I surprised myself and a bunch of friends by going to the OutDoor Fair in Friedrichshafen this year. Here’s some news from my first day at the fair.
As always, hover with your cursor over the photo to see the description.
The Canadian brand is at the top of their game, making arguably some of the best garments for outdoor enthusiasts. If you’re into alpine stuff, be it fast & light ascents, ice climbing or mountaineering, then the Alpha FL Jacket will be of interest. A 310 g Gore-Tex Pro jacket (Size M) which is cut in a such a way that it only has 7 m of seams (usually a jacket has 14+ m of seams, which means more seam tape, which means more weight) is quite something. One chest pocket, Storm Hood, hip-length cut in a trim fit = cut down to the minimum for fast & light activities where durability is important.
Like-wise for climbing fast & light are the Alpha FL packs. 610 g for the 30 l version, 680 g for the 45 l version - and superb prices: 150€ the small one, 170€ the bigger one. It uses a N400r-AC2 Nylon 6 ripstop fabric, which can be taped making for a waterproof construction - and while it sports a drawcord closure, underneath that is the extendable RollTop closure which works like a waterproof packsack. A very simple and minimalistic pack which also will work great for backpacking in wet environments as well as packrafting.
Lots of companies make Duffles, but Arc’teryx makes them really waterproof - and light: The 100 l version weighs 680 g - half what comparable sizes duffles weigh. It can be worn as a backpack or over the shoulder for easy carrying, and straps can be packed away when they go into a plane, while four grab handles make these easy to strap on a camel for your next desert trek. I want one.
The Endorphine Line is the trailrunning/ jogging Line, and includes the fantastic Sarix Short Sleeve Shirt & Soleus Shorts which I have been wearing on my trail runs and backpacking trips in the last weeks. These have superb cuts and details, and are surely going to be very popular among those who like to go a bit faster and longer on their “hikes”. The 24 Line on the other hand is for those of us who appreciate technical and smart cuts in their everyday garments. Interesting for cyclists will be the A2B Commuter Pant and Jacket which come with cycling specific cuts and details.
The Salewa Capsico can be transformed from a comfy shoe into a sandal in seconds. It’s very meshy and should dry quickly, which could make it a good shoe for packrafting or those who like to have camp shoes. It’s intended purpose is a ápres-climbing shoe, so it will work good for belaying, too.
The Via Ferrata Vario harness is light (under 300 g) and packs very small, so could be of interest to those who have a few via ferrata sections on their hikes in the Alps and like to save weight.
The big news at Petzl are ropes. Made in cooperation with Edelrid. Single ropes and Twin/ Half-Ropes. Competitively priced. This will be very interesting, and weighs et al. will follow when I have them. The handling is great from what I tried at the fair, and they come with various different treatments.
The Meteor Helmet got a new, simple to use closure system and a few new colours.
The Petzl Spirit is back! Lighter with better breaking load values, this surely will be a very popular ‘biner.
Headlamps are now divided into three segments and have experienced a few re-designs. The Tikka RXP makes use of the Nao’s Sensor Technology which automatically adjusts the light output depending on where you watch and so increases battery life.
Evernew’s collapsible bottles are now available in Europe, as will be much of their Ti Pots. The newest UL pots come with red lettering and red handles, so that are the ones you want.
A wonderful find is Pronto Café who make real brew coffee which weighs a fantastic 8 g for everything! The filter includes very tasty Arabica coffee, which is roasted in Italy and then 24 hours later packed in Switzerland. A shelf life of at least 12 months and a really good taste will surely make this very popular amongst coffee lovers. Immediately available from Pronto Café and Outdoor Food Shop.
Mammut Ultimate Alpine Hoody and the Mammut Ultimate Hoody are softshell jackets. They have been re-designed, and the Alpine version is specifically made for climbing as it has harness compatible pockets et al. No info on weights, but looked to be in the medium weight category.
The Rainspeed jacket is a 175 g light waterproof jacket, with a hydrostatic head of 10.000 mm. It’s from the Mammut Performance Line, which is aimed at Trailrunning and similar high-output activities.
The Realization pants is the long version of the Realization Shorts. It’s a pants with an integrated harness, two gear loops and a loop for your chalk bag. They should be very comfortable and if you consider that you safe an extra harness there’s also some good weight savings. Oh, and they feel and look great, too!
Plenty of very cool, thought-through garments coming from OR this & next season. The Helium Hybrid is a very light Pertex jacket with reinforced shoulders, so you can wear it with a backpack on.
Very cool are the Hot Pursuit Wrist Warmers, which are a pair of wrist warmers which transform into mitts when the temperatures drop. 36 g (I think that’s for the pair, will need to check), breathable, reflective details - this could be very popular with runners.
The Hot Pursuit gloves are 50 g (again, I think that’s for the pair, will confirm), and these are for a bit cooler temps. The gloves can operate your smartphone, have a nose wipe, reflective details and transform in seconds into a lobster mitt if it gets too cold. I can see these as very useful for hiking in shoulder season.
The Sparkplug Gaiter is very minimalistic and shouldn’t be very heavy either.
It’s hot, or windy, and you don’t want to get your hoody out? Put on a pair of sun sleeves. These are coming with an insect repellant and UPV 50+ so keep the bugs and the nasty UV rays at bay.
Finally, also OR is coming out with an urban line. A very simple, but beautiful line coming with various garments, backpacks and duffles will have you look like the outdoorsy guy you are in the office!
Sea To Summit
The Australian company makes a lot of interesting gear for ultralight backpackers. There’s going to be
Laufbursche now offers Evernew pots and the great collapsible bottles as well as Trail Designs stoves. Now you can almost get a complete UL setup at the cottage, as there’s also very good CCF pads and other gear besides the huckePACK and huckePÄCKchen. There’s more coming, too - but it’s still secret =)
More coming this and next week. Have a look at Benjamin, Markus, Corinna, Carsten, Sven, Gipfelblick, Trekking Blog and outdoor enthusiast to see their view on the OutDoor 2013. And there’s more photos on Flickr.