Kits

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.

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The smell of leaves and exhaust

Kit: Fall Driving Essentials

When the temperatures drop from their sweaty heights and the warm hues of fall foliage emerge, the driving experience changes -- it's time for windows-down scenic cruising. Bring along the appropriate warm garb (plus a few other essentials) and you'll have mastered the fall drive.

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Garb for the Green on Eighteen

Kit: Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

Walking the Concours d'Elegance at Pebble Beach with all manner of beautiful automobiles at your fingertips calls for some dressy duds and proper accessories. It's far more than just a car show; it's an automotive cultural event like no other, and just about everyone comes decked out to the nines. But it's also no time to break out the tuxedo. Hence, this simple, handsome kit.

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The Toiletries Manifest

Pack Your Dopp Kit Like a Pro

The dopp kit or toiletry bag can be a point of confusion. No more. Pack yours like a pro with these essentials.

The Beauty of Bare Minimum

Kit: Ultralight Backpacking

Obsessive weight-trimmers with less than 10 pounds strapped to their backs are considered "ultralight" hikers, a term as ubiquitous and unregulated in the hiking retail market as "organic" and "grass fed" are in the food industry. But trust us: the following gear truly is ultralight, perfect for those faithful to the church of long trails and little gear.

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New school. New gear.

Kit: Freshman Year

Our college years have faded into the past, but that hasn't stopped us from rethinking what we'd pack if we could do it all over again. Whether you're matriculating this fall and looking for a leg up on your classmates, or a (clearly hip) parent prepping for one last spending hoorah before crossing your offspring off the books for good, consider your packing list officially started.

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No blue jeans and sneakers allowed

Kit: Ferrari 400i

Just because the Ferrari 400i isn't nearly as coveted as, say, a 512 Berlinetta Boxer, doesn't mean it's not worthy of respect. It's just the right car for the businessman who wants to set himself apart from the typical German sports sedan. For starters, it's got automotive character in spades, and it's still thrilling to drive as well as hear. To own one, dress and gear up appropriately. Gear Patrol has the right kit to helm this Cavallino Rampante.

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Looking great at Goodwood

Kit: Goodwood Festival of Speed

When attending a British motoring event that's held on the estate owned by someone named Lord March, you can't just fly over the Atlantic with a day pack full of casual duds and a twin blade razor. We've put together a comprehensive kit that takes you from airport to hotel to track and back.

Sweet dreams are made of these

Kit: A Better Night’s Sleep

You shouldn't need a reason to get more sleep, but we'll happily lay the facts out for you anyway. According to National Institute of Health sleep expert Dr. Merrill Mitler, "Sleep services all aspects of our body in one way or another: molecular, energy balance, as well as intellectual function, alertness and mood.” Also, don't buy into the hype surrounding sleeping less as a trait shared by the uber successful. It's simply not true for the average joe. In Mitler's words, “when we look at well-rested people, they’re operating at a different level than people trying to get by on one or two hours less nightly sleep.” While there are countless factors that can prevent you from getting your fair share of beauty sleep, a poorly equipped place of rest shouldn't be one of them. The path to a better night's sleep starts here.

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A German grand tourer requires grand style

Kit: Mercedes-Benz 280 SL “Pagoda”

You're the guy who gets respect the subtle way. You don't demand it; you're not the showy type. It's also how you choose your cars, which is why you'll drive the 280 SL "Pagoda". It's elegant and beautiful without barking for attention -- an under-the-radar grand tourer that looks just as good parked at the hunting club as it does at the finest restaurant in town. Our kit for this gentleman's car will keep you stylish, comfortable and classic...just like the vehicle you've chosen for your stable.

GP x Petrolicious
Master Your Smoky Domain

Kit: Backyard Grilling

No man should need an excuse to grill. But long summer weekends do provide an excellent opportunity to show off your skills and (hopefully) have others hand-deliver beers to your door. Make sure the stage is properly set for your next backyard bacchanal by having the right tools at disposal.

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Glory days on the road

Kit: Mustang Fastback

If you're fortunate enough to possess a Mustang Fastback -- one of the grandaddies of the American muscle car -- you know the respect and admiration it garners from car lovers to kids. It's Americana on four wheels. That sort of red, white and blue clout requires a driver to pull off an homage to American style without resorting to a pair of Ol' Glory lined cutoff jeans. Here, we line up the right kit (light on the actual stars and stripes pattern) you need to get it right.

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Squid Vest not included

Sartorial Safety: Office-Friendly Motorcycle Gear

The office dress code can be a challenge for a motorcycle enthusiast; riding the elevator in an unzipped kangaroo skin onesie doesn’t score too many points with the boss. Thankfully, there's some excellent motorcycle gear out there that provides the protection you need without sacrificing any of your executive flair.

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Coastal Essentials

Kit: Free-Diving the Mediterranean

Whether you're heading to the Mediterranean coast in real life or just your daydreams, this kit of casual clothes and accoutrements will keep you both cool and looking cool.

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Get just the right amount of attention

Kit: Triumph TR6

The Triumph TR6 is the affordable substitute for more rarified fare like the Austin Healey MkIII or the Jaguar XKE, and it's no paltry replacement, with sophistication and masculine bravado to spare. Plus, its lighter price tag means you'll have plenty of dough left over for a full kit of driving gear. Here's what we recommend for comfort, style, and a touch of brashness -- you've got to keep up with the pace the Triumph's setting, after all.

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Stylish at any speed

Kit: Chevy Corvair Corsa

The Corsa was a sophisticated and sporty coupe that looks even better today, with far more panache points than its ordinary Corsa brother. The Corsa was a gentleman's car, for sure, but it was plenty sporty, too; the potent flat six engine, crisp sheet metal and luxurious interior meant that not just anyone would look right in the driver's seat. You'll need to look the part -- neat and clean, 1960s business style -- while you cruise around in yours, and we've got the perfect kit.

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Get the gear, don't attempt the accent

Kit: Austin-Healey MkIII

If you're in the market for a vintage roadster that adds a new dimension of style and sophistication to your life, and you're willing to throw reliability and modern amenities into the dumpster, then an Austin-Healey MkIII is an excellent choice. Since a good example of the MkIII is relatively affordable, you'll be able to add the right gear and adorn yourself in the right garb to match your new British steed's level of panache.

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Fast fundementals

Kit: Track Weekend

Your normal couch-bound weekend attire won't cut it during a weekend at the track; tarmac-amplified heat and humidity plus the occasional run-in with a troupe of Umbrella Girls nixes that plan. Instead, race weekend is primetime for packing light, multifunctional duds and accoutrements that don't skimp on style.

Octane
Car With Attitude, Gear to Match

Kit: 1972 Chevrolet Chevelle

Any serious car collector will have home-grown American steel in his garage, and the 1972 Chevelle would be an excellent place to start. But don't you dare take it for a drive without going whole hog -- your gear needs to complement the Chevelle's bad self without sacrificing a strong sense of red, white and blue style.

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Essentials for a quicky with mother nature

Kit: The Perfect Day Pack

Most day hikes require a peanut butter sandwich, a water bottle and maybe some bug spray. But for the weekend warrior who wants to crush in one day what most people stroll in three, there are a few indispensables. Here are our favorite necessities and extravagances for spending a day burning through some miles on the trail.

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Davy Jones's (Dive) Locker

Kit: Wreck Diving

For centuries, man has found countless ways to send ships to the bottom of the sea. Since the advent of scuba technology, we’ve found ways to explore them. Whether it’s to search for booty, take eerie photos, or just to pay respects, wreck diving is a not a sport for the timid. Often found in deep, cold water with strong currents and dangerous reefs, wrecks demand expertise, experience, humility and marine-grade bronze balls -- not to mention a lot of specialized gear. This isn’t tropical holiday diving, so be prepared to shell out for equipment that can stand up to the conditions the Gunilda, the Thistlegorm or the Doria present.

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Keep Austin Geared

Kit: SXSW

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).

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Earn Your Turns

Kit: Ski Mountaineering

Ski mountaineering is the ultimate punishment tour in the mountains -- moving uphill with heavy gear through deep snow and ice -- with a perfect payoff when it's time to go down. We spent this winter testing the best winter mountaineering and ski gear on some of the biggest peaks in Utah and Colorado as we trained for the Power of 4 Ski Mountaineering Race. If you're looking to start going further in search of deep powder, look no further for the best extreme-condition gear for any winter climbing mission.

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Armoring up for battle with frigid surf

Kit: Winter Surfing

When it comes time to hit the surf and temps are in the 30s rather than the 70s, the right gear is the difference between channeling Bodhi and becoming intimate with the symptoms of hypothermia. While it's admittedly tough to be toasty in water less than half your body's normal temperature, with the right kit you can at least pursue your hobby and live to tell about it. Below are our picks for the gear you'll need for winter surfing.

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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.

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No excuses, just good shots

Kit: Essentials for the Budding Movie Maker

Today's affordable tools, cameras, classes and copious creative outlets have brought making a film (one of the best story-telling devices) nearly to the everyman. Still, all those advances can't change a basic fact: sometimes making a movie means going to where the story is rather than waiting for it to come to you. But paying to check 10 Pelican cases of equipment will essentially eat your entire production budget, not to mention it's tough to sneak into a location if you have a fleet of boxes and bags. This kit can be carried by one or two people in traditional suitcases -- which means you get your shots, no matter where those shots may be.

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Climbing Mountains Beyond Mountains

Kit: Volunteering in Haiti

Despite Haiti's reputation for danger, it's a beautiful and inspiring country for the intrepid traveler. Although tourism in the country has been slow to rebound since the devastating 2010 earthquake, Haiti offers an opportunity for those with the right set of skills to get involved with humanitarian work while seeing an infrequently visited part of the world. During our recent visit, we got by on Pepto and grit, and a few other things besides: we found all of the above useful, if not downright necessary.

Gear for the diehard winter rider

Kit: Fat Bike Racing

Fat bikes can effortlessly glide over snowy conditions like a set of snowshoes, and they’re cushy enough for riding in frigid temps without shattering your frozen tuchus. But the bike can only take you so far. Staying warm and dry -- and returning home with all your fingers and toes -- requires the right set of gear for when the weather decides to take a serious turn for the worse. These winter fat biking essentials will help you battle the worst Mother Nature can throw your way.

The Fat Bike Issue
Duds for fitness studs

Athletic Guys, Consider These Easy Wardrobe Staples

There are a lot of great menswear companies making high quality clothes to fit most guys and most budgets. Perhaps unexpectedly, one guy who has been overlooked is the athlete. Most clothes off the rack are either made for the average American male (i.e., skinny shoulders and an expanding waistline) or the "in-shape" guy (essentially his waist is not larger than his chest). These ten brands make excellent clothing that flatters and athletic build, and we’ve picked out some staples for your wardrobe.

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To Russia We Fly

Kit: Capturing the Olympics

Packing for a trip to Russia for the Sochi Olympics is no small feat. There's weather, international travel, technology and a desire to stay light on our feet to consider. Gear needs to be tough, functional, lightweight and understated. Here's a sampling of what we're packing to use on a normal day in Sochi.

The Sochi Issue
The Straightforward Essentials

Kit: Straight Razor Shave

Face it: you need a change in the shaving department. We're here to tell you that a straight razor shave is a good shave, especially if you're willing to take a little extra time every morning and you appreciate history and a good deal of custom. You don’t need to go nuts purchasing everything you see on the newest hipster shaving website, but you also can’t just buy a straight razor and call it a day. We've got your essentials.

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Pow, Wow

Kit: Powder Day

Deep powder is a religious experience, and it takes just one perfect day of blue skies and bottomless snow to become a pious worshiper. From Alyeska to Taos, powderhounds feverishly monitor weather reports for the next big storm, and after spending a weekend skiing 12,000-foot ridges in Telluride, we know exactly why: powder skiing is as close as man can get to flying in the mountains. The best way to enjoy the fluffy stuff is with the right gear. Here’s what we pack on Powder Day.

The Skiing Issue
It's never too cold

Kit: Winter Running

It’s not like getting up for that pre-work run was easy during the summer or fall. Now it’s pitch black, relentlessly cold and the streets are covered with ice, snow and salt. But a brisk jog before sunrise is a one-way ticket to a fulfilling day, not to mention a long winter of staying fit despite a dining regimen of braised short ribs and mashed potatoes. The right gear will keep you warm, dry and, most importantly, stable when the ground beneath you isn't.

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Work anywhere

Kit: Mobile Office

Business travelers used to have serious panache: Vasco da Gama traveled in a fleet of ships accompanied a few hundred men; Benjamin Franklin allegedly wore a rustic fur hat while serving as an ambassador to France; in the 1960s men wore three-piece suits in Economy. Today’s business traveler is less ostentatious but dangerously effective: he’s creative, flexible, mobile, well-connected and never ever sick at sea. Working all the time? Sure, but that’s a small price to pay for a life without borders. If that sounds like you, this is the gear you need.

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Gear for the Granite State

Kit: Hiking Hut-to-Hut in the White Mountains

Even when you're sleeping in huts every night, hiking in the White Mountains requires considerable planning. With New Hampshire's notoriously unpredictable weather, it's wise to hope for the best but prepare for the worst. That means shells for rain, layers for warmth and good footwear for all that granite. Here's what we took on the final part of our Mountain Series, a three-day hut-to-hut excursion.

The Mountain Series
Own Your Wilderness Overnight

Kit: Multi-Day Hiking

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.

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Armed to the Gizzard.

Kit: Thanksgiving Dinner

The kitchen is one of the last bastions of respect and order in a society that mostly eschews hierarchy. Snapchat may be run by kids, but grandma's red sauce is no flash in the pan. Though we've proved our chops in the kitchen, for Thanksgiving we decided to bring in one of the big guns of culinary wisdom: Jim Oseland, former Editor-in-Chief of Saveur, one of our favorite food magazines. Here's his essential turkey-roasting kit.

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Gear for the Top of World

Kit: Free Solo Climbing

Sometimes the mountains just call your name. Whether you've got a season to train for a summit bit up Mt. Rainier or just a Saturday afternoon to log some miles hiking up the local ski hill, the right gear can mean the difference between enjoying the majesty and struggling through misery (or worse). Here's the gear we used for our recent solo free climb of Mount Olympus in Utah -- but it's perfect for any ultralight mountain mission.

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