By Martin Nordesjö
|OR Transcendent Beanie. Some people look good in any headwear. Some don't.|
I've had seagulls land better looking things on my head, but this one might be really useful. 650 cuin down, packs down to the size of a... compressed down beanie, and the weight is probably negligible. Around 30 euro.
|OR Versaliner, hiding a nice shell glove.|
Another creative product from OR is the Versaliner glove. It's a smooth fleece glove with a small zipper, hiding a lightweight shell glove in Pertex Shield DS. For summer use, the shell glove is probably enough. But like many other finger gloves with waterproof fabric, the seams are not taped. The overall weight is around 80-90 grams - about the same as a pair of windstopper fleece gloves.
|Woolpower LITE crewneck on Sales Manager Christian.|
At Woolpower we finally had the chance to take a closer look at their new Lite series of wool underwear. They have invested a lot into this step into lighter and cooler garments (compared to their classic Ullfrotté). The best thing, apart from them being manufactured in Östersund, is that they will be more durable than pure merino wool since they contain 20 % polyamide (that's still distinctly within the odour-safety limit). They will also be cheaper than clothing from for example Icebreaker and Smartwool. Unfortunately they will only come in black, which can be a bit too hot in the summer.
|Merrell Trail Glove to the right. Softshell version to the left.|
I came to Swesport to see Merell's take on the barefoot/minimalistic trend, the Glove series coming this spring. As an added treat they showed us the second edition. Nothing revolutionary for us lightpackers (I like the all black Trail Glove, though), but models with softshell and Gore-tex will maybe make good shoes for everyday use.
|New Balance Minimus Trail. (Might be fall 2011 colours.)|
The minimalistic outdoor shoe I look forward most to try is probably New Balance Minimus Trail. It looks like it's made for exactly our kind of terrain use. Hopefully we will be able to test some of these shoes in the coming season.
|ME Arete. Just another down sweater, but maybe less expensive.|
No sportswear company came to Swesport without a lightweight insulated jacket this year. One of the most interesting was Mountain Equipment, who had a half zip version of the Arete. It's a down sweater with a price tag considerably below many competitors (around 170-180 euro). The weight is around 350 gram.
Another premier for me was Gore Active Shell. I tried a jacket on at Mammut, and it was definitely softer and more comfortable against the skin than my Paclite jacket. Active Shell could actually make a wind jacket redundant. But you will probably not save any money.