Great Walks attended the ORA (Outdoor Retailer Association) gear trade show in Melbourne and we were very excited with what we saw.
The first stand we visitied was Alton, a company that makes a range of outdoor products including an ultralight titanium mug made in China’s ‘Titanium town’. This place exists solely to manufacture the space-age metal, there’s no factory in Australia.
Then onto RUMPL, our favourite Instagramable blanket-maker who’ve really upped their game environmentally and creatively. We were impressed to find they’ve made a great blanket even better by using recycled plastic to make the soft fluffy fill, added corner tabs to allow it to hang easily and a fun clip at the front for an instant cape.
Our friends at Intertrek have just begun importing a new range of men’s SAXX boxers with a tongue-in-cheek name ‘Ballpark Pouch’ separating the *ahem* package from the transport. Essentially a ‘bra for the boys’!
Sherpa have continued to sit comfortably in their niche as high quality bread-and-butter gear at a very affordable price, their merino scarf kept us warm on the flight back and at $40 it’s a total steal.
Petzl have somehow packed 900 Lumens into a headlight retailing for a whisper under $200, Buff now has a flap option, GSI has added thumb drips to their collapsible pots, and MSR is celebrating 50 years with a new commemorative fuel bottle.
Also Therm-a-Rest has created a new ‘winglock’ valve which looks set to change the way we think about using air mats, you’ll start seeing them on products in 2020.
The Sea to Summit stand was packed with new and interesting innovations, to name just a couple, there’s a big tough ‘Watercell’ water-bag with a lot of clever features that can apparently withstand being lashed to the back of a motorbike, and women’s specific sleeping bags with clever features such as wider hip space and narrower shoulders, more stuffing in the chest area and a focus on lightweight meaning they pack down so small we thought we were looking at a packable pillow.
Lastly Camper’s Pantry cold-water lunches have been going down a treat and commuter favourite Pacsafe have turned their focus even more towards the environment, using reclaimed ocean plastic spun into yarn to make their bags and aiming towards fully recyclable luggage within 3 years.