REVIEW STRUCTURE: Instead of giving reviews of specific gear models, we'll often present our thoughts as overall guidelines. Why? So you can evaluate ANY piece of gear in a store yourself, or so you can design your own gear. We hold it to be self-evident that this will be more useful to you than a half-dozen reviews of specific models that will be all be either discontinued, unavailable, ethically distasteful to you, or out of your price range.

OUR BIAS: Beyond Spec's primary contributors have a disproportionate amount of experience in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. Although they have desert, canyoneering, and tropical jungle experience as well, their primary expertise is in coastal rainforests, temperate conifer forests, tundra, wetlands, and alpine areas.

A NOTE ON COMPANIES: We recommend that you briefly research any companies before purchasing from them. Looking over their catalogue or website often suffices. Do you WANT to support these people?

For equipment assemblies, see Ensembles & Kits.
For overall design considerations and materials info, see Understanding Gear Design.

A Note on Down: We do not review goose down, not because we don't love it, but because we're mostly wet-climate folks who can't tell a goose from a wallaby.

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