A peek at emerging products from the sometimes cutting-edge, sometimes quirky world of gear design.
Bicycle Ski Carrier
Ride your bike to the slopes and carry your skis on multi-sport adventures with Defiant Pack’s Gunslinger Ski Carry. This $85 system straps to your bike and holds your planks. It comes in different sizes to fit all sorts of skis and even splitboards, from nordic to 110-mm waist to split. Plus, the design lets riders leave their ski boots in the bindings while they pedal in other shoes.
Waterproof Knit Shoe
Stay dry — up to your ankles — without sacrificing style or breathability. Vessi shoes claim to be the “world’s first 100% waterproof knit shoe.” The single-piece knit upper has no seams and a hydrophobic treatment. And the knit construction is designed to promote airflow, reducing sweat and odor. Live on Kickstarter.
Give tired legs a break with the RideEasy Portable Footrest and Lock. The device attaches to bindings and includes a drawcord that hooks onto a chairlift, holding up your board. Plus, with a built-in combination lock, the hook also secures the board while you’re away.
All-In-One Camp Cookware
It’s a frying pan, it’s a pot, it’s an oven — yes, and it’s electric. The Morphcooker is built to be a safer alternative to gas camp stoves, and operates as the “Swiss Army Knife of stoves.” The rechargeable camp cooker has adjustable sides that convert between six functions: pan, pot, oven, hot plate, grill press, and water boiler. Plus, it can charge phones and other devices.
Keep gear and smart devices separate and stable using X-Pak Pro‘s variety of closures and organization. This single-strap shoulder pack has two main compartments, one for smartphones, tablets, and laptops, the other for clothes, books, climbing shoes, and more. It sports a roll-top entry in addition to two separate zipper entries, expandable storage, and waterproof construction.
Most Packable Seat
Always have a place to rest thanks to the Sitpack ZEN. Available in aluminum or aluminum-carbon fiber construction, this telescoping monopole has a ballistic nylon strap that cradles your bum when you need to take a load off. Both models hold up to 300 lbs., pack down to the size of an umbrella, and weigh under one pound.
Seiko PADI Special Edition SRPA21
The Seiko PADI Special Edition SRPA21 Automatic Diver takes cues from the iconic Seiko divers from the mid-70s and adds modern-day technology, resulting in a classic watch that’s sure to stand the test of time. Equipped with luminous hands and 200m water resistance, this stylish diver is the perfect accessory whether you’re a watch aficionado, underwater adventurer, or style seeker.
Pick the perfect frame, lens, temple style, and components using Tifosi Optics’ custom sunglass portal. The brand now allows customers to build an ideal pair of glasses—from color to function—based on its full-frame Camrocks, half-frame Synapse, and frameless Brixen styles.
'Vintage' Approach Shoe
Tackle the crag or crush in the gym with a climbing hightop. So iLL released its first approach shoe last month, and we tried it on the slick quartzite at Devil’s Lake in Wisconsin. The $119 Approach held up well in our first tests bouldering, scrambling, and hiking the bluffs.
Stop fussing with a dangly, dirty chain during routine wheel and tire maintenance. Feedback Sports’ Chain Keeper falls in the “Why didn’t they build this before?” category. The $40 device inserts into one dropout when the wheel is removed, keeping the chain tensioned and inline.
Let sand out without letting it in using CGear’s Sand-Free Mat. This beach-ready ground cover uses a “patented weave and specialty fabric” that allows sand to sift through from one side, but blocks it from entering from below. Available in a range of sizes from 6’x6′ up to 10’x10′, this looks like a great option for the beach, tent vestibules, and RV entryways. It’s been around for a couple years, and we’ve used and love the design, but this mat just came back on our radar because it’s launching a new model for spring 2018.
Chrome Industries Knife Roll
Knives and bicycles don’t typically pair well, but bike bag and gear manufacturer Chrome Industries aims to change that. The brand partnered with chef Chris Cosentino to launch the 1050d nylon Knife Roll. It holds 11 knives up to 17 inches, has three utility pockets, and packs down to 19″x10″. Available now for $100.
Quick-Link Bike Multitool
Don’t carry more tools than you have to. The Blackburn Tradesman is the first multitool we have seen with a quick-link splitter. It includes a splitter and a breaker, and a place to store extra quick links. At just $29, it’s a smart gift idea for cyclists.