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Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold!

OR never ceases to amaze – always something new, something different, and something bizarre! The gear just keeps getting better and lighter.

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by Will Rietveld | 2010-08-04 00:05:00-06


Wow, what a day! We struck gold right away on our first day visits. Never underestimate people’s creativity and innovation! That’s what the industry is all about - constantly developing new and improved products, staying ahead of the competition, and filling in every niche. And the beneficiaries are us! Actually, it’s a fair trade, we get better gear and they get our money.

Okay, no more horsing around. Here is our daily blog on the interesting gear we found today.

Patagonia Develops the Lightest Down Jacket in the World

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 1
How’s that for a claim? Patagonia’s new Ultralight Down Shirt for Spring 2011 weighs just 5.5 ounces (162 g) for the men’s model and 5 ounces (142 g) for the women’s model (not shown, but it has more stylistic quilting). It’s insulated with 800 fill power down and has a 10 denier 0.8 oz/yd2 (27 g/m2) ripstop nylon shell with Deluge DWR finish. MSRP will be US$250. The weights are actually a miniscule difference from the Montbell Ex Light Down Jackets, which weigh 5.7 ounces (163 g) for the men’s model and 4.7 ounces (133 g) for the women’s model, and they feature 900 fill power down and 7 denier shell fabric.

“The new Patagonia Ultralight Down Shirt is our next step in the process of evolving the insulation business,” notes Tim Bantle, business unit director for Technical Outerwear, “the Ultralight Down Shirt is not just a new product, it's a new product category.” With a slim fit and minimal silhouette, the Ultralight Down Shirt is engineered for thermal efficiency. Its unique quilted pattern controls any shifting of the 800 fill power European goose down, resulting in optimal loft and warmth. This new quilting technology, with decreased channel sizing, allows for less down to be used in the garment, ultimately lessening the overall garment weight while maintaining warmth.

I have found that jackets with a lot of quilting release small down fragments created from sewing through the down, and the fragments make a mess of a fleece garment worn under or over the down garment. We will see how this one fares…

Featuring Carbon ION poles with AirLock connectors, the Easton Mountain Products Kilo Tent weighs Less Than 1 Kilogram

Weighing less that 1 kilogram (2.2 lb), the two-person Kilo tent packs the most advanced materials and technologies into an ultra-light freestanding tent. “The Kilo incorporates all of the latest and greatest technologies from Easton,” says Marketing Coordinator Rich Packer. “With the Carbon ION poles and AirLock pole connectors, the Kilo is unlike any tent you’ve ever seen before.”

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 2
Features: The new Easton Kilo two-person double-wall tent features Easton’s Carbon ION poles with AirLock connectors (see below). The inner tent is 20 denier nylon no-see-um mesh, the fly is 20-denier silicone/PU coated nylon ripstop 1500 mm, the floor is 30 denier PU-coated nylon ripstop 5000 mm. Floor area is 26 ft2 (2.42 m2) and the vestibule is 6 ft2 (0.56 m2). Trail weight is 2 pounds (910 g), MSRP is US$400.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 3
The new Easton AirLock carbon fiber poles are 56% lighter than aluminum poles with elastic cord inside. AirLock uses precision inserts that utilize a short monofilament tether to keep pole sections in sequence. AirLock’s construction starts with an advanced aluminum/carbon composite insert tube. This precision-built core is machined to a high-tolerance fitment that mates to pressure-molded high strength Delrin receivers. An ultra-strong monofilament cord completes the AirLock modular system that pressure-fits between pole sections. The new system eliminates the elastic cord running through the poleset, and dramatically reduces weight. For example, the entire poleset for the Kilo tent above weighs 5.3 ounces (150 g).

New Granite Gear Nimbus Trace 62 is a Super Comfortable Load Hauler

The 4-pound (1.81-kg) Nimbus Trace for spring 2011 is right at our normal weight limit for an internal frame backpack, but that requires some qualification. We can’t judge a pack by light weight alone. Other factors - such as comfort, load-carrying capacity, adjustability, and useful features, need to be taken into account - and Granite Gear has those attributes in abundance, so the extra weight is justified for many hikers. A Granite gear may weigh a half pound more than similar-sized packs, but the extra weight is pure comfort.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 4
The new Granite Gear Nimbus Trace has their Nimbus suspension, which is very adjustable and very comfortable. Other features include stretch mesh lower side pockets, zippered stretch-woven top side pockets, a full height stretch mesh front pocket with a compression sleeve over it (enables attaching a sleeping pad to the front of the pack), Advection backpanel (shown), Criss-Cross top closure with extension collar, removable floating top lid, lightweight LineLoc compression system, and TAC Ideal zippers (claimed to never wear out). This is a really nice feature set. Total weight is 4 pounds (1.81 kg) with the top pocket and 3 pounds 7 ounces (1.56 g) without, volume is 62 L (3800 in3), and MSRP is US$260. Available spring 2011.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 5
Equally impressive in its simplicity and features is the Blaze AC 60, weighing 2 pounds 14 ounces (1.3 kg). Features include AirCurrent suspension with quick torso adjustment, AC frame with molded air channels, lidless pack body (lid shown is optional, US$40), LineLoc compression system, stretch mesh lower side pockets, and full height stretch mesh front pocket with compression sleeve over it. A women’s version, the Blaze AC Ki will also be available. MSRP is US$200.

The only deficit I see in these packs is hipbelt pockets, but Granite Gear does have accessory pockets available that attach to all of their packs.

Pentax Introduces the 11th Generation Optio W90

It took several years and several compact digital cameras to make me realize that a waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof digital camera is the way to go for backpacking. The new Pentax Optio W90 (available now) offers enhanced waterproof, shockproof, dustproof, and coldproof performance and features an innovative Digital Microscope mode with LED lighting to capture small but intriguing subjects.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 6
Features of the new Pentax Optio W90 include: waterproof to 20 feet (6.1 m), shockproof to 4 feet (1.22 m), coldproof to sub-freezing temperatures, 12.1 megapixel sensor and wide angle 5X optical zoom (28-140 mm equivalent), Digital Microscope mode with LED lens lighting perfectly captures the smallest and closest macro subjects as near as 1 centimeter from the camera, Eye-Fi wireless SD memory card connectivity for built-in Wi-Fi capability to transfer photos and videos from the camera to a computer or an online sharing site such as Picasaweb, Flickr, Facebook and YouTube (Eye-fi cards sold separately), 2.7 inch (7 cm) LCD with 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio that is easy to view in strong light or underwater, captures movies in widescreen 720p HD video at 30 frames per second, HDMI port plays back beautiful high resolution images and video on HDTVs, Advanced Pixel Track Shake Reduction captures blur-free images in any lighting, Fast Face Detection, Smile Capture, Blink Detection, and processing modes specifically designed for portraiture, and new Pet Recognition captures up to 3 pre-programmed pet faces in memory, infrared remote control compatibility with new waterproof Remote Control WP, as well as other PENTAX infrared remotes, autofocus assist lamp helps to quickly and accurately focus, even in challenging lighting. MSRP is US$340.

Cascade Designs Rolls Out a Passel of New Gear

Cascade Designs - an umbrella company that owns Platypus, Therm-a-Rest, MSR, and SealLine - had literally dozens of new or redesigned gear to show us. I could write our entire daily blog on new gear from Cascade Designs!

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 7
The new MSR Fast Stash Shelter is a single wall tent for two people plus gear. It sets up with trekking poles or included aluminum poles. It has a large front porch and adjustable side wings. Ventilation is through mesh panels on the ends (shown). Specifications: minimum weight 2 pounds 14 ounces (1.3 kg), floor area 36.5 ft2 (3.4 m2), inside height 46 inches (117 cm). MSRP is US$300, available January 2011.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 8
The MSR Twin Brothers Shelter is a single wall floorless (floor optional) shelter for four to six people. Sets up with included poles or trekking poles. Features include a large door, top vents, and snow flaps. Specifications: minimum weight 4 pounds 14 ounces (2.2 kg), floor area 96 ft2 (8.9 m2), inside height 68 inches (173 cm). MSRP is US$400, available January 2011.

The snow flaps on this tent suggest a “cool” application for this shelter: use it for snow camping by setting it up over a dug and packed snow pit with kitchen bench and sleeping platforms. That’s something I have been thinking about for some time and hope to try out next winter.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 9
New SealLine Cirrus Sacks will be the lightest in their lineup. Built with fully taped silicone impregnated, urethane coated Cordura nylon. Sizes are 2.5 L (1 oz/29 g, US$13) 5 L (1.2 oz/34 g, US$15), 10 L (1.7 oz/49 g, US$23), 20 L (2.3 oz/64 g, US$23), and 30 L (2.8 oz/80 g, US$28). Available January 2011.

Outdoor Research Bug Net Cap

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 10
The versatile OR Bug Net Cap features a no-see-um netting that keeps bugs and no-see-ums off the face and neck. The netting can be tucked into a pocket at the back of the cap. Wicking headband manages moisture. Features: Supplex nylon fabric UPF 30, TransAction headband, drawcord closure seals netting around neck, Color: khaki. MSRP US$34, available spring 2011.

GoLite Terrono 70 and 90 L Backpacks are Lightweight Freight Haulers

GoLite is adding a new member to their Adventure Series with their new mega Terrono backpacks. These are completely new packs, designed to carry “any load,” and they back that up with “60 pounds (27.2 kg) is not unreasonable.” Well, that is normally outside our scope, by choice. But there are times when we do need a Mack truck, and when we do we want a lightweight one, like 4 pounds (1.81 kg). Did I mention they have adjustable torso length and hipbelt length?

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 11
The new Terrono 70 and 90 backpacks are impressive. Their LiteRail perimeter frame is anatomically contoured to fit the body, and has an additional curved flat aluminum stay. The pack body is 210 denier tier 1 Dyneema and thinner nylon webbing is used to save weight. Features include anatomical hipbelt with two pockets, large zippered front pocket, detachable large floating top pocket, Compaktor system to reduce pack volume for smaller loads, bottom sleeping bag compartment, internal stretch-woven hydration sleeve, and more. This is a high-end backpack that provides a lot of volume with low overall weight. The 90 L pack weighs about 4 pounds 7 ounces (2.01 kg) and the 70 L pack comes in at 4 pounds (1.81 kg). MSRPs are US$275 for the 70 L and US$300 for the 90 L. Women’s versions will also be available in spring 2011.

GoLite Malpais Jacket is Lightweight Gold!

The full name is the Malpais Trinity 3-Layer Liteshell Jacket. It's shell is Trinity three-layer stretch construction nylon with a polyurethane membrane.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 12
The GoLite Malpais Jacket for spring 2011 weighs just 6.7 ounces (190 g) in men’s Medium. Features are fully taped seams, water-resistant zippers, adjustable hood, single adjustable hem, adjustable cuffs, two zippered hand pockets - an essential feature set done well. It will be available in men’s and women’s versions at a MSRP of US$250. Sorry, no pit zips.

Innovative Klymit Inertia X-Frame Inflatable Sleeping Pad is Full-Length and Weighs Just 9.1 Ounces - More Lightweight Gold!

How about a body-mapped inflatable sleeping pad? Those cutouts save around 3 ounces (85 g) and are also functional; your sleeping bag is compressed less over the voids, so it’s warmer. Another nice feature is it takes only four breaths to inflate it (my wife can do it in three breaths, but that doesn’t surprise me…).

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 13
The new Klymet Inertia X-Frame Sleeping Pad has a claimed weight of 9.1 ounces (258 g). So what’s our measured weight? (Drum-roll….) The actual weight is 8.7 ounces (247 g). This is sooo exciting! The dimensions are 72 inches long x 18 inches wide x 1.5 inches thick (183 x 46 x 3.8 cm). The top fabric is 30 denier and bottom fabric is 75 denier ripstop. MSRP is US$100 and it will be available on Klymit’s website in November 2010. More sizes are planned. We got a sample and will be testing it out for the rest of the summer.

Sea To Summit Sleeping Bags??

When we arrived at the Sea To Summit booth, we were in for a surprise. These folks have a reputation for constantly developing new lightweight, “can’t do without” gadgets and widgets. But we couldn't believe our eyeballs when we saw sleeping bags! Yes, a new sleeping bag line, and they did their homework too.

There will be four lines of bags: Alpine (warmest), Traverse (full featured), Micro (the lightest), and Trek (budget). These bags are still in development, so details are missing. I would like to provide a full report on the Micro line (the lightest ones), but information is simply not available at this time. However, they did have the Traverse bag on display, and I will report on that one to illustrate.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 14
The new Sea To Summit Traverse Sleeping Bag for spring 2011 is EN rated at 19 F (-7 C, lower limit) and weighs 2 pounds 6 ounces (1.08 kg). That’s a bit heavy, but read on to get the details. As I said, STS did their homework; the features include: 14 ounces (397 g) of 850+ European goose down fill, 20 denier shell with nano DWR, ¾-length zipper with lightweight stiffener on both sides (very similar to Western Mountaineering), offset baffles that are precise-filled with down, insulated neck and zipper baffles, dual drawcord hood, and footbox vent/expander. The MSRP has not been set yet.

A unique feature of the Traverse bag is its hydrophobic polyester fiber layer just under the bag’s shell, which acts to trap migrating body moisture, keeping it from dampening the down and keeping it near the bag’s shell where it can be expelled. In cold temperatures, moisture normally migrates toward the outer shell and hits the dewpoint within the bag’s insulation, so it accumulates. This technology is designed to overcome that process. Sounds good in theory, but we need to test it to see if it works.

SteriPEN Adventurer Opti Adds Features and Cuts the Weight Down to 3.5 Ounces

I realized that I’m getting tired of using Aqua-Mira for water treatment - count the drops, wait five minutes for it to activate, add to water container, wait twenty minutes before I can drink it. I should have tried a UV filter by now, but I haven’t. I guess it’s because I usually use a lightweight water bottle or flask with a narrow mouth, which makes it hard to use a UV device for water treatment. But UV water treatment makes so much sense - simply wave the wand in the water while agitating it for ninety seconds and you’re done, and you can drink it right away.

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! - 15
Featuring an optical water sensing system, the new Adventurer Opti uses germicidal UV light to destroy viruses, bacteria, and protozoa in drinking water. The Opti combines a sleek, portable water purifier with a handy LED flashlight (the optical sensor doubles as a flashlight). Pocket-sized and weighing only 3.6 oz (103g), the SteriPEN Adventurer Opti is not only light, it's fast, easy, and effective. One CR123 battery has enough power to treat fifty liters of water. Note that UV treatment does not work when there are ice crystals in the water. MSRP is US$100. Available now.


"Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold!," by Will Rietveld. (ISSN 1537-0364)., 2010-08-04 00:05:00-06.


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Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold!
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Addie Bedford
(addiebedford) - MLife

Locale: Montana
Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 12:56:07 MDT Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold!

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Klymit pad. on 08/04/2010 13:34:47 MDT Print View

The Klymit air pad looks interesting. It would make a nice frame for lying a thin CCF pad on top. Not much use to quilt users otherwise.

Jonathan Ryan
(Jkrew81) - F - M

Locale: White Mtns
Re: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 13:45:48 MDT Print View

Golites concept for a lightish pack that can carry heavy loads is actually a pretty good idea. But why do they need to make such a complicated pack to fit on that suspension system. Would be cool if they had 2 Pinnacle options. One for light bulky loads as they do now, and then another option like this for those times you need to carry some real weight.

John McAlpine
(HairlessApe) - M

Locale: PNW
MSR Tent on 08/04/2010 13:52:10 MDT Print View

I'd like to see that MSR tent made out of cuben fiber..... I like the design of it. It should breath well with the sides being mesh.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 14:53:47 MDT Print View

MSR Fast Stash Shelter - looks like a lightened version of the MSR Missing Link. Looks like the condensation management would be much better as well...

Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
Re: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 15:56:56 MDT Print View

Will- "my wife can do it in three breaths, but that doesn’t surprise me…"

that made me laugh for 5 mins.

You guys are LUCKY!! Keep em comin!

Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 17:06:55 MDT Print View

Great update- thanks Will. This time of year is my favorite for content on BPL!

Bradley Danyluk
(dasbin) - MLife
Klymit Pad on 08/04/2010 17:57:23 MDT Print View

The Klymit pad looks really cool. I like the idea of letting your sleeping bag loft under you in the open parts. Now, if they down-filled the rest of the pad, it seems like that would actually be a solid cold-weather system on its own!

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Pad on 08/04/2010 18:34:45 MDT Print View

Not sure about that pad. You would still compress the down in the places where the pad touched your bag and given that the pad is not insulated it may prove to be a cold 9 oz.

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Easton Kilo on 08/04/2010 20:46:38 MDT Print View

That Easton Kilo tent has me drooling....sub 2 lbs for a 2 person double wall that doesn't look tiny like the Fly Creek UL2?? Wow! The floor is 57" max width tapering to ~40" and the peak height inside is 44".

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
MSR Fast Stash on 08/04/2010 20:59:36 MDT Print View

The MSR Fast Stash is very close to a design I've been thinking up. Kind of like my Hexamid, except easier to get in and out of. Now if it had external hanging loops, cuben fiber exterior and a bigger mesh inner composed of nanoseeum...

Brad Groves
(4quietwoods) - MLife

Locale: Michigan
Re: Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010: Day 1 – Lightweight Gold! on 08/04/2010 21:14:35 MDT Print View

Good eye, David. The Fast Stash is a huge improvement on the Missing Link. Much more ventilation, including under the front eave. It also looks like they made this a bit deeper/wider, more usable space. I was impressed!

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

18" on 08/04/2010 21:29:36 MDT Print View

18" wide for the Klymit pad?? It's tough enough staying on a NeoAir at 20" wide.

Edited by dandydan on 08/04/2010 21:30:12 MDT.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Golite Malpais on 08/04/2010 22:08:39 MDT Print View

It's made from a 3-layer version of Golite's proprietary Trinity fabric.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: 18" on 08/04/2010 22:26:48 MDT Print View

Who are these skinny, little, side sleeping designers that come up with these dimensions?


Edited by kthompson on 08/04/2010 22:30:46 MDT.

Peter Sustr
(czechxpress) - F - M

Locale: Boulder
Good day on 08/04/2010 22:48:32 MDT Print View

Excellent day of reports Will! I'm interested to see how the STS bags do in the market since they are not know for that. The Golite packs sound interesting, I can envision a no resupply AT hike, maybe...

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Klymit pad. on 08/05/2010 04:45:58 MDT Print View

> The Klymit air pad looks interesting.

We have a very large prize for the first person to use one of these (only) to sleep on snow and survive the night ...


Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
Re : Klymit pad on 08/05/2010 04:51:34 MDT Print View

I should have said 'interesting' for summer use! :)
I'm recovering from hip cartilage surgery, and my usual CCF pad isn't giving me enough cushioning at the moment.
A thin CCF mat (1/8 or 1/4) on top would still only weigh around 10/11oz for a full length mat.

Yes, i'm a side sleeping quilt user. :)

Fred eric
(Fre49) - MLife

Locale: France, vallée de la Loire
Klymat on 08/05/2010 05:27:09 MDT Print View

Even in summer i carry a neoair,i couldnt sleep well when i was using a thermarest ridgerest on top of an artiach light and now with the neoair i sleep like in a bed.

So anything lighter and confortable is interesting for me :)

Stephan Doyle
Re: Re: Klymit pad. on 08/05/2010 07:45:02 MDT Print View

> > The Klymit air pad looks interesting.

>We have a very large prize for the first person to use one of these (only) to >sleep on snow and survive the night ...


Do we get to use a sleeping bag and/or certain… er… natural resources?