Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008)

The only true limitation with the Gatherer is your imagination.

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by Will Rietveld | 2008-01-28 18:22:00-07

Overview

The Merrell Gatherer Jacket is a 100% nylon envelope with numerous stylish orange zippers. It has a DWR finish for weather resistance.

The Gatherer will become whatever you want it to be.

 Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) - 1
The Merrell Gatherer Jacket is a concept piece made of 100% nylon with DWR. Note the stylish orange zippers. Jacket as shown is stuffed with leaves.

A SUL pack jacket perhaps? Simply stuff the jacket with all your backpacking gear and wear it. Be careful where you put your cook pot.

An insulated jacket perhaps? Just stuff the jacket with newspaper, leaves, grass, shredded paper, or packaging peanuts. Maybe leaves or grass would be best because you can leave them in the woods.

You could even stuff it with muli-colored blinking lights during the holidays.

Here’s Merrell’s description of the Gatherer: “The inspiration for developing this jacket is to allow the wearer to adjust their own temperature to surrounding conditions using adaptive insulation pockets throughout the body and sleeves. Developed as a “do it yourself” piece, the jacket represents creativity and technology merging together. Reduce, reuse and recycle with insulating materials like newspaper, leaves, recycled shredded paper or stuffing from old pillows to fill the jacket and collar - the only true limitation with the Gatherer is your imagination. The Gatherer allows for the wearer to be original and creative while encouraging the use of sustainable materials in outdoor exploration.”

The Gatherer will be available in limited quantities for fall 2008; the MSRP will be $99, and men’s and women’s models will be available. No weight is available, but I'd estimate it in the 10 ounce range.

What creative uses can you think of for the Gatherer Jacket?


Citation

"Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008)," by Will Rietveld. BackpackingLight.com (ISSN 1537-0364).
http://backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/merrell_gatherer_jacket_orwm08.html, 2008-01-28 18:22:00-07.

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Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008)
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Will Rietveld
(WilliWabbit) - MLife

Locale: Southwest Colorado
Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/28/2008 18:28:09 MST Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008)

Edited by sharalds on 01/29/2008 12:23:24 MST.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/28/2008 20:19:28 MST Print View

Hmmm, but what does it WEIGH??

Are those pockets sewn through or baffled?

The idea is pretty cool.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/28/2008 20:40:15 MST Print View

Allison,
My same questions as well.

It seems that most of the (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) items they are showing us here do not have 1/4th of the info I would like to see on it.

Come on BLP...

Edited by awsorensen on 01/28/2008 20:41:43 MST.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Blinky Lights on 01/29/2008 06:45:20 MST Print View

Wouldn't that be awesome...

Anyhow, this is an odd jacket. Potentially a very cool concept. Backup / extra insulation on the really light (presuming there's still brush / leaves available), great for fall/spring .

In fact one of the other sites I've seen had this as a concept piece only. It's nice to hear they're making some.

Or, if one could only source some airfoam... or whatever that superlight insulating stuff was...

Edited by jdmitch on 01/29/2008 06:46:10 MST.

Michael Martin
(MikeMartin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: North Idaho
Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/29/2008 08:27:48 MST Print View

Hi Guys-

No, we didn't forget the weight. (We even carry our own scales when roaming the show floor.) In the case of the Merrell Gatherer, the vendor didn't have a weight spec available, and didn't want us to break down their mannequin display to weigh the jacket ourselves. Such is the nature of Outdoor Retailer: on new products especially, the vendors sometimes aren't willing to give us all the details we'd like.

Thanks, though. I did change the article to add a comment that the weight was unavailable, and add a 10 ounce guesstimate.

Cheers,

-Mike

Edited by MikeMartin on 01/29/2008 08:31:59 MST.

Casey Cardwell
(Niles) - MLife

Locale: On the Dirt in Oregon
Stuffing the stuff on 01/30/2008 11:05:35 MST Print View

How do you stuff the jacket? The baffles look sewn through and the zippers don't look like they open up to all the compartments.

I gotta say, this jacket really excites me though. I'd love to try one out.

Edited by Niles on 01/30/2008 11:06:22 MST.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: Stuffing the stuff on 01/30/2008 11:50:06 MST Print View

Actually, if you look closely, side zips allow you to access both of the bottom torso baffles which encircle the body.

Back zip, allows access to the top two baffles. Other than the top chest areas (in front of the collar bones), those are by those two little zips in the front chest.

The arms are via underarm zips that you can barely see...

The trailspace blog has a better pics of some of the zips... Outdoor Retailer: Merrell Gatherer Jacket

Jon Rhoderick
(hotrhoddudeguy) - F - M

Locale: New England
Re: Stuffing the stuff on 01/30/2008 12:14:36 MST Print View

Be great for when its raining and you dont want to get a book your carrying wet or bent from a regular pocket that books never quite seem to fit in. If someone made one out of a lighter fabric, you could get it to be about double a regular windshell and have it be double duty as a windshell and insulation. Also one of those back panels looks like its dying to have a pillow in it, mmm.

Edited by hotrhoddudeguy on 01/30/2008 12:15:37 MST.

Walter Underwood
(wunder) - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Stay cool or warm on 01/30/2008 13:20:56 MST Print View

You could slip a hydration bladder in the back and stay cool (cold water) or warm (warm water) in different seasons.

Load it up with bubble wrap from your gear purchases and amuse yourself by popping it later.

Stuff it full of energy bar wrappers and used freezer bags if you want to attract bears and raccoons.

Keep plenty of toilet paper handy for those emergency stops.

Collect luminescent lichen and freak out your tent/tarp mate.

Hmm, having trouble coming up with ideas sillier than the jacket itself. The zippers must weigh more than insulation would.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/30/2008 13:46:08 MST Print View

Sorry Will, but ...

USELESS GIMMICK.

No matter what you put inside the compartments, the result will be colder and heavier than a proper jacket - like a Cocoon for instance.

And who had the mad idea of putting a zip down the back over the spine? Stark staring lunacy. Obviously whoever created the design has never carried a pack.

Yuppie market maybe, but I predict the product will die fast.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: Tsk, Tsk, Tsk Roger... on 01/30/2008 14:48:20 MST Print View

Roger C... you're forgetting something. Weight of the jacket post-stuffing is immaterial during shoulder seasons (spring / fall) as you're not going to be actively backpacking once you've stuffed it.

All you need whilst moving is a decent base layer and a windshirt, typically.

During those seasons you're only going to pull your cocoon out at camp.

That argument is like arguing that using sticks for stakes is stupid because they're heavier for the same holding power as Ti stakes. You're not going to be carrying the sticks.

Also, as far as the zipper, most mainstream packs (unlike the relatively unstructured UL packs) are designed not to push directly on the spine.

Would I hike with it in winter? No. But shoulder seasons, where natural filler could be found? Possibly.

Note, I agree with your last comment that it will likely die fast and will only be made in a single limited run.

Edited by jdmitch on 01/30/2008 14:49:33 MST.

Brian UL
(MAYNARD76)

Locale: New England
Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/30/2008 15:32:08 MST Print View

What is the R-value of dry maple and oak leaves?

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Stay cool or warm on 01/30/2008 15:34:15 MST Print View

Hmmmm, we have a new puppy that would fit in one of those pockets quite nicely. Transport AND heat generation.

Flexair pillow could provide decent loft

Ummmm, Kiwi feathers??

You could make a batch of popcorn each night and use as insulation, then eat your way through your insulation the following day.

Expanding foam/space invader could provide a permanent custom fit insulated jacket that would also protect you from knocks and falls. You could also sleep on it instead of using a separate mat. Only problem would be getting the jacket on and off once the foam has hardened, and packing it would be a b**ch

You could fluff up all your Spark-Lite Tinder-Quik Firestarting Tabs and use as insulation. They're pretty light and fluffy.

Likewise cotton balls would work well as both insulation and heat source.

OK, I'm running out of silly ideas too.

Edited by retropump on 01/30/2008 15:35:08 MST.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Stay cool or warm on 01/30/2008 18:13:48 MST Print View

> Ummmm, Kiwi feathers??
Whole Kiwi? Beak and claws included?
(Note for people not from Oz or NZ: 'in joke'.)

Pamela Wyant
(RiverRunner) - F - M
Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/30/2008 19:09:52 MST Print View

Funny piece. One of the problems I see is that when I need insulation the most (cool, wet weather) all the natural insulation is going to be wet. The R-value of wet leaves seems like it would be considerably less than down. And the weight of the zippers likely more than down.

Thumbs down for this one.

Casey Cardwell
(Niles) - MLife

Locale: On the Dirt in Oregon
Re: Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/30/2008 20:45:28 MST Print View

You could still stuff your clothes into it, for cold and wet conditions. Although, if you're really ultralighting, you may not have enough spare clothing to fill the whole jacket. But then you could always pre-stuff some extra insulation before you start out.

I still think it's cool. But then again, I'm a sucker for stuff like this.

Will Rietveld
(WilliWabbit) - MLife

Locale: Southwest Colorado
Stuffing it with popcorn - great idea! on 01/30/2008 21:37:53 MST Print View

Hey, I like that idea! Jordan and Skurka would probably prefer crushed Pringles and Oreos.

On the dark side of the coin, it would make great shoplifting apparel; an opaque version of course.

Pamela Wyant
(RiverRunner) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Merrell Gatherer Jacket (Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2008) on 01/30/2008 21:49:28 MST Print View

"You could still stuff your clothes into it, for cold and wet conditions. Although, if you're really ultralighting, you may not have enough spare clothing to fill the whole jacket. But then you could always pre-stuff some extra insulation before you start out. "

Or you could just wear the clothing and save the weight of the jacket.

doug colacicco
(fangtooth) - F

Locale: ventana wilderness
gatherer on 01/31/2008 01:56:54 MST Print View

for a real high r value put it on and have your buddy fill it up with construction foam

Christopher Chupka
(FatTexan) - M

Locale: NTX
SUL on 01/31/2008 06:26:49 MST Print View

How about an esbit stove, foil pot, mini water bladders and all your clothes, bivy sack, mini tarp, and trail bars. Wear your jacket as a pack, super weight distribution.

Surely someone with a 3 or 4 pound load could get everything in the "tubes".