Partnering With the Best Vendors to Curate Your Backpacking Gear Needs
At Gossamer Gear, we pride ourselves on working relentlessly to create the best and lightest designs for backpacks, shelters, hiking poles, and other backcountry essentials. But we also know we don’t operate in a vacuum. We’re always looking for ways to partner with fellow outdoor brands to carefully curate additional gear we think our customers will love.
If you’ve taken a look at our site, you’ve probably noticed that some of our accessories are from third-party vendors—many of which are custom designs exclusive to Gossamer Gear. We know that when you come to our shop, you’re trusting us to carry the best products available, so we put a lot of thought into which vendors we partner with to make sure their brand’s mission aligns with the Gossamer Gear ethos.
As our gallant VP of Everything Jon Schmid explains, “We look for who makes the lightest and highest quality version of a product that leaves little room for us to improve on. We also prioritize smaller family- and woman-owned businesses.”
For example, we partner with TOAKS for our tent stakes, a small business based out of Thousand Oaks, California that has been on the cutting edge of titanium outdoor gear for the past 20 years. Woojin Plastic is another family- and woman-owned business we work with to manufacture our buckles.
“We try to only carry products one of us would use, or something customers have found, shared with us, and love to have on the trail,” said Schmid.
Our hope is that the research we put into deciding which items to stock makes your job easier as you’re gearing up for your trip. We’re honored by the value our customers place on our opinion and appreciate your choice to support small businesses by purchasing these third-party products through Gossamer Gear, rather than Amazon or other large outdoor retail chains.
Below is a sample of some of our favorite third-party products currently on the Gossamer Gear site. They make excellent stocking stuffers, if we do say so ourselves.
1. Green Goo Salves
We carry three salves from the woman-owned small business, Green Goo:
Green Goo’s products are made from all plant-based ingredients, and have become a fan favorite among our long-distance and endurance hikers and runners. Brand Ambassador Kathy “OBAL Unbranded” Vaughan uses the First Aid Salve on her ultramarathons to prevent chafing and heal any dry or chapped skin. You can read all about her specific tips for using this Green Goo (and other advice for women on the trail!) in her recent Gossamer Gear blog post Women’s Whispers: Potty Talk and Other Trail Tips.
2. Kula Cloth
Kula Cloth was founded by former park ranger and violinist for The Musical Mountaineers, Anastasia Allison. Anastasia wanted to promote Leave No Trace principles while creating a pee cloth that wasn’t an afterthought, but an intentional piece of gear. She ended up spending three years obsessively researching textiles and hundreds of hours field testing upgrade options to old bandanas. As a result, the Kula Cloth was born.
We’ve previously described the Kula Cloth on the Gossamer Gear blog as an opportunity for anyone who squats when they pee to have their best pee yet. And, through our partnership with the fellow Austin-based company, we now offer an exclusive Gossamer Gear design for your Kula Cloth, including an outdoor scene with butterflies to pay homage to our Mariposa 60 backpack.
3. Deuce Backpacking Trowel
Made in Colorado by TheTentLab.com, the Deuce Backpacking Trowel is a highly coveted, super lightweight piece of gear that will be your best friend for, well, digging holes to squat over in the woods.
We like to highlight the fact that it weighs about the same as ten small blueberries, which are also good for pooping in the woods. Made of 7075-T6 aluminum, this 6.5-inch long trowel will easily make the perfect size cathole. Digging out hard soil or in a hurry? Use the handle for 4x the digging power!
4. Soto Micro Windmaster Regulator Stove
The Soto Micro Windmaster Regulator Stove is a great ultralight canister stove with a built-in igniter that performs beautifully in a wide range of temperatures. We carry this award-winning stove because we think it’s the best in its class.
Due to its unique regulator, the stove maintains consistent output in hot or cold conditions. It’s compact, ultralight, and durable. The stove includes a built in "stealth igniter" and requires no matches or outside source to light. Its large concave burner head distributes the flame evenly, making it an ideal choice for backcountry cooking.
5. Custom BUFF® Multifunctional Headwear
We recently partnered with BUFF® to design two custom prints for, you guessed it, buffs. We offer both the Original and CoolNet versions of this multifunctional piece of gear. And the designs pay homage to our various packs and pieces of gear that have made us the company we are today.
The BUFF® Original Multifunctional Headwear is engineered with a 4-Way, seamless, ULTRA STRETCH fabric construction that features UPF 50 protection, and 100% recycled REPREVE® Performance Microfiber. BUFF® Original Multifunctional Headwear is approved and recommended by The Skin Cancer Foundation. It can be worn more than 12 different ways, from a cap to a balaclava to a hair tie, for a personalized style and perfect fit.
CoolNet UV+® Multifunctional Headwear is 95% recycled, engineered with REPREVE® performance microfiber, HeiQ cooling technology, and Polygiene® odor control, and has a 4-Way, seamless, ULTRA STRETCH fabric construction that features UPF 50+ sun protection.
6. Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter
U.S.-based and trusted since 1984, you can feel secure using Sawyer Products to take a swig of that mountain stream alongside the trail. The Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter is the lightest and most versatile filtration system on the market. With a total field weight of 3 ounces and the ability to roll up, this power filter takes up virtually no space in your pack.
Simply fill up the pouch at a lake, stream, or river, screw the filter directly onto the pouch and do one of the following:
- Squeeze the bag and filter water into your water bottle or container of choice
- Drink directly from the filter, which has a built-in push-pull cap for on/off functions
- Attach the filter onto most threaded water bottles, including 2-liter bottles
In addition to making a great product, Sawyer Products has partnered with the World Health Organization on preventing diseases spread by mosquitoes. The company also partners with disaster relief organizations, Rotary Clubs, and other other national and international charities to bring clean water to people who need it. That brand ethos of giving back is something we can get on board with at Gossamer Gear.