When you’re hiking hundreds of miles in one go, you’ve got to be picky about what you pack. For long-distance hiker Kristin Gates, that includes a beloved beanie that’s been in her family for more than adecade. Along with her essentials, the beanie’s been on some of her greatest treks, including the Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide and Grand Enchantment. In total, they’ve logged more than 10,000 miles together.
There’s a good reason she holds onto well-loved gear, whether it’s her beanie or the thoroughly patched-up puffy that’s proudly shows proof of wear, care and repair. “The longer I keep a piece of gear, the more stories it accumulates. I do notice when other people are wearing Patagonia gear, and when I see that it’s older and beat up, I think, ‘There’s a kindred spirit.’”
Watch “Stories We Wear: The 10,000-Mile Hiking Hat” at https://pat.ag/HikingHat