Twice each year we hand out these coveted Peak Gear Awards to the very best stuff we put to the test in the field. How do we determine the winners? Simple. We asked our top contributors—who, we are proud to admit, spend far more time camping, hiking, backpacking, biking, climbing and paddling than they do “working”—to name the best gear they used over the past year. What gear can’t you live without? Which gear changed your life?
Why It Won: It’s just pure fun. Everywhere we took it—from navigating whitewater to just messing around on the lake—and no matter who hopped on it, this eight-foot, 30-inch inflatable proved up to the task. Credit that versatility to its stability and a shape that makes it quite responsive in any conditions. It’s a snap to inflate and the tough rubber isn’t deterred by fast-moving encounters with sharp rocks.
Where We Took It: It packed nicely in the back of our Highlander for quick deployment everywhere from Steamboat’s Yampa to the Boulder Reservoir.
Award presented by Elevation Outdoors.