Holiday Gear Guide 2012

The Big List: 59 gifts to fit any gear closet (and budget)

A wise man once said (in a non-holiday context), "it's all about the money." And when you come right down to it, he was right, even around the holidays. You've got lots of people to make happy, and finite resources with which to do it, and that's a challenge right there.

So we decided to take those two things, happiness and price, and organize a selection of the very best active lifestyle kit we could lay our hands on—road test it, bench test it, even smell test it. Then we spread it out in ascending price order from $0 to $700—from free, DIY lanyard bracelets to mountain packs with air bags that inflate, James Bond-style, in an avalanche.

If that method seems a little mercantile for such a generous-spirited time of year, just think of it as our gift to you—the very best stuff, arranged in the most practical and efficient way, so that rather than stress out puzzling through the money side, you can concentrate on making exactly the right selections, and on how stoked your giftees will be to receive.

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