Kootenay Mountain Culture Magazine Reviews Three Pieces of Gear Made Right Here

The editor of Kootenay Mountain Culture Magazine has offered glowing reviews of products crafted by three KORE makers. 

One of the definitive websites dedicated to mountain culture in British Columbia and beyond has featured Kootenay-based manufacturers specializing in outdoor gear. As part of its “Amazon is an F’n River ~Shop Local” Christmas gift guide campaign, the Mountain Culture Group singled out retailers and other companies that are based in the Kootenay region. That included three manufacturers who specialize in outdoor products and who are members of the Kootenay Outdoor Recreation Enterprise (KORE) initiative.

In the first review, editor Vince Hempsall took the Lynx OGT Raven Double Ultralight Headlamp for a late-night spin on his fat bike through the local trail network. In the second review he threw a bunch of ski gear into the new Truckit Bucket Tote, created by Wewerke Design in Trail, BC, and carted it around. The third review centred on the Sundown Backpack made by Northern Ultralight in Nelson, BC. Overall, he was extremely impressed by the products, giving them nothing less than a 9/10 rating and ultimately saying that although buying local “may not always be as slick as getting the latest Apple product, but damn, it feels so much better supporting a guy who lives up the road versus a cauldron of faceless businessmen.” Here is what he has to say about each product.

Lynx OGT Raven Double Ultralight Headlamp

The Raven Double Ultralight Headlamp, created by Lynx Off Grid Technologies in Nelson, BC, was the first review Hempsall did and it was also the most lighthearted. To wit: “Finally, it was time to jump on my fat bike and turn the light on. Verdict? Let’s just say I now know what God felt like on day one,” he writes. “I don’t often quote scripture but the passage in Genesis that reads, “Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good” is an apt description for my first experience riding with the Lynx OGT Raven Double Ultralight Headlamp.”

Aside from the super-powerful brightness, Hempsall went on to list the positive attributes of the light: it only weighs 110 grams the one-button functionality is intuitive; it’s waterproof; it’s easy to snap in and out of the mount; and it “comes with a three-year warranty. Three years! Try to get that guarantee the next time you purchase some dross on Alibaba,” he writes. To read the entire review, visit the story on the Mountain Culture Group website. 

Truckit Bucket Tote by Wewerke Designs

The Truckit Bucket is hand-made by Wewerke Designs in Trail, BC, and was the second local product reviewed by Kootenay Mountain Culture as part of their “Shop Local” Christmas campaign. The 35-litre tote bag features six external mesh pockets and what Hempsall calls “an ingenious feature”: the frame is made from one strand of bike brake cable, which securely seats the bucket portion so it stays open, even when empty, and makes it easy to find your stuff.

The review states that the Truckit Bucket has expandable sides and is large enough to hold ski boots or a 60-metre long 9.8mm climbing rope. “This is now my go-to gear hauler from home to trailhead,” Hempsall writes. “It’s also perfect for grocery shopping or throwing child items into for a trip to the beach.” And, because it’s made of synthetic material, it can simply be hosed out and hung to dry. To read the entire article, visit the Truckit Bucket review on the Mountain Culture Group website. 

Northern Ultralight’s Sundown Backpack

The third locally made product reviewed by Kootenay Mountain Culture‘s editor was the Sundown backpack by Northern Ultralight. Weighing in at just 767 grams, this 46-litre backpack is one of the lightest in the world. As mentioned in the review, if you were to take four iPhones and stack them in your hand, this pack would weigh less than them. Yet there is no shortage of features: side and front pockets, elastic compression straps, ice axe attachment, and built-in whistle on the sternum clip. Hempsall writes, “My favourite components include the volume reduction clips of the bottom of the pack, which allow you to cinch the bag tighter for smaller loads…I also like that the hip belt and aluminum frame can be removed, thus turning the Sundown in an ultra-ultralight day bag.”

Hempsall goes on to say it’s no surprise the pack is so well-designed given that the company’s owner, Scott Matson, has thru-hiked the Pacific Coast Trail from Mexico to Canada and the Continental Divide Trail, both of which are approximately 5,000 kilometres long.  To read the entire article, visit the Northern Ultralight Sundown Backpack review on the Mountain Culture Group website.