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Outside Gear Guide cover image: Hoka trail running shoe on rocky background

The 2022 Summer Gear Guide

341 field-tested favorites for summer adventure

Editor's Letter

New Beginnings

This is a gear guide unlike any other. It is a partnership between five magazines—Outside, Backpacker, Beta, VeloNews, and Climbing, all siblings under Outside Interactive Inc. These pages represent the collective efforts of ten gear editors, 40 category managers, and nearly 150 testers. It is the biggest, most comprehensive, and most exhaustive gear guide any of us have produced. That’s saying a lot, seeing as the editors who worked on it have more than five decades of combined experience.

How did this work? Team members from each magazine spent weeks planning as a group, then divided and conquered. Outside and VeloNews worked together on road and gravel biking. The Beta crew handled mountain biking, including vital data from their week-long bike test in British Columbia (see Mountain Bikes). The Climbing gang logged hundreds of pitches to find the best climbing shoes and equipment. Meanwhile, the Backpacker bunch focused on hiking apparel, footwear, and multi-day gear, and the Outside magazine team handled car camping, watersports, travel, and fitness. Each team then nominated and re-tested Editors’ Choice finalists. The highlight: a four-day trip through Panama’s Parque Internacional La Amistad with Backpacker and Outside. Reviews of award winners like the Deuter AirContact Ultra pack and Box Synergy7 solar panel are the result.

When all was said and done, our family of gear nerds—bigger, more seasoned, and more specialized than ever before—wound up testing more than 1,000 products and covering thousands of miles from high-alpine peaks to lowland forests to coastal waterways, in order to present you, our members and readers, with the best gear for summer adventures. I won’t lie: it was a lot of hard work. But it was also an incredible opportunity for growth. By sharing information on our testing tactics, we learned a lot from one another. We debated gear-reviewing philosophy and evolved our collective understanding of what makes a product writeup useful and engaging. And the learning has only just begun. This first unified Gear Guide is just that: a beginning. We have big plans for the chapters to come, and can’t wait to share them with you. —Ariella Gintzler, editor


This pack bridges the gap between ultralight and ultracomfy

Shoulder the load and make miles with these trail-ready rucksacks

This nifty container makes gear organization a cinch

These bags and pads will keep you warm and promote healthy sleep without weighing down your pack

With the right tent you can protect yourself from the weather, spread out in luxury, and settle into a home away from home

Finally, a hiking boot that can truly do it all

These hikers will help you carry your load and stay comfortable and secure, no matter the terrain

Fend off water and wind with these breathable, packable jackets

Scarpa is pushing approach shoes to new heights—and distances

These bags redefine carrying comfort

These shelters score major comfort points

The comfiest base-camp bedding

Pants made by—and for—plus-size female hikers

Technical layers for any occasion

Technical layers for any occasion

These accessories might not make or break your trip, but you’ll sure be glad you packed them

A lightning-fast water filter makes staying hydrated on the trail easier than ever

Feast-making cookware that won’t slow you down

A five-star kit for base-camp meals

A cool kit for eager little adventurers

Keep your pup safe and stylish on the trail with these seven accessories

A reliable workhorse that will last for years

From the backcountry to the airport, this pack has you covered

A beginner friendly backpacking pack with everything you need—and nothing you don’t

This shelter is a versatile three-season performer

A portable three-person tent for deep backcountry adventures

For comfort and storage space, this shelter is hard to beat


From the park to the podium, the Privateer 141 does it all

Rigs to put a smile on anyone’s face

These rigs impressed us with fresh design

Allied’s new gravel-road crossover bike is the best two-in-one we’ve ever tested

Top-notch rigs for riding where the pavement ends

These motor-equipped rides are both fun and functional

Devices bringing innovation to the trails and beyond

Round out your trail kit and get riding

A secure connection to your bike starts with your feet

These top-notch lids won us over

Rigorous testing was no match for these pieces

Rigorous testing was no match for these pieces

Step up your cycling game with these road, gravel, and spin shoes

On-bike essentials for a better ride

A cycling outfit that everyone will love

A cycling outfit that everyone will love

These lids tick all our boxes

Clothing and accessories for urban riding


Purpose-built platforms for a variety of experiences

A new wave of inflatables is approaching shore

Leave the heavy lifting to these pieces

Masterful sleds for a variety of conditions


This shoe brings carbon-plated speed to the masses

These rugged runners love to rally

Blisters are history with this snug, no-slip pair

Kicks for logging tarmac miles

There’s a lot more to these bottoms than meets the eye

Don’t be afraid to sweat it out in these running pieces

Don’t be afraid to sweat it out in these running pieces

Carryall solutions for every kind of run

Unlock your project with this cragging gear

Quality rubber is the most important part of your crag bag

Focus on your session—not your clothes

Focus on your session—not your clothes

This featherlight racerback doesn’t sacrifice support

The best comfort and performance for all levels of activity

Embrace the heat and take your practice deeper

There’s a great new wearable for every kind of athletic goal

This travel speaker impresses with studio-quality sound

You’ll want to know about these earbuds


This portable, packable device will repel mosquitoes no matter where you take it

These bags’ innovative features make them standouts for adventure travel

Winning shades for every kind of adventure

These rigs make car camping easy

The best gear for staying put outside

This compact solar panel will juice up your next long-distance trek

Upgrade to these versatile trip staples

We adore these easy breezy on-the-road pieces

The best gear for capturing your adventures

This is the most innovative camper we’ve tested in years

Take the whole family along in this distinctive camper

You’d be hard pressed to find a better deal on a fully built camper van

The fuzzy tops we’re reaching for when summer adventures turn cool