The Goods: Adventure Racing

Go-fast gear for your next adrenaline-fueled run-climb-bike-hike-paddle through the woods

1. HYDRAULICS RACE PRO // A slim profile, hands-free drinking system, and accessible snack pockets make this PFD race ready. $195; www.hydraulics-nz.com

Adventure Racing
Photograph by Jens Mortensen


2. LEKI ULTRALITE TI ERGOMETRIC AS // These trekking poles are comfortable in the palms for hours on end and collapse to a compact 27 inches for easy stowing. $110; www.leki.com. Small hands? Check KOMPERDELL's superlight CARBON AIRSHOCK WOMEN poles (not pictured). $160; www.komperdell.com

3. PETZL METEOR III // Smart cutouts make this climbing helmet cool and light. The 7.7-ounce brain bucket adjusts precisely, and the integrated clip holds a headlamp in place. $89; www.petzl.com

4. THE SUMMER BUFF // Beanie, sun protector (up to UPF 50), neck warmer, wrist sweatband, tourniquet . . . This Coolmax swath of fabric is an adventure racer's most versatile piece of gear. $20; www.buff.us

5. GOLITE MULTI-SPORT PACK // Can't stop to refuel? Stow two hydration bladders and plenty of instant-access Snickers in this 1,900-cubic-inch pack. $100; www.golite.com

6. C.A.M.P. XLH 95 // You'll carry a harness much more than you'll wear it, so choose the world's lightest, at three ounces. $40; www.camp-usa.com

7. SALOMON KARMA // Instant draining, reliable traction, and one-pull lacing help these shoes ace canyon, river, and coast terrain. $90; www.salomonsports.com

8. PEARL IZUMI KAWAIHAE RACE SHORT // Eliminate chafed skin with these bike shorts and their perfectly thin chamois. $75; www.pearlizumi.com

The Goods: Bike Touring

Focus on the scenery—not your gear—by packing for long, comfortable miles

Bike Touring
Photograph by Jens Mortensen

1. RIVENDELL ATLANTIS // Handcrafted of forgiving chromoly steel and equipped with mercifully small gears (26-36-46 in front), this is the ultimate touring bike: durable and easy to pedal, even under a load. $1,400 (frame only); www.rivbike.com

2. KRYPTONITE KCL // Here's an overdue brainstorm: Get lock-tight security with a built-in LED to prevent after-dark futzing. $17; www.kryptonitelock.com

3. ORTLIEB BIKE TOURER // It's the Fort Knox of panniers: totally secure. The PU-coated, seam-welded bags are impervious to knocks, scrapes, and weather. $250 per pair; www.ortliebusa.com

4. NALINI FABIO SKULLCAP // This beanie fits neatly under your helmet for cold-weather warmth. $30; www.albabici.com

5. SHOWERS PAST ELITE JACKET // When you can't change your itinerary because of a little rain, ride on through with this trim eVent shell. The rear pocket even keeps your iPod cranking in a storm. $180; www.showerspass.com

6. PEARL IZUMI THERMAFLEECE ARM AND LEG WARMERS // These pull-ons deliver quick, efficient warmth without the bulk of extra garments. $25 (arms), $45 (legs); www.pearlizumi.com

7. ASSOS THERMAX WINTER GLOVE // Forecast iffy? This insulated glove has the dexterity of a lightweight but cuts the chill like a mitten. $63; www.assos.com

8. BOB YAK PLUS TRAILER // For bigger-than-pannier loads, the cavernous, smooth-rolling Yak is the standard. $329, with Dry Sak; www.bobgear.com

9. BLACKBURN SYSTEM X3 // Sunset coming and your B&B is still miles away? This lamp's smart charger means you'll never get left in the dark. $150; www.systemxlights.com

10. WANDERTEC CELLO BIKE CASE // This airline-approved carrying case protects your ride en route, then folds neatly onto a trailer while you're touring. $400; www.wandertec.com

The Goods: Sport Climbing

Ten indispensable cragging tools—don't leave the ground without them

Sport Climbing
Photograph by Jens Mortensen

1. FADERS SUM // Finally: an auto-locking belay device that works with ropes down to 9.1mm. $80; www.libertymountainclimbing.com

2. TRANGO SQUID // Extend your reach with this clever stick clip—attach it to Trango's eight-foot rod (sold separately) or your own painter's pole and it eliminates high first clips and lets you retrieve hanging draws. $30; www.trango.com

3. C.A.M.P. QUARTZ HARNESS // The trick auto-adjusting leg loops are Barcalounger comfortable. $65; www.camp-usa.com

4. FIVE TEN RETRO TENNIE // With grippy Stealth-rubber soles and hip skater looks, this shoe is built for rough granite—or concrete—approaches. $65; www.fiveten.com

5. MAD ROCK ROPE BUCKET // Origami meets jack-in-the-box: The bucket keeps rope in check with stiff, high sides but tacos flat for storage. $20; www.madrockclimbing.com

6. METOLIUS MONSTER MARKER ROPE // How's this for forehead-slapping innovation? The rope's ends and halfway point are marked by special threads extending from the sheath as well as a distinct ridge you can feel in the dark. $205 for the dry-treated 9.8mm; www.metoliusclimbing.com

7. BLACK DIAMOND POSITRON QUICKDRAW // With smooth, key-lock 'biners and tucked-away rubber housing, these smart draws provide lightning-fast clips. $17; www.bdel.com

8. MONTRAIL MAGNET // A stiff, slightly cambered lace-up rock shoe for high-performance edging, with the plush custom fit of thermomoldable foam. $100; www.montrail.com

9. BLURR EVILUTION // This gear bag is tough enough for the crags but not out of place at the gym café. Bonus: Now PVC-free. $100; www.blurrstuff.com

10. KRIEG CLIMBING SPECIAL-K CHALKBAG // Same perfect design, sharp new look. $21; www.kriegclimbing.com

The Goods: Scuba Diving

Head to 20,000 leagues—or at least a hundred feet—with the finest subaquatic gear

Scuba Diving
Photograph by Jens Mortensen

1. HENDERSON TITANIUM HYPERSTRETCH // Ditch the straitjacket: Four-way stretch neoprene makes this 3mm wetsuit as comfy as a sweatsuit. Even more revolutionary, the Insta Dry wetsuit (not pictured, $473) does as it says: It dries in about five minutes, using a nonabsorbent neoprene exterior. $275; www.hendersonusa.com

2. SEALIFE DC500 ELITE // By packaging the camera, housing, and flash as a set, the Elite delivers quality underwater photos at a killer price. The five-megapixel digital camera is small enough for landlubber use, too. $999; www.sealife-cameras.com

3. TUSA VISUALATOR M-14 // Masks are like shoes: Fit comes first. Start your search with the single-lens Visualator, which offers amplified vision. $75; www.tusa.com

4. REEF FISH // Was that a reef shark or sand shark? This 500-page fish-identification tome (available in a waterproof five-by-six-inch version) will put an end to topside debate. $40; www.fishid.com

5. AERIS SPORT BACKPACK // Carry logbooks, defogger, and loose items in this well-organized pack. Bonus: Fins lash neatly behind the front shock cord. $60; www.diveaeris.com

6. MARES NEMO // Forget gawky, monster dive computers—this one is so slick you can wear it to post-dive dinners. $600; www.mares.com

7. AERIS VELOCITY FULL FOOT FINS // No need for a dedicated duffel for your fins with these shorter-than-average, lightweight (2.5 lbs per pair) flippers, which deliver plenty of kick for both diving and snorkeling. $50; www.diveaeris.com

8. SCUBAPRO LAGUNA SNORKEL // The drytop ensures you always suck air, and the flexible mouthpiece is easy on the gums. $49; www.scubapro.com

The Goods: Fly-Fishing

Fly gear to get you from spring melt to winter steelhead runs

Fly-Fishing
Photograph by Jens Mortensen

1. WILLIAM JOSEPH HOOK NET // Ultralight and durable, this bamboo net hangs from any gear loop and draws quicker than a six-shooter. $59; www.williamjoseph.net

2. CLOUDVEIL 8X JACKET // The neoprene cuffs, three-ply Gore-Tex, and articulated arms create the dry comfort of an expedition jacket. $395; www.cloudveil.com

3. SAGE 490-4 TCR ROD AND 3200 REEL // Fast action and a full nine feet of graphite make this four-piece four-weight and matching reel your all-purpose kit—supple on the cast and tough in a fight. Rod, $715; reel, $315; www.sageflyfish.com

4. MAYFLY HEX-CESSORIES TROUTFISHER LANYARD // Lose the dorky vest and carry the essentials with this convenient cord. $30; www.mayflyhex.com

5. WILLIAM JOSEPH GEAR BAG CHEST // Pack everything you need for a full day's wade: lunch, hydration, and a workstation of flies. $89

6. SCOTT G2 ROD // Paired with Ross's flagship Evolution #1 reel, this ultraprecise eight-foot, 2.3-ounce, four-piece three-weight rod is your instrument for technical spring-creek fishing. Rod, $595; reel, $275; www.scottflyrod.com, www.rossreels.com

7. RISING ULTRALIGHT PLIERS // These stainless-steel grips are light, sharp, and versatile. $20; www.risingfish.net

8. UMPQUA SOUTHERN ROCKIERS TROUT HATCHBOX // Friends may mock your refined tastes when they see this hardwood-boxed, 84-fly selection, but they won't turn down your offer to sample the goods. $180; www.umpqua.com

9. SIMMS G3 GUIDE BOOT // With cobble-gripping felt soles, this boot is rapids-ready. $160; www.simmsfishing.com

10. SIMMS G3 GUIDE STOCKINGFOOTS // Constructed of tough three- and five-layer Gore-Tex, with reinforced knees and gravel guards, these waders will keep you drier than the Dolores River. $425

More Gear

Big. Crazy. Opinionated.

Thank you!

Pinterest Icon