Ask the Gear Guy

    • Q. Gear Guy, I’m going on a Boy Scout backpacking trip in a couple of weeks with my son to Utah. We will be walking through water and sand for three days at the bottom of the canyon. Any recommendation for an inexpensive pair of water shoes for my son (age 16)? Thanks for your help.

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, My son and I saw your knife reviews...his question is (him typing now)...where can I buy the Leatherman Fuse?

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, I have a tent with a waterproof fly, but I still get wet. Why is that?

    • Q. Hey Gear Guy, I was just wondering what kinds of special gear my troop should get when going on a canoe trip? We are going down the Delaware River and as ASPL I was assigned to learn what sorts of stuff we needed. We are only going for a couple days and I would be really grateful if you could help. Thanks so much.

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, Is it a good idea to wear steel-toed boots for hiking?

    • Q. Hey Gear Guy! What kind of jacket do you recommend for Philmont Scout Ranch? I need the jacket to be preferably something light and under $100.

    • Q. Sometimes on hikes or camping trips I pack a little bit too much or a little bit too little clothing. How can I restrict myself from packing an amount of clothing that is wrong?

    • Q. I need a good knife for exploring a forest. I want a knife that either unfolds or stays open. Any suggestions?

    • Q. I don’t have a pair of hiking boots, but I do have a pair of Georgia Giant work boots that come eight inches over the ankle. Would they work? Or should I get a pair of hikers instead?

    • Q. My troop is sending boys to Sea Base and I was wondering about good inexpensive waterproof watch. Any ideas about where I could get one?

    • Q. This is not so much a gear question but a technique question: My buddy and I plan to backpack a 24-mile point-to-point trail one weekend, camping halfway. Problem, we only have one car. How do we get back to our car at the end of the trail?

    • Q. I am looking for a type of tent that can zip onto other tents (of the same style) for my friends to use on campouts so we can each have our own living quarters.

    • Q. Gear Guy, I am trying to find a tent that is lightweight, and very well ventilated to prevent condensation, but without being too expensive. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Q. My rain pants are leaking because there is a hole on the inside of the leg on the seam. I want to be thrifty because I am a Boy Scout. I would like your advice as to how to repair them. If I am not able to fix them, what should I pay for a new pair?

    • Ever been scrambling before an outing for fresh flashlight batteries but never have the right kind on-hand? If you’re like me, the answer is a big fat yes. In fact, I have a great flashlight sitting in my drawer right now that requires a CR123 Lithium battery but I never remember to get one of those at the store and I definitely don’t have one just lying around the house. But that’s exactly the type of situation where the Gerber Omnivore Flashlight really shines -- pardon the pun.

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, I’ve been searching everywhere for a reversible rain jacket, with one side to be waterproof, the other side just to keep me warm. Think you can help?

    • Q. Hey Gear Guy, I’ve been bass fishing for a couple years now but I really wanna get into fly fishing too. My friends say it’s really expensive—so can you recommend a simple, cheap fly rod and reel to get me started?

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, I would like a good quality but inexpensive Buck knife. I saw the article in September 2008 about the fixed-blade knives, but my troop does not allow sheath or fixed-blade knives. What can you recommend?

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, I need a good camping pillow that is not too expensive and can be used easily on backpacking trips.

    • One of the best ways to stay safe when bicycling is to make sure that you and your bike can be seen. This is especially important at night. Basic reflectors are a good start, but you really should have lights too.

    • Q. I have been looking for a pot, plate and bowl all for under $50. But I can’t find any?

    • Q. What equipment do you need to cook an oyster? I caught one on my fishing pole. Hope you write back!

    • Q. Hey Gear Guy, I have a problem: I’m getting a little too “old” for my BMX bike. I’ve had it for three years, but now I need a new one. My saddle is too low, and when I stand on the pedals for a while, my back begins to hurt. There’s one big problem: I’m kind of low on the green stuff (if you know what I mean). Any suggestions?

    • Q. Hi Gear Guy, I’m a swimmer and our coach has us time our laps with wristwatches, but every waterproof watch I try, the buttons don’t work underwater. What can I do?

    • Q. Yo Gear Guy, I’m about to go on a winter camp-out and I need some good warm gloves but my budget is just $15. What could I do?

    • Q. What skateboards are best for kickflips, grinds and ollies? Which board goes the fastest?

    • Q. Dear Gear Guy, Where can you find unbarbed fishing hooks? I keep on catching pumpkin seed fish, and they have sharp teeth. I think unbarbed hooks would help.

    • Q. I’m looking for an advanced first-aid kit that has everything I will ever need at a low cost with quality stuff for wilderness, desert, cave, boat, home, camper, car, etc.

    • If you’re like most guys I know, you’re tough on your stuff. Problem is, most electronics like cell phones can’t stand up to your kind of abuse. That’s why you’ll be stoked to hear about this super-durable mobile phone.

    • A hoodie with built-in headphones? No way.