The Perfect Way to Gear up for a Hike, According to the Duo Behind Hikerkind
Allison Levy and Chelsea Rizzo share why they launched their own hiking apparel brand and reveal their must-haves for exploring the outdoors.
Hiking is one of those outdoor activities that catapulted in popularity during the pandemic. Trails became a go-to spot for people who desperately needed to get out and gulp up some fresh air while also practicing social distancing. For Allison Levy and Chelsea Rizzo, hiking was already part of their lives, but they seized that moment as an opportunity to combine their love for the outdoors with their background in fashion. The result? Hikerkind, a hiking apparel brand focused on style-forward technical gear that’s rooted in sustainability.
This “true quarantine baby,” as Rizzo calls it, came from their shared frustration with not being able to find high quality outdoor gear that fitted their style. “It didn't seem to make any sense to us, because we wanted to look like ourselves in the place where we felt most like ourselves,” says Levy. “We decided to create gear that not only performed how it's supposed to perform on trail, but also fit your body and aesthetically was streamlined, and classic.” They launched with one core piece— the Midlayer_01 pullover—and three accessories, including a water bottle, organic cotton bandana, and a scrunchy made from fabric scraps.
Ensuring their offerings were sustainable was also a top priority. Their pieces are made with all recycled materials or natural fibers, including Polartec Power Air, which is a recycled polyester. “Not only is it a recycled poly, but it also has these little pillows [with] microfibers trapped inside for your heat, but it doesn't shed as much on trail, so you're not leaving as many microfibers behind, or when you put it in the wash, it doesn't go into the ocean,” says Levy.
May 6, 2022
Outdoor Life: Do You Really Need a Water Filter for Backpacking and Mountain Hunting?
My only complaint is that eventually, backflushing won’t be enough. These can clog up after some time and no amount of back flushing will fix its low flow. I went through 2 on the AT. However, it will attach to Smart Water Bottles and most bladders!
Built for backcountry reliability and portability, the Sawyer Squeeze filter is our pick for the best portable water purifier.
The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).