We’re officially into spring and that means the second-best hiking season (after fall, of course) is underway. It’s literally the perfect time for spring cleaning your gear closet and taking stock of your outdoor equipment. Keep what works, donate the rest, and consider upgrading anything that just isn’t working for you anymore. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up the best new gear for hiking (and camping and kayaking and whatever else you’re getting into) this spring.
- Voormi River Run Hoodie
- Uncharted Supply Co. Park Pack
- Stoic Zip-Off Pants
- Kate’s Real Food Snack Bars
- Swiftwick Flite XT Trail Socks
- Jaybird Vista 2 Earthproof Earbuds
- BN3TH Merino Wool Boxer Brief
- Spy Optic Rebar Sunglasses
- WESN Microblade Compact Knife
- Superfeet Trailblazer Comfort Hiking Insoles
- Matador NanoDry Trek Towel
- Danner Free Spirit Hiking Boots
- Fenix HP30R V2.0 Headlamp
- Suunto 7 Multisport Smartwatch
Voormi River Run Hoodie
For those hotter-than-normal spring days, a good sun shirt is often the only layer you need. Voormi’s River Run Hoodie is a featherweight, long-sleeve hoodie that offers just enough protection. With a 100 g/m2 fabric weight, it’s one of the lightest Merino wool hoodies on the market. A relaxed full-cover hood provides extra coverage when the sun gets to be too much, and integrated thumb loops ensure a good fit. Plus, the all-natural Merino makes this comfortable enough for all-week wear.
Uncharted Supply Co. Park Pack
Sometimes even a daypack is still too much backpack. Uncharted Supply Co. takes it back to basics with its new-for-2022 Park Pack. This compact hip bag is designed to carry everything you need and nothing you don’t. It’s anchored by a 2.8L storage pouch with a 600D Tarpaulin shell and heavy-duty YKK water-resistant zippers. The storage is neatly divided among Molle attachment straps, an internal mesh pocket, a large external smartphone pocket, and dual attachment points for strapping on any extra gear you can’t go without.
Stoic Zip-Off Pants
If your hiking pants could use a reboot, Backcountry’s own Stoic Zip-Off Pants are the perfect option. The blended poly-spandex fabric dries quickly and breathes well for all manner of outdoor adventures. Four-way stretch construction offers freedom of movement, while an integrated belt and hem shock cords ensure a good fit all around. Plus, the zip-off design makes them versatile enough for whatever you’re getting into this spring.
Kate’s Real Food Snack Bars
Many brand-name energy and snack bars are little more than glorified candy bars. Kate’s Real Food is upending the game with, well, “real food.” Every bar in the brand’s catalog is non-GMO, USDA organic, and features ingredients you can actually pronounce. Plus, they taste great without relying on megadoses of sugar and artificial sweeteners. We’ve tried every flavor, and they’re all great, but the Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate is the one that keeps us coming back.
Swiftwick Flite XT Trail Socks
We don’t get excited about socks that often. But, Swiftwick’s all-new Flite XT Trail Socks are hands-down — er, feet-down — the best trail socks we’ve ever tested. The versatile, performance-oriented socks are designed for hard-charging outdoorsmen who like trail running, hiking, climbing, and everything in-between. Among the long list of features, we especially love is the GripDry fiber with an increased grip that helps the socks stay put to reduce friction and slippage.
Jaybird Vista 2 Earthproof Earbuds
Of the many joys of escaping into nature is leaving the hustle and sounds of “normal” life behind. But, we’re not above listening to podcasts or a little Enya out on the trail. Jaybird’s Vista 2 earbuds are built tough with a long list of adventure-ready features. What we love most, however, is the SurroundSense technology that helps keep you oriented and aware of your surroundings. Plus, they’re IP68 rated, so they’re waterproof, sweatproof, and drop-resistant.
BN3TH Merino Wool Boxer Brief
For our money, boxer briefs are the only way to fly. Whether you’re biking, climbing, or kayaking, the tried-and-true design keeps everything in place — well, almost everything. BN3TH’s Merino Wool Boxer Briefs blend all the best parts of Merino wool, polyamide, and spandex for a next-level brief that’s breathable, odor-resistant, and temperature-regulating. What’s more: The built-in MyPakage Pouch helps support your boys and keep them in place, no matter how extreme your adventures.
Spy Optic Rebar Sunglasses
Your outdoor adventures demand eyewear that’s up to the task, and Spy Optic delivers with its latest Rebar sunglasses. The thick, chunky design features durable plastic construction with polycarbonate lenses that are built tough. The polarized, UV-coated lenses offer extra protection and maximum clarity whether you’re out on the trail or sailing the open water. Plus, the design just looks great.
WESN Microblade Compact Knife
Multitools and fixed-blade knives are great for campers and long-haul hikers. But, spring day hiking calls for a compact blade that’s there when you need it but packs neatly out of the way when you don’t. WESN’s aptly named Microblade is among the smallest foldable knives on the market with an overall length of just 3.75 inches. The 1.5-inch, tool-grade steel blade is ultra-fine and razor-sharp, so it works well for on-trail emergencies or just slicing open your favorite trail snacks.
Superfeet Trailblazer Comfort Hiking Insoles
There’s no better investment for hikers than good hiking boots and trail-ready socks. But, insoles make a big difference too. This spring, check out Superfeet’s Trailblazer Comfort Hiking Insoles designed for everything from day hikes to overnight backpacking treks. The Aerospring Ascent foam is ultra-comfortable while reducing fatigue and providing extra support and stability on uneven ground.
Matador NanoDry Trek Towel
Outdoor exploring is dirty business, but a good trail towel can make all the difference. Matador’s NanoDry Trek Towel is a full-sized hand and face towel that packs down small and clips neatly to your pack or hiking pants. The nano-fiber material is ultra-absorbent and quick-drying, so it’s perfect for wiping your brow or cleaning up after messy trailside lunches.
Danner Free Spirit Hiking Boots
If your boots need a serious refresh this season, Danner’s aptly named Free Spirit hiking boots are just the trick. The retro-inspired design offers just the right amount of pop, so they pair well with jeans and casual wear. When you’re ready to hit the trail, they provide plenty of support in a lightweight, breathable design perfect for spring hikes. Plus, a Gore-Tex liner ensures they’re 100% waterproof if the weather suddenly goes sideways.
Fenix HP30R V2.0 Headlamp
Night hikes are a lot more fun when you can actually see what you’re doing. Fenix’s next-gen HP30R V2.0 is the brightest headlamp we’ve ever tested with an eye-popping 3,000 lumens to help you navigate the darkest environments. To put that number in perspective, a 750-lumen headlamp is considered more than adequate for most hikers. It’s also IP66-rated again dirt, dust, and other foreign objects. But, we especially love the 120-hour run time (in low mode) — enough to survive a long, well-lit weekend away in the woods.
Suunto 7 Multisport Smartwatch
Among Suunto’s deep catalog of sport-centric smartwatches, the Suunto 7 is a standout. It’s a feature-rich design that tracks everything from sleep to daily activity to stress levels, making it ideal for everyday wear and more active pursuits. For exploring away from civilization, the offline outdoor maps with navigation are an especially nice feature for spring hiking. It all works seamlessly with both Android and iOS phones.
Spring is the perfect season to refresh your gear closet. Sure, you may not need everything on this list, but chances are at least some of your outdoor equipment is well past retirement age. Why not treat yourself to something new?
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