Title: Gear Editor
Location: San Francisco
Social Media Links:
- Surfing, Skiing, Wing Foiling, Climbing, Hiking, Camping, Beginner Snowboarding.
- Years in This Expertise: 10+
- Number Of Products & Number Hours Spent Testing: 800+ products, 5,000+ hours
Education & Certifications
- Education: Claremont McKenna College, 2020 (Philosophy)
- Years of Writing: 12
- Certifications: Emergency Medical Responder, AIARE 1
- Club or Association Memberships: Association of Wind + Watersports Industries (AWSI)
- Awards or Recognitions: Honors in Philosophy at CMC, Gould Center Creative Works Fellowship
Everyone remembers that kid in grade school with the cargo pants — Will Sileo was that kid with the eleven-pocket cargo pants. And while his style has certainly improved, Will’s love of gear has only evolved, from a child-like obsession to a deep appreciation and understanding for what elevates a good piece of gear and makes it great.
Growing up in the Bay Area, the outdoors were everywhere, from the beaches of Marin to the surrounding trails, and Sierra Nevada mountains just a few hours away. And while being a trail runner and Search and Rescue Volunteer in high school didn’t leave much time for other activities, attending Claremont McKenna College in Southern California brought with it a discovery of rock climbing, and a renewed interest in surfing and skiing from childhood.
Claremont, the furthest town east in L.A. County, provided the multi-sport athlete a unique opportunity, being an hour away from surfing at Orange County Beaches like Trestles and San Onofre, climbing in Joshua Tree National Park, and consistent skiing at Bear Mountain. Mammoth Mountain was a mere four hours away, and Mount Baldy only a 35-minute drive for sunsets, hiking, campouts, and the occasional powder mission during winter. Will also finished a philosophy degree at Claremont, developed his creative writing chops, and did a short stint as a podcaster.
The fact that Will’s first article for The Inertia three years ago was titled “7 Pieces of Invaluable (and Underrated) Surf Gear,” was likely foreshadowing that he’d soon grow into the role of Gear Editor, but it didn’t start out that way, as he honed his craft in the editorial department, producing content on surf, snow, and the outdoors. Some highlights include covering action sports events such as the Vans Pipe Masters on the North Shore of Oahu, the Kings and Queens of Corbet’s in Jackson Hole, and the US Open of Surfing, as well as interviewing personalities like Kai Lenny, Stephanie Gilmore, and Jeremy Jones.
This is also when Will discovered the emerging sport of wing foiling, at the iconic windsports location of Crissy Field in San Francisco. Foiling quickly became another obsession, with countless hours spent honing his craft on the waters of the SF Bay.
With The Inertia joining AllGear Digital in 2022, an increased focus on gear reviews had Will transition from editorial jack-of-all-trades to Gear Editor where he sits today, working to coordinate, write, and edit reviews of surf, snow, foiling, and other outdoor gear. As a resident of San Francisco, he has the surf of Ocean Beach, the mountains of Tahoe, and the windy San Francisco Bay as his testing grounds for surf, ski, and foiling gear.
- Covering events like the Kings and Queens of Corbet’s in Jackson Hole, WY (2022, 2023), the WSL Finals at Lower Trestles (2021, 2022), the US Open of Surfing (2022), and the Vans Pipe Masters (2022)
- Traveling to Hood River for the 2023 AWSI Expo to test the latest and greatest wing foil gear.
- Constantly testing the latest and greatest wetsuits for surfing at Ocean Beach, San Francisco.
A Word From Will Sileo
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for wanting to learn more about me. In short, I’m a hopelessly enthusiastic lover of the outdoors, a flow-state junkie, and gear-nerd, with a penchant for philosophy and sour beer. When I graduated from Claremont McKenna College in 2020, the global pandemic put a bit of a damper on my post-grad surf trip to Australia. It turned out to be a blessing in disguise, however, as it led me to take a crack at combining my passions for writing and the outdoors into a career, landing an internship, then a contract, then a full-time gig with The Inertia. I’m still following that dream today.