Our Gear Guy’s Black Friday Deal Picks

Gear sales are everywhere this week, thanks to Black Friday, but finding something you know will stand up to your adventures can be challenging. I believe it’s a good time to pull the trigger on an item that’s practical and that you would have bought otherwise, sale or not. To help you get that quality piece of gear during the melee, I scoured deals to find products that I’ve personally tested and approved.

GSI Outdoors Microlite 1000 Twist Water Bottle ($35)

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(Photo: Courtesy GSI Outdoors)

Deal: 25 percent off

On Sale: November 27 through 30

Why I Love It: This water bottle took the clear win on my most recent test of insulated water bottles. It’s a smoking deal, even at full price, due to its light weight and fantastic thermoregulation. It also happened to be the least expensive of the seven I put head to head. To quote myself: “It almost never pans out that the lightest, most affordable product also demonstrates the highest performance, but the Microlite 1000 really has it all.” With an additional 25 percent off, you can get a high-performance drinking vessel at a incredible price.

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Honey Stinger Waffles ($18 for 16)

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(Photo: Courtesy Honey Stinger)

Deal: 20 percent off with coupon

On Sale: November 20 through 30

Why I Love Them: These sweet performance morsels are so delicious (and not filled with creepy additives) that I find myself using them as both run fuel for myself and dessert for my family. Unlike some bars, they’re light, easy to munch on the move, and eminently digestible. 

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5.11 TacTec Plate Carrier ($200)

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(Photo: Courtesy 5.11)

Deal: 25 percent off

On Sale: November 24 through 30

Why I Love It: I don’t think I need to elaborate on the benefits of an efficient piece of workout equipment in our current locked-down environment. The right one adds a layer of much needed pain—and the resulting endorphin rush—to your at-home body-weight exercises. While the TacTec looks badass, its padding is soft and lessens the discomfort that comes from exercising with 40 extra pounds strapped to your chest. It also fits damned well, eliminating chafing. I tested one last year and still wear it during my garage circuits and on hill-running routines when I want to punish myself in the most stress-relieving way possible.

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Body Glove Red Cell 5/4/3/ Wetsuit ($500)

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(Photo: Courtesy Body Glove)

Deal: 20 percent off

On Sale: November 27 through December 1

Why I Love It: Surfing was my entryway into outdoor sports. I surfed at least five days a week through high school but then fell in love with rivers and mountains as a young adult. This eventually brought me to Ashland, Oregon. My wife and I live about two hours from the ocean here, and while it’s usually really cold in this part of the Pacific, I still surf in relative comfort, thanks to the Body Glove Red Cell 5/4/3 wetsuit that I tested for last year’s Holiday Gift Guide. Hexagons of hollow fibers line the suit, allowing it to flush cold water while retaining body heat. The design is pretty technical, but the result is simple—it makes the suit warm and comfortable next to my skin. While a five-millimeter wetsuit is probably way too much for most surfers in our country, the Red Cell is available on sale in thinner versions as well.

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Brickell Daily Defense Face Lotion ($32)

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(Photo: Courtesy Brickell)

Deal: 25 percent off

On Sale: November 23 through 30

Why I Love It: I’ve used Brickell skin-care solutions for over five years now, and this face lotion is my go-to. I find that all of Brickell’s products do their jobs efficiently—my face feels clean and my skin feels good, without any fuss or fancy smells. I love this specific product because the SPF protects the aging face I created while working as an outdoor guide for a decade. It also soothes any skin inflammation.

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Bee’s Wrap ($18 for Three)

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(Photo: Courtesy Bee’s Wrap)

Deal: 20 percent off

On Sale: Now through November 30

Why I Love It: My family has used Bee’s Wrap as a plastic-wrap substitute for years. To quote younger Joe: “They are malleable and sticky enough to keep bricks of cheese fresh, and easy to clean with cold water and soap.” It’s incredible how many uses you can get out of these wax-covered pieces of cloth. I also personally hate the taste of plastic wrap, and Bee’s Wrap imparts no flavor on the foods it covers.

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Lead Photo: Sarah Jackson

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