Springtime means rainstorms, and the Venture 2 is a budget-friendly way to stay dry, whether you’re dodging drops on your way to work or stuck in a torrential downpour miles from the trailhead. Clean lines help it look sharp, while the 2.5-layer DryVent waterproof-breathable laminate and underarm vents dump unwanted heat buildup.
This lightweight, soft-shell hoodie is built for comfort on all-day missions. This jacket has windproof coverage in the hood and arms, but if you're looking for more insulation, layer up with a warm long-sleeve base-layer underneath.
The Borod works great as a midlayer or light jacket for outings in multiple seasons. The lightweight gridded fleece interior keeps your skin cool and dry on high-output days, while maintaining insulation should the weather turn foul.
The Isabella will serve you well on your daily commute, on campus, or as a carry-on. It's outfitted with a laptop sleeve, two side pockets, a compartment for your electronics, and plenty of room for textbooks. And the cushy shoulder straps make this pack a solid option for day hikes after class.
The synthetic insulation in the Ventrix is made to be active, with gill-like vents cut into the underarms to dump heat. The soft face fabric glides easily under your shell for perfect layering when the weather turns.
This award-winning jacket has a permanent home in our editors' closets—and for good reason. The active insulation in the Ventrix is made to work with you, dumping heat as you go. Gill-like vents cut into the synthetic insulation that stretches throughout the whole jacket.
Goodbye, shaky footage. Outside contributor Brent Rose praised the Hero7 Black for its superb image stabilization. “It handles small bumps much better [than the Hero6] and does a killer job of eliminating vibration,” Rose writes. “The footage is certainly smoother and easier on the eyes (and the stomach).”
Hold on to your fitness goal harder than ever before with this data-driven bundle from Garmin. It combines a multisport GPS heart rate monitor watch with an HRM-Tri heart rate chest strap to deliver top-notch results after every workout. The watch is great for everyday use too—smart notifications hit the device as soon as you get a text or call to your smartphone.
This isn’t a luggage tag in the traditional sense. It’s a GPS tag you can attach to anything you don’t want to lose like your camera, keys, or purse. Pair it with your smartphone and you can click a button to sound an alarm on the Tile that can be heard for 300 feet, or use the GPS feature to track the item that’s missing.
Our gear editor praised Patagonia's Nine Trails packs for their clean efficiency: “With a minimalist design and well-considered features, Patagonia has proven that when it comes to daypacks, simpler is better,” he writes. It's available in both men's and women's sizes from 14 liters to 36 liters.
This bag is a staple for summer surf trips, shoulder-season backpacking trips, and overnight forays into the mountains. It’s light and compact enough for taking out on the trail, yet still comfy enough for casual car-camping adventures, and it comes at a price that won’t destroy your summer-wandering budget.
Don't venture into the woods without your favorite frosty beverage stored inside this mega-insulated 64-ounce growler. The wide mouth and one-hand handle design allow you to pour a pint easily without making a mess. The growler is made from vacuum-sealed stainless steel to insulate cold drinks for 16 hours and hot for 12 hours.
After testing this new Hydro Flask product, our Gear Guy said that it became his favorite cooler-pack hybrid mostly because of how comfortable and easy to carry it is. Credit the padded shoulder straps and sleek design.
Pack right and a 34-liter rucksack is an ideal weekender. But snow camping? That’s where the “+” comes in. With all your avy gear in a dedicated pocket, goggles and other essentials stashed in the brain, and skins in the zippered side sleeves, the Rise's cavernous main compartment is left open for a whole lotta love.
Stio teamed up with Polartec to create a line of baselayers made with merino wool and synthetic fibers. The result? Breathable, durable pieces that move moisture off the skin. The Power Wool was the only baselayer gear editor Ben Fox wore on a four-day hut trip. “The Basis was completely odorless,” he writes.
Camping with a partner? Our Gear Guy recommends the Apollo, which uses a QuadPower LED light that pumps out 250 lumens, and features a non-glaring case and fold-down legs. It's ideal for lighting up your camp kitchen or tent.
Gear editor Emily Reed loves the Eldris, which is a staple of her camping box. She finds the oversize handle and fixed blade effective for whittling and chopping kindling. Plus, the affordable price means it's not a devastating loss if she accidentally forgets the knife at a campsite. Read her full review here.
Part Tupperware, part dinnerware, the MealKit 2.0 combines storage and serving with its system of plates, bowls, cups and lids, making it easy to prep the meal at home and store it in a cooler on the way to the perfect picnic spot. They’re a lot lighter than many other picnic dinnerware options and fairly reasonable to boot.
This practical, sturdy headlamp pumps out 70 lumens of light and only weighs 3.2 ounces. The four-LED lamp is surprisingly feature-rich considering its affordable price tag: it has five different light settings, and can be dimmed or brightened simply by holding a finger down on the button.
With ten LEDs that produce 50 lumens, this lantern has a frosted plastic body that casts prettier light than most fixtures at five-star resorts. It has three settings (low, medium, and high), a separate button to check the remaining power, and a strap for carrying and hanging.
We love the Klettersack for its beautiful, high-quality design. Our tester praised the bag's bomber construction, writing "the 22-liter pack features 1,000-denier Cordura fabric and heavy duty hardware so it'll put up with years of day-hike abuse."
This jacket is as high-tech as it looks. Packed with premium 850-fill down in the torso and synthetic insulation elsewhere, the Cerium LT is constructed to retain warmth where you need it (around your core) and manage moisture everywhere else. You'll barely notice it in your pack (it weighs just 9.7 ounces).
Our testers put the Z/Cloud X sandals through the paces and came away impressed. One wrote: l've hiked for miles on end in them, from rocky scrambles in Grand Teton National Park to ruins in the ancient city of Petra, Jordan, and dusty, steep hills along other parts of the Jordan Trail.
Keep your digits extra warm this winter with a refillable hand warmer from Zippo. Fill the interior chamber with lighter fluid, light the flame, close the lid, slip it in your pocket, and enjoy heat for up to 12 hours. When the heat runs out, repeat the process for endless warmth all winter long.
The Roo Double camping hammock is optimized for adventure. It's durable, tear resistant, comfortable, and strong enough for two campers—or a baby elephant. Your pick. Diamond ripstop nylon adds reinforcement to protect against tearing and ripping and results in the 500-pound weight capacity.
The Deviator is one of our favorite mid-layers. It uses hydrophobic Polartec Alpha insulation, which moves water away from your body.
The easy-to-set-up Discovery fits four people and has two vents for airflow. At 10.4 pounds, it's a better fit for car camping than mutli-day backcountry excursions. Still, we love this shelter for its full-coverage rainfly and the well-designed interior pockets.
The River Bank bridges the gap between a small power bank designed to charge your phone and a large portable generator made to power just about everything. It features two USB-C ports and two USB ports as well as a Qi wireless charging pad, so you can charge a laptop, phone, drone, or even jump-start your car. It holds its charge for up to six months and only weighs two pounds.
Our testers picked the Caldera 2 as one of the best trail runners of summer 2018. “This was the shoe we reached for when we wanted to take it easy on our dogs,” they wrote. “On most trails, the Caldera provided ample protection.”
Constructed with 2.5-layer GORE-TEX, the Paclite Stretch is built to brush off rain showers and snow. With vents to dump heat and a drop-tail hem that protects your lower half from downpours, it's a complete waterproof package.
Pair the Kyanite fleece vest with a base layer, or wear it under a shell when you're huffing it on switchbacks. The airy Polartec insulation wicks moisture and breathes well, and the four-way stretch keeps you unrestricted.
Our tester praised this shirt in his test of the best performance flannels. “The Fjord deserves points for its 100 percent organic cotton, which felt soft and supple, and it had just enough give to never slow me down as I rode the Jabberwocky Trail outside Ashland, Oregon,” he wrote.
We featured the Challenger ATR 4 in our roundup of the best trail running shoes of 2018. Though the ATR 4s are thick-soled, testers described the shoe as “admirably nimble.” They're great all around: “Extra-long days on hardpack? Easygoing efforts? Both felt great,” our testers wrote.
Why choose between pants and shorts when you can have both? These convertible pants go easily between both by an easy access zipper above the knee. They have two great cargo pockets for maps, keys, or other small essentials.
This hoodie is as high-tech as it looks. Packed with high-quality 850-fill down in the core, the Cerium LT Down Hoodie has strategically mapped areas with synthetic insulation to resist moisture. You'll barely notice it in your pack: it weighs just 10.9-ounces.
Don't leave your offspring at home just because they can't hike on their own yet. Pack them up in the Kid Comfort Air and enjoy the outdoors as a family. This carrier adjusts to different body types and has a 14-liter gear compartment for small layers or snacks.
This is one of the best starter climbing packs on the market. Besides shoes and a rope, this kit has everything you need to hop on the rock: a comfy Corax harness, a Verso belay-rappel device, carabiner, chalk bag and chalk ball. The kit is also available with a larger harness size.
The 60-meter Ceuze is a solid rope for both indoor climbing and outdoor sport routes. The included rope bag keeps your rope clean when flaking it out and organized for travel to and from the wall.
We featured this helmet in our nine favorite pieces of peak-bagging gear. Thanks to multiple adjustment straps, you can dial in the Wall Rider to fit your dome perfectly. “Bonus points for the ultralow weight and big vents to keep your noggin cool,” our tester writes.
The Halo was designed for ultramarathons and all the extra gear they demand. The front bottle pockets keep water at the ready but also have lash points to holster trekking poles, while the pockets on the lower straps hold your phone, gels, or bars. The bladder-compatible Halo also has two pockets on the back, which are reachable without taking off the vest.
Weighing just 1.6 pounds, this chair can hold up to 320 pounds. The secret is a pairing of strong but light aluminum poles and tough 600 denier polyester fabric which creates a package that packs to the size of a Nalgene.
One of Outside columnist Jakob Schiller's favorites, this jacket is made with burly, seven-ounce waxed sailcloth and lined with soft polyester. Like fine leather, it will develop a patina that looks great the more you wear it. “[It] will not only put up with years of chopping wood but will also look better afterward,” he writes.
Made from 100-percent wool, the Walnut Ridge works just as great around the campfire as it does on your couch. Keep this blanket in the trunk of your car—just in case you decide to spread it for an impromptu picnic or lounge sesh.
Thanks to the Prairie Dusk's stretchy, organically grown cotton and polyester-canvas blend, this jacket is a solid choice for unpredictable spring and fall weather. It's prime for layering over a fleece or light shirt, and two big drop pockets on the front are roomy enough to carry your wallet, keys, and other everyday essentials.
Designed to handle a variety of snow-filled excursions, the Environ is made with a three-layer, waterproof polyester shell that can take a beating. While the outer is plenty breathable, Stio added pit zips to dump heat for high-output activities, like those grueling early-morning skins.
This ultralight, all-season insulator is filled with 60-gram Primaloft Gold insulation and features a 15 denier polyester outer with a DWR coating. A secret bonus: the Azura's interior pocket acts as a stuff sack—that means you can convert your jacket into a pillow at camp or when traveling.
We love the Azura LT for its versatile, four-season insulation. Built for fast-and-light ascents, this pullover performs just as well for more casual endeavors, like relaxing around the campfire. It's packed with 40-gram hydrophobic Primaloft insulation, so it will stay toasty if you're caught in a shower.
We’re a big fan of henleys, but most of ours are cotton and don’t work well in the woods or on the river. That’s why we love the Tipton, which is made from a cotton-polyester blend, so it dries four times faster than traditional shirts but still feels like a normal cotton tee. It’s become our go-to weekend shirt.
On-mountain performance meets street-savvy looks in this parka that extends down to mid-thigh—it’s the more fashion-forward sister to Stio’s Shot 7 resort jacket. The waterproof-breathable outer shell and 800-fill waterproof down insulation mean you won’t be soaked or cold after two hours of sledding.
Made from thin waffle-knit fleece with stretch panels at the cuffs, this top combines the soft feel of your favorite sweatshirt with classic button-up styling. With a collared neck, snap front, tailored fit, subtle drop tail, and muted solid colors, it’s like a mountain-casual spin on the oxford—clean, simple, classic, and practical when sweat is on the day’s agenda.
We get compliments on our Marmot Precip jackets every time we wear them. It's a simple, streamlined design that works for urban commutes as well as epic hikes. Marmot makes them in solid colors that look good on everybody and you won't find a more reliable, comfortable shell like this at a better price.
Our testers love the Thorium for its tough outer nylon shell that will resist rips (unlike the paper-thin outers of most puffies.) Bonus points for the DWR finish and water-resistant synthetic insulation at the spots most likely to get wet (the shoulders, cuffs, and underarms.) It's the complete package.
Gear editor Ben Fox praised Patagonia's Nine Trails packs for their clean efficiency: “With a minimalist design and well-considered features, Patagonia has proven that when it comes to daypacks, simpler is better,” he writes. It's available in both men's and women's sizes from 14 liters to 36 liters.
One of our favorite pieces of ski gear, this shell is made with bomber three-layer Gore-Tex and fully-sealed seams to brush off nasty snow storms. Our testers called it “an investment in staying dry.” It also has a helmet-compatible hood, powder skirt, and underarm vents to dump heat.
Our columnist Wes Siler tested the Tango Duo Slim in his comprehensive review of couple's backpacking gear. The sleeping bag weighs in at 2.6 pounds and has a 30-degree temperature rating, making it ideal for three-season backpacking.
This stainless steel bottle will keep your coffee hot and your iced tea chilly, thanks to its double-wall vacuum insulation. Yeti's TripleHaul cap makes it 100 percent leakproof, so don't be afraid to toss it in your pack with other weekend sundries.
This superlight jacket is filled with the company’s brand-new PlumaFill insulation, made of hydrophobic polyester fibers that mimic the structure of down—gossamer tendrils radiating from a central spine. Rather than being blown into baffles like other synthetic down, the PlumaFill is tacked between sheets of ten-denier nylon fabric in long strands, so it won’t shift and create cold spots.
We love Topo Designs for their functional, well-designed packs, and the Rover is no exception. Great for both the trail and the commute, the Rover is coated with burly pack cloth and Cordura, and its brightly colored compartments keep your gear easily organized.
The Kinvaras blew us away during testing, so naturally, we picked them as one of the best road runners of 2018. They “accommodate long, pounding runs and mellow days when you want to go easy on your legs,” our testers wrote.
We featured these zero-drop shoes in our roundup of the best trail runners of 2018. “The shoe takes a centrist’s approach to foam and protection, with a slow, cruisey vibe and a wide, boxy fit best suited for ambling runs on less technical trails,” our tester wrote.
We gave these gloves a nod in our 2018 Winter Buyer's Guide. Our tester wrote: “As dexterous as your hands, just tougher and warmer. When you need precision without going numb, slip on these wool-lined gloves made from soft cow-belly leather. Curved fingers and elastic wrists keep them snug while you clean out the woodstove.”
The perfect outer layer for climbing, hiking, or anything active, the Alpine Start has a gusseted construction, which allows for complete freedom of movement, and the hood fits over your climbing helmet for added weather protection when the wind picks up in the afternoon. It's highly packable and stows in its own chest pocket when not in use.
Pairing a removable insulation box with an outer shell, the Cooloir was a breeze to hose down and dry out after a trip. It’s large enough to pack lunch for four, but we wouldn’t trust it to keep cheese cold for more than 48 hours.
Iterations of the R1 have been on the market for years, but it’s still the ideal layering piece for a variety of activities, and it’s our favorite overall fleece. The R1 uses Polartec’s Power Grid fabric—tiny squares of thicker fleece arranged in a grid pattern and separated by thinner fleece fabric. The pattern is meant to increase air transfer and reduce the material’s overall weight.
The SuperFly has served gear editor Jeremy Rellosa for years without fail. “I've taken this stove everywhere from Nepal to Patagonia, and it's kept my trail food warm and my backpack happy because it's easy to use, clean, and stow,” he says.
One of our favorite trail running shoes of 2017, the Trailbender impressed testers with its cushioning. “We were pleasantly surprised by how well this shoe bombed full-speed down deeply rutted trails,” they wrote. “It's a confident, cushioned shoe that delivers support, not just stack.”
Contributor Justin Nyberg picked the Caldera 2 as one of the best trail runners of summer 2018. “This was the shoe we reached for when we wanted to take it easy on our dogs,” he wrote. “On most trails, the Caldera provided ample protection.”
These emerged as the best budget leggings in our editor’s test. “I’m continually delighted,” she concluded, “by these budget-friendly leggings. Sure, they don’t have many bells and whistles, but they get the job done without compromising important features.”
A flashlight and lantern in one, the Orbit is great to have around camp when night hits. The 105-lumen light operates with one button to transition among flashlight, lantern, and dual (lantern and flashlight both illuminated) modes.
Astral has long been our go-to brand for quality life jackets with bang-up features. The Layla is no exception, with a women-specific fit that allows more room in the chest; its slimmer front profile reduces chafing while you’re out on long paddles.
Perfect for hiking, climbing, or layering during cold weather pursuits, the Screeline technical pants are made from a mixture of nylon and spandex and are treated with a DWR coating to resist light rain and spills. They have a UPF rating of 50 and a drawcord hem adjustment to tighten over boots or around your ankle.
Our tester loved the ability to seamlessly swap between AAA batteries and the rechargeable ones that come with the ReVolt. And the torch has a max output of 300 lumens, which is nearly bright enough to light up an entire campsite.
A good pair of slippers can be a game changer in cold winter months. These ones have a fleece lining to wick moisture and durable sidewalls made of suede. Skid-resistant outsoles mean you can wear them both inside and outside, and don’t worry about keeping them clean: they’re machine washable.
Made from water-resistant nylon and stuffed with a few grams of synthetic insulation, the Howser III is perfect for frosty morning walks to the coffee shop or long winter nights in the cabin. A non-marking rubber sole won't mess up your floors if you decide to wear it indoors.
It seems like every week one of our writers praises the performance qualities of the Buff. Made from soft polyester microfiber, you can use it as a neck warmer, twist the ends together to make a hat, or even wear it as a bandana.
Get your finger out of the shot with this small extender handle, which is especially handy on water-based adventures. The bottom of the grip has a flotation device that will keep your camera from sinking to the bottom of the ocean when you get smacked by a rogue wave.
Easily the most versatile mount you can buy, this accessory turns your ski pole into a selfie stick for powder-heavy face shots. It also fits multiple positions on your bike: stick it on your bars for head-first action, or turn it backward on your seat post to capture a friend ripping behind you. The base rotates 360 degrees and features multiple secure positions for the perfect angle.
Hestra has been making gloves since 1936 and they know what they’re doing— every single pair of their gloves are made in their own factories and they personally source all materials. The Army Leather Couloir is a classic sport glove that combines leather and a high tech polyester lining to keep your hands warm during cold, damp days.
These gloves raised nearly $225,000 when they debuted on Kickstarter in 2016. Gear editor Jakob Schiller is a big fan writing, "with a waxed and baked leather outer, waterproof-breathable membrane, and Thinsulate insulation, they're great for frigid resort ski days while being breathable enough for long backcountry missions."
Outside contributor Jason Heaton loves the new Huckberry line, saying "Huckberry’s Flint and Tinder line, a new collection made entirely in the U.S., enables lots of mixing and matching right through shoulder season." The Crossback Work shirt is made from midweight indigo denim and is cut, sewn, and washed in El Paso, Texas.
The shirt jacket is an essential layer for anyone living in colder climates. Built from the same cut as Patagonia's iconic Fjord flannel, this shacket ramps up the warmth level thanks to a thin layer of polyester on the inside. Of course, on the outside, it still looks like your favorite flannel.
These slippers are an all-time favorite of gear editor Ben Fox. Each pair is handcrafted from toasty 100 percent pure, natural wool, which naturally wicks moisture from your feet so they're always warm and dry. Plus, the rubber sole means you can wear them outside.
Designed to move with you through the elements in fall and then transition into a trusty midlayer for winter, the Nova Jacket is stuffed with Primaloft Gold insulation and has a stylish, modern cut that's flattering without being restricting.
The design of this jacket is based on the iconic M65 field jacket issued to American troops, but Proof has borrowed smart modern materials for their updated version. We particularly love the outer fabric, which maintains that matte green finish but comes coated with DWR and has four-way stretch for unrestricted movement. Inside, the jacket is packed with 80 grams of cozy synthetic insulation.
The Performance Better Sweater is the perfect mid layer for cold-weather pursuits. The side panels are stretchy for extra mobility and the back hem is lower for better protection against the elements.
Two vests in one, the Bivy is reversible and insulated with 600-fill recycled down. Each side is treated with DWR to resist light rain or snow and the drop in hand pockets have a button closure for extra security.
Go fast and light up the mountain and enjoy the comfort of the Gea's on your way down. Each boot weighs just over two-pounds and the front tongue is designed to open up wide for easy entry. Plus the integrated ski/walk mechanism makes it easy to go from climbing to descending.
The best part about the Wilder is that while it excels at being wet, it feels just as comfortable on land. It features a mesh and neoprene upper on a grippy, lugged outsole. That upper is reinforced for support with a heel cup in the back and rubber vamps toward the front. Dual climbing shoe-inspired tabs make getting in easy, and a speed lace system locks the foot into place.
One of the most popular AT boots of the year, the Maestrale RS is built on a wide, 101mm last for super comfort on the ascent. The shell is made from Grilamid, a lightweight plastic that's reinforced with carbon fiber for increased rigidity without extra weight. The entire cuff is vented to let body heat escape and is backed by a waterproof, breathable membrane so snow doesn't work its way in.
This is our favorite midwinter morning top. It's stuffed with just enough synthetic fill to keep you warm while brushing off the car and driving to the mountain and an extra layer of fabric across the shoulder and on the forearms will tame sharp ski edges.
On top of the traditional crampon-style claws underfoot, MSR serrated the edges of the Lightning Ascent. It looks like a snow saw—and bites like one, too. The extra spikes provide stellar all-over grip and lateral stability on steep, icy traverses.
When it was first released in 2010, we called the Snowshot “one of the least expensive jackets in our test but also a tester favorite.” The three-in-one design lets you wear a waterproof shell or insulated liner—or both together for really cold weather.
At long last, the holy grail of waterproof jackets. The Interstellar blew our crew away with an uncanny mix of weatherproofing, breathability, and stretch. “It feels softer than a soft shell but as waterproof as any hard shell I’ve used,” said one tester. “Not to mention that it’s the most breathable rain shell imaginable.”
The stretchy face fabric adds durability and breathability and a DWR treatment repels water, dirt, and oil. The PrimaLoft Silver synthetic insulation provides consistent warmth, even through the start and stop cycle of alpine climbing and backcountry skiing. When the snow begins to fall, pull the adjustable hood over your helmet for extra weather protection.
The Traverse is an all-aluminum touring pole that's durable enough for any day of backcountry skiing. Black Diamond's FlickLock system makes adjustability easy and the ergonomically shaped grip and rubber grip extension feel natural when choking up while sidehilling on the skin track.
Quality insulation doesn’t have to be expensive. Case in point: the REI Co-op 650 Down jacket. It weighs just 10.5 ounces and packs into its own pocket when you don’t need it. It’s a perfect midlayer for colder winter pursuits, thanks to the 650-fill down insulation, and it’s lightweight enough to be a good stand-alone piece in milder weather.
The Solstice is a rugged jogging stroller, complete with inflatable tires that roll smoothly over all types of terrain. It’s got plenty of room for snacks and baby gear, but what really impressed testers was its ease of use. “The ability to fold and unfold with one hand is genius,” one wrote.
The stretchy face fabric adds durability and breathability and a DWR treatment repels water, dirt, and oil. The PrimaLoft Silver synthetic insulation provides consistent warmth, even through the start and stop cycle of alpine climbing and backcountry skiing. When the snow begins to fall, pull the adjustable hood over your helmet for extra weather protection.
Trekking poles help keep you stable on sketchy sections of trail, and when you’re wearing a heavy pack they can transfer some of the load to your arms, relieving your back and shoulders. The Trail Backs have low-profile trekking baskets, non-slip EVA foam grips, and nylon webbing straps with woven lining for increased comfort.
The Coffee Flask keeps beverages cold for 16 hours, so you’ll never sip on lukewarm coffee again. The smartly designed flip lid essentially eliminates any spills. Note: the sale price will only appear once the product has been added to your cart.
The Gurkhali's are one of gear editor Will Egensteiner's favorite pants. They're made with a blend of Dyneema, cotton, and Lycra, so they provide range of motion and durability. For those reasons, they're a great fit for the office and the trail. “Pretty soon I’ll have no reason to change out of them,” Will writes.
The Lowdown Slims are gear editor Ariella Gintzler's go-to shades. “A smaller, skinnier version of Smith’s classic Lowdown frame, the Lowdown Slim has the same sporty yet stylish androgynous shape that fits in equally well on a snowfield, singletrack, or sidewalk,” she writes.
REI’s Flash series of packs takes a minimalist approach. The 22-liter version maintains Flash simplicity while incorporating smart features like external stash pockets big enough for bottles, a bladder sleeve and port, and external tool loops in case you’re bringing trekking poles. The Flash 22 was featured in our roundup of the daypacks we use most.
No frills but packed full of dependability—the Trail trekking poles offer easy-to-use FlickLock adjustment points that promise no slipping while you're hiking. The poles extend from 23 inches to 49 inches and pack easily into suitcases or on the exterior of backpacks.
One of the top shoes from our 2017 Summer Buyer's Guide, the Trailbender is "a thick, cruisey softy, best for meandering epics over hill and dale. Though it offered a somewhat clunky ride overall, we were pleasantly surprised by how well this shoe bombed full-speed down deeply rutted trails—not a fun prospect in most high-stack maximalist shoes."
Sole is known for its heat-moldable footbeds, but for the Performance, the company collaborated with pro skier Chris Davenport to create a slim insert that provides support without added cushion. It has Polygiene odor-control technology in a moisture-wicking top sheet and a 100 percent recycled-cork base. The footbed promotes natural foot alignment and equalizes pressure through the running shoes.
CEP is known for its compression layers, and this sock has graduated compression features that help enhance circulation through the calf and foot. But you’ll really appreciate the blend of silk, merino wool, and synthetic fibers that maximize the warmth and comfort of these socks. The seamless toe closure doesn’t hurt either, whether you’re running or ski touring.
The Merino 150 is Smartwool’s lightest base layer. Wear it as a solo piece during warmer months or the first layer for winter pursuits. It’s mostly merino wool with some nylon mixed in for durability, but you get merino’s signature softness and antistink properties. The wicking and quick-dry capabilities of the layer are legendary, which is key when you’re running during cold temperatures.
The 21-liter Urban Assault bag is inspired by military assault rucksacks and is the epitome of clean, functional design. A unique three-zip closure on the front allows you to easily see the contents of your bag without having to dump it out. The face fabric is a super durable 500-denier Cordura, which you'll be hard-pressed to tear.
The Vibe was featured on a list of the best affordable bike lights, where our tester appreciated “a sensor, which turns the light on when there’s motion and turns the light off when the bike is parked so you never waste your battery by forgetting to hit the off button.”
These are some of Outside editor Jakob Schiller's favorite pair of approach shoes. "I loved them so much I wore one pair for four years straight through my first couple of photojournalism jobs because the thick all-leather build and highly cushioned soles put up with everything I faced daily—from muddy rodeo fields to long, boring press conferences where I stood still for hours on end."
These Chelsea boots look good and perform well, too. Made from a waterproof leather upper with a canvas lining, the boots slip on and off easily. The rubber outsoles have a slight heel and are made to be grippy on rocks and light snow.
Go for a run with your little ones (the Chariot fits up to two kids up to 100 pounds) and pack it up small to store easily in your trunk or garage afterward. With different attachments, this stroller can be used for fours activities: biking, jogging, strolling, and skiing.
The Crown2 has all the bells and whistles you need, like compression straps, a ventilated back panel, and stretch pockets on the shoulder straps hold cell phone or earbuds, but still weighs barely over two pounds. Going on a shorter trip? The roll-top closure accommodates varied load volumes making it just as easy to use this pack for an overnight as it is for a week-long adventure.
The Moab boots have been around for years now, garnering love and a cult-like following from hikers across the country. This low-volume option for women is completely waterproof and has a Vibram outsole for extra grip and durability.
Protect your eyes with these polarized sunglasses for women. The lenses reduce 99 percent of visible glare from water, snow, sand, and even pavement for better visual accuracy and decreased eye strain. An anti-reflective and hydrophobic coating help them resist reflections and water.
You don't have to pack up your skirts just because the weather is getting colder. The Parmalee is filled with 60 grams of recycled wool insulation to keep you warm. Stretchy, knit panels allow you to run to catch the subway in a pinch and the DWR coating gives you light protection against moisture.
With Spidey-like Stealth C4 rubber soles, these Guide Tennies excel as approach shoes. They also work for every day because of their clean, not-overdone aesthetics, cushy compression-molded EVA soles, and simple but fun colors. They’re not our first choice for longer hikes, but they’re perfect for overland camping trips where you’re driving for hours and then and scrambling over rocks.
An instant classic, these rain boots have waterproof, vulcanized rubber uppers that are flexible so you can walk in them comfortably. Buckles at the top of the boot allow you to tighten them down when the weather turns for extra protection and a nylon lining helps wick away foot sweat.
New Zealand-based Icebreaker has sourced the merino directly from growers since 1997 and in 2000 they were the first outfitter to launch a full line of merino performance wear. The Tech Lite Crewe for men is great for hiking or everyday wear thanks to the properties of wool—wicking, breathable, and odor-resistant.
Keep hands happy and dry with these gloves made from a waterproof Gore-tex lining and tech-compatible, nonslip synthetic palms. The brushed tricot lining adds warmth and wicks moisture when your hands get a little warm after hours on the hill.
Pick up your pace in these all-in-one running and compression shorts. The side vents work to eliminate moisture build up but in case it does, a DryFit lining wicks it away quickly. The small front pocket gives you storage for small items like cash or earphones.
Made with a waterproof nylon outer and a Gore-Tex lining, these gaiters feature a fitted design and a front tab, which latches to your boot laces to keep it secure. The retro styling ensures you stand out amoung the crowd.
The medium size of this pod will hold up to six liters of small products—like toiletries or cords. The wide zip opening makes it easy to see what you packed and what you didn't and the fun, bright orange print won't get lost in your luggage.
Featured in our 2018 Holiday Gift Guide, this yoga towel feels like a soft terry blanket. Don't let the coziness fool you, though. This puppy is all about yoga performance, with silicone dots on the bottom to grip slick studio floors and a convenient lightweight and packable build.
Skhoop, which is female-owned, makes down and synthetic skirts in all lengths, ranging from mini to ankle-length. You can adjust the side zippers to fit the temperature or your stride length, pull the skirt easily over pants and snow boots, and when you’re not wearing it, squash it down to the size of a pair of gloves.
Gear editor Ariella Gintzler loves the Houdini for its versatile, lightweight material. “The papery quality of the Houdini offers superior next-to-skin comfort; you can wear it over a short-sleeve shirt without that clammy shell sensation against your arms,” she writes. It's billed as a trail-running shell, but works just as well for climbing.
We featured Honolulu-based brand Reyn Spooner in our 2018 Summer Buyer's Guide for their vintage-inspired aloha-print shirts. The Hawaiian Christmas Shirt blends warm style with holiday spirit (looking at you, snowbirds.) It's made out of a cotton-poly blend and treated with Reyn Spooner's Weekend Wash, so it feels uber soft on your skin.
The Thyrus boot is built for day hikes and quick weekend backpacking trips. With a Perwanger waterproof leather upper and Gore-Tex liner, it’ll be a completely dry hike, regardless of how hard it’s raining. The upper and dual-density footbed are complemented by the popular Vibram Megagrip sole for traction on the worst terrain. You can get it in brown, but we dig the Johnny Cash black.
For years, Vasque has been known for its straight-out-of-the-box comfort and has made a substantial contribution to the world of leather hiking boots with its classic Sundowner. The sportier St. Elias has a full-grain all-leather upper with a Gore-Tex waterproof liner, a soft EVA footbed for cushion, and a urethane shank for support and protection against sharp rocks.
This simple yet versatile midweight jacket has a supremely casual vibe—perfect for running errands around town. The 650-fill down stuffing makes it light and warm, while the cool snap closure adds style points and eliminates the fuss of a zipper.
Marmot's Ama Dablam is an excellent midweight expedition parka. It has a long cut, full hood, and 800-fill down, all in a sub-three-pound package. And thanks to the hexagonal quilting, it has a slimmer, sleeker cut than many other puffies.
The Sense Rides are one of our favorite trail runners. The drawcord lacing system makes them easy to slip on, they don't require a break-in period, and, thanks to the thick, cushioned midsole, our feet are always happy after a few miles of trail-chomping.
The H2No fabric that Patagonia uses for the Rainshadow is fully waterproof and fairly breathable, but cheaper to produce than Gore-Tex, keeping the cost of the jacket low. A helmet-compatible hood with a visor, watertight zippers, and a draw-cord at the hem are just a few of the highlights of this fully featured rain shell.
The Down Sweater delivers ultralight, compressible warmth for your cold-weather fun outside while everyone else is languishing at the gym or huddled by the fireplace. It's stuffed with sustainably sourced 800 fill down and covered in a recycled ripstop nylon shell with a DWR coating.
Once winter sets in, a sturdy, warm pair of winter boots are an essential component to your daily life. We love the Chelsea version of the Cheyanne for it’s easy-to-slip-on fit and durable leather upper and classic rubber lower half. It’s lined with 200-gram synthetic insulation, allowing for work or play in cold conditions.
Fully taped waterproof construction keeps your feet dry while 200-gram insulation keeps toes warm and toasty during that early morning drive to the mountain for first tracks. When you take off your uncomfortable plastic ski boots, the Cheyannes, with their removable molded EVA footbeds, will feel like walking on clouds as you slip them on for apres-ski drinks.
Editor Ben Fox loves the Transcendent for its uber-warm protection from the elements: “When you’re on a chilly belay or ripping off touring skins on an exposed summit and the wind starts gusting, you’ll be thankful for the Transcendent’s lofty, lightweight 650-fill down insulation, wind-resistant fabric, and cozy hood,” Fox says.
Fend off chills and cold weather in the Ghost Whisperer Reversible jacket. Nikwax treated 800-fill down insulation retains heat while also resisting moisture so the jacket can be worn in light rain and snow and still provide ample protection from the elements.
Ideal for speedy missions in the alpine, the SummitRocket can hold between 10 and 25 pounds of gear. The shoulder straps (with four pockets) hug your chest and distribute weight evenly. Ice climbers, give kudos to Mountain Hardwear for throwing in two ice tool holders and mini daisy chains.
The Lamina’s insulation is selectively zoned to maximize warmth where you need it most while reducing weight and bulk in other areas. The result is a 0-degree bag that insulates more efficiently while saving weight and packing down smaller. This women's model also packs more insulation than men's bags since women have been proven to sleep at colder temperatures than their male counterparts.
Built with underarm gussets for more mobility, this shirt moves with you whether you're clinking glasses or reaching for the final hold on a route. Cotton blend construction adds softness and a touch of moisture management so you can focus on having a good time instead of a wardrobe malfunction.
This DWR-treated softshell packs down into its own pocket so it can be easily pulled out/stashed when the clouds roll in. Slip it on when the gusts come out to play, and the climbing-specific gussets keep your arms moving freely even as its nylon face blocks the wind. The Schoeller softshell fabric is highly breathable, so you can hike fast and climb hard.
Thanks to its T-back, this polyester top allows for free range of movement and breathability. The light and stretchy polyester and elastane blended fabric wicks moisture and dries quickly to keep you looking fresh for the post-send beverages back home.
This bag's resilient polyester shell will stand up to seasons of abuse, while its synthetic insulation continues to insulate even if you set up on soggy ground. Lofty synthetic insulation combines hollow fibers and denser, solid synthetic fibers to create a balance of warmth, softness, and compressibility for easy packing, whether you're car camping for the weekend or on a longer adventure.
It may be so hot and humid outside that your hair feels like it never left the shower, but at least the Short-Sleeve A/C Lightweight Top helps. With a blend of ultralight organic cotton and breathable hemp crafted into a slightly raised texture, this shirt helps cool you down against the sticky heat outside.
Made with lightweight, quick-drying polyester ripstop fabric, the Sol Patrol shirt is a warm-weather staple. The shirt also offers UPF 30 sun protection.
The ultralight Ascensionist is made with double-ripstop nylon and features one large sinch compartment for stuffing gear on-the-go. It's just as good for hauling gear up a multi-pitch wall as it is at making a short the local crag.
Now 35 years in, Nike’s oldest running shoe is sweeter than ever. The midsole of the Pegasus is snappy, aided by an eye-catching beveled heel and slight rocker—transitions were easygoing and effortless. We featured the Pegasus as one of the best women's running shoes of 2019.
An updated version of our go-to outdoor pants, the Zion Straights take the comfort from their predecessors and add a more streamlined cut. One bonus: less muddy, flappy cuffs on those dirty days on the trail.
The SingleTrack 18 pack is ideal for runners, hikers, and bikers who want to carry gear without slowing down. It’s not big, but it has enough room for the essentials and trades unnecessary features for a few well-placed organizer pockets.
If you have smaller feet (size 5 or 6), this is a great deal on a pair of Chacos. The ZX/3 has the same features of the award-winning Z1's, including a sturdy sole and anti-microbial footbed, in a slightly more stylish, three-strap design.
One of the top picks of our 2017 Summer Buyer's Guide, the Trailbender is "a thick, cruisey softy, best for meandering epics over hill and dale. Though it offered a somewhat clunky ride overall, we were pleasantly surprised by how well this shoe bombed full-speed down deeply rutted trails—not a fun prospect in most high-stack maximalist shoes."
Big enough to fit a Kindle or other small tablet, there’s also enough room for all your cords, batteries, headphones, and whatever else you’re toting. The interior organization is a mix of elastic straps, mesh pockets, and a large zippered pocket. There’s even enough room for pens and a slim zipper pocket on the outside, too.
Made of a cotton polyester blend, these Chinos have a casual look and a technical feel. We wore ours to the office and then kept them on for an after-work hike. We suggest you size up as the 32-inch waist feels a lot more like a 31.
Although it sports a similar cut and the same Primaloft insulation as the Sherpa, this jacket is decidedly more stylish. It sports oversized metal zippers and forgoes baffles for a cleaner look that can be dressed up for date night.
The Trekkers are a great multi-sport glove that will keep your hands warm on chilly hikes. They're ultra-breathable and grippy, too, making them our go-to option for high-output adventures. Take an extra 20 percent off with code NEWGEAR2019 at checkout.
The Air Core Insulated sleeping pad offers a 4.1 R-value, with a comfort range down to 15 degrees. Complete with a ripstop nylon outer and stuffed with a thin layer PrimaLoft insulation, it’s a durable multi-season pad for those chilly nights under the stars.
Nearly every guy in the Outside office has a pair of Stretch Zions. That's because they're supremely comfortable (way superior to jeans) and the DWR-treated nylon-Spandex fabric makes them a solid choice for hiking and climbing.
The Sonic Pro topped our list of the best waders for women. They worked well for testers with a variety of chest sizes; in general, testers found they fit "more like your favorite pair of jeans than the balloon-style waders of yesteryear."
These pants are made from a stretchy, ripstop-nylon spandex blend and then coated with a DWR finish. Our Gear Guy thinks they're the best pants for hiking. Although he found them lacking in breathability, he called them otherwise "damn near perfect. They're so functional and so comfy that I credit them with getting me on the trail more often," he wrote.
Thanks to its light yet durable build, the Minimalist earned a place in our Reader's Choice roundup of the best men’s rain jackets. "It has a minimal weight to it but feels substantial enough to be more than just a raincoat," one tester wrote. "It's truly a wind-proof waterproof shell."
The mountain bike-specific Tectal features a clean style and unibody construction, which extends coverage over the back of the head and temples. POC also carves 15 vents and a lengthy system of air channels throughout so you won't overheat under your lid when you start working hard on a climb.
The GLCR impressed us so much that we gave it a Gear of the Show award . It has a water reservoir integrated into the powder skirt with a hose that runs along the inside of the jacket. All that is to say that instead of awkwardly carrying a bottle on the slopes, or going thirsty, you can now hydrate via bite valve.
The Rendezvous is rated as one of the best camp chairs on Amazon. One reviewer praised the chair for its simple design: "[It's] incredibly sturdy, and there is no need for a cup holder since you are so low to the ground."
Last year, we named this one of the best active midlayers for women. Much of its performance chops come from the Polartec Alpha Direct insulation, which looks like shag carpet and uses a big, open weave to vent sweat, while also holding in just the right amount of body heat.