The MSR Away Team Shares Their Favorite Outdoor & Hiking Essentials

We couldn’t be more excited to introduce the all-new MSR Away Team—a passionate crew of adventurers from around the world who will share their trips, expertise and insights with the MSR community. Chosen from nearly 1,000 applicants, these 10 amazing outdoorspeople will bring the stoke all summer long.

Read on to meet the whole crew and learn about the favorite outdoor gear and hiking essentials they take on every adventure. Make sure to follow them on Instagram to see all their explorations.

Corey McMullen

Corey McMullen @coreyoutdoors

Home base: New Hampshire, United States

Corey is a photographer and an avid backpacker and trail runner who has stayed close to home in the White Mountains of the Northeast United States since the COVID pandemic hit. This summer he plans to camp and backpack around Maine and the Adirondacks mountains in New York.

Corey’s favorite hiking essentials: “There are a great number of essentials that I carry with me outdoors. I’ll usually always carry a pair of trekking poles [and] the Therm-a-Rest Z-Seat.”

Deanna Molenda

Deanna Molenda @deannamolenda

Home base: Washington, United States

You’ll usually find Deanna on rock, ice or snow. Otherwise, she’s volunteering as an instructor for a mountaineering recovery program. Her summer plans consist of climbing conditioning trips throughout the US to prepare for an expedition to Argentina in January.

Deanna’s favorite outdoor essentials: “For high altitude summits: The North Face Ventrix Hoodie and La Sportiva G2 SM mountaineering boots. For hard sport climbing: Petzl Sitta harness, Petzl Sirocco helmet; For volcano summits and expeditions: Jansport 75L Tahoma Guide backpack.”

Eilir Davis Hughes 

Eilir Davies-Hughes @eilir30

Home base: Wales, UK

Nature photographer Eilir spends his time surfing, mountaineering and chasing mountains. His summer calendar includes travel to Scotland, the French Coast and the French Alps if regulations permit.

Eilir’s favorite outdoor essentials: “A solid head torch (I use the Petzl Reactik Pro+ and it has never failed me), a stove you can rely on no matter the weather (MSR Windburner), and a jacket that will keep you dry even in the worst conditions (my go-to is the Arc’teryx Alpha SV).”

Jill Wheatley

Jill Wheatley @mntsofmymind

Home base: Nepal

After a traumatic brain injury left her with only 30% of her vision, Jill embarked on a new direction in life, much of it vertical. She plans to spend the summer mountaineering throughout the Himalayas to train for a summit push of Manaslu, the world’s 8th largest peak.

Jill’s favorite outdoor essentials: “Whether running, skiing, climbing or mountaineering, as a visually impaired mountain adventure athlete, I never leave without two pairs of sunglasses and a headlamp. Protecting the eyesight I still have and ensuring there is enough light on the trail should the day go long or weather change the visibility is critical.”

John Loftus

John Loftus @uk_wildcamp

Home base: England

Inspired by the mountains of the UK, John plans to apply his landscape photographer skillset to Snowdonia National Park this summer. If travel is allowed, Norway is also at the top of his list to capture the peaks of Senja and Lofoten.

John’s favorite hiking essentials: “Once you’ve reached your destination and stopped moving, things can get pretty cold rather quickly and the ability to stay warm whilst at camp is down to a well-insulated sleep system. I use a Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm sleeping pad, a Carinthia sleeping bag in the winter and a Therm-a-Rest Corus quilt in the summer.”

Kamran Ali

Kamran Ali @kamranonbike

Home base: Pakistan

Six years, 50,000 kilometers and 43 countries on a bicycle—it’s safe to safe Kamran has seen some things, and has captured most of them with his camera. This summer he’s planning a number of bikepacking trips through northern Pakistan and a trek to the K2 base camp.

Kamran’s favorite outdoor essentials: “My Petzl headlamp, Swiss Army knife, Nalgene 1L bottle, and GoreTex® rain jacket and trousers.”

Maiza Lima

Maiza Lima @maizalimarock

Home base: Montana, United States

Born in a small village in the state of Pará in northern Brazil, professional climber Maiza didn’t even learn to rock climb until she was 27. This summer she’s planning on working on climbing projects and developing new routes around Montana, and spending a month in Kentucky building a cabin.

Maiza’s favorite outdoor essentials: “Oh, for sure my MSR Reactor stove! A fast water boiling system allows me to have oatmeal and coffee and get going.”

Mario Rigby

Mario Rigby @mariorigby

Home base: Ontario, Canada

A self-described ‘eco-explorer’ who walked the length of Africa in two years, Mario has focused on extreme human-powered expeditions and advocating for sustainable travel. In April he will take part in the six-day Caicos Challenge, traversing the length of his native Turks & Caicos Islands by human-powered propulsion including swimming, hiking, paddling and cycling.

Mario’s favorite hiking essentials: “Arc’Teryx apparel, since they support most of my projects and I love their products. It’s lightweight, sweat-wicking and tough material.”

Rebecca Ross

Rebecca Ross @bexie_r

Home base: Washington, United States

Rebecca is a climbing logistics manager for the American Alpine Institute and spends most of her time climbing mountains, hiking, writing adventure articles and gear reviews, photographing landscapes, and immersing herself in everything the Pacific Northwest has to offer. The summer will see her camping and kayaking throughout the San Juan Islands, trail running, and backpacking and climbing around the Mt. Baker area, and possible trips to Alaska and Canada, safe travel permitting.

Rebecca’s favorite outdoor essentials: “I have my eye on the Hyperlite Mountain Gear 2400 Junction backpack! I’m a fan of going as light as possible and these bags do just that.”

Rini Sugianto

Rini Sugianto @rinisugianto

Home base: California, United States

Rini is a speed-focused trail runner, climber and skier who takes full advantage of her vast California playground. Her summer plans are packed to the brim, and include attempts to fastpack the 220-mile John Muir Trail, the 170-mile Tahoe Rim Trail, and gain the Fastest Known Time (FKT) of the 74-mile Joshua Tree Double Traverse.

Rini’s favorite outdoor essentials:Therm-a-Rest XTherm Max sleeping pad, Coros watch with routes/tracks loaded, Garmin InReach Mini, Sols emergency bag, Petzl Actik Core headlamp, and an MSR Windburner stove.”


We can’t wait to live vicariously through all our awesome Away Teamers’ adventures this summer, and we hope you follow along too!

*All trips are being planned to strictly follow COVID guidelines for safe travel to protect the team members, any adventure buddies and the people and destinations they will visit.