Essentials: Alpine

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The Alps, as the highest and most extensive range of mountains in Europe, stretch from France through Switzerland, Italy, and Germany all the way to Slovenia. Their majesty has inspired countless generations to climb their peaks and ski their slopes—and to build many a chalet to sip digestifs in after a day out in the cold.

We were feeling inspired by the Alpine aesthetic as well, and collected a handful of the best gear that will put your mind in the Alps (or get you ready for your next European vacation).

Howler Brothers Spellbinder Parka

Howler Brothers Spellbinder Parka

A capable parka is a must for any snow-bound vacation—and the Howler Brothers Spellbinder Parka is a fine jacket, indeed. It’s fairly lightweight for a parka, but its 100 grams of PrimaLoft Gold insulation and quilted design make it punch above its weight on the warmness scale. And for those carrying a backpack, the reinforced shoulders ensure the longevity and durability of the jacket.

Alpine Cooking

Alpine Cooking

Author, gourmet, and long-term traveler Meredith Erickson spent years traipsing her way through the Alps, delving deep into the culture of the place to bring back the photos and recipes featured in Alpine Cooking. It’s a perfect coffee table book for the adventure-minded culinary enthusiast.

Arc'teryx Bora 75 Backpack

Arc’teryx Bora 75 Backpack

The Bora 75 is more than just your average backpack—it’s a fully capable, purpose built pack for anyone looking to spend days at a time out on the mountainous slopes. Its 75 liter capacity is backed up by a specially designed hip belt that distributes the pack’s weight so well, you’ll hardly know it’s there. And the Cordura cloth construction provides top notch durability and a great degree of weatherproofing, too.

Vallon Heron Mountain Sunglasses

Vallon Heron Mountain Sunglasses

When the sun is beating down on a fresh layer of powder, an ordinary pair of sunglasses just won’t do. Vallon Heron’s Mountain Sunglasses have the full coverage style that you need to protect your eyes from reflected light—and their leather accents make them quite a stylish choice, as well.

Salewa Crow Gore Tex Boots

Salewa Crow Gore Tex Boots

When it comes to trekking through snow, there’s no substitute for a pair of Gore Tex lined boots. Salewa’s Crow Boots put the waterproof but breathable material to great use, complementing it with a tough as nails abrasion-resistant fabric upper, highly adjustable climbing lacing system, and grippy Vibram soles.

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