Arc'teryx Naos backpack, $700
It's a strong statement, but true: The Arc'Teryx Naos 70 backpack is the single best piece of gear I've ever owned. Hands down.
Built like a dry bag, the pack is a large compartment of polyurethane-coated nylon with a roll-top closure and pouch lid. All seams are taped and the main body is 100 percent waterproof. A soggy and dripping June in Glacier Park is no worry, and I've even forded swollen rivers in the Bob with the pack floating behind. Never has a drop of water sneaked inside.
A rock-solid swivel hip-belt relieves any ilium rub and moves seamlessly with all motionswalking, bending, leaning and climbing. I can load it full and not have one sore spot on the hips. Two ice ax loops, two outer pockets and six straps make stowing gear streamlined and easy on this handmade Canadian gem.