10 Perfect Outdoors Valentine’s Day Gifts for Your S.O.

Ditch the reservation and go backpacking instead with these romantic presents. Some people are into five-star restaurants and long-stem roses. But when the stars are shining, the campfire is roaring, and the coyotes are howling, a night in the wilderness beats even the most romantic evening out. So this Valentine’s Day, we suggest you change…

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Big Agnes Debuts New Tiger Wall Tent & Sleeping Gear

Lighter, comfier, better. It’s the gear we want this season Big Agnes is a company obsessed with getting you outdoors in comfort. The newest set of Big Agnes backpacking gear for spring—the Insulated AXL Air sleeping pad, Upper Slide and Katherine SL 20 sleeping bags and the Tiger Wall UL2 tent—definitely delivers on that mission.…

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The Ultimate Continental Divide Trail Packing List

Gear up for the United States’ toughest long path with these expert picks. On a path as long, high, and remote as the Continental Divide Trail, there is little room for gear errors. For four to six months of walking, CDT thru-hikers have a laundry list of concerns that outpace those of many other long…

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Editors’ Choice 1996: The Best Backpacking Gear of the Year

The Best Backpacking Gear of the Year Each spring when we present the Editors’ Choice Awards (this is our fourth time), we invariably get asked, “Say, how do you choose the winners anyway?” To answer that question, consider what one of this year’s entrants , a pack, went through. One editor, who was headed out…

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Editors’ Choice 2005: The Best Backpacking Gear of the Year

The Best Backpacking Gear of the Year Innovation ain’t worth bugger all if it pikes out in a pinch. That’s why we took the finalists for our 13th annual best-gear awards to New Zealand: We knew the South Island’s legendary storms and rugged topography would help us peel back the last layers of hype and…

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Editors’ Choice 2018: The Best Backpacking Gear of The Year

A lightweight backpack, custom-molded boots, and the best lip balm we’ve ever tried: meet our favorite gear of the season. Mt. Taranaki, North Island, New ZealandGood gear gets the job done. Great gear makes it easy. We should know—we’ve been at this for 25 years. That’s a quarter of a century worth of big blisters,…

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Editors’ Choice Awards 2014

After months and miles of testing, we found 12 products that set new benchmarks for performance, innovation, and value. Kelty TN 2 Kelty TN 2 (Courtesy Photo)Cowboy camping is fun—the bazillion stars overhead, that sense of complete integration with nature—until the rain starts to fall. And who among us hasn’t had a late-night, bleary-eyed scramble…

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Editors’ Choice Awards 2016

How do you separate good gear from great gear? Six months of backpacking around the globe will do it. Columbia Outdry Ex Diamond Hard truth: Even the best hard shells have a weakness. Eventually, the durable water repellent (DWR) on the fabric’s exterior deteriorates. Instead of beading off the surface, water soaks in. And while…

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