The popularity of mountaineering has exploded in recent years, bolstered by a passionate consumer cohort that loves braving the elements and exploring the great outdoors.
High-alpine treks are attracting more climbers than ever before, and The North Face is responding with a new release geared toward the sport.
The Summit Series Advanced Mountain Kit is a “breathable, packable, warm and lightweight layering system” made up of 21 products ranging from garments to equipment and footwear.
Launching on May 4, the pieces in the kit will be available for purchase through specialty retailers, select The North Face stores, and on the brand’s website.
The kit was designed in concert with the mountaineering world’s elite athletes, designers and innovators, North Face said in a statement. Professional alpinists David Gottler, Herve Barmasse and Andres Marin collaborated on the project.
“This kit is revolutionizing how professional climbers attempt big objectives and move at high altitude,” said Marin, who climbs professionally for The North Face.
“Through the use of premium material, new technology, and revolutionary construction, this incredibly lightweight system is the most functional gear I’ve ever used, from base camp to summit,” Marin added.
The kit’s development aimed to give athletes “the tools to help them climb faster and more efficiently in the world’s harshest climates,” Scott Melin, global general manager of mountain sports for The North Face, said.
With the collection, the company will debut its latest fabric innovations and technologies.
In addition to Futurelight, a breathable waterproofing process that launched in October, the Advanced Mountain Kit will showcase Cloud Down, which offers increased thermal performance with an innovative asymmetrical construction; 50/50 Down, a breathable down layer with less bulk than traditional options; FutureFleece, a full-loop, lightweight fabric made with octagonal yarn; and Dot Fleece, a base layer that pulls moisture away from the skin through the use of hydrophilic and hydrophobic yarns.
Using these five proprietary materials, The North Face team created 10 garments for the collection, including the Summit AMK L6 parka and pant, Summit AMK L5 Futurelight jacket and pant, Summit L3 pullover hoodie and pant, Summit AMK L2 pullover and pant and Summit AMK L1 crew and pant.
The line also features an array of four glove and mitt styles, each solving for issues like dexterity, warmth and protection.
The brand’s Futurelight technology will also be leveraged in its equipment offering. The AMK Assault Tent, AMK Superlight 10 bag, AMK Spectre 38L pack, AMK Spectre 55L pack, and AMK Base Camp duffel XXL will all feature the waterproof-yet-breathable material.
Three new footwear innovations are included in the Advanced Mountain Kit, including the Summit L3 Insulated Climb gaitor, Summit L2 Supper Approach boot, and Summit Futurelight Down bootie.
In fall of this year, the technologies and materials used in the Advanced Mountain Kit will be made more widely available in the brand’s other Summit Series offerings, which include extreme cold-weather clothing designed for high-alpine conditions.