Gear Reviews

Expert, field-tested reviews of the best hiking and backpacking gear.

Beside the Colorado River at Hance Rapids, Grand Canyon, from my 25 Favorite Backcountry Campsites.

Click this photo to see my 25 Favorite Backcountry Campsites.

I tested and reviewed gear for Backpacker Magazine for 20 years. At The Big Outside, I review only what I consider the best outdoor gear and apparel. On this page, you’ll find links to all of my reviews.

—Michael Lanza

Backpack Reviews

Daypack Reviews

Backpacking Tent Reviews

Hiking Shoes Reviews

Backpacking Boots Reviews

 

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Trail-Running Shoes Reviews

Sleeping Bag Reviews

All Outdoor Apparel Reviews

Kids Outdoor Gear Reviews

Kids Outdoor Apparel Reviews

 

Get the right pack for you. See my “Gear Review: The 10 Best Packs For Backpacking
and my “5 Tips For Buying the Right Backpack.”

 

Hi, I’m Michael Lanza, the creator of The Big Outside, recognized as a top outdoors blog by USA Today and others. I invite you to get email updates about new stories and gear giveaways by entering your email address in the box in the left sidebar, at the bottom of this post, or on my About page, and follow my adventures on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

All Backpacking Gear Reviews

All Ultralight Backpacking Gear Reviews

All Hiking Gear Reviews

All Trail-Running Gear & Apparel Reviews

 

10 Tips For Getting a Hard-to-Get National Park Backcountry Permit.

Click here for my 10 Tips For Getting a Hard-to-Get National Park Backcountry Permit.

Rain Jacket Reviews

Ultralight Wind Shell Reviews

Puffy & Insulated Jacket Reviews

Headlamp Reviews

Trekking Poles Reviews

Backpacking Cooking System Reviews

Air Mattress & Sleeping Pad Reviews

Camping Gear Reviews

 

The Big Outside is proud to partner with sponsor Backcountry.com, who supports the stories you read at this blog. Click on the backcountry.com ad below for the best prices on great gear, and your purchase will support my work on this blog.

 

Other Top Gear Stories

The Simple Equation of Ultralight Backpacking: Less Weight = More Fun

5 Things to Know Before Buying Backpacking Gear

5 Tips For Spending Less on Hiking and Backpacking Gear

Why and When to Spend More on Outdoor Gear

Shop smartly for gear. Click here for my tips.

Shop smartly for gear. Click here for my tips.

My Top 5 Ultralight Backpacking Tips

5 Tips For Buying the Right Backpack

“Video: How to Load a Backpack”

5 Tips For Buying a Backpacking Tent

Pro Tips For Buying the Right Boots

5 Pro Tips For Buying the Right Rain Jacket For the Backcountry

Pro Tips: How to Choose a Sleeping Bag

The 10 Best Backpacking Packs

The 5 Best Backpacking Tents

The 5 Best Rain Jackets for the Backcountry

6 Favorite Daypacks

21 Essential Backpacking Gear Accessories

The Best Gloves for Winter

The Best Clothing Layers for Winter in the Backcountry

 

 

The Simple Equation of Ultralight Backpacking: Less Weight = More Fun.

Make backpacking more fun. Click this photo for my tips on going ultralight.

Gear Review: The 5 Best Headlamps

Ask Me: How Do We Begin Lightening Up Our Backpacking Gear?

Ask Me: An Essentials-Only Backpacking Gear Checklist

 

See also my Ask Me: Gear page, where you’ll find a menu of all Ask Me posts about gear.

 

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Grand Canyon Hiker