Favorite Finds At Winter OR


You would think that a trade show promoting backcountry gear and human-powered athleticism would be long on fashion sense and footwear. But at the Outdoor Retailer Show in Salt Lake City, it was all about the head-to-toe style for 2015.

Thousands of exhibitors displayed everything from underwear to purses as the show has become a catchall for slope to street steeze- more so than at SIA. Just because you never pass through those avalanche gates doesn’t mean you won’t look awesome in that Arc’teryx coat. Get my drift?


Speaking of drifts, no element will penetrate to these boots from Timberland. Fully waterproof, insulated and lugged on the sole for functional style.

Even Timberland’s junior boots come with that ‘wow’ factor.

KEEN‘s new winter hikers were getting attention for their use of PU in the sole for greater durability. Check out the display showing the difference in support over time between EVA and PU constructions. EVA gets mashed down quite a bit.

Lowa‘s big announcement at the Show was their entry into the rock climbing world. Climbers head indoors when the weather turns nasty so Lowa has designed shoes for both comfort and performance while you wait out the storms. They are made with Bio-Active anti-microbial lining for stink-free play and a roomier toe box. The Falco comes in a lace and Velcro edition.

Another shoe destined to go the distance is from Kamik. The is a three-season, injection molded neoprene boot that’s out to give Bogs a run for their money in middle schools across the nation. The American made boots have a cinch collar to keep warmth in and cold snow out and outsoles that grip in snow, slush, ice and mud.

Who says you ever have to learn to tie shoelaces? Between Kamiks and Boa lacing system you’re all set.

They can run around in these fun slippers from Acorn when they get home. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Acorn Moc, we all got to take home a pair of the fleece feet marshmallows. The rubber sole on the Moc makes it great for stepping outside to check on the dog but if you plan to do more walking on vacation take a look at the new Pakems. The lightweight slipper shoe has a stiffer sole for support and pack easily for the plane.


Make sure you pair whatever’s on your feet with a technical. Lorpen, Smartwool, DarnTough, Point6, Fits, ThorLo, and FoxRiver all represented with varying contructions and designs.


Dog lovers never forget Rover so outdoor companies don’t either. Grab this Ruffwear cover for your pooch’s pack the next time you take him out in the rain and snow. After all, you have covers for your own backpack, why not his?

This hot little number from Kurgo is a rain jacket in the winter and floatation vest in the summer depending on the removeable padding.

Who has room for kibble with all this gear you’re hauling around? Stuff a few Turbopup bars in your glove box instead. These complete meal replacement bars are a bit spendy so you wouldn’t want to use them all the time but they’re great in a pinch. And all dogs but Chihuahuas love them. (But are those really dogs anyway?)


Backcountry clothes are looking more and more resorty as frontcountry skiers are heading out the gates.

This is Mountain Hardwear‘s new Barnsie Jacket.

Flylow says they use the same factories as The Northface and Arc’teryx so the construction is just as bomber without the sticker shock. I just like how they hang.

My favorite part of the OR show is discovering new companies that are like the Davey to the Salomon Goliaths. These Flipside hats for youth and adults are not only adorable but eco-conscious. They’re made from upcycled and sustainably sourced materials with a portion of sales going to local schools and non-profits. Because they use ‘waste’ from bigger clothing companies no two hats are the same.

Carhartt has long been in the outdoor game but next year it won’t be all work dudes. The women’s jeans get a makeover and they’ll add all sorts of cute midlayers like this reversible plaid vest. Can’t you just picture me on the ranch in this?


Sage is dying for one of the neoprene lunch boxes from Natural Life. Every little tough girl should carry one.

I just loved this little USB rechargeable lantern from Goal Zero. The Lighthouse immediately reappeared in my daughter’s bedroom to aid in her late night reading. When the battery dies she can crank the light.

Now that you’re all styled out, pack it up in Thule’s new ski bag. We usually shove as much as we can into those bags so Thule developed inner bags that slip over the tips of skis and boards to keep your clothes and gear from slipping around and getting sliced on sharp edges.

Of course, no outdoors seeker is ever fully styled without a sheepskin wheel cover to keep your mitts warm in the winter and cool in the summer. RJ’s fuzzies‘ will keep my hands on the wheel all year long. It’s like a cat that needs constant petting.


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