This year’s list of winners include some remarkable innovations
The UK Outdoor Industry Awards are a barometer for where things are heading – a showcase of gear at the cutting edge. Prior to the public vote, all 102 products entered were on display to 1,000 trade visitors in July 2017 at the Outdoor Trade Show. The 31 finalist products were shortlisted by a panel of experienced judges from outdoors media.
From these ten winning products, the panel of expert judges selected Katadyn’s BeFree water filtration device as the overall Product of the Year. Will Renwick (Outdoors Magic Editor, former Online Editor at The Great Outdoors, and a member of the judging panel), said: “It’s a remarkably lightweight, compact and simple filter that is mightily effective. A product lightweight backpackers and long-distance runners will really benefit from.”
Accessories, and overall Product of the Year: Katadyn BeFree
HIGHLY COMMENDED: TGO Gear of the Year awards 2017 (Equipment)
The BeFree is a collapsible drink bottle with a filter in the head. Simple really, but the high flow rate means you can get clean water from streams and lakes wherever you are on the hill. Ideal for runners and walkers, just fill up the bottle and let the EZ-Clean Membrane do the work. Easy to clean; remove the filter and swish in any lake, river or stream. For storage, the collapsible bottle packs down small. Available in 600ml, 1L and 3L versions.
Backpacks: Osprey Levity 60
Our review of the 45L version
The Levity 60 integrates comfort and ventilation into the ‘ultimate ultralight backpacking solution’. It weighs just 850g, a remarkable feat achieved through cutting-edge construction methods and materials. A new NanoFly™ HT Nylon with UHMWPE reinforcement provides unparalleled abrasion and tear resistance. The Airspeed™ back-panel ensures excellent ventilation whilst the suspended lumbar creates impressive load transfer. Its weight/volume ratio works out at 14g/litre; never before has a backpacking pack this light been this comfortable.
Camping Equipment: JetBoil Flash
The legendary Jetboil Flash has been upgraded for 2018! This firm favourite for campers, soldiers and backpackers returns with new tricks up its sleeve. The new stove is 33% faster than the original, boiling 500ml of water in only 100 seconds. It is 29g lighter weighing in at only 371g making it ideal for those weight-conscious backpackers. The cooking vessel connection has been improved, making it easier to use, and the new lid offers a better fit and function. Finally the overall design is more ergonomic; the new burner design is easier to hold and ignite.
Climbing Equipment: Edelrid 3D Lap Coiling
Traditionally the purchase of a new climbing rope has meant that it needs to be uncoiled prior to the first use, allowing the rope to run safely through karabiners and belay devices. As the popularity of climbing increases, new entrants to the sport may not have the knowledge or experience to do this correctly. Using brand new machinery, EDELRID have developed the 3D Lap Coil. This ensures that when the rope is pulled out of the packaging, it is ready for use immediately, without any kinks or twisting. This is more intuitive for climbers, and easier for retailers to merchandise.
Clothing: Jack Wolfskin Sierra Trail Jacket
One of 12 high performance waterproof (20,000mm hh), windproof and breathable (>15,000 g/m2/24hrs) jackets made from Texapore Ecosphere, the Sierra Trail Jacket is made of a 100% recycled face fabric, 100% recycled inner lining and the world’s first 100% recycled membrane. This jacket not only delivers on Jack Wolfskin’s continual dedication to innovation and environmentally responsible products, but also comfort functionality and price. With all the trappings of high performance weather protection (articulated elbows, fixed volume adjustable hood, pit zips, reflective details and adjustable hem) there is no trade-off for environmental sustainability.
Digital Product: Satmap Active 20
SHORTLISTED: TGO Gear of the Year Awards 2017 (Equipment)
Innovative ‘DualControl’ touchscreen and buttons give this all-new sports GPS best-in-class functionality. Large, bright 3.5” hi-res HVGA screen for crystal-clear mapping. Huge map capacity for the ever-popular OS Full GB (1:10k,1:25k,1:50k), or 450 other global-maps, with super-fast software. Superb GPS accuracy on GPS/GLONASS/ GALILEO/EGNOS, enhancing outdoor safety. Elevation from pressure, GPS, mapping. 3-axis electronic compass. High-capacity rechargeable LiPol/AA batteries. 16-hour duration. Quadlock bike & vehicle mounting-system. Ergonomic button layout allowing easy one-handed use. Very rugged (IP68/IK07), with 2.5mm extra-tough Gorilla-Glass screen. 100% UK conceived, designed and manufactured to the highest standards of workmanship.
Family: Lifeventure OS Map Towel
Soft Fibre Trek Towel collaboration with Ordnance Survey. The iconic Lifeventure soft fibre trek towel is now available in Giant size (150 x 190cm) in three Ordnance Survey maps of Ben Nevis, Snowdon and Scafell Pike, allowing conquerors of these peaks to ‘get the towel’. Each towel is just over 200g and absorbs 9 x its own weight as well as an ultra-quick drying mechanism that is 8x faster than conventional towels. The towels come with an elastic hanging loop for storage and are treated with polygiene® permanent odour control – handy for when they are packed away and in transit.
Footwear: Garmont Sticky Stone GTX
For the climber looking for a reliable shoe for fast ascents and descents. Precise footing when climbing, well cushioned for the descent thanks to the construction and Vibram® Extended sole with Megagrip. This shoe utilizes the new Double Damper technology for superior shock absorption. This two-part system features an EVA midsole that dampens ground impact and an internal layer of EVA that dampens heel impact. The Sticky Stone GTX® also features the new anatomical erGo-last. The contours of this last are smooth and rounded to closely follow the shape of the foot.
Sleeping: Rab Mythic sleeping bag
Rab claim the Mythic 200 is currently the warmest sleeping bag for its weight in the world. Hand filled with 900 FP R.D.S Certified European Fluorocarbon-free Hydrophobic Down, the Mythic has a Pertex® Quantum 7D inner and outer, proportionally assigned differential cut, ergonomically designed inner collar, internal hood and collar drawcord, ¼ length YKK zip, anti-snag zip guard and angled footbox. The trapezoidal baffle chambers prevent down shift, maximising the warmth-to-weight ratio. At 475g, packing down to 16x39cm, the Mythic 200 is temperature tested to European standard EN13537:2016 with ratings of 6oC (Comfort), 1oC (Limit of Comfort) and -13oC (Extreme).
Tents: Backpacker Flying Tent
The Flying Tent is a 4-in-1 camping system. This innovative design enables you to use the tent as a hammock, hammock tent, ground bivy tent and rain poncho. Made from top quality ultralight durable materials, the Flying Tent is weather resistant with a hydrostatic head rating of 5000mm. The main structure is a hammock; it has an integrated rain fly, mosquito netting and it can be set up in less than 60 seconds. It weighs 2.2 Kg and can fold down to 40 x 34 x 4 cm. An ISPO brand new award winner 2017.