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Emerging Gear: Schwarzenegger x LeBron Supplement, Waterproof Hemp Pack, Sand Kettlebells, and More

Take a peek at emerging products from the sometimes cutting-edge, sometimes quirky world of gear design. Explore the grid or click through for a slideshow.

GoRuck Sand Kettlebells
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Take a peek at emerging products from the sometimes cutting-edge, sometimes quirky world of gear design. Explore the grid or click through for a slideshow.

Paka Alpaca Running Socks

These socks ($43 for a three-pack) are made from baby alpaca fiber. Paka claims that they are the “first-ever high-performance running socks.” Though we can’t exactly confirm this, we can confirm that alpacas are very soft (source: petting zoo). Alpaca fiber has a very low water-retention rate, and the brand says this trait translates to “stink-free” socks. Along with alpaca fiber, these socks also utilize recycled nylon and bamboo.

GORUCK Sand Kettlebell

Sand-filled kettle bells

Why load up your home gym with a bunch of unwieldy iron? GoRuck’s new Sand Kettlebells ($39-59) mean you only have to store some 1000D CORDURA bags in your closet. Leave them filled, or empty them and take ’em on your next trip! The Sand Kettlebells are the latest addition to the brand’s extensive home gym equipment collection. They’re available in 6, 8, 12, 16, 20, and 24 kg, and every size has a padded handle. All GoRuck home gym products come with a lifetime guarantee. The brand promises to replace the product if it falls apart — no receipt necessary.

Osprey Exos and Eja

Updated Osprey Packs

The Osprey Exos (men’s) and Eja (women’s) are long-standing thru-hiker favorites. Now, both packs ($200-240, depending on size) have received top-to-bottom design updates. New features include adjustable torso length, improved back panel mesh, and Bluesign-approved main body fabrics. The previous edition of Exos and Eja packs did not have hipbelt pockets, but after lots of requests from users, they’ve returned on 2022 models.

8000Kicks Hemp Backpack

Waterproof Hemp Backpack

Over 50,000 years ago, hemp was one of the first plants that humans managed to spin into usable fiber. The recent history of hemp is fraught and complex, but one simple fact remains: Hemp fabric is very strong. And 8000Kicks will soon drop the “first-ever waterproof hemp backpack.” In exchange for an $89 Kickstarter pledge, the packs can be reserved now for estimated delivery in October 2022. The pack is coated in a water-repellent “bio wax,” and an additional waterproof membrane lines the interior.

Abus QUIN Chip Mountain Bike Helmets

Abus Quin Chip Mountain Bike Helmet

If you crash your mountain bike while wearing this helmet, an embedded chip will automatically alert your emergency contacts. The QUIN Chip system is a proprietary crash detection and notification technology embedded directly into ABUS’ MoDrop and Moventer helmets. The QUIN is a rechargeable unit made up of various sensors that record and evaluate movement pattern data. The settings are customizable, and the technology clearly has the potential for increased peace of mind.

Guardian Kids' Balance Bike

Guardian Kid's Balance Bike

As cyclists of all ages know far too well, ongoing supply chain issues make it difficult to acquire a bike. To cut down on lead times, these kids’ bikes from Guardian are built in a robotic automation factory in Indiana. The 12″ Balance Bike claims to be the “safest bike on the market.” Instead of traditional front and back brake levers, the Balance Bike has a single right-handed lever that slows the back wheel first to prevent over-the-handlebars crashes.

Daggerfish Camping Grill

Daggerfish Mini Camping Grill

Just because you’re going backpacking doesn’t mean you have to resort to dehydrated meals. Earlier this month, Daggerfish launched a lightweight camping grill on Kickstarter. The mini grill is available in multiple configurations, but the Solo Pack is the smallest and lightest option. With a simple grilling tray and a storage bag included, the Solo Pack is designed for one-person campfire meals.

Chamois Butt'r Ultra Balm

Chamois Butt'r

This anti-chafing balm might literally save your butt. Nothing ruins a nice hike or bike ride faster than a burning behind. Chamois Butt’r’s new Ultra Balm ($30) is made to help keep you comfortable during long days in the saddle. According to the brand, the product is all-natural and a single application lasts all day.

LeBron James Supplements

Ladder Preworkout by LeBron

Ladder was developed after LeBron James committed to “never having his body fail him again.” So far, it seems to be working. Most of us aren’t exactly LeBron, but if this pre-workout ($15-75, depending on bag size) does the trick for one of the world’s premier athletes, maybe it’ll work for us, too. Developed over 4 years in collaboration with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ladder claims this product is “free of banned substances and unsafe levels of contaminants.”

BUFF Pride Month Collection

Buff Pride Month Collection

Just in time to kick off Pride Month, BUFF drops a limited-edition collection of colorful neck tubes ($24 each). In collaboration with Canada-based graphic artist Tim Singleton, these three designs combine themes of “adventure, exploration, and pride” with an element of “the unexpected.” Proceeds from the collection will benefit The Venture Out Project, an organization that leads backpacking and wilderness trips for the queer and transgender community.

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