Credit: SMC Gear
SMC Endeez$20; SMC Gear
Every climber knows you should always tie knots in the end of your rope when rappelling so you don’t accidentally drop into the abyss. But mistakes are made; knots are forgotten. The solution: Endeez, two aluminum cylinders that attach to the ends of a climbing rope without affecting strength or performance. The rigid tubes let you climb normally—they won’t get snagged in cracks—but they’ll jam in a belay or descending device when you’re rappelling.
The same technology that keeps four million Kenyans safe from water-borne diseases may be the simplest and easiest way to avoid beaver fever and Montezuma’s revenge. The oversized straw—just suck water through it to filter—removes almost all bacteria and protozoan parasites (including giardia and cryptosporidium). One straw can filter 1,000 litres of water, with no chemicals.
Credit: Kuat Innovations
Kuat Bottle Lock$35; Kuat Innovations
Like a gadget from James Bond’s Q, the Kuat Bottle is not the water bottle it appears to be. Hidden inside are five feet of bike lock cable (8 mm braided steel). Just pull out the cable at the bike rack, wrap it around your steed and then lock it back into the bottle. There’s even a hidden pocket at the bottom for you to stash keys.
Credit: Geiger Rig
Geigerig Rig 700Pack $130, Pump $54; Geiger Rig
Despite their many unique features, all hydration bladders work the same—you suck on the hose and water comes out. That is, all but Geigerrig. A ball pump on the shoulder strap pressurizes the bladder (but doesn’t fill it with air), so when you bite on the hose valve, the under-pressure-water squirts into your mouth. No suck required. It makes drinking easier, especially when you’re breathing hard, but it also turns your hydration bladder into a tap for your dog or for cleaning your hands.
Columbia Flyin' Dry Shell$280; Columbia
Even a highly breathable waterproof jacket is going to feel a little sweaty when you pick up the pace. But the Flyin’ Dry scores lowest of all on our not-so-scientific “slimy scale.” The proprietary Omni-Wick Evap compound built into the Omni-Dry waterproof-breathable membrane increases the jacket’s internal surface area to a football-field size, cranking the potential rate of moisture movement. Basically, sweat moves faster so you feel drier.