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Favorite piece of gear
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Andy Anderson
(ianders) - F

Locale: Southeast
Favorite piece of gear on 01/03/2012 18:43:56 MST Print View

If you could recommend one piece of gear to a friend, what would it be? Your favorite piece of gear in your kit. Mine is my Golite Ultra 20 quilt with a couple of extra ounces of down. The extra down turned this quilt into a true 20 degree quilt for 22 ounces for fairly little cash.

Christopher Yi
(TRAUMAhead) - F

Locale: Cen Cal
Re: Favorite piece of gear on 01/03/2012 22:21:27 MST Print View

I've recommended plenty to my friend, in which he went out and bought, but the catch is I didn't actually have it. I do the research and my friend goes out and buys it first, lol.

Some of the gear I've recommended are a ULA Circuit and Catalyst, Snow Peak LiteMax, Kahtoola MICROspikes, TarpTent Rainbow, Zpacks Hexamid, and some others. I bought a Circuit after him, and has been my favorite piece of gear, but I just bought a HMG Windrider to try out and see if the grass is greener. I got to try out his MICROspikes recently on a frozen lake, and it's another piece of gear I'll buy myself.

Edited by TRAUMAhead on 01/03/2012 22:24:02 MST.

Angelo Radano

Locale: New England
2 recommendations on 01/03/2012 22:22:19 MST Print View

Windshirt and quilt.

Joslyn Bloodworth
(JoslynB) - F

Locale: Southwest
reccomend on 01/03/2012 22:31:29 MST Print View

I would probably go with a wind jacket as well. Possibly the smallest, lightest most versatile thing in my gear closet. The fact that it is useful from the hottest summer trip to the coldest winter trip (leaving out expedition like conditions of course :) ), is really a big deal for me. I don't think I've even been on a day hike where I wasn't glad I threw it in my pack, even if it was "just in case".

Brad Walker

Locale: SoCal
Recommended on 01/03/2012 22:45:44 MST Print View

R1 hoody

Windshirt would be close 2nd (modded camp magic anorak)

Fred eric
(Fre49) - MLife

Locale: France, vallée de la Loire
favorite piece of gear on 01/03/2012 23:51:45 MST Print View

they are 4 changes in my gear that were really big improvements :

synthetic -> merinos shirt /( silk + merinos if very hot )

tent -> floorless shelter ( tarp / trailstar / shangri la 5 if family etc...)

ridgerest -> neoair.

goretex -> event.

Jeffrey McConnell
Re: Favorite piece of gear on 01/04/2012 00:02:55 MST Print View

Blackbird hammock - I sleep like a baby thanks to this thing.

Serge Giachetti
(sgiachetti) - M

Locale: Boulder, CO
hard to choose just one on 01/04/2012 00:03:49 MST Print View

my favorite gear is probably my katabatic sawatch quilt. Its kept me warm on a lot of cold nights. I even show it off to my non-outdoorsy friends, as if they care how lofty my bag is.

I also love my i/o bio contact hoody, since I wear it pretty much all the time. Between skiing and ice climbing I've worn it 5 out of the last 8 days, and I wear it at least 3 days a week for three season backpacking and hiking as well.

One recent fav: marmot scree pants. I've probably already got 20 days in these pans and I've only owned them for a month or so!

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: hard to choose just one on 01/04/2012 01:57:05 MST Print View

Serge, I feel the same about my contact hoody!

I would have to second the windshirt as my one recommendation. While I have a lot of advice for the big ticket items and clothing in they end personal preference is important.

However, a windshirt is a piece of gear that most (this forum aside) are unfamiliar with and when properly integrated as a layer it can change a lot of your outlook on clothing systems. For that alone it's one of the most interesting pieces of gear available.

Alasdair Fowler
(MessiahKhan) - F

Locale: Newcastle, UK
Favorite piece of gear on 01/04/2012 03:15:15 MST Print View

Either my PHD Minimus down jacket or my Blackrock Gear Hat. Both are like instant heat! I love down kit. I now just need down trousers and booties, so I can be fully enveloped in down!

James Stewart

Locale: New England
recommendations on 01/04/2012 05:55:01 MST Print View

I don't find myself recommending any one piece of gear as much as I do leaving gear at home. You know, full cook kits, spare undies, camp shoes, and the like. I recommend lightening up. And I guess I do usually rave about my Jam.

Bobby Pack
(Piddler) - MLife

Locale: West Virginia
Re: Favorite piece of gear on 01/04/2012 06:21:40 MST Print View

The small Bic lighters. I've carried one since they came out. Always works and light weight.

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Favorite piece of gear on 01/04/2012 06:55:43 MST Print View

The biggest revelation for me is definitely merino wool socks and shirts. Socks I warmed up to quickly, sure they're a little pricey but I didn't have to wear uncomfortable liner socks and now I wear them daily through the winter because my feet stay warmer, even at my desk job. It took me a while to shell out the cash for a merino shirt but I'm a convert. They don't stink and don't feel nearly as clammy when they're sweat-soaked as synthetic shirts did.

My favorite piece of gear is my quilt though. Replacing my heavy, bulky synthetic mummy bag with a homemade down quilt has given me the most satisfaction of any piece of gear I've ever purchased/made.


ben wood

Locale: flatlands of MO
Re: Favorite piece of gear on 01/04/2012 07:56:24 MST Print View

I'd have to stick by my old z-lite. sounds funny, but...
it is as reliable as anything can be. I love strapping it to the outside of my pack and using it to rest along the trail. it has been comfortable enough for sleeping and it is cheap.

Michael Unger
(oscar057) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Favorite Piece of Gear on 01/04/2012 07:56:53 MST Print View

My favorite is definitely the wind shirt. I have the Patagonia Houdini. I use it everyday regardless of whether I'm in the hot or cold conditions. It is small and light enough to carry in my pocket. My last wind shirt lasted two thru hikes.

Jeff Hollis
(hyperslug) - MLife
Down Jacket on 01/04/2012 08:16:44 MST Print View

I have carried a down jacket with me for maybe 30 years, starting with a Camp 7 with metal snaps, FF, and now my flight jacket. My jacket has several patches and no down in the cuff on my left sleeve due to a hole. I am afraid to wash it because all of the patches. It serves me well morning, evening, and becomes my best friend's down bed at night, Mamadog loves it. Just bought a Stoic Haldron anorak to save 1/4 pound so will see how it goes.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
MLD Trailstar on 01/04/2012 08:38:39 MST Print View

Mountain Laurel Designs Trailstar

You can go round and round looking for the one versatile shelter, but very few offer the amount of coverage, ease, durability, wind shedding, simplicity of design, and versatility all at an affordable price and low weight. I've been pleased with mine and would recommend it to anyone.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re Trailstar on 01/04/2012 08:41:47 MST Print View

I hope i'm agreeing with Eugene next year. :)

Ben F
(tekhna) - F
Not sexy on 01/04/2012 08:47:00 MST Print View

But my event compression sack. Wet down sucks.

Karple T

Locale: Mid-Alantic
"Favorite piece of gear" on 01/04/2012 09:07:16 MST Print View

My Nano Puff pull over.

I use it in so many different ways.

I am MYOGing a cuben rain suit using the new breathable cuben that I hope will be my next favorite item.