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Tag Archives | Outdoor Retailer

Outdoor Retailer is a semi-annual tradeshow held in Salt Lake City where brands display their current product lines and reveal their latest-and-greatest. Most new products are evolutionary, but there is an occasional ground-breaking one, too.

My coverage of OR is inherently brief. There is only so much to say about a product that I have not worn, slept in, carried, or operated in its intended conditions. I may sound skeptical of its purported benefits (especially for the price) but generally I’ll reserve criticism for an actual review.

The Primus PrimeTech Stove Set is a stable and very efficient system for groups and winter camping.

Preview: Primus PrimeTech Stove || Stable, efficient group & winter system

Two years ago I shared my five go-to backpacking stove systems, including what I use in the winter and when in a group. These systems are proven, but they’re less efficient than integrated kits, and the a la carte components are less convenient to obtain (and perhaps more expensive) than multi-piece sets. Last week at […]

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The S-Lab Ultra (right), the second-generation of the S/Lab Sense Ultra and formerly called the S/Lab Sense Ultra 2; and the all-new Ultra Pro (left), a more commercialized version

Preview: Salomon S/Lab Ultra & Ultra Pro, and S/Lab Sense 7 & Sense Pro 3

For 2018 Salomon has partially reconfigured the line architecture of its trail running shoes, to better leverage a few success stories and to create space for greater product differentiation. It created an entirely new category, Ultra, and then updated the S/Lab and Pro models in its longstanding Sense line. Ultra The new Ultra category is more niche […]

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Especially when cinched, the contoured top color will help to reduce drafts around the neck. But it still does not seal as well as a mummy or hide-away hood.

Preview: Western Mountaineering Nanolite & Astralite || Premium UL quilts

Western Mountaineering is known for not chasing trends and for being supremely loyal to its retailers. So the news that it’s offering a sleeping quilt for spring 2018 says two things to me: Quilts are not a fad, and have perhaps reached critical mass; and, WM retailers became convinced — by either a compelling WM […]

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The pack body is made of 70d nylon; the bottom, out of more durable 210d.

Sneak peak: Ultimate Direction Scram || Anton Krupicka scramble pack

After a Sierra Designs meeting this morning (re updates to the High Route Tent for 2019), I swung through the Ultimate Direction area to ask about the new pack they are designing with the ridiculously fit but chronically injured Anton Krupicka. None of the Exxel Outdoors brands — notably SD, UD, Kelty, and Slumberjack — had […]

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The Microspikes (left) are best for consolidated snow and ice. They are also light, reasonably priced, and easy to put on and take off. The K10 Crampons are more suitable for steeper slopes and less consolidated snow.

Buyer’s Guide: Kathoola Microspikes vs K-10 and KTS Crampons || Differences, intended uses, and limitations

Kahtoola was showing off its new gaiters at the Outdoor Retailer tradeshow, but I was more interested in its time-tested traction devices. These spikes and crampons are crux for: Running on snow- and ice-covered trails and roads; and, Hiking on glacial ice, crust-covered snowpack, or steep-ish lingering snowfields. All the Kahtoola devices are compatible with soft-soled […]

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