We’ve found that, in a lot of cases, the developments that get us most excited don’t need to involve some flashy new technology. Instead, they enhance convenience, allowing us to focus on our time skiing or hiking rather than futzing with gear. That’s why we’re giving 686’s Reservoir Jacket a Gear of the Show award.
Going on sale this fall, this jacket has a clever way of keeping skiers hydrated on the slopes: 686 built a water bladder into the powder skirt, with a tube that runs up the inside of the jacket, near the zipper, ending with a bite valve right at your chin. That leaves you free to not carry a backpack with a bottle in it (or stop for breaks at the
water fountain) if you’re skiing in-bounds. In the backcountry, it means having water handy in a pack. When we put the jacket on and fastened the powder skirt, it felt snug and secure, sitting close to our center of gravity. If the bladder is too tight, you can loosen it with a strap. And it was easy to turn our head and take a sip from the bite valve.
This year for the first time, two of the most influential trade shows in the outdoor industry came together in a new combined convention where manufacturers showed off their newest products to buyers and media. The leading business-to-business outdoor sports show, Outdoor Retailer was founded in 1982, while Snowsports
Industries America (SIA) has been around since 1954 and produces the annual Snow Show. Last month, the two joined forces in Denver for the first Outdoor Retailer & Snow Show, and while not open to the public, what happened there greatly affects the clothing and equipment choices you will use for your outdoor and fitness pursuits.
Every year Outside Magazine, the industry’s consumer facing media leader, sends staff to dissect the offerings and select their “Gear of the Show.” As Will Egensteiner, Outside’s Senior Gear Editor, explained (via release), “The ‘Gear of the Show’ winners represent our top equipment picks for Winter 2019…