I am not quite sure how to sum up today. I was on the floor from 9 – 6 and all I got to eat and drink were energy gels, powerbar samples and various hydration mixes (well, and a couple of beers courtesy of BD! – I know, hard life, eh!). It’s been a long, long day of running around this gigantic warehouse they call the OR Show Floor but I’m so excited to see all the cool new stuff, there really is an endless supply of vendors to meet and goodies to discover – I’ll try to get pics and convey some sense of scale in a later post!
For now, in no particular order, and with perhaps some missing names and details, are some highlights:
Mammut Polartec Alpha jacket – again, why Alpha is cool and something you should be on the lookout for I’ll explain in a future post, but this jacket is light, fits great and should prove to be a kick-ass midlayer. I’ll have names, weights, details, etc. in more detailed posts to come after the show.
Scarpa lace-ups – sort-of kinda a replacement of the defunct Techno. These look pretty slick, and look set to fill the all-day trad / crack climbing hole in Scarpa’s lineup.
DMM tiny ‘biners – 4kN-rated 8-gram mini-biners (check the tin of Altoids for a size reference!). Typical DMM fit and finish, which is to say awesome. They also come in multiple colors! And if you think 4kN isn’t much, consider that it’s what most ascenders are rated to – so while not a full-on climbing biner, these may come in handy in some situations.
I have a feeling that Petzl’s patent on their ‘String’ biner-attachment rubber-thingy has expired as I am now seeing versions of it on draws from DMM, Wild Country, Edlerid, Metolius, etc.
Petzl Meteor gets a redesigned restraint system, more and larger vents and the magnetic buckle as seen on the Sirocco. The Meteor III+ already fits and vents really well, this is just better. Cool.
Petzl Attache and Attache 3D are now merged into the new Attache – lighter, stronger, better, etc. A refined shape offers a better rope surface, with the same typical Petzl construction.
Petzl Djinn – a new ‘budget’ draw from Petzl. Slightly heavier than the Spirit (left) but with a larger, beefier rope-bearing surface. Thinner dogbones save some cash but with the same great Petzl gate action. A bit over $15 (MSRP) when they hit the shelves. Amazing – I don’t know how Petzl does it.
New Petzl ropes – whew, a lot of new Petzl stuff! But, this is cool. New ropes: singles, halfs, twins. The 9.2 Volta looks to be the pick of the litter with new dry treatments and better handling properties.
Montane made a big impression on me. Great-fitting jackets, some cool packs, and all climber friendly. This piece is a hooded 40-gram Primaloft insulated piece that packs into its own pocket and weighs almost nothing. Seriously cool as a winter-mid-layer or a summer belay jacket.
BD is adding their Magnetron locking to the Vaporlock. I love the Magnetron locking system, and have been using the Rocklock and Gridlock for a few months now. Really stoked on having a lightweight Magnetron locker in the mix next season!
Mammut is also adding to their shoe collection, and these low-cut light-hiker / approach shoes really stood out. Great fit, nice flex, Gore-Tex lining and a well-lugged sole. Love the Euro colours as well!
There is so much more cool stuff from Asolo (ice boots), Lowa (rock shoes!), Zamberlan (ice boots), Arcteryx (packs), DMM (more biners!), Granite Gear (packs), Sea to Summit (sleeping bags), Patagonia (packs & shells) and even more I just can’t remember right now. I’ll post detailed, section-by-section reports when I have time, and I hope to get a chance to test out some of this stuff, too!
And, of course, more to come tomorrow. For now, check out Dane’s blog for a different take: http://coldthistle.blogspot.com/