What's New, Now

Today in Gear: October 20, 2014

Today in Gear: TravisMathew's glass ping pong table, Google Nexus 9, trendy-looking timber bags, Patagonia wading pants and more.

Gear for an Open-Wheel Beating

Kit: Taking on Baja

Packing perfectly for the Baja Peninsula in Mexico means being prepared for everything -- because anything can, and will, happen.

What to pack for the adventure of a lifetime

Essentials for a South African Winter Safari

Traveling too much of Africa is intimidating. Years of headlines, let alone the complications of getting there, are foreboding enough. But South Africa has come to establish itself as a gateway to the larger continent for travelers around the world. When packing for a South African safari, versatility is key; here's everything you'll need.

Moving on up

Kit: Sophomore Year

A year's worth of college puts you on a separate plane than the eager fresh faces that've just been let off the parental leash for the first time in their lives. There's a wisdom that comes with knowing the ropes -- like avoiding classes that meet more than twice a week, or where to find grease at any godforsaken hour. You've also made friends (some probably for life) and finally have a say over where you live and who you live with. Craft a smart plan, lean on your parents, and with a little bit of luck your new home might actually be a house. You've earned the extra space, now make it your own.


This Week in Gear: July 5, 2014

This Week in Gear: the 2015 Ford Focus ST, GE Link connected LEDs, Ginger infused bourbon, Trek's Edmonda SLR 10, Patagonia's Nano-Air jacket.

What's New, Now

Today in Gear: July 2, 2014

Today in Gear we're looking at better sounds from your BMW, the internet of things, an omnipotent wax, ginger bourbon and more.

Upgrade Your Skivvies

Deft Drawers: Underwear for Active Guys

Made from lightweight, wicking, breathable fabrics like merino wool, polypropylene and a host of proprietary fabrics, sports underwear designed for active guys keeps you cool and dry without bunching up when you move.

From the Latest Tech to the Tried and True

Ten Shirts that Can Take the Heat this Summer

Summer is the enemy of body temperature and presentability. But a crop of new companies is combining technical fabrics and quality cuts for easy breathing style. That isn't to say we're willing to ditch our madras and seersucker just yet, but here are 10 of our favorite lightweight shirt options, new and old.

Fashionable and Functional

Button Up, Hike Down: Best Hiking Shirts

Apparel with the technical specs to keep you snug and dry on the trail doesn't have to look out of place the minute you leave the wild. Exhibit A: these 10 adventure shirts.

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night...

10 Best Rain Jackets of 2015

When the season changes from twenty degrees and snow to forty degrees and rain, it's time to update the outerwear. Sometimes you need a coat that's lightweight and waterproof, while also being paradoxically windproof and breathable. These are the best.

Today in Gear: April 2, 2014

Today in Gear we examine Ray-Ban's new customizable remix program, Nike Soccer's revised away kit for team U.S.A., the return of the Omega Seamaster 300, your new guide to alpine training and Bluelounge's key-sized charging accessory for Android.

Keep Austin Geared


You've done it: flight, rental car and hotel booked, $1,700 Gold Badge purchased. You are about to attend the most diversified festival in the country -- SXSW. Now it's time to pack. What does one take to this event featuring A-list celebs, billion dollar corporations and the CEOs of the next big thing? Here's what we brought to stay connected, light on our feet and ready to make a strong first impression for all those meet-and-greet networking sessions (not to mention the VIP parties).

Warm, Dry, and Comfortable...that's far from base

Second Skin: 5 Best Base Layers

Whether you're training for a ski mountaineering race or just sick of shivering on your morning commute, staying warm and dry is objective number one. The base layer you choose to wear while doing battle with the elements can't guarantee success, but it sure as hell can guarantee ruin. But have hope. New synthetic fabrics offer amazing moisture-wicking properties, while merino wool is experiencing a renaissance with temperature regulating properties that are borderline miraculous. We've done the leg work to find the best base layers for every outdoor activity and situation for upcoming winters, falls and springs.

Get wet, stay warm

Tested: Patagonia R1 Wetsuit

Patagonia has always been a company with one foot in the mountains and one in the sea -- climbing and skiing one day, surfing and paddling the next. When they introduced wetsuits to their lineup a few years ago, it was a big leap for the company, but not one they were unqualified to make. In fact, their experience building warm, lightweight and bombproof alpine gear transferred well to wetsuits, which we found out recently while testing the R1 wetsuit during a week of diving in Belize.

Gear for the jungle and the reef

Kit: Underwater and Underground in Belize

Packing for a tropical getaway usually only involves deciding what color swim trunks to pack. But when your plans include jungle hiking, cave exploration and scuba diving, things get a little more complicated. The key is versatility -- you need gear that works underground or underwater just as well as it does topside. For our week in Belize we made sure everything we took did more than just one thing well. This saved space in our luggage and let us be nimble yet well prepared. Here’s a sampling of what we took.

Weatherproof Jackets for the slopes and otherwise

Shelling Out: 10 Best Winter Sports Hardshells

There’s no such thing as bad weather -- only bad gear. And in the age of industrial manufacturing and waterproof fabrics, there’s no good excuse for bad gear. Modern hardshell jackets are designed to provide a first layer of defense between you and the elements, whether “the elements” are an alpine whiteout or an afternoon thunderstorm. They’re the crown jewel of any outdoor kit: they’ll keep you warm, they’ll keep you dry, and most of them weigh less than a pair of blue jeans.

Be faster than the freeze

Cold Warrior: 10 Best Winter Running Shoes

'Tis the season of calorie intake, so keeping one's running regimen going strong should be a priority. Thing is, winter weather -- the snow, slush and cold -- is prohibitive at best. Fortunately, gentlemen, we have options. These are the best winter running shoes for facing the cold on pavement, trails and mountains.

See My Vest...

Patchwork Season: Stylish Quilted Vests to Layer (or Not)

It seems some folks jump straight from shirtsleeves to parkas when the autumn leaves begin to fall. No, vests are for those in-between days, the time when one extra layer over a thick sweater, a mug of hot cider and the company of a loved one is all we need to keep warm during a stroll through the park. But even when the atmosphere turns up the a/c, a vest beneath your overcoat does wonders; after all, 'tis the season to layer and layer some more. We've rounded up the best quilted vests -- each fashionable and cozy in its own right.

Today in Gear: December 3, 2013

Bacons Of The World Stop whining. We don’t care that you’re just emerging from your post-turkey bloat and tryptophan fog. Fact is, there’s never a bad time for bacon — especially if it’s the best bacon the globe has to offer. We’re talking four installments, each five pounds of heavenly hog meat ecstasy. With each...

Mother Goose

Patagonia Encapsil Down Belay

If there's one constant in almost all mountain activities, it's that sooner or later you're going to come across nasty weather. It doesn't matter if you're chasing big walls in Yosemite, powder lines in Courcheval or summit days in the Canadian Rockies -- staying warm is the difference between owning a harrowing expedition and bailing back to civilization with your tail between your legs. Patagonia's Special Edition Encapsil Down Belay Parka ($699), a perfect fusion of purpose-driven engineering and uncommon design, is the most formidable backcountry armor on the market.