I own several different backpacks for different reasons, multi-day backpacks, short 3-season day hikes, day-packs, etc. One thing I always struggle with is keeping my must-have gear with me no matter which pack I have for that particular adventure. Usually this includes a headlamp, fire starting device, pocket knife and/or multi tool, my compass, and my trusty Gerber Infinity Ultra LED Flashlight.
This tiny flashlight is very well built, I’ve dropped it many times without incident, and provides a great output of light in a pinch, and its even waterproof up to 10 feet. I always find myself wishing I had one for every backpack. It fits my system well, as it takes a single AA battery, as does my headlamp, GPS, and camera. The included clip is excellent and wont slip off, and the 8 lumen bulb projects a nice beam up to 30 feet. This is not a substitute for a headlamp, but its great to have in your pack at all times as a just in case, I make sure to have it on me when going to sleep in my tent, as it’s output is just perfect for finding my way to the bathroom when camping with others that don’t want to be disturbed by my 100 lumen headlamp beam. Gerber estimates a burn time of 100 hours from a fully charged battery, and stands behind their build with a limited lifetime warranty.
The Gerber Infinity Ultra LED flashlight shines a true white light to illuminate the task at hand.
My back country stove of choice is the Jetboil Flash. I like it for it’s simplicity, easy of use, and versatility. Fuel is cheap and easy to come by, and there are a variety of accessories for the stove, such as a fry pan, a coffee press, a larger cook-pot, and a hanging kit. I primarily only use my stove to boil water, either to add to a backpacker meal-in-a-bag or if I don’t have other means of treating my water. I have successfully made pancakes and sausages in the fry pan, and I’ve seen someone first hand make popcorn in the cup as well. Last year in Baxter, I used it to boil some corn on the cob and it was excellent. Everything stores inside the included cup and packs up nice and small. I keep mine on a carabiner and store it in the side slot in my mid-size pack. I can have it out, unpacked, assembled, with water boiling usually under 3 minutes. Always carry a lighter just in case.
2NDS . When you’re traveling light and need hot water or a hot beverage quickly, the Jetboil Flash personal cooking system delivers. The cooking cup clips to the burner and features a color-changing … more info.
I’ve had my Asolo’s for just about a year now, and they have treated me very well. I wear them hiking in all kinds of terrain, and while they might do OK for light winter conditions, I have other boots for snow season. Not once have I gotten a blister, hotspot, or wet feet hiking in these boots, and they have seen a lot of trail and water crossings. They provide excellent ankle support and grip rock very well, even when wet. One thing I do is condition the leather once a season, usually in the late fall before I put them away in lieu of my winter boots (I liked my 3 season ASOLO purchase so much, I bought their double plastics for winter mountaineering!) Overall, I would give them a 9/10, my only complaint is that they are a bit heavy, weighing in at close to 2 lbs.
I borrowed a friends Therm-a-Rest NeoAir sleeping pad on my last hike and was presently surprised. I was so surprised that I sent back my current pad and bought this one. The weight and pack-ability are far superior to anything I have ever used. I found it to be very comfortable and the size to weight to price ratio worth it. I look forward to using it on some late fall and winter backpacks this year. With an R-value of 4.9 and 2.5 inch thickness, the sleeping pad provides excellent insulation from the cold ground. The long size weighs in at only 25 ounces and packs up to be about the size of a Nalgene bottle.
The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir All Season sleeping pad lets you sleep outside in any season. The high R-value and increased thickness bring greater comfort and warmth to backcountry outings.