Alexander Deedy is the assistant editor and digital content manager for Alaska magazine. He grew up in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley hiking and downhill skiing, still his two favorite mountain activities. He’s chased powder and fresh lines on a few backcountry ski trips, but found that riding a chairlift to the top of a mountain allows for more ski runs and less sweating. He’s backpacked some of Alaska’s most iconic trails, including the Chilkoot Trail and Kesugi Ridge. His willingness to say yes to pretty much any adventure has landed him some pretty cool one-time experiences, including a 170-foot free rappel from the top of a dome in Utah, a 22-mile trail run along the Na Pali Coast on Kauai, and a scuba dive with tiger sharks.

Product descriptions by Alexander Deedy

Vortex Viper 10×42 Binoculars

Vortex Viper 10x42 binoculars

I started using these binoculars during a summer I spent studying elk in the Canadian Rockies while I was a wildlife biology undergraduate student. Instead of the neck strap, I used a shoulder harness and barely took them off for the entire summer. I wore them hiking and horseback riding and was often looking through them for hours. That was a decade ago, and I’ve been using them ever since. They’re lightweight, have beautiful glass, and work well in various light conditions.

Spyder Men’s Leader Ski Jacket

Spyder Men’s Leader Ski Jacket

When it comes to downhill ski jackets, Spyder is my go-to. The Leader is comfortable, flexible enough to allow easy movement, and surprisingly warm. It has fun features like a clip-in cloth for wiping goggles and a pocket just for your lift card. Plus, it’s stylish, so you’ll feel even cooler when you’re carving fast turns on groomers and bouncing down powdered steeps.

PETZL e+LITE Headlamp

Petzel e+Lite headlamp

The e+LITE is branded as an emergency headlamp but I’ve been using it for years as a go-to backpacking light. It’s super light and doesn’t take up much space. At 30 lumens, it’s not the brightest on the market, but it’s always been enough to serve my purpose on the trail and around camp.

Sony ICD Digital Voice Recorder

Sony ICD digital voice recorder

For the past few years, I’ve used a Sony ICD-UX560 to conduct field interviews, and it’s always held up, even in less-than-ideal conditions. Its size, long battery life, and built-in USB make it convenient to carry, record, and dump audio. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the clean audio it captured while hiking and in crowded settings.

REI Co-op Flash 3-season Sleeping Pad

REI Co-op Flash 3-season Sleeping Pad

This sleeping pad is lightweight, compact, comfortable, and easy to fill and deflate. It has held up through several multi-night backpacking and camping trips.

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Bjorn Dihle is Alaska magazine's gear editor and a lifelong resident of southeast Alaska. You can follow him at instagram.com/bjorndihle or facebook.com/BjornDihleauthor.

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