Four of our own set out from our headquarters in Park City, Utah in search of Jackson Hole, Wyoming's famed Teton powder. Old Highway 89 was not the fastest route, but it was a deliberate choice to rediscover the pleasure of the #slowroad.
The gear and clothing we took along the way are some of our top picks for Holiday 2015, representing the best in adventure and travel.
Climbing at China CaveLogan Canyon, UT
In Logan Canyon the road winds with the river and gains elevation at every turn. We pull off at China Cave, a cliff that juts out over the river. The limestone crags along Highway 89 in Logan Canyon are one of America's original sport climbing destinations.
Learn More About Climbing
How to Choose a Climbing Shoe
Choosing your first pair of climbing shoes? Ready to upgrade? Brush up on profile shapes, asymmetric curvature, linings, and closure types to figure out which shoe is right for you.
Sport Climbing Essentials
Rock climbing is one of the most exciting ways to get out and experience the vertical world. There are many forms of climbing; sport climbing involves using pre-drilled and set expansion bolts for the primary means of protection. Backcountry Expert Gearhead Bill Porreca shares a few tips on selecting the perfect kit to get you out onto the crag.
How to Choose a Climbing Rope: Beta from Steph Davis
With nearly two decades of hard free ascents, free solos, and mind-boggling BASE jumps under her belt, it’s clear that Backcountry athlete Steph Davis knows her stuff.
Running at Bear LakeBear Lake, UT
Highway 89 wraps around the western edge of Bear Lake. Famous for its turquoise color, the lake is sometimes called the "Caribbean of the Rockies." Gray skies dull the color, but we still take the opportunity to go for a run.
Learn More About Running
How to Choose a Running Watch
From early morning road runs to epic endurance tests in the mountains, the right running watch will provide the data you need to track, measure, and ultimately improve your performance.
Road Runners vs. Trail Blazers
Running shoes differ significantly based on their intended uses. Road shoes use lightweight, breathable materials with plenty of cushioning and rebound so you can run without feeling beat up by the hardness of concrete or pavement.
The Transition to Trail Running
With the switch from road to trail come new obstacles, challenges, and rewards. Expecting the unexpected is a large part of the trail running experience, but there are a few things to think about before you get started.
Picnic at Lunch Counter RapidJackson Hole, WY
Just prior to reaching Jackson, Highway 89 runs parallel with the emerald-green current of the Snake River. The rocky ledges overlooking Lunch Counter rapid make an ideal spot for a picnic lunch.
Learn More About Camping
Backcountry Journal: Camp Coffee Systems
Camping is a good excuse to shed the trappings of modern life like your smartphone and laptop. But you shouldn’t have to leave behind a quality cup of coffee.
A Blanket Statement
In the gentle rolling hills of Eastern Oregon, along the Umatilla River, you’ll find the old frontier town of Pendleton, Oregon. For over 100 years and through six generations of family ownership, the Pendleton Woolen Mill has cranked out beautiful woolen goods that reflect the culture and heritage of the American West.
Kitchen Setups for Tailgate Camping
For as long as folks have loaded up vehicles and set a course towards the mountains, eating well has been an integral part of the experience. With a bit of forethought, culinary ambition, and the right camp kitchen setup, there is nothing to stop you from cooking like a pro and eating like king.
Fly Fishing the Salt RiverStar Valley, WY
In the ranchlands of Star Valley, Wyoming, Highway 89 follows the path of the Salt River, a waterway with a reputation for brown and cutthroat trout.
Learn More About Fly Fishing
How to Choose a Fly Rod
There are countless fly fishing rod options available and choosing one can be an overwhelming task. Dan Gates, an Expert Gearhead at Backcountry.com, shares a few tips to help you select the ideal rod for any given situation.
How to Choose a Fly Reel
To the seasoned fly fisherman, there is no sound sweeter than the mechanical hum of a quality fly reel, especially when the drag sings under the strain of a big fish. Expert Gearhead Dan Gates outlines the basic functions and features to consider when you are looking for your next reel, whether you’re new to the world of fly fishing or are brushing up before selecting your next reel.
Fly Fishing 101: Fly Rod Action Explained
In addition to length and weight, another way fly rods differ from one another is in their action. Loosely defined, it’s related to the flex pattern of the rod; the action and flex of the fly rod significantly affect its feel and performance. Rod actions are rated as soft, medium, and fast. Following is a rundown of each.
Touring the Teton BackcountryJackson Hole, WY
While touring the Tetons, president Theodore Roosevelt famously said, "This is how mountains are supposed to look." Just before descending, the clouds rolled back like a curtain and we made fresh tracks with the grandest of views in our periphery.
Learn more about Skiing & Snowboarding
From Carving to Powder: How to Choose the Right Ski
If you’re just getting into skiing, or have been on the same skis for years, the terminology now used by retailers can be confusing.
How to Choose an Alpine Ski Boot
Selecting a new pair of ski boots can be a little overwhelming, to say the least. Backcountry Expert Gearhead Wally Phillips, a former bootfitter, offers some guidance to help you select just the right pair of boots.
How to Choose a Snowboard
The number of snowboards available these days can seem overwhelming if you’re not quite sure what you want. To select a deck that properly fits your riding style and personal preferences, it helps to learn a bit about different types of boards and how their shapes and construction affect the way they ride.
Clothing for the Journey
At Backcountry, it’s no secret that we have a passion for great gear. Check out the top picks from our road trip north on old highway 89.
We want to see how you take the #slowroad
Share an image of the gear used on your journey with #slowroad and earn a chance to win a $1,000 Backcountry.com gift certificate.