Featured Image: Courtesy of Icelantic Skis
The snow has melted, the ground has thawed and the flowers have bloomed. We’re headed into the heat of the summer, which means longer days to explore in the mountains. Whether you’re a runner, mountain biker or peak-bagging hiker, a change of seasons is all the reason you need to stock up on new gear. Below are 16 items I’ve had the chance to test out this summer, so far, that I’m confident will keep you out on the trails longer and looking damn fine while you’re getting after it.
Celina Tee and Tights, Kari Traa
Keep it light and airy on your next adventure with the Celina Tee and Tights from Norwegian apparel company, Kari Traa. Featuring hardly-there sleeves, a mesh panel on the upper back and an open bottom back with knot detailing, the Celina Tee keeps its cool when the day–or date–starts heating up. Pair the top with the Celina Tights for a cute and casual ensemble that stands up to intense training sessions as well it does on the trails or in the yoga studio. A beast in breathability, the legs of these tights are made with a stretchy mesh material and you won’t be doing the awkward pulling-up-my-pants dance thanks to its high-rise design, custom waist-width adjustments and silicone waist band.
Women’s Alpine Pro, Dynafit
When you’re out blazing trails, you need a shoe that can stand up to the beating and the Alpine Pro from Dynafit proves to be the ultimate trail runner. At 300 grams, this shoe feels like it’s barely there when you’re wearing it but you’ll notice its “alpine rolling” midsole helps you run faster and smoother with an even roll-through from heel to toe on variable, mountainous conditions. A carbon plate integrated between the midsole and outsole protects your foot from protruding rocks and a Vibram Megagrip sole will keep your feet from slipping, rain or shine. Because of its versatility, this foot cover performs equally well in the gym as it does outside, negating the need for a specific pair of workout shoes.
Nordic Headband, Skida
Corinne Prevot started out making hats out of her dorm room at Burke Mountain Academy, and that initial startup has blossomed into Skida, one of the most distinct women-owned headwear companies in North America. Expanding the brand’s product line beyond winter activities, Skida launched a warm-weather version of the Nordic headband. Available in two colorways–Sun and Sand and Misty–this summer-centric headband features a polyester-spandex jersey blend with an antimicrobial treatment to keep sweat out of your eyes and your lady stank at bay on the hottest days of the year.
MTN Halter Bikini, Icelantic Skis
Icelantic recently launched its own swimwear line–dubbed MTN Swim–designed for those who escape to the mountains year-round. Made in the USA of recycled and sustainable materials, the MTN Swim collection shines when its durability and versatility are put to the test on a multi-sport mountain day. The MTN Halter Bikini top and bottom are sold separately so you can mix and match different designs, all created by artist Carly Jo. For me personally, protecting my chest from the sun is really important, which is why I love the MTN Halter top. I can sport a cute, stylish and sporty bikini without exposing my UV-sensitive chest to the elements. Icelantic’s MTN Swim collection comes in many different styles and designs for every kind of mountain girl.
Vamos Short, Cotopaxi
From early morning, high-alpine ascents to a mid-day bike ride to your local brewery, the Vamos short from Cotopaxi will have you saying “let’s go” to every summer excursion. Featuring a blend of nylon and spandex, these shorts move with you and efficiently wick away moisture for all-day, long-haul comfort. The recycled polyester and spandex waist band is ultra-soft to the touch and has a built-in hidden draw cord so you can dial in the exact fit. Two drop hand pockets and a zipper pocket in the back provide ample storage for your phone and keys and because of the relaxed style of this board short, boost your ego and order these babies down one size.
Cala Active T-Shirt, Cotopaxi
The hardest worker in your summer vacation suitcase, the Cala Active T-Shirt from Cotopaxi will keep you fresh and cool no matter what’s on the itinerary. This fun and flirty tee features an open back that doesn’t just look cute, it also increases airflow under the garment when you’re on the move and a combination of polyester, Tencel and spandex sends this shirt’s comfort factor through the roof. Polygiene odor-control technology makes this the perfect top to extend that hiking date to dinner afterwards.
Blister Resist No Show Socks, Balega
There’s nothing more frustrating than ending a run early because of blisters and no one understands that better than Balega. By combining natural mohair with the brand’s proprietary moisture-wicking fiber they called Drynamix, this sock provides an ultra-smooth, friction-free ride for your longest runs. A seamless toe, wide arch support band and high heel tab all play a role in making this one of the most comfortable socks I’ve ever slipped on. An extra deep heel pocket ensures a Cinderella-like fit, even for my tiny feet.
Sandia Adventure Shirt, Wild Rye
Sometimes the most annoying part about exploring in the mountains, whether that’s on a bike or your own two feet, is figuring out where to put your things (i.e. water bottle, phone, keys). It’s too much to carry in your hands but not enough to warrant a full-sized backpack. Wild Rye is solving that problem with the Sandia Adventure Shirt. Sporting three full-sized pockets on the back of this jersey, you’ve got a spot to carry all of the necessities. Strategically constructed using mesh and moisture-wicking panels and boasting 50 UPF protection, this jersey is designed to keep you shielded from the elements without overheating, so you can stay out longer and ride harder no matter how intense the summer sun may be.
Ember Capri and Leily Bra, prAna
Look good, feel great in this two-piece set from prAna. Made from a recycled polyester and organic cotton blend, this trendy legging and bra are cute, comfortable and naturally wick away sweat for all-day wear. The high-rise Ember Capri leggings feature an extra wide waistband so they stay in place, no matter if you’re in down dog position or running after your dog. The Leily Bra pairs perfectly, featuring the same polyester-cotton blend and zig zag stitching for a little extra flair. The bra’s high neck keeps your chest protected from the elements while the backless design makes the Leily a little extra sassy than your average sports bra.
Luzon 24L Daypack, Cotopaxi
For those big days in the high country, you need a pack that has the space to fit all of the essentials and the Luzon 24L Daypack is your ticket to cargo paradise. Made from leftover nylon panels, every pack’s color combination is unique and ultra-light mesh shoulder straps make it one of the most ergonomic packs I’ve ever carried. The large main compartment is big enough to hold extra layers and snacks and the second, zippered internal pocket is made to hold your muddy trail runners so you can keep the rest of your stuff dry and clean without needing a second bag. Mesh water bottle holders on either side of the pack provide plenty of hydro space and a front zippered pocket keeps your wallet and keys safely stashed away.
Range, Smith Optics
Sunglasses in the mountains are important for two reasons. First, they protect your precious eyeballs from damaging UV rays. Second, they’re an accessory that can make or break your entire get-up. The Range sunglasses from Smith Optics are the beautiful love child of show-stopping style and versatile function. Sporting Smith’s proprietary Evolve eco-frame construction–53 percent bio-based material in their injected-polymer sunglasses–these shades are easy on the environment while still being extremely durable. The four-base frame curvature with a double bridge design gives off an effortlessly-cool vibe while the color-enhancing Chromapop lenses provide a helluva view.
SPF 50+ Mineral Sunscreen and Rehydrating Serum, Avène
Eau Thermale Avène uses the thermal spring water found in its hometown of Avène, France, in all of its skin care products for its natural healing properties, including in its SPF 50+ Mineral Sunscreen. This 100-percent mineral lotion boasts the protective properties of a sunscreen without the greasy residue, making it ideal for daily use. Free from fragrances, parabens and other harmful chemicals, this lotion is both hypoallergenic and reef-safe. After you’ve washed away the day’s dirt and grime, give your skin an extra splash of hydration with Avène’s oil-free Hydrance Intense Rehydrating Serum. You’ll thank me later.
Dry Shampoo, Klorane
If you’re on a week-long camping trip, odds are a shower isn’t part of your daily routine. Keep your hair looking and smelling fresh with Klorane’s dry shampoo, made with oat milk. Using all-natural, gentle botanical ingredients–vegans, take note–this hypoallergenic spray cleans your hair, soaks up oil and adds volume and texture within minutes. Unlike other dry shampoos, this one doesn’t leave a weird white residue, so you–or your partner–can freely put your fingers through it.