Editors' Picks with Map Editor Andrew Matranga

Gadgets and gear from our resident map editor.


Mammut Neon Light 12L

Stuff a short dayhike’s worth of gear in this streamlined featherweight, slip in a bladder for elbows-clear ski tours, or slide in a 15-inch laptop for bike commuting. Four pockets stash small stuff, daisy chains accept climbing gear, and a 16-inch bungee cord inside the front pocket keeps keys and droppables secure. The contoured shoulder straps, removable hipbelt, and tapered, semi-stiff backpanel keeps loads (up to 15 pounds) well balanced and comfortable. $60; 13 oz.; mammut.ch

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GTU 10

My family likes to track my progress when I’m hiking, so with this GPS-enabled personal locator I draw a “geofence” around the places on my itinerary, and the device emails or texts my contact list when I enter or leave those locations. Cool: Download the free app (Garmin Tracker) to view the unit’s position on your iPhone or Android and navigate to it with turn-by-turn directions. $200 (includes one year of standard tracking); 1.7 oz.; garmin.com

[bargain smartphone case]

OtterBox Defender for DroidX/MilestoneX

When you drop half a paycheck on a smartphone, adding 50 bucks for the ultimate armor is a good investment. I didn’t flinch when I butterfingered my DroidX from 30 feet on Chimney Tops in Great Smoky Mountains National Park—that’s how bomber this case is. Cool: The swiveling belt clip means easy, on-trail access for mapping and apping. $50; 1.8 oz.; otterbox.com