Favorite Gear of 2015

I guess it is that time of year again to list my favorite gear. With one exception, it is the same as 2012, 2013, and 2014. Instead of sending you to a link of previous lists (you can do a search if so inclined), I have edited the 2012 list. The updated item is in red font.

Life sure is great when you don’t have to spend time constantly trying to dial in your gear.

#1 Sans Trekking Poles – actually this is non-gear. I quit using trekking poles this year… as a matter of fact I quit last year. Just found them to be more of an inconvenience that a benefit. I wrote about this earlier in the post titled, Trekking Poles? However I may start bringing my old faithful Tracks brand hiking staff on trips again. This was my hiking companion for over 20 years. Can’t say it offers any significant advantages, but it is like an old friend; one you just cannot abandon. It can be used as shelter pole, a mono-pod, hiking aid, remove-rattlesnakes-from-the-trail implement among other things.

# 2 McHale LBP 36 backpack – This is my absolute favorite piece of gear. When I need a smaller pack, then it is my McHale Bump, which is my 2nd favorite piece of gear. For more detailed information read the following posts McHale LBP 36 and McHale Bump.

GVP Cone#3 Caldera GVP Cone Kit (stove) – Uses either alcohol or solid Esbit fuel. Light and efficient. I often consider bring one of my other stoves, but this is the one I usually take trip after trip. The Caldera Cone Systems are made by Trail Designs and I have several, but the GVP is my favorite.

Houdini#4 Patagonia Houdini Wind Shirt – this is the one piece of gear I bring on EVERY trip. I cannot say enough good things about it!! Here is my review.

#5 Mizuno Universe Wave 4 XC Flats – You can read about them in the Minimalist Shoe Craze article I wrote last month.

Wearing my Houdini windshirt and Mizuno shoes on a windy day.

#6 Favorite Clothing – There are 4 pieces (not all are used on the same trip):

  • Patagonia Baggie 5″ Shorts (been using them since the 1980’s.
  • Rail Riders Eco-Mesh Pants
  • Rail Riders Eco-Mesh Shirt
  • Mountain Hardware Cliffer Merino/Poly Long Sleeve Shirt (I’m down to my last two shirts and as all good things in life, it is no longer made).

Patagonia Men's Baggies™ Shorts - 5

Above (L to R): Patagonia Baggies, Rail Riders Eco-mesh shirt and pants, Mountain Hardwear Cliffer.


#7 Montbell XUL Down Jacket – Not much to say. Extremely Ultralight. 900 FP goose down. Weighs around 6 ounces.

#8  The Six Moon Designs Deschutes Cuben Shelter has displaced the zPacks Hexamid Solo Shelter.

#9 zPacks Poncho/Groundsheet – approximately 3 ounces.

#10 Thermarest NeoAir Mattress – I still often use a foam pad for sleeping, but more and more am enjoying the comfort of an air mattress.

#11 Cammenga Lensatic Compass

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