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  • Mat Jobin

Holiday Gear Gift Guide

I recently had the opportunity to do a segment with MyTv9 News, Lauren's Crazy Pet Show and FALPS (Friends of American Legion & Peoples State Forest) where we discussed cold weather gear, and some holiday gift ideas for the hiker and outdoor enthusiast.

Below you will find images from the show-n-tell segment featuring some of my personal gear. This gear does not represent what I might take with me today and is not everything I would carry with me. In fact, I would most likely make a few changes due to the multiple factors involved with trip planning such as location, time of year, conditions ,etc.

I am continually learning from my experiences and improving my kit accordingly, as well as also incorporating new breakthroughs in product materials, tech and design out of personal interest and to provide honest accurate feedback to you, the reader, and to my clients that I work with each year.

Disclaimer: I am not compensated, sponsored or influenced in any way by the companies that make the gear I am sharing in this post. This is gear that I have purchased out of my own money and are things that have worked well for me. All opinions and feedback are my own. The gear in this post is not suitable for all conditions, applications, individuals or their skill levels. It is up to the user to determine if it is appropriate for them to carry on a specific trip. This gear guide is here to simply help with providing gift ideas. Click on the links below each image to learn more about a specific item and find out where you can purchase it if you'd like.

Maps & Books

A good map or trail guide will never steer you wrong. I like to use these when planning out some of my trips and will always have a paper copy on me while out on the trail. Price range: $12.95 - $30.00

(From left to right, starting at the top left):

National Geographic Appalachian Trail Map for Connecticut & Massachusetts

Long Trail Map

Connecticut Walk Book 20th Ed

Rail Trails Southern New England

Rail Trails Northern New England

The AT Guide by David "AWOL" Miller (pre-orders for 2021 edition taking place now)

Long Trail Guide Book 28th Ed

White Mountain Guide Box Set 30th Ed

New England Trail Map Set

Bay Circuit Trail Map Set

Rhode Island Recreation Map


These are a few essentials I always have on me for whatever micro adventure I may be on. They help provide safety, recovery and an overall enjoyable experience. Price range: $12.95 - $350.00

(From left to right):

Petzl Swift RL 900 Headlamp

East Coast Greenway Face Mask (in collaboration with artist Autumn Cobeland and BOCO Gear)

Rawlogy Cork Massage Ball

Anker Powercore 13000

SPOT Gen 3 Sat Comm Device (Spot recently released the Gen 4 which works similarly to the Gen 3 pictured here)

Garmin InReach Mini Sat Comm Device

Clothing Layers

A good layering system is important for any trip or thru hike, any time of the year. Here are a couple of my favorite pieces. Price range: $45.00 - $159.00

(From left to right):

REI Co-op Merino Midweight Baselayer L/S Top

REI Co-op Merino Midweight Baselayer Bottom

Patagonia Midweight Capilene Zip Neck Baselayer

Patagonia R1 1/4 Zip Fleece Pullover

Outdoor Research Helium Hooded Rain Jacket (with Diamond Fuse technology)

More Clothing

Don't leave those extremities exposed. These items have helped keep me warm when needed. Price range: $27.00 - $80.00

(Clockwise starting from upper left):

Black Diamond Balaclava

Goosefeet Gear Down Socks (small blue stuff sack to the left of socks comes with the purchase of the down socks)

Outdoor Research Transcendent Down Mitts

Outdoor Research Transcendent Down Beanie

REI Co-op Merino Wool Liner Gloves

Buff Headwear Lightweight Merino Wool

Black Diamond Dirt Bag Gloves (pictured center)

Traction, Vision, Blister Prevention & Socks

Not carrying traction can make or break a trip. Here are some of my favorite items to help me log miles while keeping me grounded and comfortable. Price range: $14.00 - $260.00

(Clockwise starting from upper left):

MSR Revo Ascent Snowshoes (snowshoe bindings have been upgraded from straps to MSR's new Paragon binding system compared to the ones pictured here. I have them on my Lightning Ascent snowshoes and they are excellent!)

Smith Squad MTB Goggles

Gogglesoc (covering Smith goggles)

Muc-Off Chamois Cream

Smartwool phD Cycling Socks

Darn Tough Midweight Cushion Socks

Darn Tough Mountaineering Socks

Black Diamond Carbon Z Trekking Poles

Outdoor Research Rocky Mountain Low Gaiters

Kahtoola Microspikes

Food Storage, Hydration & Cooking

A hot beverage at camp, warm meal after a long day of hiking, keeping wildlife wild with Leave No Trace. These pieces help enhance the trail experience. Price range: $14.00 - $140.00

(Clockwise starting from upper left):

Ursack Major Bear Bag

Polar Breakaway Insulated 20 oz. Water Bottle

Yeti Lowball 10 oz. Tumbler

Katadyn BeFree Water Filter

Aeropress Go

MSR 20 oz. Fuel Bottle

MSR 2.5L Ceramic Cook Pot

MSR Whisperlite Universal

MSR Titan Titanium Cook Pot

MSR Pocket Rocket 2

MSR ISO-PRO Fuel Canister

Sleep System & Relaxation

There's no reason to sacrifice comfort on a backpacking or camping trip. Here are a couple of my favorites for lounging around the fire and getting a good night's rest. Price range: $60.00 - $220.00

(From left to right, starting with sleeping pad under smaller items):

Sea To Summit Comfort Plus Insulated Sleeping Pad

Sea To Summit Aeros Down Pillow

ENO Doublenest Hammock Leave No Trace

Sea To Summit Thermolite Reactor Extreme Sleeping Bag Liner

Additional Clothing & Fabric Care

A few additional favorites of mine that are almost always in my pack or on me during my trips. The fabric care products are important in helping keep my gear going year after year. Price range: $10.00 - $350.00

(From left to right):

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer

Nikwax Down Wash

Nikwax Tech Wash

Outdoor Research Helium II Rain Pants

Pearl Izumi Summit AmFib Lite Pants


One of the most personal items of every hiker. What works for one, might not work for another. These are my preferred footwear for the trail, in town and everything else. I find them to be that comfortable. Price range: $120.00 - $160.00

(From left to right):

Altra Lone Peak 4.5 (see my YouTube video of these shoes by clicking here)

Altra Lone Peak 4.0 RSM Mid (see my YouTube video of these shoes by clicking here)

Have you used any of this gear? What has your experience been like with using it? Feel free to leave that experience or any questions about the gear in a comment. Happy holidays and happy hiking!

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