National Geographic names Gear of the Year for 2010

If you’re looking for advice on the best outdoor and travel gear available today, you might as well get it from National Geographic Adventure.To that end, the organization has posted its selection for their annual Gear of the Year awards, pointing a spotlight on a host of new and innovative products that are sure to make your next trip a more enjoyable one.

The list contains 32 great items ranging from gloves to jackets to sleeping bags and just about everything in between. There are suggestions for hot new cameras, a couple of pairs of boots, skis, and even an electric motorcycle that is both fun to ride and environmentally friendly.

While the list of products may be very diverse, they all share a few things in common, namely great design and good use of modern technology. Some of the products that earn the “Gear of the Year” honors include the DeLorme Earthmate, a device that combines a hand held GPS system with a specially designed SPOT Satellite Messenger, that allows you to send text and Twitter messages, not to mention update your Facebook status, while traveling through some of the most remote places on Earth. Gerber earns a nod for their Ultimate Knife, endorsed by Bear Grylls himself, while Patagonia offers up an incredibly warm down-filled sweater that weighs just 10 ounces. How’s that for traveling light?

Travelers looking to upgrade their cameras will want to check out the Canon Powershot S95, which now seems to be the point and shoot camera to beat and the new Nikon D3100 which is getting rave reviews in the budget DSLR arena. And if you’re looking for a new way to carry all of your gear, you might want to check out the Exchange 26 duffel bag courtesy of Briggs & Riley. Nat Geo gives it high marks for being lightweight but still able to carry more than other luggage, while still maintaining a high level of quality and good looks.

As a self confessed gear hound, I can’t help but love these kinds of lists. They not only help me to select the gear I’ll be traveling with in the near future, but they keep me abreast of trends in the industry as well. The problem is, I sometimes get severe gear lust, prompting me to want everything on display.

So, what has National Geographic just added to your wish list?