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Outdoor Retailer Summer Market '07 - Day 2


Submitted by vegastradguy on 2007-08-10 | Last Modified on 2008-01-23

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by John Wilder


Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2007

Other articles in this series (OR Summer 2007): Day 1 Blog Day 3 Blog

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J. Wilder

Welcome back to the Summer Market! The first day of the show was filled with lots of exciting news and stuff, and today is not too shabby either! Oh, and a couple of answers from yesterday that I omitted. First up- Sharp edge testing- I talked with Sterling and basically, the test was bad science to start with and don’t expect to see the test again anytime soon…but its really up to the UIAA. Second, Black Diamond had this to say about C3 price decrease rumors- no comment. They did, however, tell me that the Viper and the Cobra will be out in short order- Sept. 15th. Alright, now that that’s done, lets get on to Friday!

Mental Gear

I started out the day with a more relaxed appointment with the folks at Mental Gear. These are the guys with the wacky helmet covers and they have some new stuff to show off at this show. In addition to a few new shirts to their line, they’ve also added the Head Case- a tubular piece of material that can be manipulated in a variety of ways.

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J. Wilder

DMM/Wild Country

Once I finished up with the guys at Mental Gear, I headed over to start the day in earnest with a visit to DMM to get the answer about these little guys:

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J. Wilder

Sexy, aren’t they? Yes, folks, these are the DMM offsets. Anodized, $16 a piece, and available in sizes 7-11. They also are not glued to the wire like the old HB’s, so you can probably use these as the occasional hangerless bolt placement. They’re due out in April, not August as we thought. Sad, but at least they’re on their way.

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J. Wilder

Here is the new line-up of revolvers from DMM. Three styles of locker- screwgate, locksafe, and quicklock. All of them are expensive- $33.75 for the screwgate, $35.75 for the other two. Yowsers!

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J. Wilder

I bet you’re thinking- why do I have a picture of the forged friend line up here? Well, here’s the answer- it’s the last time you’ll ever see it. Wild Country has stopped production of the line for good. They’re shipping off of what’s in stock and when they’re gone, they’re gone! It’s the end of an era…..

On the bright side, they do have a new carabiner out- the Synergy Light- a hybrid I-beam/HMS construction allows for lighter weight but full performance. 78g and $10 retail.

Petzl

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J. Wilder

That’s right, Petzl is bringing sexy back to climbing…these are the new color prints for the Meteor 3 helmet line. Look for them this spring. There’s also a new small headlamp called the Signal, which is specifically designed to let you be seen. Tiny, runs on the same battery as the E-lite, and has visibility up to 1 km away. $14.95 retail, look for it in the spring.

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J. Wilder

Okay, so Petzl has finally answered the call to redesign the Reverso. A standard since it came out, it has seen a total makeover and frankly, doesn’t look anything like its old self. Introducing the Reverso 3, designed as a more traditional tube device with a release tab (a Petzl spirit will fit into this tab), and a newly oriented hang point. It’s also nice and light at 72g. Look for it this spring:

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J. Wilder
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J. Wilder

Petzl isn’t done either. They’ve also plushed out the old Calidris with frame construction and more comfort all around. They’re touting this as the all-day dream harness. They also have updated the Myo XP with a new way to focus the light resulting in a 200% increase in brightness (translates to a 100m throw) and an additional 10 hours of burn time! Cool!

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J. Wilder

Petzl is also introducing a new pack at this show- check out the Bug Pack, a basic 18L pack. It’s fairly roomy pack designed to ride high on your back and not interfere with your climbing. It also has a fairly neat innovation of the rope compression straps being on the bottom- the theory being when you’re done, you coil the rope and strap it to the bottom of your pack, keeping the weight down low.

Sierra Designs

Sierra Designs is going green in a big way and their new tents are definitely reflecting this philosophy. Where they can, they’re using DAC Featherlite NSL poles (poles that are anodized in an environmentally friendly way), Dye-free canopy material, and PVC-free tape. The Stretch Tiros tent (above) reflects all of these features. It checks in at 8lbs 13oz trail weight and is a 4-season tent.

SD is also introducing the Velox 2, and updated version of the Baku tent. This 4lb 2oz tent features all environmentally friendly construction methods like the Stretch as well as a squat 40” height. It will also be out this spring and will retail for around $300.00

SD is also updating its sleeping bag line. The Echo/Electra series now comes with this fancy stuff called ‘Funk-off,’ a sunlit activated material that repels the funk from the interior lining of the material. Fancy. The big news, though, is the Verde bag, a 20 degree bag that is 90% recycled. It features Primaloft Eco, a Climashield recycled exterior shell, and a Cocona lining. It also features a reasonable price: $149/$169 Long.

Arbor Wear / Buff

I had some time before my next appointment, so I stopped by two of my favorite small manufacturers- Arbor Wear and Buff. Arbor Wear are the folks that make Arborists pants- aka BURLY pants. They’re adding some nylon stuff to their line this year- a Single Front Tech pant and short, a simplified version of their Tech Pant and short- stripped down and $20 cheaper- look for it in the spring at $60.00 for the pants and $50 for the shorts.

Have you heard of Buff? These are the guys who invented the tubular wrap that does it all- beanie, do-rag, bandanna, balaclava, neck warmer, etc, etc. I own two of them and love them to death. They’re made of Coolmax and many of them come with 95% UV protection, a great thing for those of us with not much hair up top. This year, they’re also introducing a headband, which is a modified Buff with a flat seam on the inside. It will retail at $14. Also expect a bunch of new patterns and colors from them in February.

Grivel

I seemed to have more spare time than I thought, so I headed over to Grivel with Grant to see if they could spare some time to talk to us about their new offerings. First is that they are changing all of their technical tools over to the X Monster pick- simplifying the line. This is a change that is now in effect, so don’t expect any other pick styles from Grivel. Also, they have a bunch of new packs- a 35, 45, and 55L called the Alpine. They feature cool things like a packable helmet pouch, pascal sling, and axe carriers on the waist belt. They’re due out in the spring.

Grivel is also releasing the Air Tech Helmet (285g, $109.00) and the Air Tech Pack (455g) this spring.

La Sportiva

La Sportiva continues to innovate with a nice offering of new shoes this spring. First up is the Velcro Miura- improved with the P3 system from the Solution that ensures a permanent downturn on the toe box.

They’re also offering another new shoe, available in lace-up and Velcro, as well as a womens lace-up. The Arco and Nago (lace-up) have a modified Mythos last to accommodate the asymmetrical nature of the shoe as well as a partially lined upper. They’re made in Italy and are being introduced as a reasonably priced shoe. The Arco is $100 and the Nago is $90.

Finally, they’re introducing a affordable shoe with the Scorpion (lace-up) and the Mantis (Velcro)- both retail at $80 and are a perfect beginners shoe.

Osprey

After the release of the Crescent and Luna series, Osprey built on the features of those packs to release the Argon/Xenon series of packs- the monster expedition pack series from Osprey. They start at 70L, go up to 85L, and finish off at a monstrous 110L! They feature the bioform waist belt as well as a removable top and water pouch that can both function as daypacks with straps from the pack. They retail from the mid $300 to $400.

Another new series is the Kestrel series. It comes in 4 sizes, three with a top load (28L, 38L, and 48L) as well as a panel version (32L). They all come with a stowable rain fly as well as lots of other goodies that make them an excellent all around pack. These packs look like they’ll make excellent climbers packs- perfect for the day at the crag or an overnight trip depending on which size you choose.

GoPro

After we finished up at Osprey, Mary and Julie took us over to check out the GoPro booth. At the last show, the GoPro debuted the Hero Wrist camera, a spectacular 3 megapixel video camera capable of filming an hour worth of video on 2 AAA batteries. More impressive was the size of the camera- it fits comfortably on the back of your wrist and weighs a scant 4.5oz. This year, the GoPro team has improved the camera with 40% smoother video and an auto-photo mode among other things. More importantly, though, is the helmet attachment you can purchase the camera with. They also have a “Ride” attachment kit to let you attach the camera to your bike. The new Helmet HERO retails at $170.00 and the Ride kit runs an additional $20.00. Pretty neat- here’s a picture of the owner/founder of GoPro with THREE cameras on his helmet!

Rab

In 1981, a guy in the UK decided to start making his own down jackets. Soon enough, his name became famous for high quality down jackets throughout Britain and elsewhere. Today, Rab is working with another new entry to the market to make some of the coolest new hardshells around. Rab’s new line-up includes shells made with eVent fabric, a truly waterproof breathable material- which tests show to be superior to Gore. To that end, Rab has four jackets out that highlight the eVent fabric- the Latok and Drillium, a pair of 3 layer hardshells that retail at $275 and are available now. In the spring, they’ll release the Pioneer (m)/Jet (w), and the Pinnacle, which are two layer hardshells that will retail at $250. Since they are a British company, they’re a bit tough to find stateside, but Mary gave me the lowdown on how to find them. Check out their site at www.rab.uk.com and if you like what you see, you can buy their stuff at www.prolitegear.com.

Acopa

I must admit, I’m a little enamored with Acopa- I can’t help it, they’re based in Las Vegas, so I get to talk with them more than most gear companies, and I also can cruise down to their warehouse to ogle the shoes! So of course I was jazzed to sit down with John Bachar, Lisa, Tim, and Dario to talk up the new offerings from Acopa. As with the last show, they are offering two new shoes for the spring line-up- one climbing shoe and one approach/climbing shoe.

Introducing the Merlin- inspired by the Sidewinder and the Spectre, this slick new sport shoe takes the best of both worlds and combines them into an all around shoe. The Merlin has a slick blue and white upper with laces while the sole is a toned down version of the Sidewinder, allowing it to also excel in smearing and on other features where a radical sole design may not do as well. John’s really excited about the shoe, and it looks pretty slick- and, most importantly, comfortable. It retails at $125 when it hits stores.<./p>

Acopa’s Lowrider street shoe was really popular, but it also had practically no cushion in whatsoever. A lot of folks used it as an all day climbing shoe and many wore it around all day, but some of us are a bit more sensitive and need at least a little cushion underneath our feet. So John took the last of the lowrider and added some EVA foam to the bottom and the Scrambler was born. Designed for longer approaches, but it still has the Acopa climbing rubber on a flat sole on the shoe, which means you can still use it as an every day climbing shoe. Expect it in the spring as well for $89.

Mountain Hardwear

I was running a bit late, but I still managed to make my last appointment of the day with Erin at Mountain Hardwear. As usual, the Mountain Hardwear booth is full of fun stuff, and while there’s nothing radically new, there’s lots of innovation and lots of evolution of products. Clothing, as always, continues to be a core part of Mountain Hardwear’s business and a bunch of new pants, shirts, and tanks for both women and men are due out this spring. The trend this year is to start defining clothing with specific purpose, so pants like the Talus and Coolidge (pictured) along with the Belay T (pictured) and Maramir and Petra shirts for women are geared specifically for climbers.

Tents are also seeing some real improvement and innovation. Along with guaranteed watertight construction, Mountain Hardwear is using the new technology to push the envelope for what is light in tents. With the Helion 2, the ultralight poles with variable thickness and new 25d nylon fly fabric, they have broken the 4lb barrier and offer this tent at 3lbs 5oz!

Also available is the Stiletto 1, a non-freestanding single person tent that uses the same technology that the Helion uses to achieve a weight of 2lbs 8oz!

Mountain Hardwear has also used what its learned from making the Exodus series packs to develop a whole new line of packs with less technology, but more purpose. The Objective line of packs features four packs- the South Col, the Direttissima, the Dihedral, and the Splitter. The South Col is the big boy at 70L and features removeable compression straps, hip belt, lid, and waist belt. It weighs 3lbs 14oz, and when stripped, 2lbs 4oz.

It also has two little brothers- the Direttissima and the Dihedral at 50L and 40L. Also in the line is the Splitter pack, a 35L clamshell design that comes complete with a rope tarp as well as an internal compression panel to prevent the rope (or whatever) from shifting within the pack.

Mountain Hardwear also has some other interesting things like their all mountain (affordable) tent series that will see the addition of the Sojurn 2 and the Halcyon 1 this spring. It will also improve the outer skin on its Phantom sleeping bags to improve breathability. Finally, look for a new urban pack line called ‘Urban Reality’, which features MH’s Hard Wear tarp material for a beefy, yet useful pack.

Well, that’s it for Friday, it was a fun day all around and lots of stuff happened. Tomorrow is the last day of the show for us- I’m meeting with Evolv, GoLite, Cloudveil, and others. See you tomorrow!

Other articles in this series (OR Summer 2007): Day 1 Blog Day 3 Blog

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13 Comments CommentAdd a Comment

 vegastradguy
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 2007-08-11
by the way, you can find a bigger photo of the Master cams here:
http://www.rockclimbing.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?post=1654540;#1654540
sorry i didnt link it into the article or comment, but time was against me this morning!!!
 wings
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 2007-08-11
Will Petzl change the reversino as well?
 darkside
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 2007-08-11
Wings - good question and something we overlooked asking yesterday. The word is that Petzl will be phasing out the Reversino after the Reverso 3 is introduced. Basically the design of the Reverso 3 grooves will hold the same size range of ropes as both the old Reverso and the Reversino, thereby makeing it one tool for both applications and a new Reversino obsolete.
 dynamo_
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 2007-08-11
Thanks for the information on the Offset nuts...expensive, late...but I'll pick up a set ASAP.

 Valarc
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 2007-08-11
The reverso 3 looks like an interesting device. I hope it addresses one of the shortcomings of the ATC Guide, which is that it's incredibly crappy on old, fat ropes. Being a petzl product will also pretty much guarantee it's in every REI in the country, which will be nice.
 vegastradguy
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 2007-08-11
well, the reverso 3 is billed to work on up to 11mm ropes and the tapered friction slots get more aggressive the smaller the rope, so the 11mm should work fairly well, although the atc-guide works fine on anything up to 10.5mm as far as i've experienced....which is as fat as most ropes get these days.
 EricVT
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 2007-08-12
Velcro Miura -- NICE!!
 cedk
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 2007-08-12
How is Bachar doing since his accident? Well I hope.
 Nokat309
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 2007-08-12
No more Forged Friends!? Sigh. The big ones are my favorite: light, cheap, strong, durable, stable, easy to place... I guess I'm an "olds cool" artifact as well.
 ddt
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 2007-08-12
John (Bachar) is doing fine... saw him at the Acopa booth. We had a long conversation with Lisa Karafa, who has taken over Acopa from her late brother, and from a business perspective things are going very well for the company. This was really nice to hear, given the two tragic losses they had to deal with in the past year.
 winglessangel
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 2007-08-16
The colors of the DMM offsets are equivalent to the colors of their wallnuts 4-8.
I believe they must cover the same range those wallnuts do.

But the labels you say are going to be 7-11. Is that to keep co-relation with the old HB labels?

and how about a larger no-blurry pic of these babies? are there any? :-D hun? hun? eheheh
 vegastradguy
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 2007-08-16
the nuts are the same exact nut as the HB offset, so the sizes i listed are the old HB sizes. truthfully, i dont know that they'll keep those sizes listed or not. probably, as that will make them in-line with the old HBs.

as for a non blurry picture- sorry, thats the best of the lot, the grate that they're hanging on really messed with my flash and, unfortunately, i am nothing if not photo incompetent.
 winglessangel
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 2007-08-17
hehehe, thanks!

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