Essential outdoor gear to keep you going when the weather warms up


It might be time to put the snowshoes away (unless you snowshoe), but that means it’s time to break out the hiking boots. Just because the snow is receding doesn’t mean there aren’t still good times to be outdoors.

The hottest months can be unpredictable, especially at higher elevations like the Rocky Mountains. It is possible to see sun, rain and snow on the same day. That’s why it’s good to have essential gear on hand for whatever weather comes your way.

We’ve taken the liberty of compiling a list of some of our favorite gear to ensure you stay warm, dry and cool. From rain jackets to quick-drying garments, here are seven items to have on hand this season to keep moving during those sudden downpours.

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Costa Del Mar – Lido Sunglasses

outdoor summer gear product photo: Costa Lido SunglassesCosta recently unveiled its new Spring-Summer 2022 sunglasses collection, and the Lido is an ideal frame for protecting yourself from the sun’s rays, from the beach to high mountain lakes. These sunglasses are popular with anglers who spend hours on shiny, reflective waters. This makes it a great addition to your outdoor summer gear for any outing, including hiking in alpine snowfields when the glare is blinding.

The Lido includes top and side screens to prevent light from entering. Additionally, these sunglasses are vented to prevent fogging and have Hydrolite nose pads to prevent the frames from slipping or moving at all. The sleek frames, inspired by Pacific Coast vibes, are made from a plant-based bio-resin, making them more environmentally friendly. The Lido features 580 polarized glass and polycarbonate lenses, so even if you get tired on the trail, your eyes won’t.

Lidos sell for between $197 and $288.

Read more: 7 sunglasses for active lifestyles

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Grayl – UltraPress Filter/Purifier Water Bottle

outdoor summer gear product photo: Grayl Ultra Purifier water bottle

One thing there is a lot of this time of year is snowmelt runoff. So rather than carrying around a bunch of water bottles or bladders with you, why not just throw Grayl’s UltraPress Filter/Purifier Water Bottle in the bag and get water as you go?

This strategy is a great little hiking hack. With this new and improved water purifier and bottle combo, simply fill the bottle with water from a lake or stream, push the filter into the bottle, and drink the freshly filtered water directly of the bottle. The combined filter and bottle work great for everything from traveling around the world to backpacking.

The new 16.9 ounce bottle features a new FlipCarry, pour spout and is available in new colors. It is simple to use and purifies water in 10 seconds, much faster than a pump system. And the built-in filter removes 99.99% of viruses, 99.9999% of bacteria and 99.9% of protozoan cysts, according to Grayl. J

The UltraPress Filter/Purifier water bottle sells for $89.95.

Read more: Sawyer Products: Bringing Clean Water to People Around the World

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Beyond clothing – Yuba Ultralight L6 rain anorak

Product Photo: Beyond Clothing Yuba Ultralight L6 Rain Anorak - RedA good rain jacket is the main piece of outdoor summer gear you won’t want to leave home without this season. With sudden downpours, a solid waterproof layer is the difference between moving forward and calling it a day.

The Yuba Ultralight L6 Rain Anorak is a great option produced by Beyond Clothing, known for their USA-made technical gear. This piece is part of their new collection of outdoor adventure layers and is light as a feather. In fact, the L6 Rain Anorak offers protection against wind and water with a Pertex Shield waterproof membrane. Additionally, the Yuba has a waterproof rating of 20,000mm, a breathability rating of 30,000 grams, and weighs just 7.76 ounces.

One of the best features is that it can fold into a zippered pocket, so you can store it easily and take it out when the rain clouds roll in. Plus, it features a hood that works with a helmet and a dropped back hem that keeps you dry.

The Yuba Ultralight L6 rain anorak sells for $285.

Read more: Dress code for snowshoeing: tips on what to wear

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Helly Hansen – Verglas Shade Hoodie

Product Photo: Helly Hansen Verglas Shade Hoodie - Lav Green

The best approach to changing weather is to dress in layers. This way you can peel off or add layers depending on the weather you encounter. A good lightweight base layer is one of the essential pieces to have with you as part of your outdoor summer gear. That’s where Helly Hansen’s new Verglas Shade Hoodie excels.

From city streets to mountain peaks, the Verglas Shade Hoodie is a lightweight, moisture-wicking layer made from recycled polyester. As well as keeping you cool, it also offers UPF sun protection so the rays of the high mountain sun don’t shine through. The hoodie, which includes a full hood to protect the head, weighs 250 grams, making it ultralight and easy to carry around the backcountry.

The Verglas Shade hoodie retails for $55.

Read more: Helly Hansen Gear review

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Fuel for the Fire – Protein Packs

Product photo: Fuel for Fire protein smoothie variety

Sometimes the biggest obstacle to a great journey is energy. At altitude, or even just on a long road trip to the destination, big energy bars can get old. That’s why Fuel for Fire’s protein packs are a great option.

These pre or post workout snacks are smoothies that come in a small package that doesn’t need refrigeration, with whey protein or vegan options available. Just throw a few in your backpack and you’re good to go. The all-natural packs contain 7-12 ingredients, 10 grams of protein, 13-21 grams of carbs, and range from 100-130 calories. Best of all, they come in different flavors, from Berry Acai to Banana Cocoa, and taste great.

Providing a boost for any activity and a great addition to your summer outdoor gear, Fuel for Fire protein packs start at $17.99.

Read more: Registered dietitian gives nutritional advice to snowshoe athletes

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Superfeet – Adapt Hike Max Insoles

Product Photo: Superfeet Hike Max Insoles

Getting the right hiking shoe is incredibly important, but often the insoles of these shoes are overlooked. Superfeet has long been the go-to insole company, supplying insoles for various shoes and boots. Their new Adapt Hike Max insoles are designed to take the shoe to the next level in terms of comfort.

Adapt Hike Max insoles offer adaptive comfort technology, ensuring the insoles flex with your foot. They also offer Moisturewick technology and breathability with odor control. To help prevent blisters, there are two layers of Aerolyte comfort foam to keep feet relaxed on rough terrain. Plus, the padded heel cup is flexible and features cutouts to accommodate the joints and make the heel-to-toe transition smoother.

The Adapt Hike Max insoles are $49.99.

Read more: Racket Shoes: Tips for Choosing Your Boot

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Ibex – Merino Tencel T-shirt

outdoor summer gear product photo: Ibex Merino Tencel T-shirt - goldA must-have item to add to your outdoor summer gear is a comfortable tee to wear as the foundation for any adventure. This season we recommend you take a look at the new Tencel Merino tee.

Merino and tencel, derived from eucalyptus, are part of Ibex’s new “lightweight wool” series of ultralight merino products, ideal for hot summer activities. Extra soft, these ultralight performance t-shirts will provide ultimate cooling and breathability. The Tencel Merino t-shirt also dries quickly, allowing you to wear it for multiple days on any given trip.

The Ibex Merino Tencel Short Sleeve Tee sells for $85.

Read more: Will merino wool keep us warm on snowshoes?

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Have you used any of the outdoor summer gear mentioned above? Which is your favourite? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

  • David Young is a freelance writer, blogger and editor based in Fort Collins, Colorado. David specializes in outdoor writing. With over two decades of experience in newspaper writing and public relations, David writes everything from books to blogs. David loves everything Colorado has to offer, from fly fishing and backcountry skiing to snowshoeing and hiking. Learn more about David at

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