The Best Gear From Summer Outdoor Retailer 2018

OR 2018 Day II gear patrol nanga 1

As posted earlier, I spent the bulk of this week catching up with friends and checking out the latest and greatest new gear from the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market held in Denver, Colorado. This annual events brings together some of the biggest brands and personalities in the outdoor industry to not only talk about trends and issues, but also to reveal the products that we’ll all be using in the months to come. ORSM is a great combination of amazing people, activities, and outdoor gear that is simply a treat for those of us who get to attend.

As usual, there was far too much gear for one or two people to see in the time allotted. You can spend hours wandering the Colorado Convention Center and still not come close to seeing everything that there is to see. But fortunately for us, several websites have compiled list of the top products that were revealed there, making it easy to sift trough the highlights. For instance, Gear Junkie has one of the most extensive lists that I’ve seen with 16 items earning their “Best in Show” awards. Some of those items included innovative new uses of products from Vibram and an ultralight tent from Nemo.

Outside magazine also provided their list of favorites, although it was a much more modest number with just four items making the cut. That list included the new Garmin InReach Mini and an incredibly lightweight new tent from Big Agnes. My friends over at Popular Mechanics posted from the show too, offering ten new products that caught their eyes. Their favorites included new boots from Danner and a backpack cooler from Hydro Flask. Meanwhile, Gear Institute has offered their selection of favorite new outdoor equipment too, with worthy picks from Patagonia and Black Diamond, amongst others. Finally, Gear Patrol has posted its coverage of Outdoor Retailer, breaking things down into Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3 reports. As you would expect, that means there is a lot of backpacks, sleeping bags, tents, and other items to sort through.

I’ve written a couple of “Best of” articles that will be making their way online on other outlets over the next few days and I’ll be sharing some of my favorite new gear here on The Adventure Blog next week. If you haven’t already gotten your fill of reports from the show, you’ll probably find some of the things on my list to be interesting. One thing is for certain, it is a good time to be a gear-nerd in the outdoor industry.

Kraig Becker