Tag Archives: ultralight backpacking gear reviews

Gear Review: Arc’teryx Acrux2 FL GTX and Acrux FL Hiking Shoes

June 19, 2015  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
Arc’teryx Acrux2 FL GTX Approach Shoe

Arc’teryx Acrux2 FL GTX Approach Shoe

Hiking/Approach Shoes
Arc’teryx Acrux2 FL GTX Approach Shoe
$270, 2 lbs. 3 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 7-14, women’s (Acrux FL GTX, $220) 5-12

Arc’teryx Acrux FL
$190, 1 lb. 14 oz. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 7-14, women’s 5-12
arcteryx.com

Is it possible for a shoe to be everything you need in backcountry footwear—and if so, what’s that worth? Those are the questions raised by Arc’teryx’s new Acrux2 FL GTX Approach Shoe and Acrux FL—both very “Arc’teryx” in their shoot-for-the-moon design and price. In pursuit of answers to those questions, I took both out on hikes intended to put the claims about these shoes to the test: ultralight backpacking the very rugged Royal Arch Loop in the Grand Canyon in the Acrux2 FL GTX, and dayhiking 17 miles through New Hampshire’s Northern Presidential Range, and Zion’s steep and scrambly Angels Landing, in the Acrux FL. Continue reading →

June 16, 2015 Trail 785 to Image Lake, Glacier Peak Wilderness, Washington.

Ask Me: Can You Suggest a Backpacking Gear Checklist?

In Ask Me, Backpacking, Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment

Hi Michael,

Can you provide a good, basic gear list for three-season backpacking? Thanks.

Jody
Cibolo, TX Continue reading →

Gear Review: Oboz Switchback Hiking Shoes

June 12, 2015  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
Oboz Switchback

Oboz Switchback

Hiking Shoes
Oboz Switchback
$120, 2 lbs. (men’s 9)
Sizes: men’s 8-14, women’s 6-11
obozfootwear.com

What should you look for in shoes for dayhiking? The answer may be more complicated than you think, which might help explain why some hikers struggle to find the right footwear. For most dayhikes, no matter the distance, I want lightweight, low-cut shoes that deliver moderate support, plenty of forefoot flex to allow a natural stride, and as much breathability as possible—to keep my feet cool and comfortable and help prevent blisters. On long dayhikes, those attributes—especially the breathability—become even more critical. On a 25-mile, 11-hour, roughly 4,000-foot dayhike in the Grand Canyon in May, the Switchback came through for me on all of those counts. Continue reading →

Review: Outdoor Research Deviator Hoody

May 22, 2015  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   |   2 Comments
Outdoor Research Deviator Hoody

Outdoor Research Deviator Hoody

Hybrid Insulation Jacket
Outdoor Research Deviator Hoody
$185, 10 oz. (men’s medium)
Sizes: men’s S-XL, women’s XS-XL
outdoorresearch.com

On cool mornings in May while backpacking the Grand Canyon’s Royal Arch Loop, and in late March on a five-day, family backpacking trip down Paria Canyon on the Utah-Arizona border, I did something unusual: I started the day’s hiking wearing the same jacket I had worn while in camp, OR’s new Deviator Hoody. From cool-weather hiking to skate-skiing in winter, I liked the Deviator as a next-generation, hybrid insulation piece whose versatility is limited only by your creativity in thinking about your layering system. Continue reading →

Gear Review: La Sportiva Core High GTX Boots

May 8, 2015  |  In Gear Reviews   |   Tagged , , , , , ,   |   Leave a comment
La Sportiva Core High GTX

La Sportiva Core High GTX

Lightweight Hiking Boots
La Sportiva Core High GTX
$200, 1 lb. 13 oz. (men’s Euro 42/US 9)
Sizes: Euro men’s 38-47.5, women’s 36-43
sportiva.com

Whenever a new boot comes along that’s mid-cut and under two pounds per pair, I want to try it out—that’s my preferred type of footwear for many hikes, from dayhikes of any distance, including ultra-hiking, to light backpacking. So I took Sportiva’s new Core High GTX on a very rugged, 20-mile dayhike in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, and backpacking for three days in Idaho’s Sawtooths, and found them ideal for light hiking and super breathable. Continue reading →

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