Pop Sci ‘Best of What’s New’ Awards

Any project involving inflatable crash pads for snow sports and tiny robotized hummingbirds is game for the Gear Junkie! Thus for the third year in a row Gear Junkie founder Stephen Regenold has aided the editors of Popular Science magazine in their quest to find the “Best of What’s New.” That’s the name of the annual article, now in its 24th year, which culls the universe of inventions to adorn 100 innovations with the BOWN crown.

This year, Gear Junkie and other experts on outdoors/recreation products (i.e., grown-up toys) consulted with the magazine to pick the best products for the Recreation category. A 3D helmet camera, a lithium-powered motorized surfboard, and carabiners that use magnets to snap shut were among the final picks in the category, which the Pop Sci editors note as revealing products that are “physical dispatches from the future.” Here’s the full list.

Popular Science’s ‘Best of What’s New’ 2011
1. Lifesaving Wetsuit: Billabong V1

2. Snowboard Crash-Pad: Katal Landing Pad

3. Magnet Carabiner: Black Diamond Magnetron


Paddle no more: Lithium-battery pack included!

4. Electronic-Powered Surfboard: WaveJet Personal Propulsion Pod

5. Three-Dimensional Helmet Cam: GoPro 3D Hero System

6. Neo-GPS: DeLorme inReach Device


Four eyes! GoPro captures 3D

7. Wearable Airbag: Alpinestars Tech Air Race Suit

8. Charge-Up Soccer Ball: Uncharted Play sOccket Ball

—Popular Science’s full “Best of What’s New” issue is online here and in print on newsstands now.


Soft touchdowns for skiers and ‘boarders on the inflatable Katal Landing Pad

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Stephen Regenold is Founder and Editor-In-Chief of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for nearly two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of four small kids, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.