Founder of one of the most revered gear blogs around, Trek Tech managing editor Billy Brown is well known in the industry for his hardcore product testing, fantastic writing and warm personality.
An adventurer and athlete by nature, Billy’s passion for the outdoors, great sense of humor and keen knowledge of gear make it clear why his work appears in Wired, Men’s Journal, Outside Magazine and of course, his baby, the Trek Tech blog.
Billy was kind enough to give us a few minutes of his time and go through the Outside PR ringer of questions to learn a little more about this wild man we know and love.
What is the biggest perk of being a freelance writer/editor?
It’s got to be the travel. In the last few months, I’ve ice climbed on Spencer Glacier, jumped off 30-foot waterfalls in the Grand Canyon, and pack-rafted across the Colorado River. I’m crossing stuff off my bucket list on a regular basis. The gear’s pretty sweet too: we get boxes coming to the house on a regular basis. My garage looks like an REI threw up in it.
Who is your biggest pro crush?
Nancy Prichard Bouchard: she’s written for some of the best publications around, climbs like an animal, and she and her husband John have accumulated some of the best stories I’ve ever heard.
To date, what is your favorite product testing adventure?
Probably the Helly Hansen trip to Alaska a few weeks ago. We did an Alaskan sampler: hiking, sailing, sitting in a river six feet away from wild grizzlies, deep sea fishing, ice climbing, and rafting. We caught six flights in seven days. It was freaking wild.
What is the dirtiest thing you’ve ever done in the woods?
That’d probably be the time I spent researching my piece on the proper use and application of the pee bottle. There was a lot of trial-and-error stuff going on there. Let’s just say my tent mates were not happy campers.
What is your guilty pleasure brand? (Fruit of the Loom undies? BK Knight basketball shoes? Spill it.)
In n’ Out Burger. Pounded a ten-by-ten in college, been a fan ever since.
How did I miss this before?! I met Billy on the Columbia Spring Preview trip in June, and I seriously love this guy— so funny but definitely knows his stuff!