Since being founded in 2001 by Brian Frankle, Ultralight Adventure Equipment has grown from the work of a single man into one of the most reputable pack makers in the long distance hiking community. Their packs are lightweight but durable, minimalist in design but highly functional in the field, handcrafted in Utah but cost-competitive with large-scale backpack producers. I carried my first ULA during 3,000 miles of hiking in 2010 and couldn’t have been more impressed with its quality.
For over 100 years, Wigwam has been specializing in producing high-quality socks for outdoor, sport, and everyday activities. Wigwam is a home-grown American company which knits all their socks in Sheboygan, WI and sources almost exclusively to American wool providers. For over 15 years, Wigwam has been partnered with the Ironman triathlon series and is the preferred sock of its top athletes. I’ve been wearing Wigwam socks for years but gained a new appreciation for their quality after using them exclusively during my thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail.