John’s first backpack is now a museum piece. Sandy went through a variety of packs before settling on the comfortable Osprey Ariel. Here’s what we now carry, and why.
Our essential gear
What's in our gear closet? These are items that we won't go without when we're hiking, camping, backpacking, and traveling to outdoor destinations. Some we received for review and liked them so much we use them all the time. We'll add the full list eventually!
For a couple of backpackers that want to share a sleeping bag, the Big Agnes Cabin Creek turns out to be an economical but bulky solution.
John trail-tests the Columbia Omni-Freeze Zero T-shirt after being introduced to the new fabric by a Columbia rep at the grand opening of REI Jacksonville.
If it’s tick season, or if it’s going to be wet and muddy, we break out our Dirty Girl Gaiters. Here’s why we don’t leave home with this piece of gear.
Hydrapak has served us well as an extremely compact day pack and hydration for both hiking and bicycle rides. Whenever one of us wants to “go light,” we pull the Hydrapak from our wall of packs and go.
After trying an array of camp stoves over the years, from Whisperlite to Zip and Esbit, I found the Jetboil. Now I feel comfortable cooking in the woods again.
A fan of lightweight backpacking tents (not tarps) since they first became available, my favorites are those produced by Lightheart Gear. We have two. Here’s why
When we met, both of us owned Tilley hats and wore them for most of our outdoor activities. Sandy’s had the same one for years; I’ve gone through several. Here’s why.
A field trip, Florida Hikes style, to a lightweight backpacking gear manufacturer creating great products – and jobs – on Florida’s Space Coast.