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Backpacker Magazine – Online Exclusive

Readers Choice 2012 Online Exclusive Gear Reviews

We didn't have room to print these readers in our January 2012 Readers Choice Issue--but they still tested some great gear.

by: Backpacker Readers

Sea to Summit Micro MCIII (Courtesy Photo)
Sea to Summit Micro MCIII (Courtesy Photo)
Princeton Tec Spectrum (Courtesy Photo)
Princeton Tec Spectrum (Courtesy Photo)

Chris Dorich
Age 22
Test Trips Backpacking in Denali National Park and Innoko Wildlife Refuge, AK, and NH’s Whites

[sleeping bag]
Sea to Summit Micro MCIII
This 28°F, 850-fill bag blew me away with its versatility. It was warm down to 14°F in Alaska’s Innoko Wildlife Refuge, yet the drawstring foot opening and full-length zipper let me stay cool and comfortable on nights in the mid-50s. Fit is trim and so is packed size (like a Nalgene bottle). The hood can be cinched snug or opened wide, and the polyester ripstop shell has an excellent DWR treatment that repelled moisture in a leaky tent. $419; 1 lb. 9 oz.; seatosummit.com


Ryan Kelley
Age 15
Test Trips Night kayaking on Lake Charlotte, hiking Mt. Airy, and trail-running in NC

[headlamp]
Princeton Tec Spectrum
This lamp delivers reliable, bright-white (43 lumens) light that, on the high setting, cut through an inky night kayaking on Lake Norman. The lightweight, compact, and stable design is excellent for trail running. And with the tiltable beam, plus low- and mid-settings, you won’t blind your pals around camp. Batteries (three AAAs) lasted 28 hours on high. Color coordinatel: Order online and you can custom-build your own lamp from a rainbow of colors. $35; 2.8 oz.; spectrum.princetontec.com


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