1.24.2009

Booth 3011: Mammut Scotch Party

Just got the invite, and I'm passing it along to all the freeloaders showgoers at Outdoor Retailer.

Seems like the good folks at Mammut will be throwing a Scotch party at 5 p.m. Saturday in booth 3011. Now, why exactly a Swiss company is throwing a "Scotch" party is a little beyond me to figure out, but truth be told I don't get why the American mastadon (in Latin, the Mammut americanum, honest) is the symbol of this company.

Anyway, here's hoping for a good Highland Park or Macallan and not any of that peet-strained, mud-soaked Laphroaig.

Booth 33196: GoMotion lights up the road like LeBron will light up the Jazz

Hey, this is blogland, so we can go ahead an published unconfirmed rumors. If it turns it out the 411 is not true, we just edit or erase the blog post and move on. No harm, no foul.

Speaking of foul, we can confirm that LeBron James, the best basketball player on the planet (screw Kobe, he put an ostentatious perfectly good ski town through hell a few years back) is in Salt Lake City this weekend as his Cleveland Cavaliers play the Utah Jazz on Saturday at EnergySolutions Arena.

Now, the rumor is this: LeBron apparently told sources close to him that he's jonesing for a GoMotion Trail Runner Lite Vest and he intends to stop by booth #33196 to pick one up, courtesy Jonathan and Bob, GoMotion's co-founders.

If this is real, don't miss out

1.23.2009

Booth 33196: Night running not 'Night Rider'

As adorable as David Hasselhoff might be (check out this family video) it looks like he had his car translate the memo rather than reading it himself.

We said "night running" not Night Rider.

And while Kit can take care of the illumination himself, most runners have to deal with annoying head lamps. Not anymore, they don't.

GoMotion (booth # 33196 ) makes torso mounted lights that are perfect for running or walking. The lights help you both see and be seen.


Booth 12039: Origo Tide/Sail Race watch

Designed with paddlers in mind, the new for 2009 Origo Tide/Sail Race watch puts a wide variety of useful oceanic and atmospheric information right at your fingertips.

This unique timepiece offers One Touch Smart Key technology to access its multitude of features with the push of a button. Functions include; a programmable tide chart; sunrise/sunset; air and water temperature; moon phase; altimeter; eight-hour barometric pressure trend graph; and eight hour advance weather forecasting .

Travel-minded, the Tide/Sail Watch also features Origo’s Smart World Time function. Simply select the time zone of your home and your visit city, and all data calculations will be adjusted accordingly without reprogramming.

Origo Watches (NA Gear)
Booth 12039
www.origowatches.com

Booth 12039: Origo Paso Pedometer

Highly accurate (two feet per mile) and affordable ($40), the Origo Paso Pedometer watch is the perfect workout companion. Incorporating a digital motion sensor and programmable stride length to provide easy access to such useful information as distance traveled, calories burned, and current speed, the Paso Pedometer will now available in two, completely new styles for 2009.

Updated features for 2009 will allow the user to record and compare workouts for up to seven days, set and track daily and weekly goals, and monitor current speed.

An injection molded body and contoured watchband keep the Paso Pedometer light and comfortable while the large LCD display and push button backlight provide superior readability. Water resistant to 30 meters, the Paso is an all conditions, go anywhere workout companion.

Origo Watches
Booth 12039
www.origowatches.com

1.22.2009

Booth 32257: The Fillmore from Ahnu Footwear


Honoring the one of the finest hipster rock venues of all time, Ahnu Footwear is introducing the Fillmore.

Agile, dynamic and totally muy bueno, the Fillmore is the ankle high answer for the concert faithful.

It's also a great excuse to cruise the poster library from the venue. LINK

Booth 27027: Kelty creates some green for NWF

Last July, Kelty launched a year-long partnership with the National Wildlife Federation to help raise money for the Federation's Connecting People with Nature initiative. To date, Kelty has raised over $3000.

Here's how the partnership works: for each Fall 2008 Kelty Junior pack sold between July 1, 2008 and June 30, 2009, Kelty will donate $1 to help support the NWF. In return, the National Wildlife Federation will reward purchasers of a Kelty Junior pack with three free issues of their award-winning children’s nature magazine Ranger Rick.

‘Connecting People with Nature’ is an NWF initiative designed to reverse nature deficit and build a mainstream movement of wildlife advocates through programs that get kids outdoors while providing wildlife-based reading and education activities to parents, schools, and community groups.


Kelty
Booth 27027
www.kelty.com

@ The Red Door: Thursday Night PARTY, 8 pm

Join the Boulder Outdoor Specialty Group (Kelty, Kelty KIDS, Sierra Designs, Slumberjack, Wenger, and Ultimate Direction) and wrap up day one with a cocktail or six at one of Salt Lake City's premier watering holes, The Red Door.

Starting at 8 and continuing up until they throw us out, this party will be a great opportunity to meet the people behind the Boulder Outdoor Specialty Group brands.

Providing booze and music under the watchful eye of Che Guevera, the Red Door is conveniently located a block away from the Salt Palace on W 200 street, within easy stumbling distance of several downtown hotels.


Booth 32257: Ahnu's everyday approach shoe

Two years ago when I first came across Ahnu Footwear, it struck me that they were the first brand I'd ever seen to put "outdoor lifestyle" in their tagline. Surf brands had done it. Basketball brands had done it. But until Ahnu, nobody had wrapped their arms around our world and called it a true lifestyle.

Fast forward to 2009, and Ahnu's rising prominence has only strengthened their commitment to creating footwear for people who embrace the style as well as the technology of the outdoor lifestyle.

Check out the new Belgrove to see what I mean. Climbing-rope round laces, a wraparound rand, leather and suede Alpen-racing stripes give it the approach shoe sensibility, but Ahnu gives it the extreme out-of-the-box comfort that retailers are looking for.

Ahnu Footwear
Booth 32257
www.ahnufootwear.com

Booth 1001: High tech underwear, low tech racing team

Does it seem a tad ironic that telemark skiers, users of the least technologically advanced snowsports equipment this side of a flexible flyer, should embrace some of the most technologically advanced underwear available? I mean, don't people gravitate towards tele BECAUSE it's more challenging?

That said, you can see why I gave a double take when I read the recent press release about high tech base layer manufacturer CW-X sponsoring the U.S. Telemark Ski Association. But after giving it some thought, I must concede that I would absolutely embrace a pair of drawers that would keep me from blowing up half way through an early season day of tele turns.

From the press release:

"The Wacoal Sports Science Corporation, makers of CW-X® Conditioning Wear (www.cw-x.com), has signed an exclusive agreement to become the “Official Baselayer Supplier” of the U.S. Telemark Ski Association. The agreement will put members of the U.S. National Telemark Ski Team in CW-X Tights and Tops from December 2008 through the end of 2009."

CW-X / Wacoal Sport Science Corp
Booth 1001
www.cw-x.com

And the winner is !

Sierra Designsl Phil Mesdag scores a sweet piece of hardwear from Backpacker magazine.

SD's Lightning XT 4 drew praise after being tested in a Wales quasi-gilligan-level-five hurricane ('we truly appreciated this tent during that storm. We had seven people in there.' ...DL)

Booth 12000: I'll take 'Swiss Geography' for $200, Alex

A: A popular holiday destination in the district of Inn that's near the Swiss National Park, or a new technical alpine style ascent pack from Wenger.

Q: What is Zernez.




See if for yourself in booth 12000

Booth 12039: EtaPackLite is WickedEfficientCool

Smaller, lighter, and just as efficient as the Primus EtaPower MultiFuel and EtaPower EasyFuel stoves, the EtaPackLite was designed to provide ample cook capacity for two people while remaining compact enough for multiple days anywhere space and weight savings are essential.

Running on pressurized LP gas and rated at 80% efficiency- meaning 80% of the heat created goes directly to warming dinner and not the environment- the EtaPackLite is among the most fuel-efficient camp stoves on the market.

The EtaPackLite weighs 21 ounces and comes as a complete cook system, including a stove base with burner, wind screen, serving bowl, and a 1.2 liter pot with a lid that doubles as a colander. All components, including a 100-gram fuel cartridge, nest perfectly in the pot. The EtaPackLite will be available for Spring 2009 and retail for $115.

Primus Camping
Booth 12039
www.primuscamping.com

We go together ...


Enjoy these combinations in SLC this week...

Salt & pepper

Salt-n-Pepa

Captain & Coke

Gin & Tonic

Simon & Garfunkel

GoMotion lights and Yukon Charlie's snowshoes

See us in Booth 33196 - we'll hook you up with the innovative sternum mounted lights and a good pair of snowshoes to try outside. The other combos you'll have to procure on your own.

Booth 32257: Ahnu lets a smile be your snowplow























In the same way that yellow galoshes breathe an air of optimism into the rainy season, the new Montclair from Ahnu Footwear takes winter, holds it down, and tickles it until it surrenders.

Think foul weather performance meets style. Think womens and kids versions. Think battle-tested Thinsulate and an off road sole. Think -tested preppy plaid and faux fur.

And thank Ahnu for a high-water weatherproof rand keeps the foot warm and dry even during deep puddle crossings.

Available for women in Black, Smokey Brown or Merlot ($130). Available for kids in Chili Pepper or Black. ($75)

Ahnu Footwear
Booth 32257
www.ahnufootwear.com

Booth 33196: GoMotion debuts Waist Light for runners & xc skiers

GoMotion, makers of torso-mounted lights for active lifestyles, announces its innovative LED light designed for waist packs of all kinds at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market Show.

GoMotion will show both the 1-watt and 3-watt models of its Waist Light Kit – an attachable light designed to make most hydration belts, lumbar packs and a wide variety of waist packs even more useful in the dark. GoMotion lights allow the users to run, hike, walk or ski in the dark hours of the day without restrictions of carrying a flashlight or experiencing the discomfort of wearing a headlamp. The light is great for backcountry skiing, Nordic touring, and snowshoeing as well.

The new Waist Light Kits feature a low-profile Luxeon LED with multiple functions including adjustable beam angle, wide ranging beam width control and three brightness level options.

Two models will be offered: a rechargeable 3-watt that retails for $89.95 and 1-watt option selling for $59.95. The kits are expected to be on the shelves in late summer or early autumn. A red blinking safety light can be attached at the rear to provide extra visibility.

“We’ve had good success with our Sternum Light Kits that attach to backpacks or hydration vests,” said Jonathan Craig, co-founder of GoMotion. “This is an extension of that, taking the light down the torso to attach to products like racing and training belts used by runners or fanny packs used by hikers.”

See it up-close and personal at booth #33196

Booth 12039: Primus LiTech Coffee Press


I don't know about you, but I rarely wake up feeling refreshed while overnighting in the backcountry (or in SLC for that matter). Maybe I should upgrade to a better sleeping bag or a softer sleeping mat. Or maybe I should just leave my flask at home and hit the sack earlier. Either way, I'm always grateful when I wake up to a strong cup of joe brewed fresh in my Primus LiTech Coffee Press. Works great for loose tea too.

Primus Camping
Booth 12039
www.primuscamping.com

1.21.2009

Booth 33196: GoMotion's Top Ten Running Songs of All Time



After seeing Outside's Justin Nyberg weigh in on this important topic ... It's time to go see the boys in the GoMotion booth (#33196) and ask them to name their Top 10 running songs of all time. They're dialed in on the running market with the Street Runner light vest, so maybe they know what goes through a runner's mind.

Some people have already tried to assemble said Top 10 list:
* This one includes Justin Timberlake
* Even worse, is this one with the world's most overrated band: Coldplay (Twice? WTF?)
* How about a little less Robert Plant?
* What are we missing with the Timberlake?


GoMotion is based outta Boston, so we're guessing they're going to answer with some Aerosmith and well, uh, some Boston.

Don't hold that against them. You've seen our #1

Booth 32400: Vibram and Simms take a big, green step

Fly-fishing sort of cruises under the radar at the winter Outdoor Retailer show. At Summer OR, too, come to think of it. It won't this summer. The intrepid staff of OR Underground swears that at the summer show we'll fish what remains of our brains out at Summer OR.

With initiatives like Green Steps in place recognizing business with environmentally responsible brands the fly-fishing eco story could cruise under the radar, too. But the intrepid staff of OR Underground makes another promise not to let that happen.

Which means you should consider this a nudge to head over to the Vibram (booth 32400) where they'll have the newest boot from Simms Fishing on display. Featuring the Simms Streamtread™ traction sole designed with Vibram® Idrogrip™ Technology, the Simms wading boots are expected to deliver all of the performance attributes of traditional felt-soled waders while being significantly more environmentally friendly.

The dirty secret in fly fishing is that felt-soled boots have been implicated in the spread of aquatic nuisance species like Didymo and whirling disease. Simms has announced it will phase out felt in 2009, with only Vibram® boots to be available in 2010. In addition, all Simms footwear incorporates the CleanStream™ design featuring materials easier to clean and resistant to aquatic hitchhikers. CleanStream also minimizes exposed stitching, ridges and pockets.

So, yes, there is a fly-fishing story with an environmental angle to be told at Winter OR. And yes, we're gonna fish our butts off in Utah come July.

Booth 26005: Thursday booth party at Sierra Designs

Before you go home and dig out that old tent, be sure to swing on by the Sierra Designs booth on Thursday at 4 p.m. and toast the launch of Re-Purpose with a Purpose; the industry's first-ever program designed to support a worthy cause while providing your tent with a second life.

"Green Effect" martinis and micro brewed beer will be on hand and the Sierra Designs staff will be happy to discuss details of the program. What better way to wrap up day one?

Sierra Designs
Booth 26005
www.SierraDesigns.com

Booth 32240: Barely legal, the new zealand way.

The downside of making high performance merino wool products? All that time around sheep does funny things to your ad team's brain.

Icebreaker
booth 32240

Booth 27027: Eco groovy the Kelty way

New for 2009, Kelty's Everyday packs and bags are made from 60% recycled polyester fabric, vegetable tanned leather, and custom aluminum hardware adapted from classic Kelty designs. Each pack is minimalist in design, requiring less material to construct. Earth tone exteriors contrast with bright interior colors, creating an eye-catching accent while helping to keep gear easy to find. Each Everyday pack (except the Scramble) comes with a handy, recycled shopper tote.

The Saunter, a messenger-style shoulder bag is a hipsters dream, featuring 1000 cubic inches of storage space, a front organizer panel for small items and internal sleeve sized for files or a laptop. The Saunter’s adjustable shoulder strap ensures a perfect fit. $79.95.



Balancing fashion with function, the Meander is a 400 cubic inch sling bag perfect for day-to-day use. Equally cool in Boulder or Boston, the Meander’s front organizer pocket, zippered main compartment, and back panel pocket easily handle a variety of gear. $69.95.



The largest pack in the Everyday line, Kelty’s Scramble handles larger loads with urban style and retro cool. Boasting 1600 cubic inches of cavernous storage space, the Scramble carries like a backpack and holds enough gear for a lunch break at the gym. $69.95.




Hip, cool, and eco-friendly, the messenger-style Rove offers 500 cubic inches of over-the-shoulder cargo space. Take a day’s worth of gear and keep it organized with front panel pockets and an internal storage sleeve. An adjustable shoulder strap guarantees a perfect fit. $59.95.


Kelty
Booth 27027
www.kelty.com

Booth 12039: Beat the BPA blues

Meet the Primus Stainless Steel Drinking Bottle. Made from stainless steel because of it's non-reactive, food safe properties, these water bottles will not leach chemicals like Bisphenol A or affect the flavor of your favorite beverage. Light weight and durable, the Stainless Steel Drinking Bottles are available in 0.6 L and 1.0 L sizes and come with an easy to grip powder coat finish.


Primus
Booth 12039
www.primuscamping.com

Booth 32257: Ahnu unveils the Croc Killer

Guilty as charged. Not only have I worn Crocs, but I have purchased them as well. And yes ... don't hate me ... I have bought them for my children. (Who didn't love them for their lightweight-icity and their lace free-ness?)

But while times have changed, escalators haven't. Or playground slides, for that matter.

The good news is that Ahnu Footwear rolled out a line of sensational new kids shoes last season that fit light an athletic shoe, but are extremely lightweight ... and YES! ... no laces!

Their newest designs include the Creekside (seen here), but you really should bop over and check out their other stuff.

Ahnu Footwear
Booth 32257
www.ahnufootwear.com

That Green Story you've been looking for

Chances are, you're starting to hear the term "sustainability" more and more on the floor of the Salt Palace Convention Center. You may be hearing it even more than the ubiquitous "green" tag. And that's a good thing.

The generally accepted benchmark for business sustainability is taking "people, places and profit" into consideration. It's the old three-legged cliche, and if one leg gets kicked out ... well, the whole apple cart topples into the perfect storm of herding cats.

In the PPP equation, "profit" is easy to figure out (no money=no business), as is the idea of "places" (evironmentally sensitive materials and manufacturing techniques help protect the world around us). But the "people" part is a bit trickier.

One way to think of it: while being green takes care of the planet, being socially responsible takes care of the people who live there. It's a big task to be sure, but we're big people.

A couple emerging industry standards include social responsibility in the mix, and are worth checking out.

One is SA8000 certification, the gold standard of social responsiblity for manufacturing facilities (used by Ahnu Footwear, Booth Booth 32257, among others). SA8000 is remarkably strict, with stringent requirements regarding human rights.

Another is the the environmentally rigorous Bluesign Standard, used in the textile industry (by Patagonia, Booth 8026, and REI among others).

Our own Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is working on their own Eco-Index right here, right now, and will be meeting on Saturday from 7:30-9 am Outdoor Retailer to discuss what's next. They've even got a BLOG!

1.19.2009

The shoes have it

In the rooftop bar at Snowbird's Cliff Lodge, Ahnu Footwear puts their best foot forward.

1.15.2009

The Green Effect ... it tingles

Toasting the launch of Re-Purpose with a Purpose; the industry's first-ever program designed to support a worthy cause while providing your tent with a second life, Sierra Designs (Booth 26005) is hosting a Green Effect happy hour in their booth from 4 to 6 pm on Thursday, January 22.

Learn more while you drink more. And don't miss out on the "Green Effect" martinis.

Sierra Designs
Booth 26005
Thursday, JAN 22
4-6 PM

1.14.2009

Tag ... you're it
















In another twenty years, it will all seem so quaint. "The way we used to do things outdoors," they will say over a designated fireplace in a designated camping area near the designated entry station. "It was all so simple."

Sad to say, the ease of grabbing a backpack and some skis (or in the summer, some wheels) and heading out on the trail for a few hours or a few days is likely at risk.

In most places for most people, the only barrier to the outdoor experience is finding the time. So simple. So quaint.

But if the current trend continues, you won't be able to so much as look at a trailhead without your Visa card.

In 2009, state legislatures from sea to shining sea are hunting for cash. And they're finding it in the same place every time: license fees from hunting and fishing. It's available, it's annual, and best of all it doesn't include the word "tax." So ... they're taking the cash in "raids," much like the one happening right now in Vermont.

They say they're "looking for new funding mechanisms," but what they're really doing is putting the old way of thinking on a respirator. And after this year's raid is successful, they're going to realize that additional licenses could bring in additional cash and plug the same holes they're trying to fill this year. They're going to look deeper into the outdoor world and spread the debt around ... to campers, to hikers, to bicyclists and wildlife watchers. And soon enough, your kid is going to need a state sponsored tag to ride his Big Wheel to school.

Unless, of course, things really do change.

If our lawmakers and our citizens are truly sincere about their willingness to seek new solutions for our funding challenges, then lets really get under the hood and see what we can do.

Let's look at things like shifting our support for the outdoors away from archaic permit processes and toward a sustainable, whole-population-pays sales tax mechanism. Let's look at unique programs that are already on the books.

And let's save the outdoor experience before it becomes another E-ticket ride.

1.12.2009

The Goatee Saver: Visit us at Outdoor Retailer, Booth 8026

For those who think NASCAR courses are too complicated comes the perfect product to extend our most deeply rooted consumerist urges.

As for the name ... apparently "The Goatee Loser" was already taken.

LINK

1.10.2009

The fascination

There is no conversation like an avalanche conversation. It's life or death, glory or defeat, rescue or tragedy, human error or a blatant ignorance of the basics ... and it easily dominates any conversation in any ski town in any year.

But this year is different.

This is the year that has seen 13 US avalanche fatalities, mainly in the frontcountry. This is the year that batches of ski patrollers are getting buried. This is the year that the New York Times is putting slide coverage on the front page. This is the year that my mom is going to remember that I ski.

Usually, avalanches are a local story, a living history that begins with the first snowfall and continues with each soap opera-like installation of special guest star weather events, heroic consolidation and the literal cliffhanger of actual slide stories. Some years are dry and blissfully boring. Others are simply riveting.

In 2009, the avalanche story is a national one. Where did the big one hit last? Which of your wedding party was involved? And how, oh how, am I going to make the most of out of that Western swing in February?

LINK: One-click avalanche forecasts

1.07.2009

Maybe Power Rangers are huge in North Vancouver?

With the eagerly, eagerly, eagerly awaited unveiling of the ONYX Alpine Touring Binding, G3 Genuine Guide Gear has finally put their best ski forward into the lock-it-down universe of fixed-heel skiing.

I'm sure the thing skis like a Birdseye carpenter on a Wednesday, but what's in the name? Is it ...

* Onyx, the sweetest dirt-skiing town in California (population 476)?

* Onyx, the AT capital of the Power Rangers Universe?

* Onyx, the hot female pro wrestler Kyle McNeely

* Onyx, the Queens-based hip-hop songsters known for their cross-eyed slightly insane member, Sticky Fingaz?

* Onyx, the pre-wacko 2004 tour of Britney Spears?

1.06.2009

I suppose you could stay and help break down the booth instead

Open to all show attendees, the World's Worst PR Event makes its debut appearance on the slopes of Snowbird on the final Sunday of Outdoor Retailer Winter Market. Head on up to the slopes with that handy show badge (50% off lift tickets, I hear), get some turns in, and look for us at the Tram Bar starting at 4pm. My guess is, there are probably rooms to be had.

Just to make things interesting, the hosts (Pale Morning Media, Denny Ink, and Basecamp Communications) will be awarding the First Annual "Media We'd Like To Suck Up To" Trophy at some point during the evening.

Must be present to win. Nominations currently being accepted.