It’s high season to get up in the hills and explore the high peaks. This roundup of eclectic gear will take you from big, open mountain passes to technical routes on rock walls.

Evolv Kronos

Comfy and easy to slip into a pack, these technical shoes can handle anything from bouldering on Mount Evans to a trip up Longs. The strap system adapts on the fly, the vegan synthetic upper molds to the foot and the VTR system helps alleviate hot spots. $130;

Five Ten Five Tenies

If you can rock the Sex Pistol color scheme, these approach shoes will take you evrywhere from scarmbles up into the Indian Peaks to after-work scurries up the Flatirons. The retro throwback shoe still performs, thanks to the brand’s Stealth rubber outsole that will get you up low-level climbs. $125:

The Original Klettersack

Back in the 1970s, dirtbag brothers Jim and Greg Thomsen took a break from their Yosemite climbing exploits to found a seminal outdoor brand called Wilderness Experience. That brand may be gone, but this summer Jim brought back one of its core products, the sturdy Klettersack from 1974 and launched it to roaring success on Kickstarter. It’s available now at a reduced price. $87-$150;

Outdoor Research Interstellar

A bomber rain shell is mandatory in the Colorado high country, where a bluebird day can transform into a downpour in less than an hour. Tipping the scales at less than 12 ounces and offering plenty of stretch so you don’t cramp your climbing style, it provides all the waterproof breathable protection of a much heavier shell. $299;

La Sportiva Testarossa

Here’s your shoe for climbs that push your limits. With a toe shape that helps keep your foot in position and a sticky 3.5mm Vibram XS Grip2 sole—plus heel cups designed for better hooking—these machines will up your game on the rock. $199;

Fjällräven Keb Trousers

We fell in love with these durable pants when we saw everyone hiking in them in Lapland at the Kebnekaise Fjällstation in Sweden. Tough, stretchy and made from sustainable fabrics, they can deal with everything from backpacking in Scandinavian drizzle to navigating a via ferrata to kicking back in the hut and enjoying a Norrlands Guld. $225;

Edelrid Swift Pro Dry 8.9mm

A good rope for alpine exploring needs to be able to deal with a wide range of activity. Buffed out with Pro Shield and Dry Shield finishes to withstand abrasion and weather, this faithful companion is triple-rated—works as a single, half or twin rope—and comes in 60-, 70- and 80-meter lengths. $310;

Ortovox Fleece Light Grid


This cozy merino fleece is just the ticket for when the temps drop, whether you are sitting around a car-camp fire or soldiering through a final pitch when the wind picks up. It’s light enough to stuff in a pack and forget about and the grid pattern provides surprising warmth for its scant size. $190;

Brazos Backpacker Oak Walking Stick

Leave the high-tech trekking poles at home and make like Gandlaf with this sturdy staff next time you wander in the hills. Crafted in the U.S.A. from solid oak, the walking stick makes for a hip, functional companion no matter your age. $60;

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