Trailspace names Tom Mangan as Assistant Editor

Trailspace’s assistant editor, Tom Mangan, on North Carolina’s Stone Mountain.

Trailspace has hired Tom Mangan as assistant editor of the outdoor gear website. Mangan will maintain and expand Trailspace’s online gear catalog database and write and edit outdoor gear guides, comparisons, and reviews for the backcountry gear guide.

Mangan, an avid hiker and backpacker, has more than 20 years of experience in journalism. He formerly was a copy editor, page designer, and hiking columnist at the San Jose Mercury News. Since 2005 he has written and published Two-Heel Drive (, a popular hiking blog covering hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area and now in North Carolina.

Mangan professes no allegiance to gear brands, but confesses a weakness for his Gregory G Pack and vows to replace his five-year-old Columbia zip-off hiking pants just as soon as they wear out. After five years of hiking among the redwoods and coastlines of Northern California, he’s eager to check out the North Carolina Outer Banks and the Great Smokies.

“We’re excited to welcome Tom to Trailspace,” said editor in chief, Alicia MacLeay. “He’s enthusiastic about hiking, gear, and the outdoors and is full of ideas to strengthen and improve Trailspace.”

About Trailspace:
Trailspace is the backcountry gear guide dedicated to helping hikers, backpackers, and climbers gear up and get out. Trailspace publishes independent reviews, news, and information about thousands of outdoor products, helping backcountry users find dependable gear that lets them get out and enjoy human-powered backcountry activities.

Filed under: Trailspace News, People & Organizations


Bev Gilmore
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1 forum posts
October 14, 2009 at 9:31 p.m. (EDT)

Congratulations...Tom! I can hardly wait to read about your perception of the Outer Banks and the Smokie Mountains. You'll surely find hiking on the East Coast just as exciting as California and the West Coast...but there's still no place like home...boy scout camping in the Midwest.

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415 forum posts
October 15, 2009 at 6:27 a.m. (EDT)

Disclosure: That was my mom.

I expect this'll be a great gig -- Dave and Alicia have accomplished remarkable things with only two sets of eyes, arms, feet, kidneys, etc. among them.

As a kid I joined Scouting only for the camp-outs. Never cared about merit badges or rank, just wanted to be out in the woods.

As an adult I became a hopeless Internet junkie. A job that matches both seems ideal.

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33 forum posts
October 15, 2009 at 11:03 p.m. (EDT)


not sure how many trails you've hiked in NC yet, but you've got to check out the black balsam knob ridge past shining rock and on to cold mountain, terrific hike, would love to hear what you think of it, my guess is that it takes you back to hiking out west! In my opinion it is one of the best in NC. If you want any further details, please let me know, my girlfriend, dog and I backpacked this two weekends ago

1,663 reviewer rep
3,956 forum posts
October 16, 2009 at 8:37 p.m. (EDT)

Welcome Tom Mangan,

On behalf of all us hicks, rednecks, & hillbillies in the Southeast, welcome to Gods country.

I'm a bit of a kidder, so don't take me too seriously Tom.

NC is beautiful, and offers some great hiking. Probably different than what you are used to, but the Appalachians hold a diversity of Flora & Fauna that is rivaled by few places. I personally like the many Watersheds, Boreal Forests, and the Highlands / Balds.

Oh....we also get a lot of rain at times, and the fog is something that I have learned to really enjoy, kinda weird but true.

Looking forward to reading your gear reviews and comparisons.

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415 forum posts
October 17, 2009 at 10:24 a.m. (EDT)

Trouthunter: Half of my family comes a remote corner of the Missouri Bootheel, so I'm always right at home among the, shall we say, rustic sorts who live far from big cities.

I set up a thread for North Carolina hiking suggestions.

All contributions welcome.

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130 forum posts
October 21, 2009 at 9:32 p.m. (EDT)


Great move! Wish you all the best.


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