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Emerging Gear: World’s Coolest Shirt, Sweet Spot Seat Pack, 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.

bikepackers in the mountains(Photo/Ortlieb)
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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.

ORTOVOX 170 Cool Horizontal T-Shirt

ORTOVOX combined three natural fibers into one high-tech T-shirt. The 170 Cool Horizonal T-Shirt ($90) is comprised of merino wool, hemp, and TENCEL — a kind of cellulose made from dissolved wood pulp. The brand claims that the inclusion of TENCEL provides a noticeable cooling effect for the wearer. For aesthetic pizzazz, the 170 Cool T-Shirt has an asymmetrical two-tone design.

woom NOW Children's Bike

Many of society’s most consistent bicycle commuters are kids. The new woom NOW children’s bike ($749-849) is specifically designed for the trip to and from school or soccer practice. In addition to daily urban rides, the NOW is also well-equipped for weekend bikepacking. The integrated rack and slightly smaller front wheel are included to maximize stability when riding with heavy loads. Other noteworthy features include a center-mounted kickstand, hydraulic disc brakes, and an integrated lighting system.

Sage R8 Fishing Rod Series

Sage went all out on its new R8 fly rod series ($1,050). The technical specs of these rods read like a master’s thesis in materials engineering. The shaft itself features new circumferential hoop fibers that Sage claims will help to maintain strength while under tension. The R8 series is designed for precise presentation control, easier line lifts, and plenty of power while setting the hook.


The German bikepacking gear engineers at ORTLIEB have cooked up a new 13L seat pack. Like many of the brand’s other models, the Seat-Pack QR is compatible with full-suspension mountain bikes and road bikes. This bag has a unique tapered shape that should minimize drag and stay out of the way during rides. Plus, it’s backed by a 5-year warranty.

KUIU Wind Jacket

Hunting gear brand KUIU just dropped a new weather-resistant windbreaker. The Training Tech Wind Jacket ($99) is lighter than a hockey puck at 5.7 ounces and it’s fully treated with KUIU’s durable water-repellent (DWR) formula. Dual zippered hand pockets and a face-hugging hood add extra utility.

Suunto 9 Peak Full Titanium Black

Sport watches and formal wear usually don’t mix, but the new Suunto 9 Peak Titanium Black ($1,099) may be an exception. Coated in matte-black carbon, this premium version of Suunto’s flagship watch has a sleek and dressy appearance. Don’t worry though — it’s a training device first and a fashion piece second. Over 80 sport modes preserve this watch’s status as a tool for athletes. The Titanium Black will be available in May 2022.

Canyon USA Spectral:ON CFR

Thanks to brands like Canyon USA, electric mountain bikes are rapidly approaching the total weight and visual appearance of their manual predecessors. Canyon’s new Spectral:ON series ($5,999-10,500) features completely redesigned frames, each with an integrated battery and a proven ridable range. One model, the Spectral:ON CFR ($10,500), comes with a Fox 36 Factory Grip2 fork with 150 mm of travel. The CFR build is rounded out by a dropper post and partially integrated cable routing. It will be available to purchase in the U.S. later this year.

Wild Rye Women's Mountain Bike Gear

wild rye women's mountain biking gear

Check out the latest drop from Wild Rye — the brand synonymous with splashy designs and high-performance mountain bike apparel for women. The spring 2022 collection includes the Freyah MTB Pant, Salida Short Sleeve Jersey, Alyssa Chammy, Galena Gel Gloves, and — our favorite — Lucy Party Shirt. In addition to the technical shred apparel, later this month Wild Rye will also unveil its first ever “active lifestyle collection,” which will feature technical overalls and a work shirt. Hop over and see all the new swag at Wild Rye.

LifeLabs CoolLife Tee

lifelable coollife tee

World’s coolest T-shirt? Seems like an appropriate companion to LifeLabs’ MegaWarm — the world’s warmest jacket, according to the brand. The CoolLife Tee ($49) uses LifeLabs’ “thermally transparent” fabric, which the brand claims allows almost 100% of your body heat (in the form of infrared radiation) to escape. We’ve tried it in a few gym sessions and can confirm its comfort in high activity — though we’ll hold off on calling it the world’s coolest. Still, LifeLabs’ testing showed a cooling effect of 2 degrees. The shirt uses a mix of polyethylene and recycled nylon. It’s also available as a long-sleeve version for $59.

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