Zpacks 8.5’ x 10’ Tarp Review: The Ultralight Tarp to Carry?

My favorite hammock tarp is the Zpacks 8.5′ x 10′ Flat Tarp, a top choice for ultralight enthusiasts in search of single-digit base pack weights. It’s light and versatile enough that I take it everywhere, including day hikes and car camping trips. I mostly use tarps as hammock rain covers, but they’re also popular for … Read more

Zpacks Offset Trio Review: A Stellar 3-Person UL Shelter?

Zpacks’ ultralight tents have long reigned supreme in the backpacking shelter world. But rather than resting on their laurels, the good folks at Zpacks have continued to raise the bar with their recently released Offset Duo and, now, the three-person Offset Trio, which I was recently able to test out and review. The Duo already … Read more

Zpacks Triplex Review: A Formidable 3-Person Backpacking Tent?

Man sitting inside a backpacking tent with his arms stretched out wide

I welcomed the chance to review the Zpacks Triplex ultralight backpacking tent. Its versatile trekking pole setup and Dyneema Composite Fabric (DCF) make it one of the lightest, thinnest, and most reliable tents for staying dry and out of the elements. Here’s my in-depth look at its features, specifications, setup, and its upsides and downsides. … Read more

Patagonia R1 Regulator Fleece Pullover Hoody Review

Hiker wearing a green pullover fleece balaclava style hoodie

Price: $159 MSRP – Check Price on REI | Backcountry | Patagonia Connor’s Rating:  4.2 out of 5 stars Pros: Comfortable, versatile, easy to layer with Cons: Not very weather-resistant, not super packable Weight: 11 oz | 312 grams Women’s Model: R1 Pullover Lighter Option: Patagonia R1 Air Crew – 9.7 oz | 275 grams … Read more

Montbell Versalite Rain Jacket Review: THE Ultralight Solution?

Price: $199 MSRP – Check Price on Montbell Noel’s Rating:  4.7 out of 5 stars Pros: Lightweight, packable, full-featured, great fit, breathable Cons: Wets out after long rain exposure, pricey Weight: 6.4 oz | 182 grams Women’s Model: Versalite Jacket Lighter Option: Enlightened Equipment Visp – 4.9 oz | 140 grams Budget Alternative: Outdoor Research Helium … Read more

Montbell Plasma 1000 Alpine Down Parka Hands-On Review

Price: $439 MSRP – Check Price on Montbell Noel’s Rating:  4.6 of 5 stars Pros: Extremely warm and lightweight, very comfortable, full set of features Cons: Not very water-resistant, slightly delicate, expensive Weight: 8.4 oz Women’s Model: Plasma 1000 Alpine Down Parka Lighter Option: Plasma 1000 Alpine Down Jacket: 4.8 oz Budget Option: Superior Down Parka: $209 … Read more

Montbell Women’s Permafrost Light Down Parka Review

Woman standing in the forest with a smile wearing a red down jacket

Price: $279 MSRP – Check Price on Montbell Keri’s Rating:  4.8 of 5 stars Pros: Great weight to warmth ratio; practically waterproof; extremely comfortable Cons: No internal zippered pockets; a tad bulky for ultralight backpacking Weight: 13.8 oz Men’s Model: Permafrost Light Down Parka Lighter Option: Alpine Light Down Parka: 12 oz Budget Option: Highland Parka: $149 … Read more

Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX Review: An Elite Hiking Boot?

Price: $230 MSRP – Check Price on: REI | Amazon Noel’s Rating:  4.6 of 5 stars Pros: Very comfortable; no break-in period; excellent ankle support, traction Cons: Relatively expensive; potential durability concerns; bulky Weight: 52.6 oz | 1.49 kg Women’s Model: REI | Amazon Lighter Option: Salomon X Ultra Mid 3 GTX: 36.5 oz | 1.04 kg … Read more