As we hike toward the promising sunrise of 2022, we’re taking a little time to look back at our journey through the peaks, valleys, and plateaus of 2021. One beautiful constant throughout this voyage has been the world-renowned Light Feet blog. 

What was once upon a time a small dream on a map in a faraway land has become a staple in households across the globe. This is thanks to our many fabulous contributors and brand ambassadors who share their wisdom, travel stories, and gear hacks with us each week.

So, as we close out this chapter and prepare for next year’s grand stories, we’ve rounded up 16 of the best Light Feet blogs from this year. We invite you to pack up your Vagabond and take a trip with us down memory lane.

1. Heather “Anish” Anderson Talks About Letting Go on the Appalachian Trail

Brand Ambassador and super groovy human Heather “Anish” Anderson released her second book in March 2021, Mud, Rocks, Blazes: Letting Go on the Appalachian Trail, and we got to interview her.

2. It’s Time to Reckon: A National Park History Lesson

Our very own Sarah del Puerto wrote a piece sharing the history of BIPOC individuals in our national parks and how we can keep working to make these spaces more inclusive.

3. Introducing The Ten: A Massive Ultralight Tent for Your Entire Covid Pod

We fooled you all on April 1 with a piece that imagined a lightweight shelter for ten that looks like a panoramic of The One and The Two.

4. So, You Want to Be a Hiking Guide? Read This First.

Christine Martens shared both the pros and cons of becoming a hiking guide from her years of experience leading trips.

5. A Mother-Daughter Duo on the John Muir Trail and Beyond

Brand Ambassador and photographer extraordinaire Emily Schrick shared a heart-warming story about hiking the JMT with her mom and what the two learned from one another.

6. Sirena Rana Talks Best Day Hikes on the Arizona National Scenic Trail

We got to interview Brand Ambassador and Queen of the AZT Sirena Rana about her book published in May 2021, Best Day Hikes on the Arizona National Scenic Trail.

7. 7 Ideas for What to Bring a Thru-Hiker on the Trail

We asked our Gossamer Gear community for ideas on what to bring thru-hikers while they’re on the trail and they delivered with some real gems.

8. Enjoy Spooky Season With These Smoky Mountain Haunts

Brand Ambassador and Smoky Mountain hiking badass Nancy East penned a Halloween-inspired piece about how you can enjoy haunts in Southern Appalachia.

9. 20 Creative and Fun Ways to Use a Carabiner

We rounded up many ways to use carabiners and encouraged you all to buy three dozen of them, and YOU DID.

10. Veteran and Thru-Hiker Matthew Fox Completes the Triple Crown

We interviewed Matthew Fox about his experience with Warrior Expeditions and how the nonprofit helped him complete the Triple Crown and work through his PTSD.

11. Reflections From the End of 5,000 Miles

Brand Ambassadors Carolyn Blessing and Jeff Podmayer wrote a series of posts about their journey hiking both the Appalachian Trail and the Continental Divide Trail in 2021 as a way of forming their marriage to one another and modeled what true love and commitment look like.

12. Queering the Outdoors: LGBTQ2SIA+ Identities in Outdoor Recreation

We interviewed Sandy Heath, a PhD candidate in the Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management Department at Clemson University about queer experiences in outdoor recreation.

13. Following the Change of Seasons in Life and the Outdoors

Brand Ambassador Kathy “OBAL Unbranded” Vaughan wrote some beautiful end-of-year, Thanksgiving reflections about a trip she took with a friend in the backcountry of the North Cascades in Washington.

14. Nick Brooks on Everything You Need to Know About Beer and the Outdoors

Brand Ambassador and beer connoisseur Nick Brooks did a Q&A with us to share all of his tips and tricks for enjoying a cold one in the great outdoors.

15. How to Pack for Front-Country Travels With the Vagabond in Italy

Gossamer Gear Founder and leading proponent of lightweight backpacking, Glen Van Peski, wrote a piece on how you can both baffle customs agents and pack everything you need for a 10-day trip to Italy in one 23-liter bag all at once.

16. The Greatest Hoodie That Ever Was

Our blog editor (it’s me, but writing in the third person feels less vulnerable) wrote a love letter to the Gossamer Gear full zip hoodie, which is still very much her favorite hoodie.

Thank You and Happy New Year!

From all of us at Gossamer Gear, we want to express how much we appreciate you being a part of our community. You made this year a great one even when the path felt a little murky at times. We wish everyone happy trails in 2022! 

Make sure to share your journeys with us by tagging us on social media (@gossamergear) and using the hashtag #takelessdomore. See you out there!

December 30, 2021 — Korrin Bishop