Skip to Content

Rock Climbing : Articles : Gear and Reviews : OR Winter Market 2009: Day 2

OR Winter Market 2009: Day 2

Submitted by admin on 2009-01-26 | Last Modified on 2009-01-29

Rating: 12345   Go Login to rate this article.   Votes: 0 | Comments: 4 | Views: 8257

by John Wilder

This is the Day-2 blog! Try here for days 1 & 3: DAY 1, DAY 3.

We’re baaaack!!!! That’s right, vegastradguy and j_ung have returned to the Salt Palace for another day of backbreaking gear ogling and picture taking. I tell you, it’s really a punishing job that we suffer through just for you! At any rate, today we start with our resident gear manufacturer, crackers, and his amazing pack company…


Unlike in the summer, Graham gets a booth for the winter show, so Jay and I got to sit and enjoy Cilogear’s collection while Graham and crew presented!

Behold, the Wally! That’s right, the baddest pack ever is making its re-debut at the OR show! This much talked about pack made of ballistics material with a cavernous interior and simple construction is finally coming! Look for the 60L version to be available in mid February, and the slick little 30L version to come later in the month. The 60L prices in at $240 and the 30L arrives at around $150.

So big, we could almost put Jay in it!

Also available this spring are the new non-woven dyneema packs that are available in every size that Cilogear makes its trademark Worksack in 30, 40, 45, and 60L. The price is steep, about $1 per gram of weight, but worth it. They’re ridiculously light and durable, these packs are a must have for any serious alpinist.

As if that wasn’t enough already, look for the new 30L Worksacks that will essentially be available as soon as Graham and company return from the OR show on Sunday. At $125, they feature the new Ninja Pocket for your bladder and loops for your keys, a non-seam taped shoulder strap stitching because all small packs blow out at the shoulder straps, so now you can inspect yours, and finally, load adjusting straps built in. Oh, and don’t forget a useful hipbelt!

The 30L worksack (left) and the dyneema pack (right).

Finally, there’s some general news about the company as a whole. As of now, Cilogear products are proudly made in Portland, Oregon after their recent move from the east coast! Also, the extension sleeves that tended to rip? Upgraded to 70d nylon ripstop- sweet!

Since I was right there, after talking with Graham, I slid over to…

Joshua Tree Products

Developed in Joshua Tree, California, and now made by the company owners in Michigan, this company that is famous for its salve products is releasing two new awesome things for us climbers (and skiers) this spring. First, the Face Stick! That’s right, now you can chapstick your face with soothing salve without the goo factor! Also available are shimmer lip balms for when you need to feel pretty for the redpoint (or other activities). The face stick retails at $6, and the shimmers are priced at $5 and available soon.

Face stick and lip balms – now we’re totally covered!

Also new from JTree products is the Pet salve- for those tender paws after a long day of getting attention at the crag! This product was awarded the 2008 Product of the Year and is available now on for $15.


About a year ago, a little shoe company located in Bozeman, Montana debuted at the OR show with their signature shoe and its topographic sole. Now, a year later and a little bigger, Oboz brings us the Valhalla, a $100 mountain sport shoe that features a molded and dense layer of EVA material for support and cushion on the trail. It’s due out in March and looks like it might make a sweet approach shoe.

But can you climb Valhalla in it???

Also out now is the Ignition 2, a sexy trail runner, it’s priced at $95 and with the vibram sole, should make a nice approach shoe for those light and fast folks!

Mountain Hardwear

After meeting up with Oboz, we headed to our most trying meeting yet – a free lunch with the folks at Mountain Hardwear. Oh, the humanity of it all! At any rate, this fall, MH will be releasing the Radiance Jacket. This jacket was developed in partnership with Ardica and features, get this, a battery that provides heat and power to the jacket. Need to warm up? Just turn the jacket on for up to 8hrs of extra toasty conditions. Need to charge your iPod? No problem, just hook up to the built in USB charger! The battery is light- 295g, charges in 2 hours and is super thin and flexible for minimum impact on the jacket. The jacket will retail at $240 (battery sold separately) and be available in the Radiance (Womens) and Refugium (Mens).

Also look for an entirely revamped line of gloves (13 models to be exact) that have replaced Gore with a new laminate called Outdry, a new waterproof (bonded directly to the shell), windproof (the direct bonding prevents wind from entering the shell at all), breathable (vapor passes easily through the membrane), and better fit (due to the bonded membrane, there is no floating insert, which results in a better fit and better dexterity.)


So, after lunch, I headed back to the Salt Palace and stopped in to see the boys at C.A.M.P. (hereafter Camp because I’m a lazy typist). These guys are bringing out a bunch of new stuff including the Orbit Wire carabiner this spring, a very nifty wire gate line that features awesome clipping action, light weight, and an actual bent gate model. It’ll retail for $5.75 (straight gate), $5.95 (bent), and $12.95 (draw) and be available in March.

The Orbit draw next to the miniscule Nano draw (right).

Also hitting the stores in March is the ALP 95, the 95g harness (remember the thong?) that replaces the old lightweight from Camp with a better setup (buckle instead of two loops to tie into), and no added weight. Also, 7 new harnesses (3 pictured below) will arrive with floating swami belts, which allow the user to center the belay loop, no matter where the user adjusts the single buckle to. Finally, the Speed, the lightest helmet on the market at 210g, and the Magic Anorak pullover, an amazingly wind resistant and water resistant shell that clocks in at a scant 95g (105g for the zippered jacket) and retails at $80 ($100 for the jacket). My favorite part of this product? A real clip in loop on the stuff sack (which is included in the weight).

The harness lineup: the bottom buckle is an adjustment buckle, allowing the user to adjust the center line of the harness.
So green and shiny!

Mad Rock

Hi, Jay here. John’s over at New England Ropes. I had a few things I wanted to yak with Madrock’s owner about, so it made sense for me to cover their bit of this. The latest out of Madrock is their new rubber. I know, I know… saying there’s new shoe rubber at an Outdoor Retailer Market is a little like saying, “Hey, there’s a shrimp in my jambalaya,” but Madrock wants you to know – this shit’s pretty sticky. Madrock brought along a friction tester, which is essentially an adjustable-angle slab, and they’re inviting anybody and everybody to step onto it in shoes outfitted with their newness – Science Friction – and also in a competitor’s shoes. I won’t tell you whose other shoes I wore, but the Madrock were, in fact, stickier. Much stickier. If you get a chance to demo a Madrock shoe with Science Friction, don’t pass it up lightly.

Madrock’s frictionality contraption – cool idea!
The Con Series, 100% outfitted in the new rubber, Science Friction. Clockwise from the bottom left: Con-Tact, a slipper; Con-Flict; and Con-Cept. The Con-Tact will retail for $89, and the others for $99.
Madrock’s concave souls (seen here on the Mugen Tech: “This will be our best all-around performance shoe. It does everything well.”) put more edge in contact with your dime-sized hold for better stickage.

Back to you, John. Heh.

New England/Maxim Ropes

I wanted to stop in with the boys at NE Ropes, as I was so impressed with their handling of their recall last year, I wanted to see what they were up to. This spring, they aren’t releasing much in the way of consumer products, but for all of you gym owners and employees out there, check out the new Chalk Line-

See the loose core strands above, and notice how they are all kept together nicely in the short segment just before the sheath? That’s the new STR8 jacket core sheath. This new technology virtually eliminates sheath slippage, helps the rope keep its shape, and extends the life of the rope substantially. It’s available in two flavors, 10.8mm and 10.2mm and is available by the foot or on 660m spools to gyms.


For our final appointment of the day, we stopped in to talk with Dave at Scarpa. This spring, Scarpa is releasing a threesome of new shoes to compliment the current lineup. Introducing the Feroce and the men’s and women’s Force shoes.

From left to right, the Feroce, Force (mens and womens), and Techno.

The Feroce is a slightly less aggressive option for those folks who don’t need the serious downturn of the Mago and its cousins. It features the V-Tension system, which, like the X-Tension, works to help your foot use its power, as well as some wild looking tabs of rubber on the heel to assist heel hooking. The Force looks a lot like the Feroce, except that it lacks any downturn at all. This is a flat shoe that will help beginners and experienced folks alike get a full day of comfortable yet successful climbing in. The Feroce retails at $155, and the Force at $125 and both arrive in the spring.

You may have also noticed the Techno in the picture above, which is a slick trad shoe designed to be a high-performance trad shoe. The coolest feature is the active heel lacing system – webbing straps at the rear of the shoe are incorporated into the lacing system, so when you pull the shoe tight, the heel literally tightens up against your heel, making for an amazing fit for those demanding crack routes. The Techno is $129 and out now!

Alright, that’s about it for us today. I hope you enjoyed checking out the cool new toys as much as we did. We’ll be back for the final edition Monday morning (complete with a special update from the boys at Totem Cams, live from Salt Lake City!

This is the Day-2 blog! Try here for days 1 & 3: DAY 1, DAY 3.


Twitter  Facebook  StumbleUpon  Delicious  Digg  Reddit  Technorati

4 Comments CommentAdd a Comment

 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
thats my foot in the mad rock flash lol, good times
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
Ha! Thanks for the loan of the foot.
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
wish the folks at cilo gear had shipped out their orders before going to this convention, I ordered a pack over a month ago and they haven't even responded to my emails... f*cking clowns should take care of their obligations to customers before worrying about advertising
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
i believe that the folks at Cilogear have been trying to ramp up production since their move from Brooklyn- in fact, i'm fairly sure that the production is just now getting back up to speed. that said, always feel free to pm crackers on the site if you have questions or concerns.

Add a Comment