Backpacking Light has built a hard-won reputation for comprehensive and fair product reviews, reflecting our Editorial Values of Objectivity, Trust, Authority, Inclusivity, and Clarity.
We publish three main types of reviews: performance, limited, and first looks. Learn more about review rating and gear awards program and review our affiliate disclosure. If you represent a brand and would like to submit a product for review, go here.
The Arc’teryx Norvan VT 2 shoe provides above-average foot protection and traction performance when hiking or running on rocky, uneven ground, but suffers from abysmal durability.
The Seek Outside Flight One (36 oz/1.02 kg, $299 - $319) is a lightweight, minimalist pack designed with comfort and durability in mind.
CS Instant Coffee is a small instant coffee product designed to compete with Starbucks Via and other popular backcountry coffee solutions.
The HydraPak Flux 1 L (2.7 oz / 77 g, MSRP $20) is a soft-sided, collapsible, 42 mm threaded, reusable water-bottle aimed at the single-use Smartwater or sports-drink bottle crowd.
The NEMO Equipment Hornet Elite 2P (33 oz / 935 g, $499.95) is a semi-freestanding, double-walled, ultralight tent. It features design touches meant to increase the volume of the tent while not adding additional weight.
The Xero Shoes Mesa Trail (8.5 oz / 241 g, $119.99) is a minimalist trail runner best used for fastpacking. Huarache-inspired straps on the midfoot and instep allow for precisely dialed fit without causing compression.
The Big Agnes Scout 1 Platinum (13 oz / 369 g, $349.95) is a single wall, single-entrance, trekking pole-supported, silnylon, one-person tent from Big Agnes. It is one of the lightest shelters in its class.
The CrazyCap 2 ($59, 1.9 oz/56 g) is an ultraviolet water treatment device that takes the form of a bottle cap. At first glance, this little multi-use item seems like the perfect invention for ultralight backpackers on the fly. But how does it perform in the field with its bottle compatibility issues?
The Vargo Titanium Bot 700 is a 0.7-liter cooking pot made of titanium with a watertight, screw-top lid with a silicone gasket.
Fozzils Solo Pack dishware is a unique, folding, ultralight, compact set of dishes which at first blush are a luxury-seeking, ultralight backpackers dream. But we ran into problems when testing them with hot liquids.