Expert Advice on outdoor gear

What to Bring and What to Buy

Get advice on what to bring on your next outdoor adventure, as well as buying and fitting tips from our experts.

Having the right gear is just the start. AMC offers a number of outdoor skills programs that will teach you to be smart and safe in the backcountry.

AMC recommends that hikers and backpackers follow the hikeSafe Hiker Responsibility Code.

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Many essential gear items are available for purchase in the AMC Store. Shop our selection now.


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  • Clip-on Fire Starter: The Firebiner August 12, 2019
    Having the means and ability to make an emergency fire is an essential survival skill. It requires two key items: something that generates a spark or flame, and tinder to catch the spark or flame and start your fire. For the latter, I have long recommended Vaseline-coated cotton balls (though a variety of other pre-made...Read […]
  • Head Nets: The Ultimate Bug Defense July 22, 2019
    There comes a point when insect repellent just doesn’t cut it. Sometimes the biting bugs are just too thick and ferocious to deal with, whether it’s a swarm of black flies, mosquitoes, no-see-ums, or some other collection of flying blood-sucking micro-monsters. Even if you’re using enough insect repellent to keep them from biting, it can...Read […]
  • The Many Uses for Paracord July 1, 2019
    It’s one of the most useful and versatile items I throw in my pack: a length of lightweight, all-purpose cord. From guylines to clotheslines, shoe laces to dog leashes, it’s remarkable how many different uses you can find for this simple, inexpensive item. Also amazing is the number of different types of cord available. Here’s...Read […]