The twice-annual Outdoor Retailer trade show kicks off next week in Utah. In our second sneak peek on new gear from the show (see here for our first preview post) we cover a lockable camera bag, an ultra-light tent, and a knife design said to be influenced by the grandfather of Bear Grylls. —Stephen Regenold
Trekking Pole Tent — A floorless shelter for ultra-light trips, Mountainsmith’s Mountain Shelter LT sets up with a pair of trekking poles. Made for two people, the shelter offers three-season protection via its sil-nylon body. There’s a zipper main door and a single ventilation window. Packs small and weighs about 19 ounces. Available later this summer for $130.
Lapel Torch — A new alternative to a flashlight or a headlamp, the Snow Peak Lapel Torch, available in January 2013, gives a small L.E.D. mounted on a cable and securable with a magnetic clip. It’s made to attach to a jacket collar, shirt or pack shoulder strap and offer a bright beam for hiking or camp chores. $66.
High Stepper — Designed in partnership with speed-alpinist Ueli Steck, the Rebel Ultra GTX from Scarpa is light and low-profile, measuring about 25 ounces a boot. The company touts it as having an “almost rock shoe-like fit,” meaning the boots are not clunky but made for precise moves with crampons on or not. Carbon fiber midsole and insulated Gore-Tex lower boot. $539.
Bear Grylls “Grandfather Knife” — A retro design knife from Gerber for sale this fall is said to be based on a World War II knife handed down from Bear Grylls’ grandfather to his father to him. Notes the press material, “Gerber has taken the classic features of the family keepsake and made it distinctly modern.” It has a blade, cork screw, flat and Phillips driver, bottle opener, file and lanyard ring. $30.
Pocket Power — About the same size as a roll of quarters, this portable recharger unit lets you plug in GPS devices, cameras and phones for a charge in the outback. The kit, made by Goal Zero, also includes a 3.5-watt solar panel that folds to fit “in a pocket or purse.” Together, the portable power station weighs less than a pound but can keep your electronics juiced for days or weeks on extended trips outdoors. Available for $100.
‘Lockable’ Camera Bag — The Camsafe V8 bag from Pacsafe has steel wire netting embedded in its body fabric. The zippers lock closed, too, providing a pilfer-proof case made for camera gear. Padding inside keeps your SLR safe from knocks while traveling or outdoors on the move. $130.
Ultimate Outdoor T-shirt — Breathable, odor-resistant, and tough. Those are characteristics of a new shirt from Rab, the Helium Tee, which employs two types of fabric. A treated polyester makes up the front side, while a panel of Cocona fabric is used on back and under the arms that’s touted to have better breathability and quicker drying. Rab positions the wear-for-a-week shirt as a fighter of the infamous “synthetic funk” syndrome common to many outdoor tops. $37.
Sporty Bifocals — Coolest old man glasses ever? Kidding. Smith Optics’ Chief Bifocal glasses have magnification on their lower half for anyone needing an extra vision boost. Up-close tasks like map reading and fly-tying are scenarios where the magnification could be a boon for people needing that added crispness on the details outdoors. Late summer release date for $139.
‘Cooling’ Cap — Made for sweaty outdoor pursuits and things like ultra races, the Quasar Running Cap from Mountain Hardwear offers an airy but sun-blocking shield. Mesh sides and a wide brim are standard touches. A more unusual bonus: Hardwear added its new-fangled Cool.Q ZERO fabric to the lid, which gives off a cooling sensation when soaked with sweat. $35.
Vacuum Bottle of Yore — This retro coffee container, called the Stanley Limited Edition 100th Anniversary bottle, borrows from a design your great-great grandpa might have used. Cap screws off and has a second purpose as a mug. Metal casing and a “vintage Hammertone green finish” included. Two sizes for sale next spring. $38.
iPhone Armor — This protective iPhone case, called the Freedom IP from Brunton, has a solar panel “kickstand” that folds out to provide power. A built-in battery backup, which can be powered up via a wall outlet at home or the solar panel, gives “two full charges to your phone” for extended use outside. Compatible with iPhone 4 and 4s. Will cost $60.
Luggage for a Gear Junkie — Built to haul mucho gear and live through the rigors of foreign airports and long trips across the globe, Eagle Creek offers its Gear Warrior Wheeled Duffel. (We love the name!) It comes in two sizes and has features any gear junkie will love, including durable wheels, rugged construction, a helmet strap on top, interior and exterior compression straps, and a zip-shut separate pocket for wet and stinky clothing at the end of a trip. Capacities of the cases are 5,450 or 6,200 cubic inches of space. For sale in November for $285 and $310.
Tactile Rope — For added safety, near each end of the BiCo Sense climbing rope from Mammut the sheath changes in its construction, providing a new texture that’s felt by the belayer as he or she pays out line. Visual cues on the sheath also let climbers know when they are near the end of the rope, adding extra safety. Comes in 60- and 70-meter lengths starting at $280.
Technical Blanket — Brooks-Range calls its new Cloak product a sleeping bag. But this is really a “technical blanket,” a down quilt with no bottom insulation that’s built for sleeping outdoors on a pad. The advantage is an extra light load — the 45-degree rated Cloak weighs only 13 ounces and packs up super small. Sold in models with 45-, 30-, and 15-degree temp ratings. Pricing ranges from $249 to $369.
Rope Collar — Made of a 7mm rope, Ruff Wear says its Knot-a-Collar settles more comfortably into fur than the traditional flat webbing alternative. Comes tied with sliding fisherman knots for adjusting the rope collar to precisely fit your dog. Safety touch: An integrated reflectivity in the rope weave offers low-light visibility when you and your canine are on a roadside run. Available for $23.
Fisherman’s Delight — Stable and supporting of up to 500 pounds, the Mirage Pro Angler 12 from Hobie will be marketed as “the most versatile fishing boat to ever come out” from the company. Made in California, the hybrid kayak is 12 feet long and 36 inches wide. It has pedal-activated fins that allow you to propel the craft forward with your feet while keeping your hands free to cast and reel in the big bites. $2,549.
Neo Fanny Pack — OverLand Equipment’s go at the fanny pack includes an adjustable strap that lets you wear it on the hips or like a messenger bag slung over a shoulder. Made for biking and travel, the multi-pocketed pack holds passport, map, phone, credit cards, cash. . . whatever you need to stuff inside. $40.
Alpine Influenced — Backpacking brand Granite Gear hopes to dabble in more vertical landscapes with its Leopard AC, a 58-liter pack with ice axe loops and a place to attach crampons. A removable lid and roll-top closure make for a modular creation that can be skimmed down for a summit day. (Weighs 2 lbs, 12 oz. with lid removed.) Men’s and women’s fit versions coming to market next year for $250.
—See GearJunkie’s latest OR Show reportage on our new special section, “Outdoor Retailer Coverage,” and in the articles “Future Gear Extravaganza! 2012 Outdoor Retailer Preview” and “Coming to Market 2013. . . Peek at Future Gear.”