Nothing beats training, preparation, and research when it comes to meeting your 2024 adventure goals. Coming in a close fourth? The right gear.
Allow Emerging Gear — the column that brings you the coolest, freshest brand-new outdoor gear to hit the market — to be your guide. This edition includes skis, bindings, watches, and no fewer than two creative personal lighting solutions. Go forth and adventure, my friends.
Flies feeling a little mangy? Freshen those bad boys up mid-fishing trip with Loon’s Outdoor Streamer Kit. The kit includes three tools you need to give your flies new life after fish or shoddy casting (not that you would do that, right?) leave them the worse for wear.
All three tools hang off Loon’s clever Spartan Lanyard system, so you can spend a minimum amount of time digging through your gear and a maximum amount of time hunting brookies, rainbows, or cutthroats. At $58, it’s affordable to boot.
It’s only been winter for a few weeks, but brands are already looking toward spring. Bamboo apparel maker Free Fly is no exception, recently relaunching its popular Lined Breeze Skort. The garment sells out every time Free Fly brings it back — and for good reason. Pleasing neutral colors pair with the unmatched versatility of bike shorts teamed up with a skirt. And yes, it has a pocket!
The $74 garment offers UPF 50+ protection, an elastic waistband, and Free Fly’s signature breezy fabric. Get one now before they sell out and you have to wait ’til next
If you’re still hitting the gym in busted old road runners that have seen better days, you’re missing out. Reebok’s NANO X4 trainers are the latest gym-specific shoe from the brand.
Pairing woven textile uppers with a midfoot ventilation panel is Reebok’s effort to give your piggies some oxygen, while attention to the stability and cushioning means you’ll be able to crush box jumps just as epically as you max your rack squats.
Be on the lookout for a GearJunkie review — our resident gym rats already have their eyes on this one. The X4s become available on Friday, January 12.
“Oil Slick” is, as one of GearJunkie’s editors noted, something of an odd marketing choice for an industry fairly well committed to battling climate change. Still, you have to admit the shimmering, liquid-evoking finish on the limited-edition Ridge Bindings from Dynafit has a lot to recommend it.
These bindings aren’t for newbs. Built for “ambitious skimo athletes,” looking for speed on the uphills as well as the down, the Ridge Bindings pair ease of entry and snow-clearing technology on the step-in with efficient power transfer on the descents.
Developed by the Germans, a nation that knows a thing or two about engineering, Ridge Bindings might be just what you need to level up your touring game. Just be prepared to shell out. At $600, you could purchase an entire budget kit for a similar price.
Regular users of headlamps know it’s a constant struggle to get them situated at just the right angle for any given task. SANDMARC Action Gear’s solution is dual-axis construction, allowing its Pro Headlamp 360-degree vertical and 180-degree horizontal movement.
For even more versatility, the little light has a magnetized base — making it perhaps the ideal headlamp for overlanders or other people on adventures where midnight vehicle repairs might be an unfortunate reality.
Blessedly, the Pro Headlamp utilizes USB-C charging, something I really wish every rechargeable headlamp manufacturer would hop on. And while it only has two modes (spotlight or red light), the Pro Headlamp is attractive enough for all the other reasons I’ve mentioned. Available for preorder now.
Faction only made 250 pairs of its Studio 1 Alex Hall limited-edition skis. So, if you love the purple and pink retro styling inspired, Faction says, by VHS still frames, then jump on this right now.
Steezy on the bottom but a timeless glossy black up top, the limited-edition Studio 1s include a poplar core sandwiched between a full carbon weave. Faction makes these bad boys specifically for park and pipe air time, and as such, they’re rocking a symmetrical twin-tail shape and a not-insignificant camber. $749 gets you a pair. As I said, act fast!
What makes a flashlight a “utility flashlight” as opposed to just “a flashlight?” If you’re JordiLight, the answer to that question is adaptability.
The brand’s Utility Flashlight has a semi-rigid, flexible structure that allows it to be worn as a headlamp, hung, wrapped around tent poles, attached to packs, or anything else you need to do with it. Touch controls, rugged IP68 weather protection, and the ability to interface with other products in the JordiLight ecosystem all add to the utility.
Meanwhile, the ever-ubiquitous connected app allows you to control the light’s many modes, colors, and features — like the built-in fall sensor connected to your phone (it sends a message to a chosen contact if you take a tumble). Priced at $140 at the time of its recent launch, the JordiLight Utility Flashlight is currently on sale for $99.
Oh, G-SHOCK. Never change, you rugged beast. Casio’s been cranking out its famously durable digital watch for decades now. And every now and then, the brand refreshes the look with styling that always seems like it’s only a few days out of the ’80s. But hey, retro is in (as always), so what’s not to love?
The freshly dropped G-SHOCK GPRH1000-9 boasts a hard-to-miss construction-yellow color scheme paired with metal side guards to further beef up the already burly construction. And in a nod to modern sports-watch technology, there’s solar-assisted charging, a heart-rate monitor you can access while tracking activities, and GPS capability. There’s even a tide graph.
I guess digital watches are a pretty neat idea! $500 snags you the GPRH1000-9 and all the invincibility it brings.
North Carolina-based Astral got its start making life jackets constructed of PVC-free materials, and now, over 2 decades later, the brand is still making strides in the area of sustainability. Astral took its popular YTV life jacket and upgraded it with larger pockets and a Bluesign-approved, 100% recycled shell.
The pullover style PDF is low-profile for use in active watersports like sailing, SUP paddling, and whitewater galore. And at $150, it’s not the most expensive PDF on the market, either. Win-win!
EcoFlow calls the recently launched DELTA Pro Ultra “our most powerful whole-house backup solution to date.” The portable battery backup system can provide the juice to power your home’s essential functions from 2 days to up to a month (depending on usage, of course).
And yes, that includes HVAC systems, thanks to the 72,000W output. You can charge the Delta Pro Ultra via AC power, gas generators, or solar panels, and EcoFlow claims insulation is a cinch.
It ain’t cheap at $5,799, but it’s a worthwhile investment, particularly because the battery can handle 3,500 discharge cycles before reaching 80% of its original capacity.