Rubbing Elbows

Unpacked: Tentpoles and Trail Runners

Stephanie Piperno, Kogod/MS '17, outdoor program and outreach market coordinator, REI 

Stephanie Piperno, REI stickers, a tent, a coffee thermos, energy chews, a belaying device, climbing rope, car keys, a fleece jacket, a laptop, a smart phone, trail running shoes, bike lube, and a bike helmet
REI stickers

My team oversees events, in-store classes, and field programs like kayaking and rock climbing for REI’s eight Mid-Atlantic locations. We also manage the local philanthropy program, which donates more than $100,000 per year to nonprofits like the Washington Area Bicycle Association.  

Energy chews

I ran my first marathon in Richmond two years ago and rely on energy gummies during long runs and races.  

Patagonia fleece jacket

REI carries hundreds of brands, but Patagonia is one of my favorites. I love their dedication to sustainability and environmental advocacy. 

sportiva trail running shoes

I got into trail running during a yearlong National Park Service fellowship in Rock Creek Park. I got these La Sportiva shoes when I was hiking with friends at Rocky Mountain National Park.  


One of my favorite camping spots, West Virginia’s New River Gorge, is notorious for unexpected rain. The Big Agnes mtnGLO tent is sturdy, roomy, and easy to put up. 

Climbing rope and belaying device

I broke my tibia rock climbing at Reed’s Creek last summer, but it’s still one of my favorite pastimes. I use a GriGri—it’s the safest belay device to use while climbing outside.  

Lenovo laptop

I use Skype on my Lenovo touch screen laptop to connect with the team at REI headquarters in Kent, Washington, and my colleagues in other markets.   

blue bike helmet and bike lube

I ride my Co-Op Cycles ARD 1.2 bike everywhere. It’s the fastest way to get around the city. My commute from Logan Circle to NoMa takes 20 minutes. 

Coffee thermos

I discovered black coffee the summer I worked on an organic garlic farm in Washington state. I still drink two cups a day. 

Car keys

My 2007 Prius allows me to explore amazing spaces around DC. It’s probably on its last legs, but Yellowstone and Glacier National Park are next on my to-do list.  


Adventure Project apps help me find climbing routes and places to camp.