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    We combed through hordes of gear to put together the best kit for road and mountain biking.


      Photo: Giro


    Giro Chrono Pro Shorts 


    A good chamois could be the single most important item in your gear closet. This is about the plushest we’ve found, with a wide waist, leg bands that stay in place, and silky Lycra.   


    Price $150

    Buy Now


      Photo: Specialized


    Specialized S-Works Evade Helmet 


    The secret to speed isn’t shedding weight—it’s getting aero. The Evade will save you 46 seconds over 24 miles compared with a standard helmet, says Specialized. We couldn’t verify the claim, but we sure felt fast.    


    Price $225

    Buy Now


      Photo: Louis Garneau


    Garneau Stunner RTR Jersey


    Upping your visibility at night is the best way to stay safer on the road. We like this reflective top from Garneau because it glows like a beacon when headlights hit it and doesn’t look like a traffic cone the rest of the time. 


    Price $180

    Buy Now


      Photo: Velocio


    Velocio Recon Jacket 


    Spandex-clad roadies aren’t known for high style, so when a company designs a shell that can seamlessly transition from a half-century to an espresso stop in SoHo, we take note. The Polartec NeoShell fabric (the stuff ski jackets are made of) kept us dry in the rain, and the long hem in back didn’t ride up when we hit the drops.


    Price $395

    Buy Now


      Photo: Pearl Izumi


    Pearl Izumi Race Road IV Shoes 


    A good road shoe should hug your foot like a second skin and provide a rock-solid pedaling platform. This high-performance tool delivers on both counts, with a carbon sole and a dial to micro-adjust fit.  


    Price $150

    Buy Now


      Photo: Specialized


    Specialized 2FO Cliplite Shoes 


    With a stiff sole and rigid heel cup, the Cliplite is an efficient pedaler, but it really shines on backcountry adventure rides. Aggressive rubber lugs and a Boa-Velcro combo inspire confidence on rough hike-a-bikes.


    Price $180

    Buy Now


      Photo: Qloom


    Qloom Black Beach Shorts 


    Baggies, meet boardshorts. We love the surf-inspired print, but what really won us over was the airy stretch fabric and trim cut. We wore these bottoms on rides, runs, swims, and hikes. The one downside: that breathable material tears easily.  


    Price $130

    Buy Now



    Giro Montara MIPS Helmet 


    With deep coverage on the sides and back, this helmet is intended for rowdy, big-hit riding. But it’s no slouch on cross-country trails, and 16 vents kept us cool in temps up to 95 degrees. 


    Price $150

    Buy Now


      Photo: Osprey


    Osprey Verve 3 Pack 


    The problem with most hydration packs: the weight and bulk throw us off-balance. When we can, we downsize to the Verve 3. Ideal for sub-two-hour rides, it holds a 2.5-liter bladder, a few snacks, a flat kit, and a light rain shell. 


    Price $80

    Buy Now


      Photo: Sombrio


    Sombrio Burst Jersey 


    Sombrio makes kick-ass kit with attitude. The Burst pairs loud colors with smart engineering, including flat seams that don’t chafe under a pack. 


    Price $70

    Buy Now


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    You can do better than jeans and a T-shirt.


      Photo: Ibex


    Ibex Shralp Jersey


    Ibex calls this a jersey, and while it does have some nice tech details—including odor- and moisture-resistant wool fabric, a drop hem, and reflective hits on the back—the wrinkle-free, plaid button-up hangs just as well at the office as it does in the saddle.  


    Price $150

    Buy Now


      Photo: Du:er


    Du:er Slim Utility Rinse Jeans 


    These trim-fit jeans are excellent on the bike, thanks to the proprietary, slightly stretchy, bomber denim and hidden gusseted crotch. We found ourselves wearing them almost full-time since they don’t show their cycling heritage with oddball darts and seams. 


    Price $129

    Buy Now


      Photo: Kitsbow


    Kitsbow Merino Mountain Hoodie 


    Leave it to this California-based apparel company to elevate the hoodie from lowly top to precision gear, with stretch-mesh panels under the arms and at the sides that complement the cozy heathered merino. A long, trim fit and button-down extension cuffs keep the cold out on brisk mornings. We put on this piece and hoped to never take it off. 


    Price $295

    Buy Now


      Photo: Search&State


    Search&State S1J Jacket 


    There are tons of cycling shells on the market, but none combine the clean, urban good looks (we love the bright sandstone color) with the all-weather insulation of Schoeller C-Change, a fabric that protects from the wet and wind yet breathes as you heat up. 


    Price $255

    Buy Now


      Photo: Bell


    Bell Hub Helmet 


    The full-coverage Hub offers impact protection on the sides and back, an ICEdot sensor to store emergency contacts in case of trouble, and 15 well-placed vents that kept us cool. It also looks reasonably hip, thanks to the soft, fabric visor. Nice touch: the integrated light mount in back. 


    Price $75

    Buy Now


      Photo: DZR


    DZR H2O Shoes 


    These seemingly ordinary skate-style high-tops feature DWR-treated sheepskin leather and fully sealed seams. The H20 kept our feet toasty and dry on even the sloppiest days. The gum-rubber sole includes a removable port for clipless pedals, but we left ours intact for better weather protection. 


    Price $170

    Buy Now


      Photo: Mission Workshop


    Mission Workshop Black Camo Messenger Bag 


    Yep, this messenger bag costs a small fortune, but the fully waterproof interior, with a roll-top for especially nasty days, will protect your more-expensive electronics. All zippers are weatherproof, the aluminum hardware is tough, and the 35-liter main compartment swallows everything you’ll possibly need in a day. 


    Price $289

    Buy Now


      Photo: Rapha


    Rapha Sunglasses 


    Rapha’s fashionable Italian-made sunnies draw their inspiration from flight goggles. They fit tight and keep out the wind, and the Carl Zeiss lenses don’t fog. The tortoiseshell frames look sharp, too, meaning you won’t need to switch shades for a post-ride stop at the bar. 


    Price $295

    Buy Now


      Photo: Knog


    Knog Pop Duo Light 


    It isn’t the brightest torch—35 lumens up front, five out back—but it’ll do the job in a pinch. And what this single AA battery-powered light lacks in power it more than makes up for in style, with half a dozen colors to choose from. Plus, the price can’t be beat. 


    Price $33

    Buy Now


      Photo: Wigwam


    Wigwam Downtown Socks 


    The 110-year-old footwear manufacturer sheds its stodgy reputation with these dapper merino-spandex socks that feel as good as they look. For a little extra capriciousness, buy several pairs to mix and match colors. 


    Price $17

    Buy Now


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  • 05/06/16--13:50: The Best Water Shoes of 2016
  • Protect your piggies in the wet.


      Photo: Inga Hendrickson


    Sperry Shock Light Boat 


    Best for: Doing It All 


    With a slipper-like fit, the Shock Light happily squeezes into the bow of a whitewater boat, while the grippy, nonmarking sole won’t scuff the teak deck on your buddy’s yacht. The shock-cord lacing keeps it snug should you fall into the drink, and it dries in less than half an hour.


    Price $85

    Buy Now


      Photo: Chaco


    Chaco Z/Cloud 


    Best for: Raft Trips


    How to improve an iconic, river-guide-trusted sandal? Very carefully. Chaco’s upgrades on the new Z/Cloud are minimal and smart: a soft antimicrobial topsheet molds to your foot, and a rubber compound on the outsole boosts grip. Bonus points for the new webbing colors. 


    Price $110

    Buy Now


      Photo: Five Ten


    Five Ten Eddy


    Best for: Sticking Like a Salamander


    Built with climbing brand Five Ten’s famously sticky rubber outsole, the Eddy is ideal for sketchy portages on slick rocks. The armoring extends over the toes, so you can jam your foot into tight spots, and the mesh upper sheds water like a champ after swims, drying almost completely in under 20 minutes. 


    Price $100

    Buy Now


      Photo: Olukai


    OluKai Nohea Moku


    Best for: Island Vacations


    The casual vibe of the Moku—one tester wore it with jeans on a Tinder date—hides solid tech: a fast-drying, sweat-wicking upper and a heel that drops down to transform it into a slip-on. Though not the best choice for a multi-day sea-kayaking trip, it’s perfect for island hopping in Belize.


    Price $95

    Buy Now


      Photo: Astral


    Astral Hiyak 


    Best for: Whitewater Kayakers


    Our veteran river rat couldn’t find a single thing to dislike about the Hiyak. The over-the-ankle fit and lacing (protected by a Velcro guard) made it the most secure river shoe we’ve tested—“They just never come off,” said our tester—while a stout hydrophobic upper made it among the toughest. 


    Price $115

    Buy Now


      Photo: Keen


    Keen Maupin 


    Best for: Creek Hikes 


    The minimalist feel underfoot, simple one-strap fit system, and soft TPU coverings over potential blister points made this a tester favorite for daylong creek hikes. The tacky rubber outsole held firm on mossy rocks, though the buckle got finicky when covered in wet sand and mud. 


    Price $90

    Buy Now


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      Photo: Merrell


    Merrell All Out Crush Light Shoes 


    For burly trail kicks, these are surpris­ingly light, thanks to an airy mesh upper and zero bells and whistles. Five-millimeter lugs and a thick toe cap offer protection in rough stuff, but we flew along buffed-out forest roads, too. 


    Price $90

    Buy Now



    Tracksmith Harrier Tank 


    This top, made from silky merino wool and cut like a vintage gym tee, works just as well for intervals as it does with jeans. Break it out on the hottest days and enjoy the breeze. 


    Price $65

    Buy Now


      Photo: Bkr


    Bkr Madly 250-ml Bottle 


    We wouldn’t run with it, but Bkr’s teeny glass bottle is perfect for stashing in your car for post-workout hydration. Plus, it’s as cute as a button and comes in a bunch of colors. 


    Price $28

    Buy Now


      Photo: The North Face


    The North Face Ultra Lite WP Jacket 


    Yes, it looks dorky, but this nylon layer is perfect for warm, rainy runs. It’s significantly cooler than a normal shell and won’t make you feel like you’re engulfed in a garbage bag. 


    Price $150

    Buy Now 


      Photo: CW-X


    CW-X StabilyX Ventilator Shorts 


    A wide panel of supportive Lycra at the waist and webbing along the sides make for shorts that steady hips while aligning muscles and ligaments. For us, that translated to less fatigue after big-mileage days. 


    Price $80

    Buy Now


      Photo: Brooks


    Brooks SureShot Racer Bra 


    Sports bras are tricky to get right. Too loose and you don’t get enough support. Too tight and you feel like you’re wearing a corset. The SureShot, with its soft poly-spandex blend, is the Goldilocks of bounce prevention. 


    Price $38

    Buy Now


      Photo: Lululemon


    Lululemon Athletica Swiftly Tech Long Sleeve Shirt


    Long sleeves in summer? Heck yes. This seamless, mesh-back top kept the sun off and pulled double duty as a warm layer when the wind picked up.


    Price $68

    Buy Now


      Photo: Smartwool


    Smartwool PhD Run Light Elite Low Cut Socks 


    A little extra cushion in the ball and heel of these merino-blend wool socks takes the bite out of pounding pavement. Seamless toes reduce the threat of blisters—key on hot runs. 


    Price $18

    Buy Now


      Photo: Craft Sportswear


    Craft Sportswear Focus 2-in-1 Shorts 


    Say goodbye to chafing with these double-duty bottoms, which integrate stretchy tights under thin poly-blend shorts. Nice touch: reflective hits woven throughout add visibility.


    Price $50

    Buy Now


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      Photo: The North Face


    The North Face Runners Hat 


    Trucker hats block sun and look rad. The North Face took it a step further, adding a mesh sweatband around the rim to keep sunscreen out of your eyes.


    Price $30

    Buy Now


      Photo: Nathan


    Nathan ExoShot Bottle


     By pairing a soft flask with an internal spine, Nathan made a 12-ounce bottle that doesn’t feel like a jellyfish. The insulated sleeve adds grip and has a pocket big enough to hold a Patagonia Provisions bar (below). 


    Price $35

    Buy Now


      Photo: Hilly


    Hilly Twin Skin Anklet Socks


    The wrong socks can destroy a run. These anklets have two layers of fabric—an outer cotton-poly blend and an inner liner—that rub against each other instead of your skin. 


    Price $13

    Buy Now


      Photo: The North Face


    The North Face Better Than Naked Tank 


    Constructed from a quick-drying poly knit with few seams, this top is, to quote Ned Flanders, like wearing nothing at all. 


    Price $45

    Buy Now


      Photo: Altra


    Altra Performance Shirt


    Mesh panels along the shoulders and upper back allow the shirt to breathe nearly as well as a tank, though more modestly. 


    Price $60

    Buy Now


      Photo: Patagonia


    Patagonia Provisions Fruit and Almond Bars 


    Made from organic ingredients, Patagonia’s bars are moist yet crunchy, and they’re the perfect size for a pit stop. 


    Price $24 for 12

    Buy Now


      Photo: Smartwool


    Smartwool PhD Shorts


    The liner inside the five-inch PhDs is made from a silky, odor-resistant merino blend, which goes a long way toward preventing swamp crotch and ­chafing. (But you should still wash them.) 


    Price $60

    Buy Now 


      Photo: Petzl


    Petzl Tikka RXP Headlamp


    This is the smartest piece of running gear we own: it adjusts the beam’s brightness depending on light conditions (though it’s fooled by oncoming headlights). The body is a hair bulky, but the dual straps in back keep everything stable and secure. 


    Price $100

    Buy Now 


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    Plus-size is fast becoming the new normal in mountain bikes. One year ago, you had only a few niche options in this category, loosely defined as including anything with 2.8-to-3-inch tires. At this year’s test we evaluated eight of the rigs, including our Gear of the Year winner, and another dozen are coming to market this season. These mid-fat machines add grip and confidence without the heft of a full fat bike, making them ideal for loose, sandy trails and super ­capable on bigger-hit riding. While the development is still in its infancy, with manufacturers debating rim widths and rubber dimensions, we believe it’s a significant advance for dirt steeds. Of course, there are still plenty of great “standard” mountain bikes out there (including four in this section), and depending on where you live and how you ride, one of those might be the best option. But as far as the bike industry is concerned, bigger (at least a little bit) is definitely better.


      Photo: Specialized


    Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie


    Gear of the Year

    Behold the finest trail bike money can buy—plus-size or otherwise. Several features set this 135-millimeter ripper a step above its competition, including superb tire clearance, feathery but burly carbon Roval Traverse SL wheels, and the genius SWAT design, which hid a spare tube, tools, and sundries inside a down-tube hatch behind the bottle cage. Specs are just right, with a micro-adjustable IRcc dropper post and hard-scrabbling stock tires (meaty Purgatory up front, fast-rolling Ground Control in the rear). But this bike’s balanced and capable personality really won us over. The big, grippy tires had testers burning down chutes and precipitous rock drops with careless abandon. Its uphill manners amazed everyone, offering Velcro-like traction in loose chunk and steeps. It doesn’t ride portly—it just feels like the next step in the evolution of mountain-bike design.


    Price $3,500 to $8,600 Weight 28.3 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: Orbea


    Orbea Occam TR M-Ltd


     Best For: Going faster. 


    The Test: This full-carbon 29er epitomizes the new cross-country race bike, with more travel (120 millimeters instead of the traditional 100), wider bars for better control, and a slacker, shorter stance for descending confidence. “I never imagined a cross-country rig could be this self-possessed,” marveled one tester. Historically known for staid wheelsets, DT Swiss came out swinging with the carbon XRC-1200s, which are nearly as light as road wheels yet exceptionally stiff. That said, we’d have liked for this rig to come with a Fox 34 fork, which would have added only a bit of weight: a few testers complained that the 32 felt anemic when pushed hard.


    The Verdict: The Porsche Cayenne of mountain bikes.


    Price $3,999 to $7,999 Weight 24.8 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: Viral


    Viral Skeptic


    Best For: Rediscovering a love for rigid rigs. 


    The Test: From the mind of Niner founder Steve Domahidy, this 27.5+ oddity might be the plushest hardtail we’ve ever ridden. The titanium tubes feel like they’re stuffed with Tempur-Pedic foam, and the three-inch WTB tires cut the rough like shag carpet. Inside the bottom bracket, the Pinion gearbox—a 12-speed with almost double the range of today’s biggest 1x11 options—pushes a Gates Carbon Drive belt system. The result is a well-geared machine that’s quiet and low maintenance, with a relaxed posture that makes easy work of even the techiest trails. SRAM’s new Level brakes proved reliable, and the Race Face Turbine dropper is a great addition. Our only quibble: it’s quite heavy at more than 30 pounds. 

    The Verdict: An all-mountain play bike for your inner geek.


    Price $5,000 Weight 30.8 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: BMC


    BMC Teamelite TE01


    Best For: Winning XC races in comfort. 


    The Test: This carbon 29er is a race ­weapon, but thanks to an elastomer bumper built high on the seat stays and designed to take the edge off the rough, it dismantled the trail, not our backside. The setup yields just 15 millimeters of vertical compliance (also known as frame flex, a measure of comfort). That doesn’t sound like much, but when one of our testers raced the Teamelite TE01 in a nine-hour en­durance event, he experienced none of the backache or numb hands typical on a hardtail. Rear traction was grippier, too. The soft-tail design doesn’t affect weight—the bike tipped the scales at just 20 pounds, even with the bar-mount-controlled 100-­millimeter Fox Float fork. And while the SRAM XX1 1x11 drivetrain is the right choice for a racer, the 30-tooth front ring left us spinning out on flats. 


    The Verdict: Swiss precision and a touch of backside suspension equal a fast, surprisingly pleasant ride.


    Price $4,599 to 10,599 Weight 20 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: Rocky Mountain


    Rocky Mountain Blizzard -50


    Best For: Checking out the fat-tire trend. 


    The Test: Slip-sliding down snowy singletrack on the Blizzard made us feel like a giddy kid with his first sled. “This could make skis obsolete,” one tester claimed. Yet, with its short reach, slack 67.6-degree head angle, and 120-millimeter RockShox Bluto fork, this bike is just as fun in the dirt, where the big tires smooth out rock gardens like steam­rollers. The price is right, too, especially considering the solid Shimano SLX parts. We do suggest upgrading the Sun Ringlé wheels and the 4.7-inch Bulldozer tires, which spin about as well as their heavy-machinery namesake. Replace them with something stiff and light, like the carbon Reynolds Dean and Bontrager Barbegazi. 

    The Verdict: Big fun, and one of the sharpest-looking bikes in the test.


    Price $2,599 Weight 33.1 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: Evil


    Evil The Following


    Best For: Shredders and 29er skeptics. 


    The Test: With just 120 millimeters of rear travel, this all-mountain carbon 29er pedals like a hardtail but is more capable than far bigger bikes. The secret? The DELTA suspension (shorthand for Dave’s Extra Legitimate Travel Apparatus), the third system from bike guru Dave Weagle. “The best shock tune out of the box I’ve ever ridden,” gushed one tester. “Confidence inspiring in corners and way quicker handling than most 29ers, it makes you want to go fast.” The build is equally inspired, with a 130-millimeter RockShox Pike fork and a stiff Race Face Next SL crank. But while we loved the handling of the Easton Heist wheels, we beat up the soft rims. If it hadn’t been for the advent of plus-size, the Following would easily have won Gear of the Year. 


    The Verdict: The consummate all-around bike for those who like to hang it out there.


    Price $4,999 to 6,599 Weight 28.1 lbs

    Buy Now


      Photo: DeVinci


    Devinci Troy Carbon RR 


    Best For: Pretty much everything. 

    The Test: With 150 millimeters of travel and a moderate 67.5-degree head angle, this is a superb all-around machine. “It just does what you want it to,” raved one impressed tester. The parts range from excellent (the confident 150-millimeter RockShox Pike RCT3) to solid, though for the money the portly SRAM X01 crank and Avid Elixir 9 brakes underwhelmed. Still, the bike is reasonably lightweight even with those parts, allowing us to rail the Troy hard uphill and down—we even picked off a few Strava segments around Sedona, Arizona. It was especially popular with women and shorter riders, as the stand-over height is low. Trade in your collection of bikes for this one. We promise you won’t miss them. 

    The Verdict: A true shape-shifter, ­sprightly enough for all-day trail rides yet rugged enough for enduro.


    Price $2,399 to 6,599 Weight 27.5 lbs

    Buy Now


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    Get wet. Go long. Have fun.


      Photo: Mi Ola


    Mi Ola X Back Bikini Top and Cya Full Double-String Bottom 


    With a crossback design on top and grippy waistband elastic below, this bikini stays put even when you tumble on a wave. 


    Price $95 and $85

    Buy Now


      Photo: Mountain Hardwear


    Mountain Hardwear River Gorge Long-Sleeve Shirt 


    Stay out all day in this half-zip with UPF 50 protection. The quick-drying fabric is silky, not clingy, and a side pocket is big enough for cash, keys, and lip balm. 


    Price $50

    Buy Now


      Photo: Bureo


    Bureo Kayu Sunglasses 


    These shades pair frames made from recycled plastic fishing nets with Carl Zeiss polarized lenses. The result: eco-minded eyewear with superior style. 


    Price $139

    Buy Now


      Photo: NP


    NP Surf SUP Neo Hooded Jacket 


    Think your favorite hoodie but made from neoprene. Break it out on colder days and long paddles, when you’ll appreciate the relaxed fit, comfy hood, and zippered back pocket. 


    Price $100

    Buy Now


      Photo: Boardworks


    Boardworks Sirena Adjustable Paddle 


    Classy graphics on this bamboo-veneer blade turn a paddle into art. The carbon handle and shaft make it plenty deft. 


    Price $279

    Buy Now


      Photo: Imagine Surf


    Imagine Surf IPS Icon LTE 10'2" Paddleboard 


    Like other new-school inflatables, the Icon is rock solid when pumped up to its max 15 psi. Unlike most of them, however, it’s amazingly light at just 18 pounds, thanks to single-skin construction on top and bottom. 


    Price $799

    Buy Now


      Photo: Patagonia


    Patagonia Barely Baggies Shorts 


    An update to an old classic, the new Baggies are a few inches shorter than the originals. Made from fast-drying nylon with a DWR finish, they have two pockets and not much else, making them a comfy, minimal cover-up. 


    Price $49

    Buy Now


      Photo: Elemental Herbs


    All Good Sport Sunscreen 


    This SPF 33 sunscreen with pure zinc oxide is organic, paraben-free, biodegradable, hypoallergenic, gluten-free, and safe for coral reefs. Oh, and it prevents sunburn.


    Price $16

    Buy Now


      Photo: NP


    NP Surf Neo Flotation Vest 


    PFDs are often bulky and uncomfortable. But this superlight, two-buckle vest has oversize arm holes for ample range of motion during paddling. It may just save your life.


    Price $125

    Buy Now


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  • 05/09/16--12:44: The Best Boats of 2016
  • For the most part, boat manufacturers are in a careful tinkering phase, making smart refinements to tried-and-true designs. Notably, the trend in shorter (sub-15 feet) touring boats has matured: many brands are now producing these more playful kayaks, which are a bit slower than their longer forebearers but also more versatile. Regardless of what type you’re after, try to test a few models in the water before making a purchase. And while online homework is helpful, it can’t replace talking through options with a knowledgeable specialty retailer. Finally, remember to ask yourself a couple less exciting questions before pulling out your credit card: Where are you going to store your new boat? How easily can you transport it? The answers will be major factors in how much you’ll actually paddle.


      Photo: Inga Hendrickson


    Dagger Stratos 


    Gear of the Year


    When a company claims to have come up with a boat that performs equally well for beginner and advanced paddlers, we roll our eyes. But Dagger actually pulled it off with the Stratos. The key to the crossover appeal: a hull with great primary stability but also defined chines and a significant amount of rocker. That combination gives newbie paddlers a boost in confidence while allowing veteran sea kayakers to play in more challenging waters, ripping efficient lean turns and punching through waves. Built with an internal hull beam similar to what you find on Dagger’s whitewater boats, the Stratos is impressively durable—we drilled a few barnacle-covered cave walls without sustaining damage. The flipside is that it’s heavy, which makes the shorter hull a little sluggish on long crossings. But that’s a minor penalty considering the overall package and low price. 14'6"; 53 lbs 


    Price $1,119

    Buy Now


      Photo: Jackson Kayak


    Jackson Rockstar Competition 


    Best For: Throwing loops. 


    The Test: Our resident playboat tester fell in love with the Rockstar, and for good reason. Jackson’s designers paired a narrow hull with a carbon-fiber baseplate to shave seven pounds from the previous model and create the company’s fastest and best freestyle boat to date. The bow and stern are extremely thin, making it easy to dig under the water and initiate tricks. Nicely balanced from tip to tail, with ample foot room and a relaxed (for a boat of this kind) sitting geometry, the Rockstar also does surprisingly well on downriver jaunts. “It’s the only playboat I would take on a ten-mile run,” one tester said. 


    The Verdict: Play it again—and again and again. 5'8"; 25 lbs


    Price $1,249

    Buy Now


      Photo: Aire


    Aire Bakraft Hybrid  


    Best For: Going way out there.


    The Test: Aire has been making our favorite hardcore inflatable whitewater kayaks for decades, and that expertise clearly trickled down to the Bakraft, which can be inflated to a rock-solid 2.5 psi. Advanced boaters were able to hold a line and didn’t feel like driftwood—a common complaint about pack rafts—on southern Oregon’s Class III Rogue River, thanks to the self-bailing I-beam floor design instead of the more typical uninflated kind. Best of all, because it’s so light and rolls down to the size of a large sleeping pad, we found ourselves bringing it along to places we never expected, like on trout-fishing missions involving long hikes to lonely mountain lakes. 


    The Verdict: Crazy light, super fun. 7'; 7.1 lbs


    Price $1,449

    Buy Now


      Photo: Perception Kayaks


    Perception Access 9.5 


    Best For: Getting started. 


    The Test: There are other $400 sit-on-top recreational kayaks out there, but most of them aren’t something we get excited about paddling. The Access 9.5 is. Yeah, it’s short, wide, and relatively heavy—and thus slow—but the upshot is fantastic stability. Add a high-backed molded seat and molded footrests, and this is a delightfully comfortable flatwater cruiser. Constructed from a single piece of rotomolded plastic, the Access didn’t seem to mind being thrown off the roof of a Honda Element at put-ins—a huge bonus for developing paddlers or parents with teenagers who might be borrowing it.


    The Verdict: Low stress, low cost, high return. 9'; 42 lbs


    Price $399

    Buy Now


      Photo: Delta Kayaks


    Delta Kayaks Delta 17 


    Best For: The open ocean.


    The Test: We were nervous when the guys at this Maple Ridge, British Columbia, company told us they were redesigning the iconic Delta 17, one of our favorite touring kayaks. But it was a relief to see that the new boat is simply a lighter, faster version of its predecessor. The V-shaped ABS-and-acrylic hull and trimmed-down nose helped it slice through choppy ocean water when weighted down. Paddle it empty and the moderate rocker and hard chines make for a much more playful boat than you’d expect, in part because it’s a full two pounds lighter than before.


    The Verdict: An elegant refresh. 17'; 50 lbs


    Price $2,495

    Buy Now


      Photo: Oru


    Oru Coast+


    Best For: Apartment dwellers.


    The Test: Oru’s intelligent tweaks to its groundbreaking corrugated-polypropylene design made an already brilliant creation that much smarter. Compared with the 12-foot original, the Coast+, which collapses down to the size of a large couch cushion, was at least 50 percent faster on flatwater. Oru replaced plastic connectors with stainless-steel ratchet points, which cut a minute or two from setup and added rigidity to the hull, giving paddlers more control. The deck rigging and hatch allow you to pack a long day’s worth of gear and food. It’s still not a vessel we’d take onto the open ocean, because the bulkheads aren’t completely waterproof, making self-rescue difficult. But for noodling around in bays or flat rivers, then folding it up and squeezing it into a closet, it’s still an amazing craft.


    The Verdict: Our favorite packable boat, now faster and sturdier. 16'; 34 lbs


    Price $2,475

    Buy Now


      Photo: Prijon


    Prijon Touryak 470 LV 


    Best For: Ultimate versatility. 


    The Test: “This thing is an absolute workhorse,” reported one tester after filling the Touryak’s hatches (a combined 360 liters) and taking it on a three-day trip down Northern California’s Klamath River. With good primary stability and a long waterline, the Touryak lets you happily crank out miles paddling on flatwater. Stuff it with gear like we did—our man even packed a small cooler full of ice—and it’s a sporty boat in whitewater, with mellow chines that make peel-out turns fun, if questionable. (It reached its limit in easier Class III.) Prijon is known for solid-as-stone plastic, and the Touryak is no exception, banging confidently through rock gardens. 


    The Verdict: One tough touring machine. 15'4"; 57 lbs


    Price $2,129

    Buy Now


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    Cast away with these choice tools for the discerning angler.


      Photo: Fishpond


    Fishpond Nomad Mid-Length Net 


    With a carbon-fiberglass frame and a massive lunker-ready rubber basket, the Nomad almost makes landing the big ones easy. 


    Price $160

    Buy Now


      Photo: Meow Meow Tweet


    Meow Meow Tweet Herbal Bug Repellent 


    Bottled by a boutique skin-care company in New York’s Hudson Valley and made from organic lavender and apple cider vinegar, this elixir smells a helluva lot better than deet.


    Price $18

    Buy Now


      Photo: Nautilus


    Nautilus XM Reel  


    Nautilus builds reliable saltwater reels designed for catching fast, powerful fish. The XM brings that same toughness and precision to the river, with a balanced, open-frame setup. 


    Price $275

    Buy Now


      Photo: Finn Utility


    Finn Utility Essex Bag 


    The Essex would have been at home on the river 50 years ago, with its waxed canvas, English bridle leather, and brass hardware. It’s a study in minimalism, with three pockets and a pouch for fly boxes and an extra beer. 


    Price $230

    Buy Now


      Photo: Sage


    Sage Mod Rod 


    The nine-foot, five-weight Mod is softer and whippier than most of the other rods in Sage’s lineup. But what it lacks in power, it makes up for in accuracy. If you chase trout, this is your Excalibur. 


    Price $850

    Buy Now


      Photo: Montana Fly Company


    Montana Fly Company Hip Flask


    For those who like a little something to stay warm (or lucky) on the water, this rugged, stainless-steel flask comes printed in many fish-inspired designs. 


    Price $30

    Buy Now


      Photo: Patagonia


    Patagonia Rio Galleys Waders 


    Cut from Patagonia’s H2No fabric, these waders minimize clamminess. Plus, a zippered waterproof pocket allows quick access to a phone, so you’re ready to ’Gram the catch of the day. 


    Price $499

    Buy Now


      Photo: Abel


    Abel Reels #2 Pliers 


    An essential tool can also be a thing of beauty. With corrosion-resistant aluminum handles and replaceable jaws, these pliers will outlast the rest of your kit. The #2 leather sheath ($50) secures to a belt. 


    Price $175

    Buy Now


      Photo: Patagonia


    Patagonia Foot Tractor Wading Boots 


    Metal bars in the sole make the Foot Tractor as stable on slick rocks as your Tacoma. Mesh panels and tough synthetic leather add breathability and ensure it’ll last forever. 


    Price $279

    Buy Now


      Photo: Howler Brothers


    Howler Brothers Matagorda Tech Shirt 


    This top has lots of clever features (roll-up sleeve tabs, a vented rear yoke, and microfiber cloth on the hem) but doesn’t wear like a lab coat. 


    Price $89

    Buy Now


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    Performance can look good.


      Photo: Lululemon


    Lululemon Tidal Flow One-Piece 


    Best For: Understated Elegance


    The Tidal Flow is the Audrey Hepburn of sporty swimsuits. It’s classy yet playful—simple, clean lines with an overlapping stringy back are paired with a band of transparent mesh running across the torso. Think of it as a little black dress that does everything—from sunning to swimming—well.    


    Price $118

    Buy Now


      Photo: Patagonia


    Patagonia Nanogrip Top and Nanogrip Side Tie Bottom 


    Best For: Surfing


    Bikinis this cute tend to fall off during your first wipeout. Not so the Nanogrip. With a sticky liner that clings like a gecko, this suit stayed on whether we were surfing or waterskiing. The adjustable crossback also helped keep things in place, though the fixed halter could have been a hair tighter. 


    Price $59 and $55

    Buy Now


      Photo: Helly Hansen


    Helly Hansen Inspire Top and Excite Bottom 


    Best For: Lounging at the Pool


    If Patagonia’s Nanogrip is a hard-charging athlete, the Inspire is its mojito-sipping, beach-cruising cousin. And that’s fine by us. The top offers just enough support, the bottom has a wide, love-handle-smoothing waist, and the seven color options pop. 


    Price $50 each

    Buy Now


      Photo: Seea


    Seea Nosara Top and Bottom 


    Best For: Going Hard in Style


    Flattering and comfortable? The Nosara, by far our favorite swimsuit of the test, nails both. The racerback and drawstring add playful details that are fully functional in the water, keeping things secure and comfortable. When you’re done playing, the piece fits right in at the local pool party.  


    Price $65 and $50

    Buy Now


      Photo: Mi Ola


    Mi Ola Serena Zip Rash Guard 


    Best For: Channeling Your Inner Mermaid


    We could claim we like this top because it’s an effective sunblock and because the tough fabric and skintight cut protected us from scrapes while surfing. Both are true, but the real reason the Serena is on this page is for its fish-scale pattern and sexy swooping neckline. 


    Price $120

    Buy Now


      Photo: Prana


    Prana Aleka Top and Kala Bottom 


    Best For: Watersports


    This is your companion for Baja surf trips. The top stayed surprisingly secure despite its low cut, with a snug halter-racerback combo, while the bottom felt good without any squeeze. Mix and match from a bunch of different color options.  


    Price $49 and $40

    Buy Now


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    Personal care essentials for before and after your workout. 


      Photo: Jack Black


    Jack Black Dry Down Friction-Free Powder 


    Dust this on prior to exercising and the mix of friction-busting silica, moisture-absorbent cornstarch, antimicrobial zinc oxide, and soothing plant extracts will help keep skin smooth and dry. 


    Price $20

    Buy Now


      Photo: The Konjac Sponge Company


    Konjac Sponge Company Exfoliating Loofah 


    This biodegradable scrubber is made from skin-coddling plant fibers, and bamboo charcoal deters microbe growth. Toss it in with the compost at the end of its three-month life span. 


    Price $21

    Buy Now


      Photo: Sun Bum


    Sun Bum Beach Formula 3 in 1 Leave In Conditioner 


    UV rays don’t just fry skin—they also weaken your hair’s protein structure. Sun Bum’s leave-in protects and fortifies with coconut oil and quinoa protein. 


    Price $15

    Buy Now


      Photo: All Good Products


    All Good Lips Organic SPF 15 Chai Lip Balm


    Zinc oxide provides broad-spectrum sun defense, while organic calendula, beeswax, vitamin E, and olive oil safeguard against chapping. 


    Price $3.50

    Buy Now


      Photo: Eau Thermale Avène


    Eau Thermale Avène Cleanance Expert Acne Treatment 


    Avène’s breakthrough formula curbs oil production and obliterates bacteria with a compound that also soothes and reduces inflammation. 


    Price $26

    Buy Now


      Photo: Philosophy


    Philosophy Turbo Booster C Powder Topical Antioxidant 


    Too much sun? Mix a scoop of this blend of vitamin C, zinc, and copper with a dab of your favorite moisturizer to calm burns and repair cell damage. 


    Price $39

    Buy Now 


      Photo: Byrd Hairdo Products


    Byrd Soap on a Rope 


    Designed by pro surfer Chase Wilson, this 12-ounce brick uses coconut oil and sea salt to clean body, face, and hair without ­drying you out. 


    Price $16

    Buy Now


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  • 05/10/16--14:37: The Best Energy Food of 2016
  • Snacks to keep the engine running all day.


      Photo: Bogg's


    Bogg’s Trail Butter


    Nutrient-dense peanut butter, nuts, dried fruit, and honey give Trail Butter its punch. Tuck a few packets into a jacket pocket for a creamy pick-me-up on long off-road journeys. 


    Price $11 for 6

    Buy Now


      Photo: Taos Mountain Energy Bar


    Taos Mountain Energy Bar


    The toasted coconut bar from Taos Mountain combines non-GMO almonds, coconut, honey, and sea salt for a tasty treat. Bonus points for the chewy, cookie-like texture. 


    Price $35 for 12

    Buy Now


      Photo: ProBar


    ProBar Base


    Ditch the morning java for the ProBar Base, which packs 55 milligrams of caffeine into each package. That’s less than you’d get in a cup of coffee, but enough to power you through sessions at the gym—minus the crash. 


    Price $3

    Buy Now


      Photo: Perky Jerky


    Perky Jerky 


    Gnawing on tough, dried-out jerky is a bit like trying to eat your leather belt. Enter Perky Jerky, which is tender, lean, and packed with flavor. 


    Price $5

    Buy Now


      Photo: Honey Stinger


    Honey Stinger Protein Gels


    Okay, so this is basically candy. But when you’re looking for a quick, clean burn, that’s all you need. Five grams of plant-based protein per serving helped justify slamming these down three at a time. 


    Price $2.50

    Buy Now


      Photo: The Better Beast


    The Better Beast 


    No meat here. Just peanut butter, with eight grams of carbs and 12 grams of protein (33 percent more than the typical spread) per bar. 


    Price $10

    Buy Now


      Photo: Evol


    Evol Fajita Cups


    Say hello to next-gen frozen food for millennials. These bowls are organic, healthy, and, most important, delicious. At 170 calories per serving, they’re ideal as a pre-run snack. 


    Price $2.99

    Buy Now


      Photo: Tsamma


    Tsamma Watermelon Juice


    Studies have shown that watermelon may reduce muscle soreness and improve heart rate recovery. We don’t know about that, but with no added sugar, this drink goes down like water, only tastier. 


    Price $30 for 12

    Buy Now


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  • 05/10/16--15:35: The Best Gym Apparel of 2016
  • Step one: toss those saggy sweats. 


      Photo: Fjällräven


    Fjällräven Gear Duffel 


    Your gym bag should be organized, well ­appointed, and just big enough for everything you need. This 23-liter duffel delivers, and it includes an internal zip pocket to hold the small stuff. 


    Price $130

    Buy Now


      Photo: Ten Thousand


    Ten Thousand Foundation Shirt


    Ten Thousand eschews loud and gimmicky in favor of high quality and understated design. The proof is in the detailing, like the sleek underarm vents and tailored fit. 


    Price $48

    Buy Now


      Photo: Beats by Dr. Dre


    Beats by Dr. Dre Powerbeats2 Wireless Earphones


    The well-rounded sound and bounce-­limiting ear hooks helped motivate us through grueling weight sessions. And six hours of battery life kept them bumping long after we’d left the gym.


    Price $200

    Buy Now


      Photo: Brooks


    Brooks City Chariot Shoes 


    Two years ago, Brooks resurrected its classic Chariot running shoe. Now the company expands the offering with designs inspired by iconic skylines. (Favorites: New York and Sydney.) The Chariot isn’t a burly, overbuilt trainer. We even found ourselves wearing it to the office and on recovery days.


    Price $90

    Buy Now


      Photo: Vuori


    Vuori Balboa Sweatpants


    Who says workout pants have to wear like a badly pitched tent? The Balboa is made from stretchy French terry cotton and fits like a pair of relaxed slacks. 


    Price $84

    Buy Now


      Photo: Everlast


    Everlast F.I.T. Weighted Jump Rope


    You won’t find a better burn for the time or money than jumping rope. This beauty comes with weighted handles and precision bearings for smoother rotation. 


    Price $20

    Buy Now


      Photo: Lululemon


    Lululemon Evolution Shirt 


    The soft poly-Lycra blend in the Evolution resists wrinkles, silver-treated threads reduce body odor, and the cut is athletic but not skintight. 


    Price $88

    Buy Now


      Photo: Smartwool


    Smartwool Men’s NTS Micro 150 Boxer-Briefs 


    These merino-wool unders wick sweat, are plenty breathable, and fight stink. And that’s all you need, really. 


    Price $50

    Buy Now


      Photo: Spyder


    Spyder Thasos Windbreaker 


    It packs down to the size of a softball and offers plenty of protection when you need it, thanks to a durable water-resistant coating, an oversize hood, and wrist cuffs.


    Price $189

    Buy Now


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  • 05/10/16--16:17: The Best Headphones of 2016
  • Let the music play, wherever your workout takes you.


      Photo: Gibson


    Gibson Trainer 


    The most visible attribute on the Trainer is the stabilizing second headband. And while it does help a little when running, what sold us were all the other features: an LED that alerts after-dusk drivers to your presence, ten hours of battery life, and a muting button for when you need to hear the world around you.  


    Price $250

    Buy Now


      Photo: Optoma


    Optoma NuForce BE6


    Optoma’s cylinder-shaped monitors have always been good for everyday use—they’re lighter than they look and sit firmly in your ear canals. Now, with the BE6, Optoma goes wireless, offering up to six hours of play on a charge. Red flag: there’s no fit kit included, so the tips are one size fits all. 


    Price $129

    Buy Now


      Photo: Koss


    Koss FitClips KSC32i


    Sub-$25 earbuds this well made are a rarity. The FitClips are sweat-resistant and have a comfy over-the-ear loop to hold them in place. The soft tips create a seal that blocks out external noise, and an inline mic lets you take calls. Best of all, they rise above the tinny sound that others in this price range emit. 


    Price $20

    Buy Now


      Photo: V-Moda


    V-Moda Crossfade Wireless


    These are some of the best-sounding headphones we’ve ever tested. The fact that they’re military-grade tough and have a headband and cord that will probably never fail only makes them better. And the cord is optional: the Crossfade holds a charge for up to 12 hours of Bluetooth use. 


    Price $300

    Buy Now


      Photo: Bose


    Bose SoundTrue Ultra


    This compact pair pumps out detailed bass. The SoundTrue is built for all-around use, but it does offer sweat resistance and a cable design that helps reduce wire noise as you bounce along. A mic-remote lets you answer calls without fishing out your phone. (Separate models are available for Android and iOS.) 


    Price $150

    Buy Now


      Photo: Scosche


    Scosche SportclipAir


    We’ve had more than a few ’phones short out on us from nothing more than a trickle of sweat. Enter the waterproof, Bluetooth-enabled SportclipAir. They stayed in place during workouts, thanks to a moldable wire that wraps around the top of the ear, and the sound is richer than $100 usually buys. 


    Price $100

    Buy Now


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    At this year's bike test in Sedona, Arizona, we tested 36 mountain bikes, eight of which fell into the growing plus-size category. These bikes, with their wider tires, provide incredible traction and inspire confidence in riders of all abilities. Watch to find out why the 2016 Stumpjumper 6Fattie stands above the rest—and why it won Gear of the Year in the 2016 Summer Buyer's Guide. Riding footage and photos by Jen Judge. 


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  • 06/03/16--08:59: Gear of the Year 2016
  • We reviewed 369 products for our Summer Buyer's Guide. Only these 14 earned the coveted Gear of the Year award.

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    You can do better than jeans and a T-shirt.

    ibex-shralp.jpg
      Photo: Ibex

    Ibex Shralp Jersey

    Ibex calls this a jersey, and while it does have some nice tech details—including odor- and moisture-resistant wool fabric, a drop hem, and reflective hits on the back—the wrinkle-free, plaid button-up hangs just as well at the office as it does in the saddle.  

    Price $150

    Buy Now

    duer-slim-rinse-jeans.jpg
      Photo: Du:er

    Du:er Slim Utility Rinse Jeans 

    These trim-fit jeans are excellent on the bike, thanks to the proprietary, slightly stretchy, bomber denim and hidden gusseted crotch. We found ourselves wearing them almost full-time since they don’t show their cycling heritage with oddball darts and seams. 

    Price $129

    Buy Now

    kitsbow-merino-mountain-hoodie.jpg
      Photo: Kitsbow

    Kitsbow Merino Mountain Hoodie 

    Leave it to this California-based apparel company to elevate the hoodie from lowly top to precision gear, with stretch-mesh panels under the arms and at the sides that complement the cozy heathered merino. A long, trim fit and button-down extension cuffs keep the cold out on brisk mornings. We put on this piece and hoped to never take it off. 

    Price $295

    Buy Now

    search-and-state-s1-j.jpg
      Photo: Search&State

    Search&State S1J Jacket 

    There are tons of cycling shells on the market, but none combine the clean, urban good looks (we love the bright sandstone color) with the all-weather insulation of Schoeller C-Change, a fabric that protects from the wet and wind yet breathes as you heat up. 

    Price $255

    Buy Now

    bell-hub-helmet.jpg
      Photo: Bell

    Bell Hub Helmet 

    The full-coverage Hub offers impact protection on the sides and back, an ICEdot sensor to store emergency contacts in case of trouble, and 15 well-placed vents that kept us cool. It also looks reasonably hip, thanks to the soft, fabric visor. Nice touch: the integrated light mount in back. 

    Price $75

    Buy Now

    dzr-h2o.jpg
      Photo: DZR

    DZR H2O Shoes 

    These seemingly ordinary skate-style high-tops feature DWR-treated sheepskin leather and fully sealed seams. The H20 kept our feet toasty and dry on even the sloppiest days. The gum-rubber sole includes a removable port for clipless pedals, but we left ours intact for better weather protection. 

    Price $170

    Buy Now

    mission-workshop-black-camo-messenger.jpg
      Photo: Mission Workshop

    Mission Workshop Black Camo Messenger Bag 

    Yep, this messenger bag costs a small fortune, but the fully waterproof interior, with a roll-top for especially nasty days, will protect your more-expensive electronics. All zippers are weatherproof, the aluminum hardware is tough, and the 35-liter main compartment swallows everything you’ll possibly need in a day. 

    Price $289

    Buy Now

    rapha-sunglasses_0.jpg
      Photo: Rapha

    Rapha Sunglasses 

    Rapha’s fashionable Italian-made sunnies draw their inspiration from flight goggles. They fit tight and keep out the wind, and the Carl Zeiss lenses don’t fog. The tortoiseshell frames look sharp, too, meaning you won’t need to switch shades for a post-ride stop at the bar. 

    Price $295

    Buy Now

    knog-pop-duo.jpg
      Photo: Knog

    Knog Pop Duo Light 

    It isn’t the brightest torch—35 lumens up front, five out back—but it’ll do the job in a pinch. And what this single AA battery-powered light lacks in power it more than makes up for in style, with half a dozen colors to choose from. Plus, the price can’t be beat. 

    Price $33

    Buy Now

    wigwam-downtown-sock.jpg
      Photo: Wigwam

    Wigwam Downtown Socks 

    The 110-year-old footwear manufacturer sheds its stodgy reputation with these dapper merino-spandex socks that feel as good as they look. For a little extra capriciousness, buy several pairs to mix and match colors. 

    Price $17

    Buy Now


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  • 05/06/16--13:50: The Best Water Shoes of 2016
  • Protect your piggies in the wet.

    sperry-shock-light.jpg
      Photo: Inga Hendrickson

    Sperry Shock Light Boat 

    Best for: Doing It All 

    With a slipper-like fit, the Shock Light happily squeezes into the bow of a whitewater boat, while the grippy, nonmarking sole won’t scuff the teak deck on your buddy’s yacht. The shock-cord lacing keeps it snug should you fall into the drink, and it dries in less than half an hour.

    Price $85

    Buy Now

    chaco-zcloud.jpg
      Photo: Chaco

    Chaco Z/Cloud 

    Best for: Raft Trips

    How to improve an iconic, river-guide-trusted sandal? Very carefully. Chaco’s upgrades on the new Z/Cloud are minimal and smart: a soft antimicrobial topsheet molds to your foot, and a rubber compound on the outsole boosts grip. Bonus points for the new webbing colors. 

    Price $110

    Buy Now

    five-ten-eddy.jpg
      Photo: Five Ten

    Five Ten Eddy

    Best for: Sticking Like a Salamander

    Built with climbing brand Five Ten’s famously sticky rubber outsole, the Eddy is ideal for sketchy portages on slick rocks. The armoring extends over the toes, so you can jam your foot into tight spots, and the mesh upper sheds water like a champ after swims, drying almost completely in under 20 minutes. 

    Price $100

    Buy Now

    olukai-nohea-moku.jpg
      Photo: Olukai

    OluKai Nohea Moku

    Best for: Island Vacations

    The casual vibe of the Moku—one tester wore it with jeans on a Tinder date—hides solid tech: a fast-drying, sweat-wicking upper and a heel that drops down to transform it into a slip-on. Though not the best choice for a multi-day sea-kayaking trip, it’s perfect for island hopping in Belize.

    Price $95

    Buy Now

    astral-hiyak.jpg
      Photo: Astral

    Astral Hiyak 

    Best for: Whitewater Kayakers

    Our veteran river rat couldn’t find a single thing to dislike about the Hiyak. The over-the-ankle fit and lacing (protected by a Velcro guard) made it the most secure river shoe we’ve tested—“They just never come off,” said our tester—while a stout hydrophobic upper made it among the toughest. 

    Price $115

    Buy Now

    keen-maupin.jpg
      Photo: Keen

    Keen Maupin 

    Best for: Creek Hikes 

    The minimalist feel underfoot, simple one-strap fit system, and soft TPU coverings over potential blister points made this a tester favorite for daylong creek hikes. The tacky rubber outsole held firm on mossy rocks, though the buckle got finicky when covered in wet sand and mud. 

    Price $90

    Buy Now


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    merrell-crush-light-inline.jpg
      Photo: Merrell

    Merrell All Out Crush Light Shoes 

    For burly trail kicks, these are surpris­ingly light, thanks to an airy mesh upper and zero bells and whistles. Five-millimeter lugs and a thick toe cap offer protection in rough stuff, but we flew along buffed-out forest roads, too. 

    Price $90 

    Buy Now

    tracksmith-harrier-tank-inline.jpg

    Tracksmith Harrier Tank 

    This top, made from silky merino wool and cut like a vintage gym tee, works just as well for intervals as it does with jeans. Break it out on the hottest days and enjoy the breeze. 

    Price $65 

    Buy Now

    madly-bkr-250-inline.jpg
      Photo: Bkr

    Bkr Madly 250-ml Bottle 

    We wouldn’t run with it, but Bkr’s teeny glass bottle is perfect for stashing in your car for post-workout hydration. Plus, it’s as cute as a button and comes in a bunch of colors. 

    Price $28

    Buy Now

    tnf-ultra-lite-jacket-inline.jpg
      Photo: The North Face

    The North Face Ultra Lite WP Jacket 

    Yes, it looks dorky, but this nylon layer is perfect for warm, rainy runs. It’s significantly cooler than a normal shell and won’t make you feel like you’re engulfed in a garbage bag. 

    Price $150 

    Buy Now 

    cwx-ventilator-shorts.jpg
      Photo: CW-X

    CW-X StabilyX Ventilator Shorts 

    A wide panel of supportive Lycra at the waist and webbing along the sides make for shorts that steady hips while aligning muscles and ligaments. For us, that translated to less fatigue after big-mileage days. 

    Price $80

    Buy Now

    brooks-sureshot-bra-inline.jpg
      Photo: Brooks

    Brooks SureShot Racer Bra 

    Sports bras are tricky to get right. Too loose and you don’t get enough support. Too tight and you feel like you’re wearing a corset. The SureShot, with its soft poly-spandex blend, is the Goldilocks of bounce prevention. 

    Price $38 

    Buy Now

    lululemon-swiftly-tech-inline.jpg
      Photo: Lululemon

    Lululemon Athletica Swiftly Tech Long Sleeve Shirt

    Long sleeves in summer? Heck yes. This seamless, mesh-back top kept the sun off and pulled double duty as a warm layer when the wind picked up.

    Price $68 

    Buy Now

    smartwool-phd-run-light-inline.jpg
      Photo: Smartwool

    Smartwool PhD Run Light Elite Low Cut Socks 

    A little extra cushion in the ball and heel of these merino-blend wool socks takes the bite out of pounding pavement. Seamless toes reduce the threat of blisters—key on hot runs. 

    Price $18 

    Buy Now

    craft-focus-short-inline.jpg
      Photo: Craft Sportswear

    Craft Sportswear Focus 2-in-1 Shorts 

    Say goodbye to chafing with these double-duty bottoms, which integrate stretchy tights under thin poly-blend shorts. Nice touch: reflective hits woven throughout add visibility.

    Price $50 

    Buy Now


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    north-face-runners-hat.jpg
      Photo: The North Face

    The North Face Runners Hat 

    Trucker hats block sun and look rad. The North Face took it a step further, adding a mesh sweatband around the rim to keep sunscreen out of your eyes.

    Price $30 

    Buy Now

    nathan-exoshot-inline.jpg
      Photo: Nathan

    Nathan ExoShot Bottle

     By pairing a soft flask with an internal spine, Nathan made a 12-ounce bottle that doesn’t feel like a jellyfish. The insulated sleeve adds grip and has a pocket big enough to hold a Patagonia Provisions bar (below). 

    Price $35 

    Buy Now

    hilly-twin-skin-inline.jpg
      Photo: Hilly

    Hilly Twin Skin Anklet Socks

    The wrong socks can destroy a run. These anklets have two layers of fabric—an outer cotton-poly blend and an inner liner—that rub against each other instead of your skin. 

    Price $13 

    Buy Now

    tnf-better-than-naked-inline.jpg
      Photo: The North Face

    The North Face Better Than Naked Tank 

    Constructed from a quick-drying poly knit with few seams, this top is, to quote Ned Flanders, like wearing nothing at all. 

    Price $45 

    Buy Now

    altra-performance-shirt.jpg
      Photo: Altra

    Altra Performance Shirt

    Mesh panels along the shoulders and upper back allow the shirt to breathe nearly as well as a tank, though more modestly. 

    Price $60 

    Buy Now

    patagonia-fruit-bar.jpg
      Photo: Patagonia

    Patagonia Provisions Fruit and Almond Bars 

    Made from organic ingredients, Patagonia’s bars are moist yet crunchy, and they’re the perfect size for a pit stop. 

    Price $24 for 12 

    Buy Now

    smartwool-phd-shorts.jpg
      Photo: Smartwool

    Smartwool PhD Shorts

    The liner inside the five-inch PhDs is made from a silky, odor-resistant merino blend, which goes a long way toward preventing swamp crotch and ­chafing. (But you should still wash them.) 

    Price $60 

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    petzl-tikka-inline.jpg
      Photo: Petzl

    Petzl Tikka RXP Headlamp

    This is the smartest piece of running gear we own: it adjusts the beam’s brightness depending on light conditions (though it’s fooled by oncoming headlights). The body is a hair bulky, but the dual straps in back keep everything stable and secure. 

    Price $100 

    Buy Now 


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