- Buyer's Guide
Best New Gear | June 2021
A fun take on tech. A tactical field office for camping. Awesome salutes to sustainability. A survival kit to keep you safe outdoors. And so much more. June’s best new gear is right here. Let’s dive in…
One of the often forgotten items in Peak Design’s carry range, the Field Pouch gets a refresh for 2021. V2 continues to fill the role as the ultimate “wing-bag” but with features that help it stand alone as a minimalist camera carry or EDC bag. New features include enhanced organization with new internal pocket layout, zip and stretch pockets. An included custom carry strap allows for crossbody or shoulder carry. Hook and loop roll top closure allows for easy expansion. Lastly, there are dual Capture anchor points for added flexibility for external camera carry. The Field Pouch V2 is available in new colorways including charcoal, black, and midnight blue.
Tech goes pretty much everywhere with us these days and connects us to one another. So why not let it add some vibrancy and personality to our daily setups? That’s what Bellroy have set out to achieve with their new tech collection. A series of tech and device accessories that bring organization, color, and fun to your EDC. New pieces include the Watch Strap with an eco-tanned leather strap for Apple Watch, the Pod Jacket Pro for Apple AirPods, the Mod Phone Case + Wallet (a nifty phone case and 3-card wallet that snap together), as well as the Flip Case, a sleek hardshell wallet with magnetic access.
Last year Benchmade’s iconic 940 Osborne model celebrated its 20th anniversary. And to round out the celebration in a stylish salute, Benchmade have released the classic colorway as a ‘mini’ variation. Everything that made the original design epic, but slicing in at under 7″ in open length. While Benchmade released the 945BK-1 Mini Osborne last year, this Mini stands out by featuring the classic colors and materials of the original 940 Osborne design including green anodized billet aluminum, purple barrel spacers, and a satin blade. A solid EDC option that brings a subtle pop of color too.
The Terrain 365™ Otter Flip-AT is set to be an EDC staple, offering a flipper version of the popular Otter Slipjoint. Designed to be used in all terrains and even underwater, it features a rustproof, edge-holding Terravantium™ blade. It’s also available in a choice of titanium handles or OD Green G10 scales with titanium liners and liner locking.
A lot of pens are limiting by design. But not BIGiDESIGN’s Bolt Action Pens. These pens are all about flexibility, accommodating over 100 different refills and incorporating an auto-adjusting length and an auto-adjusting collet for minimal tip wiggle. The pens also feature a reversible deep carry pocket clip, a solid metal construction in a range of stylish finishes, and all rounded off with a lifetime guarantee.
Incase continues their partnership with BIONIC with the release of their new Hipsack. It is created from the equivalent of thirteen plastic bottles recovered from marine and coastal environments. It features multiple mesh and zipper storage and organization pockets. There’s an additional exterior zippered pocket and a valuables pocket.
Additionally, the Compact Sleeve, Commuter Backpack, and Accessory Organizer are now available in two new colorways: Baltic Sea and Sand.
Mission Workshop and LA-based lifestyle brand Afterschool Projects have collaborated on a special collection that brings together the DNA of both brands, while introducing a new eye-catching treatment. After lots of trial and error, the duo figured out how to tie-dye Dimension Polyant’s X-Pac cotton face fabric. They came up with three unique camouflage-inspired patterns – Inyo, Mojave, and Hippie; all inspired by the California landscape where both companies are based.
The cornerstone of the collection is the Speedwell Backpack, blending the MW Hauser and the ASP Rucksack to create a perfect EDC companion. Two Sacoche accessory bags are great for quick jaunts around town. And tie-dye shirts, black shorts, and a pair of water bottles round out the collection.
Trakke are at it again with their new super-durable, easily packable Messages Tote. Made out of luxurious waxed canvas and designed for your everyday carry, it can be carried on the shoulder or in hand. Featuring strong webbing straps, three outer pockets (one will comfortably fit the biggest phones), and a metal key loop for making sure the essentials stay in one place. Trakke make elegant solutions for EDC, and they’ve achieved that here with the Messages Tote.
Multifunctional gear is great. Sustainable multifunctional gear? Even better. Osprey’s Daylite series offers a variety of versatile pieces that hop from urban pavements to outdoor trails and bike rides. And they’re made from recycled plastic bottles with a PFC-free DWR fabric coating, supporting Osprey’s mission to help protect the great outdoors while enjoying it. As an added benefit, these pieces are great budget-friendly options and come with Osprey’s All Mighty (Lifetime) Guarantee. The series includes daypacks, travel backpacks, waist packs, duffels, and slings. So whatever your adventure may be, this series can help you get out there and chase it.
When you don’t need to carry a lot, small carry is where it’s at. Enter the MAKR x Monster Children Prism Sacoche Bag. A compact bag that can be worn crossbody or around the waist and which is a convenient size for storing essentials such as your phone, keys, walllet, and even a small camera. Thanks to multiple pockets, it’s also easy to organize your gear, avoiding the frustrating delve-and-rummage to access specific items. The bag comes in a custom-printed “metal” ballistic nylon with splashproof YKK zippers and mil-spec hardware. Handmade in the USA, it’s limited to just 30 units.
The latest addition to Snow Peak’s growing drinking vessel collection, the Aurora is a single-walled bottle in anodized titanium. Designed in Japan and manufactured in Snow Peak’s hometown of Tsubame-Sanjo, the Aurora is formed from a single sheet of titanium for an even and seamless exterior. It’s available in four anodized colorways – pink, yellow, blue and the highly popular rainbow. A standard silver finish is also an option.
Helinox has brought their Tactical Collection to North America for the first time. And to mark the occasion, the company has bolstered it with the new Tactical Field Office. The collection is a rugged and utilitarian line of products that allow outdoor enthusiasts to relax and get work done. It includes Tactical Chair One and Tactical Sunset Chair, two lightweight folding chairs with different sitting positions. The Tactical Table M can be used for food prep, cooking, games, or work. Tactical Cot One Convertible allows for off-the-ground rest. Finally the newest addition, the Tactical Field Office – a lightweight mobile setup weighing just under 5 lbs and consisting of a deployable table and 15L cargo bag for storage, combined into one unit.
Mountain Hardwear are no strangers to making products that perform under pressure. And with their new PCT hiking packs they’ve brought in some new technologies! Efficiency, thoughtful innovation, and comfort-driven; this multi-day pack is a new breed of workhorse for the Mountain Hardwear line. The hover hip belt is tethered to a spring steel frame by four points, allowing it dynamic movement – most importantly side-to-side motion – which most accurately reflects the natural gait of a user’s hips while hiking. The trampoline back panel and hover hip belt feature a blend of tighter and more open woven air mesh to signal immense breathability and give the appearance of a seamless single structure.
The PCT™ also stands as the most richly featured pack in Mountain Hardwear’s line, enhanced by thoughtful and important features like fully recycled shell materials, durable Cordura fabric in the boot, and a DWR coating that is PC-free C0. Time to get hiking!
With summer now firmly on our doorsteps, it’s important to take care of the biggest organ in your body – your skin! After many requests from customers and industry experts alike, Chicago-based natural skincare experts Oars + Alps have launched their first SPF protection line. Filled with gems such as clear sunscreen, anti-aging SPF moisturizer, antioxidant SPF spray, and cooling spray, you can look after your skin this summer while feeling good about their natural, chemical-free processes!
The OPEONGO AERIAL A1 offers an elevated camping experience in more ways than one. This clever design combines a tree tent and hammock in one. Thanks to the sleeping surface that stretches out flat, you get a more comfortable night’s sleep than in a hammock. The suspension system is designed to secure to two trees, allowing you to set up the AERIAL A1 over a variety of terrain including rocks and even rivers. However, if there are no trees available, the AERIAL A1 still functions just fine as a regular tent. The solo-use design also features integrated storage, allowing you to keep essentials tidy and close at hand too.
It’s important to always be prepared when exploring the outdoors. The KEA KIT offers a straightforward and efficient way to always stay prepared, while allowing flexibility for different outings. The modular kit covers five key survival areas including Water, Fire, Shelter, Tools and Medical. The compact system is designed to provide everything you need and nothing you don’t, covering the most essential gear while remaining compact and easily portable. The modular components also allow you to adjust your packing to suit different trips, allowing you to take more or less gear as needed.
We’re still in the early days of the return to the office, so now’s a great time to spruce up that home setup. Grovemade has released a new collection of brass and hardwood desk accessories. They’re all made in their own Portland, OR factory from American Black Walnut wood. The collection includes two planters with a removable brass liner and a pen cup with a brass divider.
There are countless tech sleeves for laptops and tablets. But QWSTION raises the sustainability bar with their Bananatex® Sleeves. Available for 13″ and 16″ MacBook devices, the sleeves offer full product circularity, as they are constructed exclusively from regenerative plant fibers and a few metal parts that can be recycled in existing systems. The sleeves use water-resistant and biodegradable Bananatex® for the shell, custom-made merino wool felt for impact protection and lining, cotton for the interior label, brass-toothed zipper tape, vegetable-tanned leather for the puller, and Tencel® thread made from wood fibers.
Db, the award-winning Scandanavian luggage company, has unveiled the Duplex, a new line of rugged duffel bags that incorporates a series of innovations to make it the ideal duffel to serve the needs of backcountry and off-the-grid adventurers around the world. The Duplex continues Db’s mission of coupling aggressive innovation with meticulous design to redefine travel gear. The release of the Duplex marks the culmination of years of development and design to redefine the perfect duffel bag for adventure travel. The Duplex comes in three sizes – 50, 70, and 90L – and offers an innovative hemispheric design that gives travelers easy access to their gear, and improved ability to organize. It also offers methodically organized compartments and useful external pockets so travelers spend less time trying to find buried gear, as well as reinforced, rugged shoulder straps that allow travelers to comfortably carry the Duplex like a technical pack.
Single compartment, pocketless toiletry bags are going to lead to one thing – a jumbled mess. Not to mention a sticky jumbled mess if liquids leak. But the Gravel Explorer MAX Toiletry Bag tackles a variety of toiletry and grooming items with ease (including larger items like brushes and styling irons). Multiple pockets and separate compartments keep all your items neat, easily accessible, and separate (great for keeping your toothbrush away from your nail clippers!). For added travel ease, the toiletry kit also includes a TSA-friendly removable pouch for liquids.
WANDRD, best known for their photography carry solutions, have launched a packing cube bundle to help get the rest of your travel kit organized and tidy. The three-piece kit (small, medium, large) features cubes with a see-through front panel for quickly differentiating contents, an expansion/compression zipper, expandable laundry pocket (large only), and side grab handles. Lastly, they designed the cubes to be half the size of the next one up, making them easier to arrange. Speaking of sizes, they range from 1.5L to 5.6L and weigh as little as 1.1 oz.