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First Look: Upcoming 2017 Outdoors Gear

The twice-annual Outdoor Retailer trade show, held next week in Utah, is a mecca of gear. Thousands of brands debut products for the coming year. Here’s our exclusive look at some of the most interesting outdoors items coming to market for 2017.

‘Fused’ Summit Pack

A pinnacle alpine pack, the Summit Alpine 50L from The North Face is a streamlined carrier. The company’s FuseForm construction, where fabric is folded and “fused” instead of stitched, improves durability and reduces weight and bulk. The pack is rated to carry 50 pounds but weighs just 2lbs 9oz when empty.

Bi-Directional Belay

The Wild Country REVO already won awards this summer at the OutDoor Show in Germany, and for good reason. It is the first bi-directional, auto-locking belay device. Designed to overcome mis-loading the rope, one of the most common causes for belay-related accidents, the Revo will pay out, lock, and keep the rope aligned for smooth operating.

Water Pressure

No sucking required. The Trek Kit ($40) from HydraPak comes with a three-liter cylindrical reservoir and a “squeeze bulb” to add pressure for water to be dispensed as a blast into your mouth.

Osprey Hydration Vest

The Duro 6 and Dyna 6 vests (gender specific) provide “bounce-free stability,” according to Osprey, and they have a full-mesh build to let a runner’s body breathe.

‘Eco’ Shell

We got a sneak preview at this waterproof/breathable shell and tested it in the Alps. Short story is, it works (check out the long story and review here). OutDry Extreme ECO Shell is constructed without the use of PFCs. It’s also made of 100% recycled polyester (from plastic bottles) and is entirely dye-free, which saves copious amounts of water at the factory where they are made.

KEEN Women’s Hiker

Did you know KEEN has never made a women’s-specific hiking boot before? Until now. KEEN’s Terradora, available in Mid (MSRP $140) and Low (MSRP $130) waterproof models, has a narrower last through the heel for increased stability and “glove-like fit” on the trail. It is designed to fit the slightly higher arch of many women’s insteps.

Backpacking Bug Repeller

A new form factor, the 4-ounce Backpacker Repeller from Thermacell mounts on a camp-stove fuel canister. It then creates an invisible “cloud” of repellent with allethrin, a copy of a chemical that naturally occurs in chrysanthemum flowers, to keep mosquitoes and black flies away.

Hammock Upgrades

Hammock mainstay ENO drops a few products for the show, including a pitch-anywhere stand and an on-the-ground “hammock” product that’s inflatable and gives a cushy place to sit.

Cooler Killer

The Yeti Flip is a next-generation soft-side cooler. We’ve given it a pre-release test, and so far found it to live up to its promise of leak-proof cooling that is tough and can be carried anywhere.

Upgraded GRIGRI

The Petzl GRIGRI+ takes the classic assisted belay device to a safer level. The + version, which coincides with the 25th anniversary of the original’s release, has an anti-panic function that engages if the user’s adrenaline spikes and he or she yanks too hard on the handle. The descent will stop for a moment before the handle is re-engaged and the descent can continue in a controlled manner.

Skimo Vest

It’s a tad odd to see this in the summer, but this ski mountaineering vest looks rad, so the heck with it. Known for running packs, Ultimate Direction gives ski mountaineers a new option for gear carry in a vest. Lightweight and sleek, these packs can carry everything from water bottles, gels and reservoirs, to skis, helmets, probes, shovels, ice axes, and beyond.

Lightest Wool

VOORMI introduces what it calls the lightest merino wool on the market. The Dual Surface UL Technology wool is just 100 grams per meter squared – almost a third lighter than some competitors. It will be available in T-shirts and a long sleeve hoodie.

1 Kilo Chair

The Leki Sub-1 weighs in just under 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds), making it one of the lightest free-standing camp chairs on the market. And it even has a cup holder.

Yakima Gets Into Rooftop Tents

Rack juggernaut Yakima is jumping into the booming world of car-top tents with the SkyRise Shelter line. At 75 and 90 pounds, it’s lighter than many options on the road.

Buff Running Hat

The maker of one of our favorite multi-use headwear products launches a running cap, and it looks sweet. The Pack Running Cap from Buff weighs just 1 ounce and is highly compressible. It can be folded and rolled to stash in a pocket. A low profile sweatband provides moisture control without added bulk and the polyester materials wick away perspiration.

Jetboil Pocket Stove

A first for the brand, Jetboil releases the MightyMo backcountry stove. The MightyMo unleashes “the power of a professional chef range in a tiny package.” The 3.3-ounce stove kicks out 10,000 BTUs and allows simmer control for consistent performance down to 20 degrees F.

Carbon Frame Pack

The Mystery Ranch Stein 62 mixes a light carbon-fiber frame with bomber materials for a rugged but light pack. But where it stands out is a lid that converts into a summit pack using the main pack’s yoke for comfort during side excursions.

Upgraded ATC

The Black Diamond ATC is a stalwart of the belay station. Coming in 2017, the ATC gets an upgrade in the form of the ATC-Pilot. It has an “enhanced breaking device” and introduces a new technology for an added level of security while allowing for smooth rope pay out.

Prime Stove, Pots

The PrimeTech stove set from Primus has two pots that nest into each other and the stove. One pot is aluminum and one a hard anodized pot with ceramic non-stick coating. Included in this slick cooking system is a windscreen with integrated burner and piezo igniter, and even an integrated colander.

‘Gore-Tex Surround’ Hikers

Adidas Outdoor collaborated with Gore-Tex for this waterproof hiker, using Surround technology that allows breathability through air channels under the foot. Adidas developed extra-large channels for more airflow, and at 13.6 ounces for a men’s size 9, these are a light option that will provide support off trail.


3-Pound Gregory Pack

Starting at three pounds, the Gregory Paragon and women’s Maven lines are among the lightest you’ll find outside high-end specialty backpacks. A light aluminum frame with flexible characteristics fits multiple torso sizes. A foam-matrix back panel encapsulated by mesh gives breathability. It was recognized by an award at the OutDoor show in Europe this summer.


‘Welded’ Waterproof Backpack, Duffel

Igloo introduces waterproof and leakproof soft side cooler bags, available as a backpack and duffle. They have 1-inch thick insulation and roll-top openings, water-resistant zippers, and welded, seamless surfaces to keep water from getting in or out.

Lifestraw Bottle Filtration

Lifestraw is built on portable filtration. The new Lifestraw Go gives you a bottle and filtration for more than 99.9% of waterborne bacteria and protozoan parasites, including giardia and cryptosporidium. It also has an activated carbon capsule to reduce bad taste, chlorine, and organic chemical matter.

Superlight Hammock

Sea To Summit enters the hammock market with a featherlight 5-ounce model made from highly compressible, breathable 20D monofilament fabric. Aluminum buckles have triple tacking for durability.

crkt homefront 2

Field-Strippable Knife

The CRKT Homefront can be pulled apart, without tools, in the field for complete cleaning. It has a 3.5″ AUS 8 steel blade with versatile drop point for all-around use in the outdoors.


2-Person Sleeping Pad

The popular Klymit Static V sleeping pad is coming in a 2-person version, the Double V. It is made to minimize movement from the person next to you and has an R value of 1.3. The big pad weighs 40.5 oz. and is sized to fit in a two-person tent.

Better Synthetic Insulation

Allied Feather & Down, a leader in high quality natural down, introduces LofTech, a synthetic insulation that closely mimics the look and feel of natural down. By engineering a bit of “chaos” into otherwise uniform synthetic clusters, LofTech improves compressibility, one of the biggest disadvantages of synthetics vs. down.

Track Your Paddle

The Motionize Paddle is a new motion sensor designed for paddlesports. Dual sensor technology allows users to see their distance per stroke, strokes per minute, stroke length, number of strokes per session, and ratio between technique efficiency, and heart rate, among other stats.

‘Hero’ Jacket

The Odin 9 Worlds Jacket by Helly Hansen looks like a rugged and mountain-worthy companion. It’s made of a waterproof-breathable fabric, has a high visibility laminated hood brim, and is harness compatible.

‘Swiveling’ Backpack

The Arc’teryx Bora AR 50 has a unique hip belt that fits into the frame with a 3-dimensional ball joint, allowing it to pivot left, right, up, and down. We’ve been testing it, and the experience is remarkable freedom of hip movement. The bomber pack won an OutDoors award in Germany, and this one is poised to stand out in the States as well.

Strong Beam (Tiny Package)

A tiny headlamp with a bright beam, we got a pre-release version of the Iota by Black Diamond to test. The 150-lumen headlamp weighs 56 grams and is matchbox-small. It has a fade effect, going from its brightest setting to its dimmest when you hold the main button down. This allows a user to choose the exact, optimal brightness (and battery conservation) for the task at hand.

Sticky Rubber Trail Shoes

The burly and light Astral TR1 Junction is made for crushing miles of rugged trails or canyon. It’s inspired by water shoes, with venting and breathability as top priorities.

Responder Tool

The Skeletool RX by Leatherman has a 154CM deeply-serrated blade (for more cutting surface on clothing or fibrous materials), and a carbide glass-breaker bit, among many features. The multitool was made to serve as an essential piece of kit for any EMT or first responder.

Tech Duffle

Mountain Hardwear’s Outdry Duffle 75L has high-end OutDry waterproof technology to keep your belongings safe. But what really grabbed our attention? It can double as a cooler to keep your beer cold.

Smoother-Flowing Reservoir

The Camelbak Crux Reservoir promises 20% more water with every sip. It also has a leak-proof lid and on/off lever, plus a new larger handle for one-handed filling.

Cooling Tee

Outdoor Research is among several brands that will release shirts using Polartec Delta fabric in 2017. The Gauge Tee’s fabric combines hydrophilic yarns (that retain water) with hydrophobic yarns (that repel water) in a pattern so the shirt can act “like a radiator to provide true metabolic cooling.”

Eco-Friendly Water Shoe

The Five Ten Eddy Pro is a light water shoe with non-marking Stealth Phantom rubber. It won’t spread waterborne fish epidemics like the Whirling Disease. For anglers and paddlers, it’s a substitute for felt, with better traction and less danger for the aquatic environment. It has a quick-drying mesh upper made of hydrophobic synthetic materials. The footbed/outsole package has drainage ports that are designed to expel water and not pick up sand.

Elevated Lantern

UCO’s Sitka lantern has an extendable arm, which raises the LED light source from 12.5 inches to 26 inches, increasing the lighting area by four times. Raise the extension arm for reduced glare and fewer shadows, or keep it collapsed for softer, diffused lighting.

Expanding Backpack

Designed with renowned backpacker and ultralight enthusiast Andrew Skurka, the Sierra Designs Flex Capacitor 40-60 backpack has a unique gusset system that allows the circumference to quickly expand from 40 to 60 liters. A lightweight “Y” Flex suspension, stretch mesh side pockets, and a removable hydration sleeve round out the pack.

Redesigned Classic Tent

Sierra Designs reworked its top selling Clip Flashlight tent for 2017, building up a 42-inch peak height and 30 square feet of interior space with a packed weight of just 3 pounds, 14 ounces.

Antigravity Aether

Osprey’s flagship hiking pack gets the antigravity treatment in 2017. The Aether AG 70 combines Osprey’s Anti-Gravity 3D-suspended mesh back-panel with an IsoForm5 harness and CM hipbelt for a customizable fit capable of hauling heavy loads long miles. The removable top-lid converts to a daypack.

Affordable Sheath Knife

The Morakniv Eldris ($30) is a versatile, pocket-size, fixed blade knife. The 2mm thick semi-matte stainless steel blade has a ground spine that’s compatible with a fire starter. Its polymer handle comes with a lock for safe handling.

High-Exertion Jacket

When heavy hitter Patagonia calls a jacket “the best hybrid jacket we’ve built,” we take note. The Nano Air Light Hybrid is built for continuous wear during high-exertion activities. It’s similar to the Nano Air Jacket, but lighter, with additional hybridized panels for extra breathability.

Rack-Ready Rooftop Tent

Tepui’s latest rooftop-tent, the White Lightning, has a hard exterior and is ready to be mounted with your favorite rack system, so you can carry your bikes, skis, kayaks, or box right on top of your tent.

Highly Adjustable Backpack

The Thule Guidepost has an internal “PowerPocket” to organize power cords for your electronics. The multi-day pack has an adjustable suspension and is designed to make long trips comfortable.

Anti-Theft Daypack

The Packsafe Vibe 20L anti-theft backpack protects against bag-slashers and grabbers. It has cut-resistant straps and a security clip that allows it to be attached easily to fixtures, among many security features.

No Chafe Shorts?

When an underwear company jumps into the running short market, it gets our attention. SAXX announces the Kinetic Run Short for 2017. The polyester shorts have on-seam pockets plus an integrated hidden zipper pocket on the right. The Run Short has a low profile knit interior waistband with a stretch drawstring.

Under Armour Goes Trail Running

The Horizon FKT trail runner is designed for “trail speed.” It’s lightweight and durable, with a translucent rip-stop upper and Michelin rubber on the sole.

Flashy Backpack

The High Sierra Tokopah 45L is one unique backpack inspired by Tokopah Falls, the largest waterfall in Sequoia National Park. Beyond its appearance, the pack has all the requisite features you need in a 45-liter backpacking pack.

‘Enduro’ Running Shoe

In bike racing, “enduro” refers to riding uphills, then racing down. The Salomon XA Enduro is similarly designed for hardcore mountain terrain, where a slow climb might lead to a wicked fast descent. The 9mm drop shoe with a snug-fitting inner booty weighs 10.5 ounces for a men’s size 9.

Packable Table

A-Lite designed a portable table to couple with your camp chairs. Bring it with to the campground, picnic, or concert in the park.

Outdoors Utility Belt

Arcade Belt Co. is putting tech to work keeping your pants up. The Utility Belt has stretch built in for extra comfort over long miles.

‘Indestructawool’ Socks

Smartwool gave us “indestructawool” last winter, and now it brings the durable wool to a summer line of light running socks. The PhD Run Ultra Light Logo Crew has 46% Merino Wool, 49% Nylon, 5% Elastane for running comfort.

Sleek Suunto

Suunto calls the Spartan Ultra its “sleekest watch body yet.” But it still packs a punch, boasting 80 sport-specific pre-settings and a 26-hour battery life with GPS enabled.

Stretch Weather Protection

The Rab Kinetic Plus Jacket is a light, stretchy shell for high aerobic activity. Its breathability should help perspiration flow away from the body while water-resistant zippers keep rain at bay.

One Pound Chair

Helinox is a leader in light chairs, and this one is the lightest we’ve seen. Less than one pound and compact, the Helinox Chair Zero is one you might consider carrying on a backpacking trip.

Mount This Light Anywhere

The LEDLenser XEO 19R and 19S headlamp come with an accessory kit including charging gear and helmet, bike, waist, GoPro, and tripod mounting kits. It has eight unique light programs and functions to tailor light to your needs.

Titanium Cook Kit

Snow Peak takes a nice swing at the ultralight cook kit with the Titanium Mini Solo Set. The pot is large enough to hold a 110g fuel canister and a GigaPower stove. The Mini Solo does the job of several pieces without adding weight to your pack.

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