Fall/Winter Gear Guide 2011 Table of Contents

295 Reviews & Comfort Tips

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Most Versatile: Sea to Summit Alpine ApII

Big-guy Bargain: Mountainsmith El Diente 5 Degree

Ultralight: Brooks-Range Alpini 15

Waterproof: Mammut Ajungilak Alpine Winter

Bargain: Eureka! Kaycee 0F

Roomy Warmth: Big Agnes Hahns Peak SL


Bargain: Kelty Recluse 2.5i

Warmest: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir All Season


Light and Nimble: Teva Forge Pro Winter Mid WP

Extra Insulated: Garmont Momentum Icelock

Warm and Light: Adidas Terrex Conrax CP

On-demand Traction: Crispi Super Granite

Winter Mountaineering: Koflach Degre

Multitasker: Korkers Snowjack

Cold-weather Hike: Keen Revel

Heated: Columbia Bugaboot Max Electric

Winter Trail Runner: Salomon Spikecross 3cs


Solo: Nemo Obi 1p Elite

Single-wall: The North Face Assault 2

Big-and-Tall Alpinist: Black Diamond Eldorado

Bargain: Mountain Equipment Co-op TGV2

Classic: Big Agnes Royal Flush 3 15898

Mountain Laurel Designs Circus Tent

Basecamp: MSR Storm King

Fully Loaded: Nemo Anti Storm 3p


Weekender: Sierra Designs Sorcery 55

Ski Mountaineering: Pieps Plecotus

Ice Climbing: Osprey Mutant 38

Minimalist: Black Diamond Agent

Photo Pack: Clik Elite Obscura

Avy Ready: K2 Pilchuck Kit

All-purpose: The North Face Patrol 34

Light and Large: Golite Terrono 90



Max Warmth: Mountain Hardwear Kelvinator

Down Midlayer: Stoic Luft Down Sweater

Fleece: Sherpa Ananta/Priya Pullover

Best Warmth to Weight: MontBell Frost Smoke

Killer Ski Jacket: Patagonia Winter Sun Hoody

Convertible: REI Spruce Peak/Nevis

Bargain: L.L. Bean Packaway Pullover

Wool Midlayer: Icebreaker Sierra/Cascade Full-Zip

Warm & Breathable: The North Face Jakson


Warm & Durable: Ibex Tuck

Best for Skiing: Mountain Hardware Snowtastic

Best Ventialator: Sierra Designs Savage

Bargain: Sherpa Adventure Gear Lobutse

Best Hood: Arc’teryx Venta MX Hoody

Waterproof: Marmot Zion

Sweet Deal: REI Centre Peak

Versatile: Rab Fusion


Bargain: L.L. Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket

Breathable Bargain: Stoic Vaporshell

Ultradurable: Outdoor Research Paladin

All-season Breathability: Rab Stretch Neo

Full-featured Ultralight: Arc’teryx Beta FL

Lightest: Mammut Felsturm Half-Zip

Best Value: Mountain Hardware Ampato

Storm Protection: Patagonia Super Pluma

Versatile Value: Adidas Terrex Swift 3in1

Mountaineers’ Favorite: Mammut Eiger Extreme Nordwand


Underwear: Icebreaker Spring Boxer Brief and Pace Hipster

Top Fit: Mammut Moench Zip Tee

Head and Neck Protection: Patagonia Merino 3 Midweight Hoody

Best Bottoms: Helly Hansen Dry Revolution Pant

Women’s Favorite: SmartWool Lightweight Asymmetrical Zip

Best Warmth-to-Weight Ratio: Columbia Omni Heat Half-Zip Baselayer

Moisture Mover: Craft Concept Piece

Most Versatile: Dakine Chester/Cheyenne Shirt


Softshell: Mammut Eisfeld/Eismeer

Custom Fit: Beyond RoughRider/Ridgeline

Bib: Patagonia Super Alpine

Hiking: REI Mistral

Hardshell: Mountain Hardwear Bokta

Warmest: MontBell U.L. Down Inner


Minimalists: Injinji Performance Series Orginal Weight Mini-Crew

Never-fail Classic: Outdoor Research Crocodile Gaiter

Multisport: Fox River Cirrus/Sierra

Ski/Snowboard Lightweight: Fox River Mammoth

No-blister Guarantee: Darn Tough True Seamless Mesh

All-day Comfort: FITS Hiker Crew Medium


Best Ski Helmet: SCOTT Roam

Cold-weather Aerobics: Shredalert Smith Rock Micro Beanie

Versatility Champ: Fjallraven Skare Softshell

Ear & Sun Protection: Black Diamond Roj Headband

Cushy Camp Hat: Chaos Spruce

Favorite Face Mask: Helly Hansen HH Dry Balaclava

Best Lightweight: SmartWool Reversible Training Beanie


Tech Ready: Outdoor Research Touchtec Sensor

Waterproof: Black Diamond Enforcer

Warmest: Outdoor Research Mt. Baker Modular Mitt

Lightweight: Arc’teryx Venta LT

All-purpose: Stoic Forge



Fall/Winter Gear Guide: Desserts

Fall/Winter Gear Guide: Lunches/Snacks

Fall/Winter Gear Guide: Breakfasts


Utensil Set: MSR Alpine Deluxe Kitchen Set

No-prime Innovator: SOTO Muka Liquid Fuel Stove

Liquid Fuel Stove: Primus ExpressLander

Do-it-All Container: GSI Outdoors Collapsible Fairshare Mug

Cookset: REI Campware Nonstick Cookset (Large)


Simple Bargain: Bushnell BackTrack D-TOUR

Deluxe: Garmin Montana 650T

Workhorse: Garmin eTrex 30

Multitasker: Magellan eXplorist 710


Most Versatile: Revo Guide

Bargain: Julbo Around Excel

Best All-around Goggle: Zeal Eclipse SPPX

Mountaineering: Adidas Terrex Pro

Lightest: Native Vim


GPS-enabled Favorite: Canon PowerShot SX230 HS

Action Video: GoPro HD Helmet HERO

Pro-level DSLR: Canon Rebel T3i

Bomber Point-and-Shoot: Pentax Optio WG-1

Trail-tough Bargain: Olympus TG-310



Techncial Tool: Cassin X-All Mountain

Tough Rope: Beal Tiger 10mm

Bargain Screw: Austri Alpin SI-KO FX

Best for Women: Grivel Quantum Tech

All-purpose Crampons: Black Diamond Sabretooth


Ultralight All-arounder: Mammut Togir/Togira Light

Best Boot: Scarpa Mt. Blanc GTX

Glacier Safety: Petzl Crevasse Rescue Kit

Crampons: CAMP XLC

Helmet: Black Diamond Half Dome

Quickdraw: Metolius FS Mini Long Draw

Belay Device: Mammut Smart Alpine

Ice Axe: Grivel G1



Kids’ Choice: Atlas Sprout/Mini

Bargain: Tubbs Flex ESC

Runners’ Favorite: Kahtoola RNR 22

Beginner’s Choice: Easton Artica Hike

Load Haulers: L.L. Bean Summit Trekker

Best Binding: Crescent Moon Gold 10/Gold 13

Top Traction: Atlas Aspect


Powder Specialist: Volkl Nunataq

Women’s Favorite: Liberty Envy Powder

Most Versatile: Rossignol S3

Mountaineer’s Choice: Dynafit StokeBest Resort/Sidecountry Crossover: Black Diamond AMPerage/Element

Backcountry Snowboarding

Bindings: Karakoram Split30

Splitboard: Jones Solution


Ski: La Sportiva GT/GTS

Binding: La Sportiva RT

Boot: Dynafit TLT5 Mountain

Best Step-in Binding: Fritschi Diamir Eagle 12

Ultralight Binding: Dynafit Radical ST 10

Top Big-mountain Boot: Black Diamond Quadrant


Best All-around: Garmont Voodoo

Overall Favorite: Black Diamond 01


The editors of Backpacker and Climbing weigh in on their favorite pieces of gear and gadgets.


Iceland: Tested

Imagine skiing 2,000-foot runs from summit to sea—in spectacular fjordland terrain accessible to any skill level—and having it all to yourself. Too good to be true? We’re believers after our final round of gear testing for this issue.

Plus: Hit the top backcountry ski destinations from California to New York.


Backcountry Skiing 101

What’s more fun than hiking up snow-covered slopes in winter? Skiing down them! We quizzed ski pros, avalanche experts, and guides to bring you 130 tips for expanding your backcountry pursuits this season. Here’s how to plan routes, travel efficiently and safely, stay energized, and maintain your gear.