Backpacker

ON A BUDGET

At its heart, backpacking is a simple pursuit: walk into the woods, sleep on the ground, walk out. You can do that without expensive gear. But you still need stuff, and not cheap  because it’s minimalist and durable. For a tent, I want plenty of floor space for two, even if that means making do with a single door, so I go with the  . (The Kelty Late Start 2, on page 58, is also a great deal if you prioritize lightning-fast setup.) I round out my core camp gear with the  , a synthetic-fill workhorse, and  , which compensates for the heavy bag but still boasts 3.5 inches of cushion (affordable should never mean uncomfortable; just put your lower legs on your pack). I never skimp on shoes. Salomon consistently delivers value, especially in a low-cut like the  . For layering, the key is getting the function without the fancy, like in the shell , synthetic puffy , and  . If I splurge on one layer it’s a softshell, but I go with a streamlined design like the   to save a few more bucks.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Backpacker

Backpacker6 min read
Small and Mighty
OUR TAKE On days when we were speeding down the trail, this pack and its body-hugging fit were an easy pick. Clever use of foam and stretchy mesh allow the shoulder straps and hipbelt to flex and relax like tendons, so the Miwok stayed glued to one t
Backpacker1 min readFashion & Beauty
Fjällräven Keb Fleece Hoodi
I’m hard on my apparel’s elbows. Maybe it’s because I recline on any and every surface on breaks and in camp. Or maybe it’s that I wear garments until they’re rags. Either way, it’s shocking to think about all the places I’ve rubbed the elbows of my
Backpacker2 min readFood & Wine
DIY Breakfast Bars
Sweet, salty, and savory—this bar hits all the right notes. Makes 9 bars 6 strips bacon2 very ripe bananas½ cup peanut butter¼ cup maple syrup½ tsp. salt2 cups rolled oats¼ cup peanuts, roughly chopped¼ cup dates, roughly chopped AT HOME Heat oven to