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Brands

Gear

This Year’s Most Innovative Gear

The future is now. These 10 gear picks set new standards in their respective categories.

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Smith Lowdown Focus Sunglasses

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These sunglasses read minds. Smith brings high tech to its popular Lowdown frames in the form of EEG sensors that pair with your smartphone to measure your brain’s electrical activity. The app helps you learn to concentrate and avoid distractions, allowing you to focus all your mental energy on the next big send. 

$350, smithoptics.com

Marmot Eclipse Jacket

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The Eclipse shatters performance norms for PFC-free rainwear. Its DWR treatment is bonded to the fabric at the molecular level so it’ll never wash out or need reapplication. Each EVODry jacket saves 1.5 gallons of water thanks to a process that reduces the use of dyes by 85 percent. 

$250, marmot.com

Wild Country Revo

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Wild Country’s bi-directional, assisted-braking device solves a common danger: misthreading the rope. The Revo opens easily, can be threaded from either side, and never locks up while pulling out slack. Newbies will love that the locking mechanism can’t accidentally be overridden. 

$145, wildcountry.com

Outdoor Research Bitterblaze Gloves

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Outdoor Research takes the insulation from NASA space suits, aka the “warmest insulation on Earth,” and places it into the palms and fingers of its Fall 2018 Bitterblaze gloves. Gore-Tex membranes keep water out, while goat leather adds extra durability at common points of impact.

outdoorresearch.com

Osprey Levity

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At 1.9 lbs., the 60-liter Levity is half the weight of most overnight packs. It’s made with Osprey’s NanoFly fabric, which combines polyethylene ripstop with Cordura nylon for high-abrasion resistance that can handle squeezing through even the tightest slot canyons.

$340, osprey.com

Jetboil Flash

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Jetboil revolutionizes its fan-favorite personal camp cook system with a larger, 9,000 BTU burner and wider air intake openings to create a more powerful flame. The result: 100 seconds between you and a hot cup of coffee. 

$100, jetboil.com

Scarpa Chimera

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The hypersensitive Chimera shoes’ asymmetrical design forces climbers onto the points of their big toes, helping them lock in to even the tiniest holds. In spite of an aggressive vacuum fit, these grippy shoes are soft and break in quickly. 

$210, scarpa.com

Arc’teryx Norvan LD

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Gore-Tex boots used to mean that your foot was encased in a waterproof bootie hidden under the lining. Arc’teryx’s Norvan LD trail runners are the first to use Gore-Tex Invisible Fit Technology, which applies the membrane directly to the upper for lightweight waterproofing without uncomfortable wrinkles and folds. 

$200, arcteryx.com

Mystery Ranch Ridge Ruck 17

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Pack adjustments are a major time suck. Mystery Ranch’s new single-point adjustment design makes it easier to get the perfect fit. Now you can make micro adjustments to the shoulder straps—straight from your hip belt.

$119, mysteryranch.com

Tecnica Forge Custom Hiking Boot

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Until now, skiers have had all the custom-foot-wear fun. But Tecnica’s Forge Custom Hiking Boot brings moldable technology to hikers for the first time—cutting break-in time to zero. Tecnica hooked up roughly 60 stores with custom machines that heat the boots’ heel, ankle and arch for the perfect, blister-free fit. 

$250, tecnica.it