Home > News

Emerging Gear: Earth Day Special Edition

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.

person wearing Root Republic socks near lake
Support us! GearJunkie may earn a small commission from affiliate links in this article. Learn 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.

Parks Project x OBEY Clothing Earth Day Tees

Obey Mother Earth Park tees

Parks Project and OBEY are collaborating to raise money for Sierra Club and our outdoor spaces. The new OBEY x Parks Project collection tees ($38 each) was designed by street artist Shepard Fairey and include designs like Mother Earth peace prints and a block-style parks and Earth logo. A generous 20% of each tee purchase will go to the Sierra Club to protect parks and wildlife.

Tucktec Eco Folding Kayak

TuckTec folding kayaks on a beach shore

This folding kayak may not be the lightest or most high-tech on the market, but it does have a fantastic price. The hardshell Tucktec Eco folding kayak (now $299) will be made from recycled plastic, measures 10 feet in length, and is ultra-portable. The solid HDPE hard shell makes it sturdy and puncture-resistant, and it takes about 2 minutes to set up. It does weigh 28 pounds, but for the great price of $299, you get a kayak, retractable fin, adjustable paddle, and even a dry sack included. When the Kickstarter campaign ends, the Tucktec will retail for $499.

Osprey Arcane ECO Day Pack

Osprey Arcane day pack in blue

In celebration of Earth Day, Osprey has launched its new Arcane Large Day Pack. The 20L Arcane ($100) is made from 10.5 plastic bottles with Global Recycled Standard (GRS)-certified materials like recycled polyester and recycled DWR. The Arcane Day Pack is made with limited features to cut down on material use, although it still has convenient things like a built-in laptop sleeve, front zipper pouch, and a mesh-covered back panel.

Merrell See America Boot Collection

Merrell Isle Royale national park boot

Inspired by 1930s-era park posters, Merrell’s new boot collection is a tribute to both Earth Day and National Park Week. One of three in the collection, the Isle Royale National Park Boot ($150) features a design from Michigan artist Esther Licata on a waterproof boot with a CORDURA upper, Vibram outsole, and D-ring fasteners for the laces. It’s available for men and women.

LifeProof Recycled Ocean Plastic Phone Cases

LifeProof phone case with tactile wave pattern

The LifeProof WAKE ($40) is the brand’s slimmest case ever, has a beveled rim for extra screen protection, and is made up of 85% post-consumer recycled plastics. The case (which comes in three ocean-themed colors) has a sculpted wave pattern with a drop-proof rating up to 2 m. LifeProof will also donate $1 to nonprofits after each purchase. (Cases available for phones include the iPhone SE through iPhone 11 Max as well as the Galaxy S20 and S20+.)

Eagle Creek x CORDURA ECO Caldera Pack

Eagle Creek Caldera Eco pack

The Caldera pack ($279) is a 45L travel bag made of 100% recycled CORDURA ECO fabric and 100% recycled polyester. Durability comes from 600- to 1,200-denier fabrics. A chemical-free DWR coating resists water, and it even has water-repellent zippers. The Caldera also has an expandable zipper, packable straps, and NFC chip technology, so you can track and find your bag through a smartphone or other GPS.

Smith Lowdown 2 CORE Glasses

Smith Optics Lowdown 2 CORE shades with green tint lenses

After many months, Smith Optics developed a “sustainability task force” to identify steps on how to reduce its environmental impact. The result of that effort is finally here with the Smith CORE Collection. The Lowdown 2 CORE ($129) is made from 100% post-consumer plastic water bottles and delivered in 100% recycled packaging. The shades have bio-based polarized lenses and a matte-black frame. Each pair has eco-friendly details like an embossed logo (to avoid the use of adhesives) and a recycled microfiber bag.

Outdoor Vitals Satu Adventure Pants

model pulling on pant leg, demonstrating stretch

Outdoor Vital’s Satu Pants (from $104) are a Japanese design containing no spandex, giving them a better dry time than other stretch pants on the market. The Satu Pants are made of Nuyarn’s DragonWool (which claims to be loftier and stronger than standard merino wool). The pants also have a DWR coating, side venting, an adjustable waistband, cargo pockets, and more.

Rumpl National Park Puffy Blankets

Rumpl Yellowstone National Park blankets

In celebration of National Park Week, Earth Day, and general coziness, Rumpl has launched a new edition of its original puffy blanket. The Rumpl National Park blankets come in two styles (for now): Yellowstone National Park and Grand Canyon National Park ($129 each). The park blankets each have a NPS Park patch logo and a print design inspired by either Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon. The original puffy has synthetic insulation, 30-denier ripstop fabric, and a DWR finish. See the collection here.

PDW Odyssey Cargo Pants — Men's

front and back view of PDW cargo pants

Prometheus Design Werx’s best-selling men’s cargo pants are back with a new design for 2020. The Odyssey Cargo Pants ($149) are built with a NYCO (nylon/cotton) ripstop fabric with improved stretch, industrial nylon thread, a reinforced seat, and reinforced knees with pad inserts and bar-tacks throughout. They are definitely more of a tactical, EDC style, so if you like pants with a lot of function, these might be for you. They’re made in the USA.

Alpina Limited-Edition National Park Alpiner Quartz Watch

Alpina NPS watch

Continuing its partnership with the National Park Foundation, Alpina introduces the limited-edition National Park Foundation Alpiner Quartz Watch. The Alpiner watch has AL-240 quartz movement, a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, a 42mm case, and an embossed leather strap. It’s a cool watch, although it will cost you at $795. For every purchase, Alpina will donate $100 back to national parks. Shipping begins in June 2020.

Root Republic Explorer Socks

Root Republic Explorer socks against rock and mountain background

“The planet’s favorite socks” is a pretty bold claim, although we do like this new brand’s sustainable mindset. Root Republic’s Explorer Socks ($22 on Kickstarter) are sourced and assembled in the U.S from a blend of 75% merino wool, 22% nylon, and 3% Lycra. For every pair purchased, this family-owned company plants a tree. As an added bonus, the brand is running discounts for Earth Day.

Feather Camp Organic Feather Chair

Feathercamp chair set up on trail by beach

In an effort to reduce plastic in the outdoors, Feather Camp has launched what it calls an “organic outdoor chair.” The Feather Chair (now for $100) is made of two ingredients: organic cotton canvas and aluminum (which is infinitely recyclable). And the stitching on the chair fabric is organic cotton too. According to Feather Camp’s math, an average camp chair contains as much plastic as 114 plastic bottles. So buying this Earth-conscious chair not only gives you a comfy place to rest, but it also saves plastic from the ocean. When the Kickstarter campaign ends, the Feather Chair will retail for $150.

Hydro Flask Lightweight Trail Series Bottle

Hydro Flask Lightweight Trail Series Bottle

Hydro Flask’s newest series of reusable bottles is here. The Trail Series includes this 24-ounce Lightweight Trail Series Bottle ($45). The lightweight bottle is 25% lighter than Hydro Flask’s other bottles of the same volume, but it still has the same durable stainless steel design. As the Trail Series name implies, the bottle is also designed to fit most backcountry water filters. The bottle comes with a flexible cap with a perforated strap (to keep weight down). Keeping drinks cold is great, and the fact that this bottle sheds weight is even better.

Subscribe Now

Sign up to receive GearJunkie content direct to your inbox.

Subscribe Now

Sign up to receive GearJunkie content direct to your inbox.