Philip Werner

Philip Werner quit his corporate job in 2010 to become a full-time hiker, guide, and outdoor writer. Since then he's hiked over five thousand miles, become an adept fly fisherman, XC skier, and written over 2500 backpacking and hiking articles for SectionHiker.com.

Osprey Aether 65 Backpack Review (2021 Model)

Osprey Aether 65 Backpack Review

The Osprey Aether 65 is a multi-day expedition-style backpack with an adjustable torso length frame, adjustable length shoulder straps, and an adjustable length hip belt length so you can dial in a custom fit without having to swap out components or heat them in an oven at a store. It’s …

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10 Best Four Season Winter Tents of 2021

10 Best Four Season Tents Gear Guide

Four-season tents for mountaineering, winter backpacking, and backcountry skiing tours need to be a good deal stronger than regular three season tents if you are camping in exposed windy terrain that is subject to heavy snow loads. The strongest and most wind-resistant tents are wedge or dome-shaped and freestanding, so …

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What is a Freestanding Tent?

What is a Freestanding Tent?

Freestanding tents are tents that can stand up by themselves making them easy to set up in different types of terrain from desert sands and snow-covered peaks to wooden tent platforms. Most freestanding tents are double-wall tents that have a separate inner tent and a rainfly to help prevent internal …

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10 Best Down Winter Sleeping Bags for 2021

10 Best Winter Sleeping Bags for Backpacking

The most important attributes of a down sleeping bag for winter camping and backpacking are high-value insulation, compressibility, low weight, and ample interior space, so you ample room to store gear and water in your sleeping bag, so it doesn’t freeze overnight. Cost is also a factor, although a good …

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10 Best Winter Hiking Boots of 2021

10 Best Winter Hiking Boots

Winter hiking boots have evolved tremendously over the past 10 years and are now lighter weight and more comfortable than ever before. Gone are the days when you needed to choose between military surplus boots, plastic mountaineering boots, or heavy pac boots to keep your feet warm. Today’s winter boots …

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Winter Hiking in a Thin Baselayer

Winter Hiking in a Thin base layer

The biggest mistake that new winter hikers make is overdressing by wearing heavy or medium-weight baselayers that are hard to remove if you start to sweat. You’ll be much better off wearing a very thin crew or quarter-zip shirt and adding additional thermal or wind-blocking layers on top of it …

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Bushwhacking Sugar and Jericho Mountains

Bushwhacking Sugar and Jericho Mountains

Sugar Mountain and Jericho Mountain are located in Jericho Mountain State Park, just outside Berlin, NH (pronounced Ber’-lin), the “City that Trees Built.” While it’s just a short distance from Mt Washington, Berlin has a “border outpost” feeling to it. It’s also the southern hub for logging, ATV, and snowmobile …

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10 Best Winter Backpacking Packs of 2021

10 Best Winter Backpacking Packs 2020-2021

Winter backpacking backpacks are more specialized than regular three-season backpacks, with a stronger emphasis on heavier weight loads, external attachment points, and durability for carrying bulky gear with sharp points like snowshoes, skis, ice axes, and crampons. They also favor more pockets and the ability to access and put away …

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10 Best Budget Backpacking Tents Under $250

10 Best Budget Backpacking Tents under $250

It seems like backpacking tents are getting more and more expensive, especially ultralight tents made with specialty fabrics. But take heart. There are still plenty of good values and bargain tents available if you know what to look for. Here are our 2021 picks for the top 10 best budget …

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10 Best Hiking Pants of 2021

10 Best Hiking Pants

Hiking pants are an important piece of hiking gear but one that we often take for granted. They have to be highly breathable and quick-drying, easy to vent when you get too hot, but warm when the temperature drops. Fit, freedom of movement, and pockets are also key factors.  What …

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