You’ve booked your trip to Golden for the weekend, now what? Packing your mountain toys and all the accoutrements for adventure can be stressful because you just know that the one thing you really need (or need more of) you’re going to leave at home.
This is my basic list of necessities that I would not head to the mountains without.
1. Goretex jacket – you can look at the forecast all you like, but mountain weather can change in a minute and it never hurts to have a waterproof shell in your clothing quiver.
2. Down jacket – as an easterner I though down jackets were way over-rated, especially in the summer months. Since moving out west, I’m rarely without one. Whether it’s for sitting by the campfire on a cool fall evening, walking home from the brewery at 2:00 am in July, or giving me some extra warmth under my ski shell, a down jacket is my most versatile and well-used piece of mountain wear.
3. Toque – not only are you not going to look like a mountain adventure bum without one, they’re super handy for staying warm (see down jacket comments above). ... and for making your hair flat after a fitful night of sleep.
4. Trucker cap – again, it’s a fashion and function kinda thing. I wear my trucker cap running when I have bad hair and even ski touring in the winter on those mint blue-bird days.
5. Sunglasses – rarely do I travel without a couple sets of sunglasses. I’ve got the casual aviators for the low angle sun that always seems to be around when you’re driving out for a big day of adventure or home after it. Sport glasses are good for the up tracks and goggles for the downhill direction.
6. Buff – Buffs are one of the most versatile mountain items. They can be used to keep your head and neck warm, but also to wrap around cold hands, wear on your wrist as a sweatband or even double as a bra if you space out and leave that critical wardrobe item at home.
7. Bear Spray or Avalanche Gear. Get it and get trained on how to use it. I never venture onto the trails in summer without bear spray, and I never travel into the backcountry in the winter without my avalanche gear. It’s just the way it is. #safenotsorry
8. Growler – with all the microbreweries popping up across BC and our very own Whitetooth Brewery in Golden, you don’t want to caught without a beer carrying vessel. Yes, they do sell bottles and serve at many restaurants and their tasting rooms, but growlers are also somewhat of a rite of mountain hipster passage.
With all these items packed away, you know your time adventuring in the mountains is going to warm, dry and delicious.