Gear for an Open-Wheel Beating
Kit: Taking on Baja
Three days of off-roading in open-wheel buggies through the insane terrain of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico. For such an adventure, one must pack light but also be prepared. The days can reach triple-digit temperatures, while the nights can dip into the 50s — but there is very little space in a buggy, so versatility and ruggedness are key for clothing as well as electronics. After a 400-mile beating, your body will be as worn as the vehicle; your gear will suffer some minor scuffs and scrapes as well, but they’ll still carry you through your journey.
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PATAGONIA BLACK HOLE PACK
The perfect overnight bag for a stay at the rural Mike’s Sky Ranch, this bag is tough as hell — water resistant, with pockets for the necessities and a space that would rival Mary Poppins’ carry-on.
VANGUARD UP-RISE II 43
This compact sling bag is the perfect size to fit into the tiny cargo space in the Baja Challenge cars. They’ve also got enough padding to protect your precious Canon 5D, so you won’t have to worry about missing opportunities for some insane footage. (Let alone replacing the thing.)
LL BEAN TROPICWEAR ZIP-LEG PANTS
These pants’ velcro cargo pockets securely carry quick-access items like lens covers and dust cloths, despite the earthquake-level shakes you’ll experience from the rough terrain. Lightweight and comfortable, zip-offs like these are an ideal choice for the hot days and cold nights of Baja.
SALOMON X-ULTRA TRAIL SHOES
When your car breaks down in the middle of the desert (twice), having traction on your shoes is vital for pushing your it off the trail as fast as possible. Comfortable from the first, their aptness for dirt, sand and rocks meant is rivaled only by the buggy’s tires.
CATALYST WATERPROOF IPHONE 5S CASE
Losing the ability to take a selfie at the mall with your friends because your phone broke is one thing; being stranded in Baja with a bricked phone is another thing. The waterproof/shockproof thin and durable Catalyst case keeps your lifeline safe no matter how rough the terrain or how deep the Pacific.
SHWOOD CANBY TITANIUM GLASSES
The beautifully handmade frames, which feature vacuum-plated titanium and hardwood, can withstand inevitable helmet-on-roll bar collisions. The polarized lenses, meanwhile, make 400 miles of sun-bleached sand and rocks particularly easy on the eyes.
AETHER FLEECE PULLOVER HOODIE
After peeling off that sweaty, dusty t-shirt you wore all day, this casual and comfortable hoodie is perfect for when the temps drop. Instead of huddling together for warmth, you and the drivers’ll sit around tossing back Pacifico and recounting the day’s big wins and near-misses.
FJALLRAVEN REPORTER LITE JACKET
Tons of storage for lenses and gear and a genius pocket to hold the zip-off sleeves makes for a wonderfully versatile jacket. The cut alone makes it an all-day item on the trail — and from there you can proceed right to the bar at night.
INCASE PORTABLE POWER 5400
The InCase charger is an ideal travel accessory for those relying on iPhone and GoPro cameras. It holds two phone charges, and its fast output can recharge them before you finish your lunch break — so you can spend the rest of it reviewing your footage.