About Us

Group backpacking
GearJunkie editors test backpacks in Colorado; (photo/Eric Phillips)

Founded as a newspaper column in 2002, GearJunkie is the leading voice of the outdoors and active lifestyles with breaking news, product reviews, and buying guides.

At GearJunkie, we love the outdoors, and we love great gear. With decades of collective experience in both outdoor activities and product journalism, we are uniquely positioned to report on the world of outdoor recreation like no other website. From offices in Denver, Minneapolis, and Los Angeles, our journalists, writers, and video producers tell stories of adventure and the gear that made it possible.

Our mission is to share these stories with you. We believe every adventurer deserves to easily find the right product for their mission. Whether running three miles before work or hiking the Appalachian Trail, every adventure is enhanced with the right equipment. Our goal is to help you make informed decisions about the gear our experts test first-hand in the field.

Secondarily, we hope to entertain and engage you in the world of outdoor culture. From the controversial to the comedic, our writers examine the news and trends in the outdoors. And we consistently strive for neutral, balanced reporting about conservation, land access and regulation, sustainability, and much more. Each month millions of readers engage with these stories through our website and active social and newsletter channels.

AllGear Digital Editorial Director (former GearJunkie Editor in Chief) Sean McCoy during a ski test, Wasatch Mountains of Utah

Our Values

GearJunkie was founded by newspaper journalists with a passion for the outdoors. As such, we strive for the highest standards of media ethics. Our goal is to find the truth and to write the truth. And in doing so, we always aim to be fair to brands, sources, and our readers.

GearJunkie writers and editors also “walk the walk.” From running ultra-marathons to hiking long trails, from bike commuting to hunting whitetails, our staff gets in the field daily to stay on the cutting edge of our sports and activities. Because if we can’t put the gear through real-world testing, we can’t share honest results and expert advice with you.

To achieve the best product journalism possible, our editorial department operates separately from our business team. That means that we review products accurately regardless of business relationships. Any sponsored content will be clearly labeled as such. And we NEVER accept money in exchange for positive reviews. All GearJunkie reviews and buying guides are unpaid.

Editorial Policy

GearJunkie’s primary goals in its storytelling are to be accurate, honest, timely, and fair.

This means we do our best to tell all sides of the story, whether that be the story of a piece of outdoor gear, news of governmental policy, or a report about individuals in the outdoor space.

Ultimately, our goal is to be fair, both to brands and readers.

Our editors must strive to be accurate and impartial. But we recognize that mistakes do happen. In the event of an error, we will correct it completely, transparently, quickly, and ungrudgingly.

GearJunkie reporters will never misrepresent themselves or their intentions when conducting interviews with subjects. We do not pay sources in any circumstance. GearJunkie also never accepts payment for reviews or to include products in buying guides. See more in our Sponsored Content section below.

Because our team relies on using products, often before they come to the market, our editors regularly make use of demonstration products offered by brands for testing. Depending on the product and testing needs, editors may return the product to the brand after testing, donate to charity, or maintain possession for long-term tests. However, products received for testing may not be sold or raffled off for personal gain.

Product Reviews

To review products we use them — hard, and in their intended fashion. Our writers and editors are world-class outdoors folks and athletes. And they put gear through the wringer to make sure it works just like the brands promise.

Of course, we verify specs by weighing gear on scales and measuring it with tapes and rulers. But we go far beyond the specs. Our editors learn everything they can about trending products in their niche. That means attending tradeshows, meeting with brands, and studying the technology behind the products.

Then we take that knowledge into the field. We hike deep into the mountains to test hunting boots. We run ultramarathons, camp in blizzards, compete in adventure racing championships, and so much more. And along the way, we take notes and photos, building a repository of knowledge that we then share with you in the same way we do with our best friends.

Learn more about our review policy.

Sponsored Content and Advertising Policy

Of course, GearJunkie has to pay the bills. We pride ourselves on paying our staff and contributors a fair wage for hard work. But that does require advertising support from our partner brands.

You will see sponsored articles, videos, and images on GearJunkie and other AllGear sites from time to time. All sponsored content is clearly and proudly marked as such. And we relish the ability to tell the fantastic stories that sponsored content affords our teams.

However, we have a clear line between sponsored content and editorial coverage. Sponsorships do not play a role in our editorial coverage, and we NEVER allow sponsorship of reviews. If it’s a review, you will read both the good and the bad of a product. It’s that simple.

Diversity & Inclusion

As part of the AllGear family of websites, we strive to offer a welcoming, inclusive environment. As a minority-owned company, GearJunkie doesn’t just talk about diversity, we endeavor to live it. We all share a common thread of a love for the outdoors.

As such, our company strives to publish a broad array of opinions on everything from trail running shoes to the best ways to manage our wild spaces and much, much more. When covering news, we gather opinions from varying perspectives and try to tell all sides of a story.

Over GearJunkie’s history, it has amplified the voices of women, minority groups, and underrepresented participants in various sports and outdoor activities. Our goal is simple — to make everyone feel welcome in the outdoors and the communities formed by outdoor recreation.

We pride ourselves on our diverse stable of staff and writers, hailing from over 20 different states including Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Montana, California, Utah, Colorado, North Carolina, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Vermont, Texas, and Florida. We’ve had (past and present) contributors thru-hike the PCT, AT, CDT, Colorado Trail, and more, and staff who have stood at the summits of hundreds of peaks across the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, and beyond. 

GearJunkie has writers who are minimalist backpackers, kitted-out RVers, and everything in between. We have seasoned staff who have been in the outdoor industry for over 20 years, and writers who are just out of school, just changing fields, or fresh off the trail who bring new perspectives.

To broaden our storytelling, GearJunkie encourages contributions from writers of underrepresented backgrounds. Learn more about writing for GearJunkie below.


Do you have an outdoor story to tell or a new product to pitch to our team? GearJunkie considers pitches from freelance writers, as well as product developers. Please write a concise pitch, leading with a very clear explanation of your idea, and send it to contact@gearjunkie.com.

Our Team

Adam Ruggiero: Editor In Chief


Adam Ruggiero is the Editor in Chief of GearJunkie and host of the GearJunkie Podcast. He cut his teeth as a freelancer, then news reporter for the site in 2015.

Along with founder Stephen Regenold and Editorial Director Sean McCoy, Ruggiero graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Journalism. He was the recipient of the 2022 Outdoor Media Summit “Editor of the Year” award, and regularly co-hosts the industry’s “Gear Guide” at both summer and winter Outdoor Retailer trade shows.

In addition to accurate and impartial news reporting, and compelling, original storytelling, his interests include camping in all climates and conditions, track cycling and bikepacking, all forms of fitness, the resplendent majesty of coffee, and sports of every kind.

Mary Murphy: Managing Editor

Editor Mary Murphy in the backcountry wearing an FW Ski Jacket, GORE-TEX bibs, pink hat and sunglasses
GearJunkie Editor Mary Murphy

Mary Murphy (she/her/hers) is based out of GearJunkie’s Denver office and has a degree in English, Creative Writing, and journalism. Mary began writing professionally for her college’s alpine journal, and soon after began her career in the outdoor industry working in outdoor education. She’s worked for print newspapers, print and online magazines, and freelanced before arriving at GearJunkie’s office in Colorado. Her outdoor interests span from running to sport climbing, from landscape photography to skiing to pack-paddleboarding. She’s traveled to (and tested gear in) over 14 countries around the world. If she’s not writing, you can most likely find her at the top of a fourteener, or in a local bakery.

Stephen Regenold: Founder / VP of Strategy (AllGear)

GJ Podcast Stephen Regenold
GearJunkie founder Stephen Regenold

Stephen Regenold is the Founder of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column at age 25. As a journalist and writer, Regenold cut his teeth producing a ’zine (“Vertical Jones”) in college, and then as a reporter for a business magazine. He launched GearJunkie.com as a blog in 2006, and for nearly the past two decades he has covered the outdoors industry, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. He traveled the world and built a resume of ultra-endurance events like the Ironman, Primal Quest, the Arrowhead 135, and the Patagonian Expedition Race in Chile. His team won the U.S. Adventure Racing series and Championship race in 2012. He has trekked to Mount Everest, climbed the highest volcano in Iceland, and staked fist-ascents on remote frozen waterfalls in Canada. Beyond the outdoors, Regenold is a father of five kids and serves as a coach on their school’s NICA mountain-bike team. He and his wife, Tara, live in Minneapolis.

GearJunkie was acquired by AllGear Digital in April 2020, and Regenold now serves as VP of Strategy with the growing company. His duties include business development, strategy, and M&A for the company’s AllGear division of nine owned-and-operated media sites.

Sean McCoy: Editorial Director

Sean McCoy testing the ARTILECT Fusion Down Stretch Hoodie

Sean McCoy is the editorial director for GearJunkie’s parent company, AllGear Digital. Formerly a newspaper reporter and photographer, McCoy has worked at GearJunkie since 2012. Since then he’s served as a staff reporter, editor, managing editor, and editor-in-chief. He was promoted to editorial director in 2020 and now leads editorial operations across five AllGear media sites.

McCoy has been an avid outdoorsman since his childhood in Wisconsin. He’s spent much of his life hunting, fishing, running ultramarathons, climbing mountains, and sailing across seas. Currently a resident of Colorado, McCoy has also traveled extensively throughout the states and the world. He lived on the island of St. Thomas for 10 years, where he served as the chief photographer at The Virgin Islands Daily News.

McCoy holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and Spanish from the University of Minnesota. He was named Editor of the Year by the Outdoor Media Summit in 2020 and has also earned the dubious distinctions of Dirtbag of the Year (2020) and Colorado Resident Badass runner-up (2018 wildcard division) from Elevation Outdoors. His article, A Griller’s Call to Arms During Weird, Scary Times, was named Best Outdoor Story of 2020.

Bryon Dorr: Motors Editor

Bryon Dorr is the Motors Editor of GearJunkie. He has been writing about overland travel, off-road vehicles, whitewater kayaks, and outdoor and travel gear for 13+ years. He has created content for a wide range of outdoor, automotive, and travel media outlets, both online and in print, as well as for a wide range of commercial clients as a photographer, social media marketer, business consultant, and copy editor. After living on the road for nearly 8-years, he is now based in Portland, Oregon. Bryon is an avid kayaker, cyclist, skier/snowboarder, runner, and photographer. When not outdoors doing human-powered adventures you’ll find him behind the wheel or bars of something with a motor and wheels finding adventure around the globe.

Seiji Ishii: Cycling and Climbing Editor

Brrn board with person training
(Photo/Seiji Ishii)

Seiji Ishii is the cycling and climbing editor at GearJunkie and the Newsroom editor for AllGear. He has been a professional in the outdoor and action/adventure sports industries for 25 years, from working as a guide, trainer, product developer, and finally as a writer and editor. He lives in Wimberley, Texas with his daughter, a small herd of pets, and itinerant dirtbags. Read more at seijisays.com.

Rachelle Schrute: Hunting and Fishing Editor

Rachelle Schrute is an avid outdoorsman, conservationist, hunter and angler, who finds deep joy in writing about those passions. Prior to taking the helm as the Hunt & Fish Editor, Rachelle held leadership roles in several conservation organizations. She often finds herself testifying s at the Capitol on topics ranging from wildlife management to habitat protection. Based in Montana, she prides herself on her ability to turn just about anything into a meal and just about any location into an ideal nap spot.

Will Brendza: Camping, Hiking, and Skiing Editor

100% Norvik Glacier Goggles; (photo/Will Brendza)
(Photo/Will Brendza)

Will is a writer, journalist, and professional misfit based out of Colorado. He grew up in the Rocky Mountains, reenacting “Survivorman” episodes and studying books like “Hatchet,” “The Monkey Wrench Gang” and “Into the Wild”. He’s written about cannabis, local news, the environment, and, of course, outdoor gear and adventure. If he’s not on his computer writing, you’ll probably find Will skiing, mountain biking, or drinking beer in mountain breweries.

Morgan Tilton: Senior Editor, Buying Guides

GearJunkie Senior Editor Morgan Tilton (Photo/Eric Phillips.)

Morgan Tilton is the Senior Editor of Buyer’s Guides and Snowsports for GearJunkie. She lives in Crested Butte, Colo. More broadly, she’s an adventure journalist specializing in outdoor industry news and adventure travel stories. A recipient of more than a dozen North American Travel Journalists Association awards, when she’s not recovering from high alpine or jungle expeditions she’s usually trail running, mountain biking, or splitboarding in Southwest Colorado, where she grew up and lives today.

Matt Bento: Senior Editor, Buying Guides

Matt Bento is the senior editor for buyer’s guides at GearJunkie. Originally from the mountainless, landlocked town of Cary, NC, Matt made his way to California to climb the big walls of Yosemite and scramble up the many granite peaks of the High Sierra. After a solid decade of living in a Ford Econoline and frequenting North America’s great climbing destinations, he proudly resides in Bishop CA, where climbing, skiing, and a wonderland of backcountry adventures are only a 15-minute drive away. As a lifelong adventurer and former YOSAR member, Matt is not only critical of the fit and function of his gear, he’s cheap to the point of being unreasonable. He believes the best gear should work well enough, last a long time, and leave you with enough money to gas up the van for the next trip.

Chris Kassar: Editor, Buying Guides

Chris Kassar with dog Nala

Chris has an intense reverence for Nature and a thirst for adventure. She’s most at peace in the outdoors and has meandered along ridges, scaled peaks, and run rivers across the globe. Over the years, she’s increasingly turned her attention to using words and imagery to document these adventures and to bring attention to important issues. Before joining the Gear Junkie Affiliate Team as an Editor, Chris spent over a decade as senior editor of Elevation Outdoors Magazine and as an award-winning freelance writer and photographer.

She currently resides in Jackson, Wyoming, with her husband, Ryan, and their amazing yellow lab, Nala. They spend all their free time backcountry skiing, hiking, climbing,  baking (and eating sweet treats) and running Elk Raven Photography, a business dedicated to using ethical wildlife and landscape photography to inspire others to explore this great wild world responsibly.

Billy Brown: Affiliate Managing Editor

GearJunkie affiliate editor Billy Brown

A lifelong California resident, Billy Brown’s access to mountains, lakes, oceans, and canyons constantly feeds his climbing, running, snowboarding, and backpacking fix. His obsession with gear, willingness to take testing to absurd levels, and lack of any semblance of self-preservation have led him to cover gear for publications including Outside, Backpacker, WIRED, Men’s Journal, and Esquire over the last fifteen years. Billy resides in Sacramento, California, where he, his wife, and their two cats are a stone’s throw away from Yosemite and Lake Tahoe.

Jeremy Benson: Affiliate Managing Editor

Jeremy Benson grew up in New England before moving out west “for a year” after college to chase his ski bum dreams. Twenty-four years ago, he landed in the year-round mountain playground of North Lake Tahoe, CA, and has been there ever since. With a single-minded focus, he put everything he had into skiing as much as possible at resorts and the backcountry of the Sierra Nevada. As a ski athlete, he worked with various sponsors doing product testing and development and spent nine years as a ski tester for SKI and Skiing magazines. Eventually, he quit his restaurant job to find a more meaningful occupation. His writing career started slowly but took off after authoring two guidebooks: Backcountry Ski and Snowboard Routes: California and Mountain Bike Tahoe for Mountaineers Books. Ultimately, he combined his obsession with quality gear and his passion for skiing and mountain biking into a rewarding career as a product tester, writer, and editor for OutdoorGearLab, Bikerumor, and, most recently, GearJunkie.

Luke House: Director of Branded Content

Luke House leads branded content at AllGear Digital, managing the in-house creative and campaign management teams. Prior to joining AllGear, Luke spent 7 years as an in-house Producer at Red Bull Media House, working across athlete projects, sports properties, live events, music, and art. He has also held positions at Mekanism, and Outside Television. His video experience includes broadcast television, live streams, web series, and documentaries. He’s an Emmy Award Winner, an all-around activity guy, and breakfast burrito connoisseur.

M.T. Elliott: Sponsored Content / Contributor

Outdoor Vitals NovaPro puffy

M.T. Elliott is the sponsored content lead and a contributor for GearJunkie. He has been writing about the outdoor industry, running, cycling, camping, and more for nearly a decade. He has freelanced for other publications such as Outside Business Journal, Gear Patrol, and before that, various newspapers. Based in Denver, Colorado, Elliott spends time running, hiking, camping, slinging beers, and occasionally fishing.

History of GearJunkie

Staff and readers gather for an event at GearJunkie’s original Minneapolis HQ

In 1997, GearJunkie founder Stephen Regenold posted a flyer on a University of Minnesota School of Journalism bulletin board. “Climbers Wanted for New Magazine,” it read. It had tear-off tabs with a phone number. Sean McCoy, a fellow classmate, plucked one off and gave Regenold a call.

A few meetings later and the rock-climbing ‘zine Vertical Jones was born. Regenold and McCoy, along with Regenold’s future wife, Tara, went on to publish 11 issues of the print publication over three years. Upon graduating from college, Regenold and McCoy moved on to other publications, Regenold to a business magazine and freelance writing, and McCoy to the Virgin Islands Daily News as a reporter and photographer on staff.

Fast forward to 2002. That’s the year Regenold launched “The Gear Junkie” as a newspaper column in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. As a young journalist and an obsessive outdoorsman — a climber, hiker, camper, biker, skier, paddler, and endurance athlete — Regenold would each week test gear and write about the product and the experience for a growing audience in Minnesota and beyond.

Regenold on Iceland’s highest summit, Hvannadalshnúkur, in 2010

Regenold’s column became nationally syndicated in more than a dozen newspapers by 2004, reaching millions of readers. Around the same time, he was hired by the New York Times to cover adventure topics. He spent two years traveling the globe to ice climb, dive, bike, and explore — and test gear along the way! He published more than 50 stories for the Times in print and online.

The era of print newspapers and glossy magazines was in its final glory days. In 2006, he launched GearJunkie.com online. Regenold found two business partners, Mike Santi and John Peacock, and the trio built the first iteration of the site at thegearjunkie.com.

We got rid of “the” a couple of years later. The publication was bootstrapped and built organically, and over the course of five years, a new readership and fanbase grew.

In 2012, McCoy came back on the scene. Fresh from working as a newspaper journalist in the U.S. Virgin Islands, he rejoined Regenold in a quest to bring the world’s best outdoor gear and news site to life.

For the next decade, Regenold, McCoy, Santi, and a slew of talented outdoors writers and editors grew the website from a small blog into one of the most respected online outlets in the outdoor industry. Today GearJunkie.com employs editors, writers, videographers, and project and sales teams at its Minneapolis headquarters and editorial office in Denver, plus a new AllGear Digital office in Los Angeles.

From its core subject material of adventure racing, cycling, and cutting-edge gear, the brand has diversified to cover hunting, fishing, hiking, backpacking, overlanding, and technology. Each month, more than 2 million people click on GearJunkie for their daily dose of outdoor news and gear reviews.


Nick LeFort, Xiaoling Keller, Austin Beck-Doss, Lucie Hanes, Bergen Tjossem, Chelsey Magness, Jason Magness, Matt Samet, Anthony Sculimbrene, Steve Graepel, Cory Smith, Josh Wussow, Sam Salwei, Raquel Hernández-Cruz, David Young, Evan Williams, Paul Eisenstein, Berne Broudy, Mike Misselwitz, Andy Cochrane, Drew Zieff, Christophe Noel, Kraig Becker, Tom Puzak.

AllGear Digital

AllGear Digital acquired GearJunkie in 2020. The company owns and operates a diverse set of media properties within its Lifestyle and AllGear divisions. GearJunkie, a member of the AllGear division, aligns closely with its new sibling sites BikeRumor, iRunFar, ExplorersWeb, SwitchbackTravel, TheInertia and more.

Beyond running several class-leading websites, AllGear Digital produces written stories, videos, and design projects and campaigns for some of the largest and most innovative companies in the world. We also produce live events and activations for brands and partners around the U.S.

Corporate Leadership

Eric Phung: CEO

Alex Phung: Chief Legal Officer

Luke House: Projects Manager

Liam Steacker: Chief Technology Officer

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