Everything you need for quick jaunts or all-day trips

(Smith Optics)

Smith Ramona Polarized Sunglasses 

These shades are an elegant update of the classic Wayfarer, with impact-resistant, carbonic, polarized brown lenses that make ocean waves, or even distant grizzlies, pop. 

Price $129

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(Ex Officio)

Ex Officio Give-N-Go Sport Mesh Tank

Quick-drying nylon and breathable mesh make the Give-N-Go ideal for hot-weather hikes. Wide straps cushion a backpack, while a stylish T-back shows a little shoulder from behind. 

Price $35

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Icebreaker Women’s Ellipse LS Half Zip Hoodie

Made from 75 percent merino and 25 percent recycled polyester, this hoodie keeps you warm in fickle weather. Bonus: It looks great, so you won’t need to change if you hike straight to lunch. 

Price $230

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Marmot Roam Jacket 

A wide ’70s-era stripe across the chest gives the Roam a retro look, but the highly breathable, waterproof MemBrain fabric is totally 21st century and will keep you dry and happy when it starts to pour. 

Price $140

(The North Face)

The North Face Nueva Jogger Pants

These cuffed capris, made from wicking polyester, are as comfortable as yoga pants but hold up much better when scrambling over rocks or through trees. A zippered pocket in back holds essentials like cash and lip balm. 

Price $70

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Leki Micro Vario Carbon Lady Poles 

With 100 percent carbon shafts, these folding hiking poles come in at a feathery 14.25 ounces. Fully extended, they stretch to nearly 50 inches long but pack down to just 15. Plus, the grip is 15 percent smaller than the men’s version. 

Price $199

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Chaco OutCross Evo 4 Shoes

Ventilated construction allows for maximal breathability and quick drainage if you’re in the water, but ample coverage keeps gravel from migrating under your foot. A solid chassis allows you to use them as regular low-cut hikers.

Price $120

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Osprey Mira AG 26 Pack 

The mesh-cut harness and antigravity belt conform to your back and hips while evenly distributing weight. Result: This pack feels like it’s floating, even when fully loaded. The clip-in 2.5-liter bladder is easy to fill, and there are extra storage pockets everywhere. 

Price $165

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(Princeton Tec)

Princeton Tec Sync Headlamp

Compact, water-resistant, and affordable, this headlamp puts out 90 lumens—good enough to illuminate a late-night paddle or start an emergency campfire. Tip: Always bring extra AAA batteries, just in case.

Price $30

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Hydroflask Insulated Growler

If you’re not going far, why not bring beer for you and your friends in this 64-ounce, wide-mouth, stainless steel, BPA-free growler? It’ll keep your favorite microbrew ice cold for 24 hours. (We recommend Bent Paddle Brewing Company’s Lollygagger American Pale Ale.)

Price $55

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Feetures Elite Merino+ Socks 

These technical running socks are made from sweat-wicking merino wool and bamboo. A touch of compression and a seamless toe help keep your feet blister-free all day. 

Price $16

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The Best Tents of 2016

When selecting a tent, look at the same factors you’d scrutinize when buying a house: location, size, and amenities. First up, where are you pitching camp? The deeper you lug gear into the woods, the more weight matters. If you’re heading into high-alpine environments or anywhere you might encounter serious weather, you need something with thicker fabric and more poles. If you’re car camping or sticking relatively close to the trailhead or put-in, a bigger tent with higher ceilings and ample storage compartments is a worthwhile luxury. No matter where you’re going, the little things count. Think of features like

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The Best Hiking Tech of 2016

Spending the night outside just got brighter, cleaner, and easier. (MSR) MSR Guardian Water Purifier Backcountry water pumps are easy to use and durable. Trouble is, most strip out only protozoa and bacteria, not tiny viruses. Enter the Guardian: the filter’s pores are ten times smaller than the competition’s, stopping even the smallest bugs. Price $350 Buy Now Goal Zero Nomad 7 Plus Charger Solar panels can be finicky, draining the device you’re trying to charge when daylight wanes. Not so the netbook-size Nomad 7. A light sensor keeps tabs on how much sun’s available. If clouds roll in mid-charge, the

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The Best Jackets of 2016

For diehard gear geeks, there’s no more exciting category right now than jackets. Experimentation is the name of the game, with companies trying out new cuts, materials, and construction techniques. Weights are in free fall—the lightest shell in our test came in under three ounces—while just about everything has built-in stretch, boosting freedom of movement and comfort. Designers are mixing and matching fabrics in novel ways, using bio-mapping to create jackets that are thicker where they need to be and thinner where they don’t. Even bedrock concepts of how waterproof-breathable shells should be pieced together are being upended. (Exhibit A:

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The Best Camp Cooking Tools of 2016

The best kitchen tools for base-camp chefs. (Inga Hendrickson) ​Southwest Disk UFO Discada Enterprise Wok  A two-foot-wide wok made of quarter-inch steel isn’t an unnecessary luxury: it’s a crucial part of your cooking arsenal. With 12-inch legs, it’s the perfect tool for cooking over an open flame.   Price $100 Buy Now (Timbuk2) Timbuk2 x Blue Bottle Sabbatical Coffee Kit  The bagmaker teamed up with the Bay Area java giant to create the ultimate portable brewing kit: grinder, kettle, dripper, scale, and mugs, all in one six-pack-size bundle.  Price $349 Buy Now (GSI Outdoors) GSI Outdoors Stainless Rim Plate  With a

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The Best Sleeping Bags of 2016

Your sleeping bag is arguably your most important piece of backcountry gear. If it’s cozy, you’re a happy camper. If it’s too warm or not warm enough, rubber-room constrictive, or sticky like plastic wrap, a bad bag will ruin the experience. The trick is to pick the right bag for what you’re ­doing. Insulation is the most important factor. For alpine trips, find a sack that’s rated at least ten degrees lower than the coldest temperature you expect to face. Summer trips in mild environments call for a rating between 30 and 40 degrees. During shoulder season, we reach for a

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The Best Lights of 2016

Brighten up your night. Goal Zero Lighthouse 400. (Goal Zero) Goal Zero Lighthouse Mini Lantern  Toss this eight-ounce, 210-lumen unit in your pack for the next time you get caught out in the dark. Don’t let the diminutive size fool you: the Lighthouse has some nice features, including a miniature hook, a built-in magnet, and a dimmer.  Price $60 Buy Now (Black Diamond) Black Diamond Cosmo  The three LEDs on this compact three-ounce headlamp combine into a single 160-lumen beam that can light up the trail for more than 50 yards. Even on full blast, it gets 200 hours of

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The Best Women’s Jackets of 2016

Pick the right rig, zip up, then get out. (The North Face) The North Face Cesium Anorak  Best For: Affordable Tech The Cesium has the soul of a poncho but the smart detailing of a performance shell. We threw it over our other layers in a rainstorm—it has a huge helmet-compatible hood and is made of surprisingly stretchy fabric—and stayed bone dry. It sheds ounces by forgoing extra pockets (there’s one) and an inner liner. Price $199 Buy Now (Helly Hansen) Helly Hansen Enroute Shelter  Best For: Ditching Your Yellow Slicker   This is the workhorse of the rain-jacket world. It’s dependable

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The Best Hiking Packs of 2016

Let’s start with a basic truth: no single pack does it all. Going backcountry camping with all your toys requires a big ol’ bag. Athletes moving fast and light will be happiest with a trimmed-down thoroughbred. Day hikers will appreciate a sack with utilitarian features. But none of this means you need to own a closetful of backpacks. Thanks to design evolution, there are more multi-use options to choose from than ever before. We tested daypacks that can eke out an overnight (like the Osprey Manta) and relatively lightweight big-load haulers (like the Granite Gear Lutsen). Versatility is achievable if

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The Best Multipitch Climbing Gear of 2016

When it comes to big walls, light is right. (Petzl) Petzl Arial 9.5 mm Rope   The Arial is a flowy rope that stretches just enough to provide a nice soft catch. It’s pricier than its closest competitors, but it’ll last seasons, courtesy of a Duratec Dry treatment that resists water, dirt, and abrasions. Price $230 and up Buy Now (Black Diamond) Black Diamond Vapor Helmet  With 23 vents, the Vapor is the most breathable lid we tested. The foam is surrounded by a polycarbonate shell, keeping it light enough (just 6.6 ounces) for all-day use. Price $140  Buy Now

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