Top trail boot Meindl’s new formed trail and tramping nubuck leather boot, the Bhutan ($589.99), replaces its famed Burma model and arrives in New Zealand carrying plenty of European accolades, especially from outdoor magazines. The UK’s top selling Trail magazine for example, says walking in the Bhutan is ‘like returning to an old friend: the standard bearer for hill-walking performance’. The Bhutan (m – 1600g, w – 1300g) is lighter than the Burma, has a softer cuff, speed lacing eyelets, a waterproof Gore-Tex membrane, internal foot Memory Foam System, full rubber rand and Meindl-inspired Vibram outsole.
Super packable sleeping bag It weighs just 850g and can be crunched into a bike pannier, a kayak cubby hole or your smallest pack. The Marmot Nanowave 50 ($139.95) has an EN comfort rating and can be used down to -30C. Outer fabric is DWR-treated polyester, enclosing synthetic SpiraFil insulation. There’s a full-length zip, two-way zipper sliders and it comes with a compression stuff sack
Techno mountain jacket Macpac has replaced its long standing eVent fabric with Pertex, an air permeable microporous waterproof membrane that the company says might lack a little of eVent’s breathability but compensates in its windproofing and durability, particularly in New Zealand conditions. Macpac’s latest jacket, the Prophet XPD AP ($699.99), is the first in the world to use Pertex Shield AP, the most advanced Pertex fabric. The jacket is a fully featured mountain jacket designed for rugged terrain and extreme weather. It has reinforced shoulders, a double storm flap with gutter, helmet compatible hood, under arm stretch panels and water resistant sliders above the harness position.
Core warmer A jacket that comes in tree frog and scallion green has to be desirable. Such is TNF’s Verto Micro Hoodie ($450), a super light (254g) 800-fill goose down jacket with enough technical fabric to send you cross-eyed (Flashdry, Pertex Quantum, nylon, polester, elastane), all combined and designed to provide a durable, wicking and windproof climbing and tramping garment – or one simply for an extra layer. It has a streamlined fit with elastic-bound hood with extra neck insulation, low-profile hem and cuffs and it’ll compress down into its pocket when not being worn. The Summit Series has a climbing-specific fit.
Pack up your troubles… Lowe Alpine’s AT Kit Bag expedition duffels are loaded with travel features. Made from tough TPU-covered fabric they have minimal seams for durability and improved water resistance. There’s a stashable harness, internal pockets and load compression straps, and tamper-proof zips with locking zippers. The duffel comes in two sizes: 60l ($199.95) and 90l ($229.95).