Playing in the Snow: A day at Backcountry Base Camp
Click here to view a photo essay and listen to an audio interview from Backcountry Basecamp.
ACR Enterprises Personal Locator Beacon – the MicroFix

The ACR MicroFix Personal Locator Beacon weighs just 10 ounces.

Manzella Summit Mitt SPOTLITE REVIEW

Lightweight, dry, and warm handwear for most snow sports, but we found their limits when we used them for snow shelter building.

Wise Women Go Light, Conclusion

Wise Women Jean (from 20 to 13 pound base weight) and Sue (14 to 9 pound base weight) put their new lightweight gear to the test in the field.

Will Rietveld
Will Rietveld has a B.S. and M.S. in Forest Science from Oregon State University and a Ph.D. in Ecological Physiology and Biochemistry from the University of Arizona. He spent his...
2006 Backpacking Light Staff Picks

An eclectic assortment of favorite gear for 2006.

Grand Shelters Icebox Igloo Building Tool REVIEW

The Icebox does the igloo engineering for you, but you still have a steep learning curve. Once you master the technique, you may discover a new and fun wintertime activity.

Wise Women Go Light, Part 2

Jean and Sue select and test lighter gear from a dizzying array of choices while receiving an avalanche of expert advice - which they accept with trepidation, reject, or take on wholeheartedly - all the while listening to their own self-wisdom gained in their six (or near six) decades of life experience.

Visor Buff Evo-2 Hat SPOTLITE REVIEW

A versatile ultralight outdoor cap from Buff. Is it funky or cool – you decide.

Integral Designs Hot Socks SPOTLITE REVIEW

So much warmth in such a light package.

Backcountry Water Quality: Technologies, Trends and Paranoia?

A close look at ways backcountry users can treat their water: what works, what should concern us, and what is hyperbole.

Meridian Designs AquaStar Plus Ultraviolet Light Water Purifier REVIEW

Treat your water using this robust, 3.9-ounce, ultraviolet light based, water purifier.


If your backpack doesn’t have convenience pockets for your camera and snacks, here is a good way to add them.

Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters SPOTLITE REVIEW

Elegant in their simplicity and functionality, they’re like putting your socks on in the morning.

Komperdell C3 Duolock Women Trekking Pole REVIEW

Three-section carbon fiber trekking poles that combine sturdy construction, rigidity, and vibration absorption in a very light and compact package. This “Women’s” pole is sized for most hikers, regardless of gender.

New Balance 872 Off Road Trail Shoe SPOTLITE REVIEW

A superb shoe for ultralight backpacking on-trail. Off-trail, they performed exceptionally well, except for one weakness.

Apparel Trends and Highlights

Trends and highlights in lightweight apparel from Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2006.

In the Chaos: The craziness That is OR (Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2006)

Exciting, awesome, exhausting, intense, and hectic are just some adjectives that describe the chaos of OR.

HydraCoach Interactive Water Bottle

Why the HydraCoach may have absolutely zero applicability for lightweight backpacking.

St. Moritz Watches: Momentum VP-1 and VS-1 Digital Altimeters and Momentum Logic (Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2006)

Digital Altimeters with numerous features and a space-age materials analog watch that will stun you.

Join Our Community

Become a Backpacking Light Member

Forum Access

Unrestricted access to all forums, plus the ability to post and start new threads.

Premium Content

Unrestricted access to all 2,300+ articles, gear reviews, skills, stories, and more.

Community Posts

Post new content to the community including gear swaps, reviews, trip reports and more!

Online Education

Get unlimited access to all our online education (*Unlimited membership required).

Pack less. Be more. Become a member today!

Get Started