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Kelty Redwing 32 (2014)

£80.00

The Redwing 32 is a quirky effort from a brand continuing to make inroads into the UK outdoor market. Kelty has a strong following helped by the versatile nature of their products. It makes gear for Special Forces, so you could expect the pack to have a rather ‘desert storm’ feel to it and it does: there are many pockets, ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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OMM Classic 32 (2014)

£70.00

One for the lightweight essentialist, the OMM Classic 32 is a popular rucksack with racers and minimalists, and it earns its chops admirably in this regard. With a ‘stripped’ weight of 555g, the Classic’s secret is that its back system can be removed and used as a short sleeping mat, which obviously enhances its appeal to those used to superlight ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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The North Face Pursuit Side Zip Pant (2014)

£100.00

The North Face’s Pursuit Side Zip Pant is a reasonably lightweight option at 321g for a size medium, so you won’t mind packing this into your rucksack and carrying it just in case it rains. It’s made from a 2.5 layer fabric, meaning there is no scrim or mesh lining inside, so it may get a little more clammy than ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Marmot Precip (2014)

£85.00

To stay dry in the hills, walkers need not only great clothing design but also a great fabric. The Precip is a well-established lightweight jacket but this year Marmot has introduced a new fabric to its range called NanoPro, claiming it is 43 per cent more breathable than the brand’s previous coated fabric. This could make the Marmot Precip the ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Kayland Comet Mid (2014)

£130.00

The Kayland Comet Mid has got to be the coolest-looking boot on the market at the moment. Slick suede uppers with understated style that would be at ease in any urban setting belie a pair of very capable climbing boots. The uppers are very supportive yet ultra-comfortable, thanks to well-thought-out and nicely balanced use of padding and layering. Inside a ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Black Diamond ReVolt (2014)

£70.00

The Black Diamond ReVolt is designed to meet the increase in the availability of USB recharging facilities, such as laptop computers, solar panels and battery packs. This headtorch can be used with standard alkaline batteries, or fitted with rechargeable NiMH AAA batteries that can be recharged in situ, just by connecting it to a laptop, solar panel or battery pack. ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Petzl Tikka RXP (2014)

£90.00

Petzl has dominated the headtorch market for decades and its latest advance, Reactive Lighting technology, is now being used in the Tikka RXP. The torch can pump out 215 lumens, which is enough to light up navigational features at some distance; but what’s really neat is that the Reactive Lighting technology allows the torch to automatically adjust the amount of ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 5
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Deuter ACT Trail 28 (2014)

£90.00

This one prides itself on its attention to feminine detail, not least in the lovely faux-flower that comes attached to it. The shoulder straps curve neatly round the bust and the weight disperses neatly round the hips, establishing it as a genuine women’s pack. The capacity is huge for the stated 28L; the main compartment is very deep and there’s ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
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Osprey Kyte 36 (2014)

£100.00

Like all Osprey packs this is sleek, beautiful and packed with features. It has a really effective back system which is adjustable via a Velcro panel, and lets your back breathe without impeding your packing. The shoulder straps and hip-belt really are designed for a woman. The hip-fins encircle the torso almost completely and contain two huge pannier pockets – ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
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Lowe Alpine Yocton 35 (2014)

£70.00

A great-looking, slimline pack with robust face fabric, devoted to moving light and fast rather than with all mod cons. There’s no rain cover, for one thing. Nothing is chunky here; the shoulder straps are narrow with very minimal padding, and the attachment and compression straps are also slim and lightweight, as are the clips which connect them. It sits ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Vango Transalp 30 (2014)

£50.00

The best thing about the Transalp is the ease of access: the entire front panel unzips and flips up if you lie it down, allowing instant access to the contents. It fits securely and the back system is a pleasing mix of padded panels and subtly concave suspension, which means air can circulate around your back without the load being ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Berghaus Freeflow 30+6 (2014)

£85.00

An exceptionally comfortable, robust and intuitive rucksack. The adjustable sliding harness is easy to master so you really can tailor it to your height. Bright internal panels mean it’s easy to find what you’re looking for, and it has a removable internal divider: you can shrink the main section for smaller loads (and use the lower section for something you ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
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Vaude Triset 35+8 (2014)

£77.00

This colossal pack swallows anything: jacket after fleece after drybag went flying in with no problem, even before we’d expanded the extra side storage areas and shoved in two more jackets. The lid pocket is equally cavernous. Yet while it feels like a sack in the loading, when worn it disperses the weight with ease and feels incredibly secure and ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
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Fjallraven Friluft 35 (2014)

£115.00

A virtually flawless rucksack which is a pleasure to wear thanks to some hugely supportive hip-fins that are so sturdy, they almost massage your lower back as you walk. Packing is a little tricky if you’ve put in a hydration system, but it still takes a lot of filling. A curved aluminium frame makes it very light and the bottom ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Smartwool NTS Mid 250 Zip (2014)

£75.00

At the top end of the price range, we find this: supremely comfortable merino wool, fitted but not clingy, a completely natural thermostat and easy to wash too. And as a bonus, it's muted enough to hide all its technical brilliance in a top that looks profoundly ‘normal’. I wore it on four separate trips without washing it, and it ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Paramo Grid Classic (2014)

£50.00

If you want a warm, clever and versatile top that doesn’t look too flashy, look no further than the Grid. It’s a relaxed fit, but it’s made with a thick, insulating fabric (almost like fleece) which is so comfy I was still wearing it as an outer layer in late autumn. The distinctive grid pattern of this Parameta G fabric ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Montane Bionic (2014)

£65.00

As its name suggests, this is a top which means business. The Bionic is sleek and technical, with a slightly looser fit than the other base-layers to ensure ease of movement for strenuous days out in the hills. It’s incredibly lightweight and floats against the skin like gossamer – perfect for sweaty climbs on otherwise chilly days. But it’s the ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Icebreaker Oasis (2014)

£70.00

Here comes the merino champion: luxurious, comfortable and expensive. Unlike the coarse, itchy wool which comes from your bog-standard sheep, merino sheep produce exceptionally fine and soft wool which feels like silk next to the skin. And with this top, Icebreaker have engineered it into a top-of-the-range, deluxe base-layer. Made from 100% merino, the Oasis is tailored to be snug ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Mammut GoWarm (2014)

£60.00

Here we get a bit more athletic. This is a high-performance technical top and the tightest fit in the men’s group, although it adapted nicely to my body shape after three outings and careful washes. It’s a complex blend: a merino and polyester face fabric plus a polyester-only inner lining, which together offer great temperature regulation on hard climbs. There’s ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Sherpa Adventure gear Dikila (2014)

£50.00

Though the heaviest base-layer in the women’s group, the Dikila is surprisingly versatile. Using their own blend of synthetic fabrics called Dry-Zone, Sherpa have created a top which can double up in both a summer and winter wardrobe. It kept me warm on low-level strolls during the cold snaps of November, but it’s also breathable enough to cope with warmer ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Snowline Snowspikes Light (2014)

£55.00

As the name suggests, Snowline Snowspikes Light are much lighter than the other similar models, being just 267g (pair, size XL) while similar products such as the Kahtoola Microspikes (430g) are heavier. The weight saving is due to the rubber cradle and metal chains being thinner, but the metal spikes are the same size. You get 12 spikes that are ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Hillsound Trail Crampon (2014)

£50.00

As the ice gets harder and the snow cover gets deeper you need more, longer spikes to keep a grip. But you also need a unit that will stay on the shoe and not roll off when you traverse a slope. The Hillsound Trail Crampon has 11 spikes that are 1cm in length, and the unit is held on the ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 4
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Alpkit Filo (2014)

£120.00

Alpkit gear is only available directly from the manufacturer, but the price is stunning for what you get. The Filo is very warm thanks to a good amount of good-quality down, which is packed into a shell made of ripstop nylon with a water-resistant treatment. The detachable hood benefits from a wired peak, but there’s no volume adjuster and it ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 0
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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Marmot Thermo Hoody (2014)

£100.00

The divisions between next to skin base layers, insulating mid-layers and waterproof outer layers are becoming ever more blurred as brands develop products to suit every style of outdoor activity and the specific needs of different types of users. The Marmot Thermo Hoody is a thin mid layer, but it could also be considered as a thick base layer. For ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 3
  • Owners' rating rating is 0
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OMM Classic 32 (2014)

£70.00

One for the lightweight essentialist, the OMM Classic 32 is a popular rucksack with racers and minimalists, and it earns its chops admirably in this regard. With a ‘stripped’ weight of 555g, the Classic’s secret is that its back system can be removed and used as a short sleeping mat, which obviously enhances its appeal to those used to superlight ...

  • LFTO.com rating rating is 3
  • Owners' rating rating is 0

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