Buying Guide
By Jeremy Berger
on 11.21.13

It doesn’t take much to pack for a day hike: throw on a coat, pull on your boots and tuck a beanie in your back pocket in case the weather turns chilly. But if you’re heading into the woods for more than a stroll, a little preparation goes a long way, whether it be technical fabrics to combat inclement weather, a portable stove to heat your three square, or dominos to entertain companions after the sun sets. We’ve got a selection of gear to get you started on your next multi-day hiking adventure.

MORE MOUNTAIN SPORTS KITS Vermont 50 Ultramarathon | Climbing Ancient Art | Summiting Mount Rainier

Helly Hansen Odin H2 Flow Jacket

Helly-Hansen-Oden-Flow-Jacket-Gear-Patrol

Helly Hansen’s Odin collection is among the best for outdoor adventure, and the H2 Flow Jacket is ideal for a multi-day excursion with unpredictable weather, be it rain, sleet or snow. The most significant feature is the H2 Flow system, insulation with Swiss cheese-style holes that make it both lightweight and well ventilated — which, coupled with a 2-layer Helly Tech Performance membrane, render it a jacket to be reckoned with. Planning to hit the slopes? Your footwear might need to change, but not your jacket.

Helly Hansen Odin Insulated Shirt

Helly-Hansen-Oden-Gear-Patrol

After you’ve pitched the tent and tapped the bottle of scotch, you can probably shed the jacket in favor of this insulated shirt, also from the Odin collection. Though it looks like hipster-approved flannel, it’s insulated with Warmcore by PrimaLoft and is quick drying in case you work up a sweat telling stories around the fire.

Stio Hardscrabble Pant

Stio-Pant-Gear-Patrol

Multi-purpose pants have come a long way from simply zipping off at the knee. Jackson Hole-based Stio has just the trousers for your journey into the wild: the Hardscrabble combines an athletic cut, articulated at the knees, with the durable and stretchy Sphero soft shell material to create a pair of pants that’s comfortable and immune to water and snow. Bonus points for the brushed tricot handwarmer pockets.

SealLine Black Canyon Boundary Pack

Seal-Line-Packs-Gear-Patrol

The Black Canyon Boundary Pack is made in Seattle from super-durable RF-welded 300D urethane double-coated nylon with a tougher 400D HD urethane-coated nylon bottom. Though not the bag to take if you’re hauling the tent and everyone else’s gear, we love SealLine bags for their simplicity and watertight Dry Seal roll-top closure.

Smartwool PhD Outdoor Light Crew Socks

Smartwool-Socks

Socks may seem like an afterthought, but comfortable feet can make or break a hike. The PhD Outdoor Light Crew socks are the Suburu of under-shoe footwear: durable, reliable and comfortable. They’re reinforced in the heel and toe and have the 4-Degree Elite Fit System, which means they don’t slip around and bunch up while you’re on the move.

E-Case iPhone Case

iPhone-Case-Gear-Patrol

It would have been nice to leave the iPhone at home in a desk drawer, but since it’s with you, you’d better protect it. In a serious downpour — or dropped in a pond — the E-Case is as reliable as it gets. It can withstand submersion in 1 meter of water for 30 minutes, and once inside, your phone is operable through the high-clarity windows and via a waterproof 4-pole headphone jack.

Smith Dover with ChromaPop

Smith-Glasses-Gear-Patrol

New from Smith is ChromaPop, a color optimizing lens technology that improves clarity and reduces eye fatigue by blocking certain colorwave intersections; basically, it takes some of the workload in deciphering color off your brain’s plate. And the Dover? Well, we just like to look good.

Mountain Hardwear Skyledge 3 DP

Hardware-Skyledge-Tent-Gear-Patrol

The Skyledge 3 DP was our favorite tent of the year, thanks in part to the DryPitch system that allows you to get the fly up first for shelter during a storm and also because it’s exceptionally light. Read our in-depth review in the GP100.

Adidas Terrex Fast R GTX

Terrex-Fast-R-Gear-Patrol

The terrain dictates the footwear, but for all-around hiking the Adidas Terrex Fast R GTX is one of the best hybrid shoes we’ve had the pleasure of trekking in. Between the grippy Continental rubber sole and the impact-reducing heel, the Fast R handles itself in a variety of terrains and weather conditions. Read the in-depth review in the GP100.

Helinox Passport Trekking Poles

Helinox-Passport-Trekking-Poles

You may know Helinox from their ultra-light Chair One camp chair. If you’re just as fond of moving as you are of reclining, consider the Passport Trekking Poles, the lightest Helinox poles available (6 ounces each). They’re affordable, portable and adjustable — everything you could ask for in a hiking pole.

MSR Reactor 1.0L Stove System

MSR-Stove-Gear-Patrol

If you plan on eating more than Clif Bars and trail mix, you’ll need a stove. MSR Reactor Stove Systems are as good as it gets: fuel efficient, compact and built to burn even in windy conditions. The 1.0L system is ideal for one to two people.

Dude Wipes

Dude-Wipes-Gear-Patrol

These were best described by one of our testers as “upmarket ass wipes”. Just remember: pack it in, pack it out.

REI Backpacker Plus Multiday First-Aid Kit

REI-Backpacker-Plus-Multiday-First-Aid-Kit

Everything is fine and dandy in the wilderness until somebody gets a nasty cut (or slips on a Dude Wipe). The first-aid kit pictured here has everything from bandages and foreceps to antacids and ibuprofen. It’s temporarily unavailable, so consider an ultralight medical set from Adventure Medical Kits.

Bare Bones Dominos

Bare-Bones-Dominos

Brooklyn-based designers The Principals collaborated with Billy Reid on this re-designed “double 6” domino set. They’re handmade, so bring them if you’re doing the type of overnight that involves a picnic table rather than rock ledges.