Outdoor Retailer Winter Market

Last week one of the largest outdoor shows in North America got underway, the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market. There were some major changes this year, the largest of which was a shift in venue from Salt Lake City, Utah, to Denver, Colorado, but there was also plenty that stayed the same. Everywhere you looked people were smiling, companies were showing off their latest gear, and there was a general buzz of excitement. To quote one of the attendees, “the stoke was strong,” and I’d have to agree. Of course, OR is about more than stoke. It’s about the gear which enables us to pursue our passions, from skiing and snowboarding to camping and ice-climbing. Trying to take it all in was a bit difficult, but we managed to collect a few of the things that caught our eye during the event and listed them below for you to enjoy. We hope you find them as interesting as we did!

New National Geographic Maps

Nat-Geo has been producing epic maps for quite some time, but lately, they’ve been delving into the nitty-gritty details we need for our adventures. This year, they were showcasing a few new additions including staff-curated hiking trails and river maps with detailed information on flow patterns, rafting routes, and fishing conditions. We picked up a few of these new maps and look forward to trying them out soon.

For more information on the river recreation guides, check out their website here. 

To learn more about their other great maps, click here.

Primus Kuchoma Grill and CampFire Table

My first experience with a Primus stove was cooking lunch in the freezing temperatures of the Arctic Circle. Since then, I’ve not only fallen in love with their utility but their looks and design. At this show, the Swedish company had two new items of note: the Kuchoma grill and CampFire table.

The grill is designed to deliver a true barbecue experience in a compact and portable package. It features fold-out legs, a stainless braided gas line, a spacious closing lid for grilling meats and veggies or even toasting rolls, and a dishwasher-safe nonstick grill grate and drip tray. The grill can run on multiple sizes of gas canisters, and can even be paired with an adapter to use refillable cylinders.

The CampFire table is a sleek and elegant design that sets up and breaks down with ease and packs away into a compact bag. Its framework is made from a 7075 aluminum alloy with a reinforced poly-cotton fabric top. The top is machine washable and is identical to the machine-washable fabric used on the matching stools.

The Kuchoma Grill retails for $180, and the Campfire Table is set to launch at $120. Both can be seen on the Primus website here. 

Tin Cup Whiskey Jeep

Okay, so this was definitely one of the most interesting vehicles of the show. It’s a one-of-a-kind restoration for Tin Cup, and the attention to detail is phenomenal. We’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Luci Pro Series: Outdoor 2.0

We’ve been using Luci lamps for years now with great success, but the originals had some issues. For starters, they were difficult to hang because their loop couldn’t be disconnected. They were also strictly solar powered, so if you had several days of rain, you might find yourself out of light. Thankfully, both of these issues have been solved with the Luci Outdoor 2.0 Pro series, and several other improvements have been made.

This new light features a two-way USB port which can charge the light when conditions are poor or charge your phone when you’ve had plenty of light. A highly efficient solar panel has been paired with a larger battery, so the lamp can fully charge in just a few hours while providing you with 50 hours of camp lighting. It also features a battery level indicator, four lighting modes, a waterproof IP67 rating, and dual straps, one of which is adjustable to solve the hanging issue. The light is backed by a 1-year warranty and becomes available the first of February. If you purchase before then, Luci will automatically donate a Give Luci EMRG light to one of their NGO partners.

To learn more, check out their website here. 

Eagle Creek

Eagle Creek embraced the overland lifestyle this year with an off-road teardrop trailer that they plan to tow around the country. We have to say that it is sporting one of the coolest graphics packages we’ve ever seen and will certainly draw attention. It drew ours and reeled us in to look at their new backpacks, including the Global Companion series. These enthusiast-designed packs are perfect for those trying to stay organized on the road. They are packed with dividers and pouches and can be accessed from the top or bottom, as well as the middle via a wide butterfly opening with dual interior compartments. Prices are set at $159 for the 40L model, and $229 for the 65L.

Eagle Creek was also displaying a very exciting series of adventure luggage, but we can’t reveal that just yet. Look for more on these new releases in the coming months.

To learn more about Eagle Creek and their products, check out their website here. 

 

All New Filson Dry Bags

Few brands carry the heritage and quality of Filson, but they’re not exactly known for progressive equipment design. Their classic and (let’s face it) beautiful clothing and bags get the job done the old-fashioned way, and there’s a romantic aspect we love about that. Waxed canvas isn’t appropriate for all occasions, and that’s where the new Filson dry bags come in. These adventurous pieces of luggage are waterproof with velcro-sealed roll tops and heavy-duty buckles. They’re lightweight, durable, and manage to combine the timeless look the brand is known for with a modern twist.

We hope to take a closer look at these bags upon their upcoming release, but for now, keep an eye on the Filson website here. 

Haytercomm Tacoma and Patriot Camper

This combination greeted us the moment we walked into the event, and it was a welcome site. Loaded with some of the latest and greatest gear from the off-road and outdoor brands represented by Hayter Communications, we couldn’t help but think about where we’d take this truck and trailer first. In addition to the Dobinsons lift kit, Evo Corse wheels, and dual Rhino Racks you see on the Tacoma, it was also sporting a Warn winch behind their new Semi-Hidden winch front bumper.

The Patriot Camper was rocking its usual assortment of gear, but with one major exception: the awning. If you look closely, you’ll notice it’s an entirely new and unreleased model, a Rhino Rack 270 Batwing. We’re still awaiting the full details, but expect an independent article on its release soon.

To learn more about the Rhino Rack, Warn’s new Tacoma bumper, Patriot Campers, or any of these other products or manufacturers, check out their websites below.

Rhino Rack  Warn Industries  Patriot Campers  Hayter Communications

Ruffwear Trail Running Harness and Camp Tether

It’s not exactly a secret, but we love dogs. In fact, every employee at our company owns a dog, so we tend to get excited when we see products that will make camping with them easier, and Ruffwear had three. The first is their new camp tether, a system that allows your dog to have some freedom around the camp, without the opportunity to make a dash for that deer or your neighbors’ steak dinner. It starts with an adjustable length of rope which you tie to two trees or solid objects. You then attach your dog’s leash to the rotating and sliding carabiner on the rope, which allows them to run back and forth freely. The kit comes with the rope, storage bag, and all necessary hardware.

Another great product is their new trail running system. Both the leash and harness lengths have been optimized to give you and your dog the necessary room to run without getting tangled, and the harness’ loop strap allows for greater side-to-side movement for the dog. The harness includes zipper pockets for food, bags, and your personal items, and a water bottle holder on the back can help ensure you stay hydrated. Of course, keeping your dog hydrated is just as important, which is why the dog harness can be equipped with water bladders and comes with a collapsible bowl.

Finally, Ruffwear was showcasing the new lightweight harness systems, which provide all the control and support you want for your pet without all the weight and bulk.

To check out Ruffwear’s current products, or watch for these new releases, check out their website here. 

Iron and Resin Ural

There are some things that just never seem like a good idea but are way too awesome to argue with. This Ural is one of those things. It is loaded down with almost as much gear as character, and passersby couldn’t help but smile. It’s clear that Front-Runner Outfitters and Iron and Resin went all out to make this thing rad. To learn more about the racks and boxes on this motorcycle, check out the Front Runner website here. 

Adventure Medical Kits

Far too many off-road enthusiasts head out into the backcountry without a medical kit and even more are untrained in how to use them. Adventure Medical hopes to fix that. When the situation arises, their kits can give you the supplies, and if necessary the knowledge, needed to administer aid. Each kit comes organized into easy-to-understand sections for different types of wounds and includes a detailed guide to field medicine. It even includes tips on when to worry and why. The combination can help just about anyone in an emergency.

Several types of kits and sizes are available and are organized by the number of people and the trip length. There are even packages for your dog, or both you and your dog. Those come with a separate book on animal first aid. Prices are affordable, with the four-person 7-day kit, our recommendation for most people, priced at just $59.

To learn more, check out their website here. 

SOL Emergency Gear

We love an inexpensive but useful product and that’s exactly what we found at SOL, Survive Outdoors Longer. Our personal favorite was the all-season blanket, an emergency blanket with a durable reverse side and reinforced grommets. It can be used as a tarp, a wood hauler, shelter from a storm, or of course as an emergency blanket. I see myself using one primarily while laying under the vehicle doing inspections to prevent myself from rolling in the dirt.

Prices are expected to start around $16. To learn more, check out the SOL site here. 

Rhino-Rack Tacoma

In true winter fashion, Rhino-Rack showed up with an icy-blue Tacoma sporting matching Maxtrax, a fatbike, skis, and so much more. The Pioneer Truck Bed Tower was looking stellar, and we were impressed by the simplicity of how it attaches to the truck’s factory bed rails.

To learn more about this system check out their website here. 

Big Agnes Sleeping Pads

Amidst the slew of gear at Big Agnes were two new sleeping pads, the Axl Air, and Axl Air Primaloft insulated. Both are designed to be lightweight, low-profile options with a single-port two-way valve system for easy setup and breakdown. Official pricing has not been posted, but we hear that the uninsulated will be around $140, while the insulated will be closer to $180.

To learn more about Big Agnes, check out their website here. 

VanDoIt Adventure Vans

When it comes to building vehicles, there’s always a delicate balance of form versus function, but the best builders can figure out how to put function first and still have it look beautiful. It seems like VanDoIt has nailed that concept, and managed to make it affordable at the same time. We took a moment to check out their Ford Transit at the show, and their attention to detail was incredible. They start with all marine-grade materials and equipment and construct a solid base from which to build. Heavy-duty aluminum rails with built-in slides are used for the framework, making the entire interior modular, allowing customers to install whatever products and tie-downs they want.

Next. they upgrade the electronics with three deep-cycle batteries, a solar charging system and inverter, electrical management panels, and an array of waterproof switches and wiring. Wherever they could upgrade a wire or connection, they did, and wherever they could simplify the system they would. Their entire goal was to maximize utility while minimizing complexity.

The walls were upgraded with layers of insulation and an air gap in order to help the van retain warmth or coolness in various seasons, and the air ductwork was run through the ceiling and floor, giving the van heated or cooled floors when temperatures are excessive in either direction. The ceiling was also equipped with a full “internal roof-rack” which is essentially a modular tie-down system to hang skis, netting clothing, or anything else you can think of out of the way.

The seats are custom leather, and a custom head unit was developed in conjunction with Kenwood specifically for their application. In the back of the van, things get really cool though. The bed raises and lowers to accommodate anything from gear bags to motorcycles, and the lower level is a slide-out garage with space for a full tool kit, water system, air compressor, and so much more. When traveling with friends, the bottom layer converts to a bed, adding another double bed into the mix.

Four-wheel drive options are available thanks to a partnership with Quigley, and the interior can be equipped with removable kitchens, toilets, and cabinetry. Best of all, the entire van can be purchased for prices ranging from $48,000 to $78,000. A steal in the conversion van world.

To learn more about VanDoIt, check out their website here.

Black Diamond Climbing Gear and Packs

Black Diamond decided to freeze most of their show gear in blocks of Ice. We have to admit, it was a pretty awesome idea.

United By Blue Mugs and Citronella Candle

If you haven’t heard of United By Blue, they’re a rather trendy outdoor company with a serious mission behind them. For every product sold, their team removes a pound of trash from the world’s oceans and waterways. Thus far, they’ve done 207 clean ups in 27 states while removing 1,051,079 pounds of trash. Way to go guys!

To learn more and support the cause, check out their site here. 

Topo Designs

We’re on the road a lot, and we like to stay organized on the go. We also like attractive gear, so Topo Designs is sort of a natural fit for us. When we stopped by their booth at the show, we spotted this travel bag which is a perfect combination of tasteful design with utilitarian roots. It comes with internal mesh and zipper pockets, several padded dividers, and can be fit with their lightweight but durable packing cubes.

To learn more, check out their website here. 

Other Outdoor Awesomeness

Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, Chris didn’t receive a real taste of the outdoors until moving to Prescott, Arizona, in 2009. While working on his business degree, he learned to fly and spent his weekends exploring the Arizona desert and high country. It was there that he fell in love with backcountry travel and four-wheel drive vehicles, eventually leading him to Overland Journal and Expedition Portal. After several years of honing his skills in writing, photography, and off-road driving, Chris now works for the company full time as Expedition Portal's Managing Editor.

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