November 25th 2015 - Written by: Osprey Packs

Touching the Edge: A Nolan’s 14 Journey with Osprey Athlete Ben Clark

On Friday September 25th at approximately 6:00 am MST Osprey Athlete, mountaineer, filmmaker and ultra-runner Ben Clark kicked off his 6th attempt to complete Nolan’s 14. Nolan’s 14 is a challenging traverse that links 14 of Colorado’s 14,000-foot summits, one that covers nearly 100 miles of some of the Sawatch Range’s toughest terrain, one that must be completed in less than 60 hours.

Ben shares his reflections on “touching the edge” during this attempt:

In frigid air and with dreary gaze I saw that an ascending moon lit the long and toiling spine of rock that sends mountain climbers down the East side of 14,196′ Mt. Yale and back to the lowest point along a route called Nolan’s 14, connecting 14 Colorado 14,000′ peaks-14er’s.

Ben Clark Nolans 14 Osprey Packs September 2015

Just 3 hours in from the summit of Mt. Massive, Ben Clark points to the third of 14 peaks, La Plata Peak (19 miles away)

I was alone in the dark past midnight on my second sleepless night — 10 peaks and 43 hours into a single push across these mountains. An hour after reaching the summit, I laid down in a small pocket of pyramid shaped rocks and layered my storm shell over my legs barely blocking the winds and sub freezing chill. It was my second chance for a 15 minute nap that night. It was here that when I awoke around 3 am, I knew I had pushed my limits and that moving forward was only part of the answer. I had just ramped up the pace for a few hours and I was hypoxic-altitude sick and making slow decisions — my best option since rushing anything through this maze of rock in the predawn hours could lead to amplifying an already temporarily suspenseful fate in what was to be a full and focused effort to descend.

I like challenges — I do.

I am ok chipping away at the most complicated ones that I engage a piece at a time. I can.

An aerial view of Mt. Massive and the northern end of the Nolan's 14 route.

An aerial view of Mt. Massive and the northern end of the Nolan’s 14 route.

But there are some challenges that transform us. If even once, then maybe twice in our lives we will have an opportunity for that.  For me, it is being open to the hard work and reality that those challenges require to execute that reveals the value of the knowledge inside a challenge, the virtue of a transformation I need to make.  I completed an effort like that in my early 20’s, climbing Mt. Everest’s North/NE Ridge.  I think I’m on the second great challenge of my life with Nolan’s 14 and this line has revealed to me more about who I am than any other.

Judiciously and with a cynicism reserved for only my most tired and underfueled self, I talked myself down the ridge, spiting the wind every step of the way. The year before and hours ahead of my current 45 hour time, I had been in a similar circumstance on this peak — Mt Yale — where descending in the dark during freak flooding forced an end to an attempt on this line, just like the previous year when I reached this 70 mile point and the route became engulfed by snowstorms. Both times were heavily supported and I was on the route with great friends — now I was alone and a sniffling mess. As I contoured along Yale’s mighty ridge this third and arguably much more difficult time I began to falter mentally and to lose track of time and where I was. I laid down in a clearing by some dead trees just below treeline and decided to sleep again hoping for daybreak to light and reveal the way, this time I didn’t set an alarm and just like that I was out, out in the cold frozen air.

The last rays of light on the summit ridge of La Plata peak, entering the first night.

The last rays of light on the summit ridge of La Plata peak, entering the first night.

When I approach a challenge in the mountains, it is not always clear at the outset how it all wraps together, or why it will. There are a lot of variables to the type of experiences I wish to learn from. But if the process is always fun, and the long term benefit of health is not risked, then I pursue it based on merits that serve my intrinsic motivation to explore.  I do it to do it. I’d like to think that as a mountain climber I’m pretty fit and that it matters, but more or less, I think I am just strong willed-fitness is a by product of that.  But with that fitness and my experience of adopting challenges I know I have to really work at to complete, I can find myself a long way away from anyone or anything that most folks are going to find reasonable to be living for, therein lies the challenge: I reach beyond limits — others and my own — and hope I have the courage and confidence to stand up against myself all alone in the most extreme low points of circumstance.

The summit ridge of Mt. Missouri at sunrise the first morning

The summit ridge of Mt. Missouri at sunrise the first morning

When I woke up a sliver of faint blue light lit the horizon extending in front of me. I was cold and shivering, my throat was constricted, I had laid there too long and sunrise wasn’t coming fast enough.  I was sick and mentally reduced to just a few thoughts; The memory of popping a Dayquil the day before I started to ward off the cold I had, my hand being my 3 year-old’s Kleenex and us joking about it, how happy it made me to walk him home from school that day—Then back to the mountains my thoughts ran as I waited for direction from inside.

“Could I move?”

“Should I?”

“Man, I had already lost my way looking for a trail and just wanted the sun to come up so I could see.”

“Why the hell isn’t anyone answering me?” I wondered. Because I was alone…

I alerted my friends and family that I was sick and cold using my tracking device and a cell phone. Within 40 minutes, my father had instructed me on how to find the trail. Using my reference point on a track that uploaded every 10 minutes and showed my position on a detailed map online, I was just a half mile from it. I started running, as planned months before, as soon as I reached the trail. My granny gear auto pilot had taken over. After all the starts and stops I still had it; the relentless will to stick to a plan.

The view of Mt. Harvard from the summit Ridge of Mt Columbia, the 9th peak.

The view of Mt. Harvard from the summit Ridge of Mt Columbia, the 9th peak.

In the last 3 summers I have become obsessed with this line and completing it on foot in one single push from start to finish. This was the sixth run over 30 miles I have done on this route. I think that going alone on this 94 mile line with 92,000′ of vertical change has been the most mind-blowing experience of my life. It is the most committing mountain objective, stacked on top of a lifetime of already committing mountain objectives.  No cocaine, no acid, no drug could blow a mind like this…just old dirt and rock.  And they whup.

And I keep coming back to learn from them.


Selfie on the summit of Mt. Columbia, 36 hours in!

As dawn rose and the dim light of my headlamp receded into the suns diffused rays I lay down after running a mile, passed out again on the side of the trail in that old mountain dirt, coughing. I set my alarm on the iPhone and placed it in my chest pocket one last time. I woke 15 minutes later and quickly hustled down the trail. There I saw a man hiking, then another, and then two more. Or maybe I didn’t. I will not exaggerate my state, but many have reported hallucinations near the 40 hour mark of sustained efforts like this. I was sick, I knew that, but felt I could still cough it out and get my head back together.

The view back toward La Plata Peak at sunrise the first morning from Mt. Missouri

The view back toward La Plata Peak at sunrise the first morning from Mt. Missouri

As I neared the valley lowpoint at 9300′ I was not overwhelmed by the heaps of sub-alpine oxygen, instead it was the immediate reentry into cellular reception signaled by text after text coming in. I kept walking, I kept thinking, I kept walking.

“Don’t give up.”

“Keep going.”


People were coming to meet me at the end, I would have support if I needed to get down from the next peak.

I hiked for a few more miles in the honey colored light of a Sawatch sunrise and blinded by the sun embraced the day again from a trailside stump where I brewed one final cup of coffee on the trail, my third since starting two days prior. As with anywhere, this place specifically to find myself having been alone 46 hours and traversed 10 peaks over 70 miles through two nights was a place of sanctity. But not one I could keep up, I was just a visitor. The first one on this end to have gone so far, but not the last.

As the sun slowly crested the ridge it washed over me from my neck down and I sipped that semi-warm brew, just to soothe my throat. That 180 calories fueled the next thought, after running on nothing for 6 hours.

It was time to let go. I was sick, I didn’t recognize myself. I was going to blow it if I kept on. Someone would have to get me. And that would mean losing. This I could own.

And there I figured out why. I figured out why I did it and why I’ll try it again. Why it doesn’t matter. Why it does.

Every moment I was alive and connected to the environment alone for feedback, for stimulation, for direction. I just went out and flowed it and life led around by the mountains was good, until the end when it was just euphoric, when my own limitations brought it down to the human level, to my limit. But unpolished and wild as it may be — I’ve touched the edge for the second time.  I’ll take that time in that place of dreams, it is why I live my life.

Ben and Charlie Clark exploring Town Park in Telluride, Co.

Ben and Charlie Clark exploring Town Park in Telluride, Co.

Watch Ben’s film, “Nolan’s 14

Nolan’s 14 from Pheonix and Ash Productions on Vimeo.

Keep up with Ben:



Read Ben’s thoughts on previous Nolan’s 14 attempts and how he prepares for this formidable traverse.

About Osprey Athlete Ben Clark:

“I have shared some accomplishments with luck, and a couple of great colleagues, like most people aged 35 years. Yes, there are experiences that stand out but the impact of that 17 years and the meaning of what came forward, far exceeded the tangible values of grades on hard things I did with some real strong people that became like family to me.  Nonetheless, my bucket list included Everest’ben_clark_osprey_packs_athletes summit forever ago and putting up a few mixed climbs in the Himalayas while on a quest skiing them. But different from some I backed away-I’ve saved friends lives and my own has been spared, often off nothing but a photo I pursued fresh tracks on virgin terrain-obsessively and then mostly not when I became a dad. Simply put after all that, I am a mountain athlete and pioneering within them motivates me.”



October 21st 2015 - Written by: Kelsy

Osprey Athlete Kim Havell Tests Osprey Gear in the Mountains of Patagonia

Osprey athlete Kim Havell has skied on all 7 continents, with 1st descents on 4, and adventured in over 50 countries. During her travels, she has climbed and skied big peaks in the Himalaya & the Karakorum, the highest mountains across the US, with 1st descents both at home and abroad including in the Arctic and Antarctic. Kim has numerous first female descents in Southwest Colorado, climbed and skied both the Grand Teton and Mt. Moran in a 2 day period, completed multiple ascents and ski descents of 13ers & 14ers, and cut lines on peaks in France, Italy, Canada, Switzerland, Alaska, Russia, and Japan.


This October, Kim found herself seeking adventure in the Patagonia region of South America. On this trip, Kim’s goal is to enjoy life on the road while discovering big ski lines before the winter season ends in the mountains of our hemispheric counter-part. As a gear-hauling company focused on design and function, we thought this would to be the perfect opportunity for Kim to test new women’s-specific Osprey Packs gear to be released in 2016. As Osprey Product Coordinator Rosie Mansfield explains, “(Athlete Testing) enables us to provide insight to the unique fit, function and aesthetics of this new technical women’s ski line from the perspective of a professional athlete.”

At Osprey, a key philosophy in designing gear has been “To Inspire & Ease Your Journey.” To stay true to our commitment, it takes feedback at all stages of a pack’s development, from our consumers, professionals athletes like Kim and other Osprey athletes. Kim Havell has been a key player in the design, testing, development, fit and end-use of our women’s-specific pack offerings and will continue to assist us in pushing the envelope so that we can offer innovative, groundbreaking products that provide the best design and function for woman who get outdoors.

We caught up with Kim to ask her a few questions about her upcoming trip to Patagonia.

Stay tuned for more from Kim and her adventures while living on the road in South America.

Ultimate goal for this trip? What about little goals?

KH: Both are the same – ski some fun peaks and great lines and embrace the culture and flexibility of life on the road.

Have you been to South America before?

KH: I’ve been to Bariloche, Buenos Aires, and Mendoza – did a ski expedition on Aconcagua a few years ago.


What makes this trip so special? What are you doing different this time around?

KH: We’re picking up a fellow Ice Axe Expeditions guide’s van and driving and skiing down Ruta 40 from Bariloche to Patagonia. There’s a real freedom to this trip and it is an accessible option for those who love to backcountry ski and explore big mountains.

What do you typically eat on a trip like this?

KH: Well we’re going to meat country so we’ll shop and eat local. And, I’ll have a healthy supply of PROBARS for our ski days in the mountains.


Do you have any special rituals or traditions when you’re on the road for long periods of time?

KH: Check snow and weather every morning and evening. And, I’ll bring some lavender and eucalyptus so the van smells nice.

What are some of the things you’re most looking forward to about this trip? 

KH: Seeing the lake districts and après with local vino.


How do you scout or research trips like this one to Patagonia?

KH: I am always watching weather and conditions in remote or interesting places. When certain opportunities pop up or things align, I make a spontaneous trip happen or plan for something down the road. Usually, I see, hear, or read something that is of interest and a trip grows and cultivates out of that.


In regards to what you pack, how was this trip different and what do you do when preparing for these types of trips?

KH: We are car camping so it is lighter packing than most expeditions but we have a great deal of gear to bring along. My ski companion, Jessica Baker, and I have compiled a comprehensive list of necessary items and we’ll pack off of that.

What do you do when you’re not skiing?

HV: I’m usually in the mountains – hiking, running, climbing, or with horses.


Anything else you’re currently psyched on for this year? 

KH: My boyfriend, a 4th generation Outfitter in WY, and I just adopted 3 mustangs and 3 burros from the BLM wild horse program at the Honor Farm in Riverton, WY. So, I am excited to work with my 2-yr-old horse, Otter, over the coming months and learn how to train and work with him in the field.

Current favorite Osprey pack(s)?

KH: The Osprey Kyte Series, Variant Series & Mutant Series.

Be sure to keep up with Kim as she plans for bigger and better in 2016:





October 17th 2015 - Written by: alison

CROP-fit: Holy Terror Farm Ski Training & Harvesting with Osprey Athlete Alison Gannett

I feel the chill in the air this week, watching the leaves turn, and suddenly everyone starts to talk about skiing/snowboarding. We can’t help ourselves — powder is just too addictive. Here at our homestead, Holy Terror Farm, we can ski and bike out our door AND still manage to grow and raise almost 100% of our own food.

At first I was worried that I wouldn’t be “training” as hard here in Paonia as I was living in Crested Butte. Little did I know how hard farming was! We joke daily about starting a new fitness trend – “CROP-fit” – hauling water, food, animals (weights!), weeding (yoga), herding dogs/animals (cardio). Farming like Little House on the Prairie involves using every muscle in the body, in a fantabulously comprehensive way. Ever tried lifting a 400 pound pumpkin?

Worried that you don’t have a farm for your training? Stay with me and I’ll give you my favorite ski/snowboard trick below.

Right now, we are harvesting about 2000 pounds of winter squashes.


I pick about 100 pounds of tomatoes a day, seed and core them, solar-cook them down to paste and then can them.

Back Camera

For winter preservation of zillions of peppers, I ferment them, dry them, or roast them.


Last week, our Scottish Highland cows met their maker and are now in the freezer, along with their much coveted fat which we use everyday – for cooking, chicken/dog feed, candles and soaps.


I’ve learned firsthand how our ancestors kept fit — and it didn’t involve a gym or any fitness gimmicks. Fitness was an inherent part of survival and life. Incredibly, now when I ski, bike or surf, I find myself even more all-over fit than when I was “training” in a less farm-focused manner and with no injuries.

But asked what my favorite quick way to get in shape for ski season, I will always resort to running in the mountains — preferably bounding downhill with a loaded pack (Osprey of course!). That simulates those muscles that contract when you are riding your board/boards and the extra weight make those muscles respond more vigorously.

You will know that you have achieved your plyometric training when you find it difficult to sit down or go downstairs. Voila – your first days of skiing/boarding will be a piece of cake now.

A silhouette of a woman hiker on the Biafo glacier in the Karakoram Himalaya in Pakistan

ALISON GANNETT is a self-sufficient farmer, World Champion Extreme FreeSkier, pro mountain Alison Gannett and Spot by Jim Brettbiker, award-winning global cooling consultant, and founder of the multiple non-profits. In addition to her busy careers as an athlete, athlete ambassador and keynote speaking, she runs her KEEN Rippin Chix Camps – women’s steep skiing, biking and surf camps around the globe, featuring Osprey Packs. She has starred in many movies, TV shows, and magazines receiving many awards for her work including National Geographic’s Woman Adventurer of the Year, Powder Magazine’s “48 Greatest Skiers of All Time” and Outside Magazine’s “Green All-Star of theYear” next to Leonardo DiCaprio and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Always an advocate of walking the talk, she has reduced her carbon footprint in half and has also spent half a lifetime working to make the world a better place. In 2010, she and her husband Jason bought Holy Terror Farm, beginning the next chapter of personal health and self-sustainability.

October 7th 2015 - Written by: Joe Stock

Chamonix Envers with Osprey Athlete Joe Stock

Chamonix is the world center for climbing. The Envers Refuge is where climbers and guides go on vacation. It’s a mellow scene, but the rock routes are huge. This year Cathy and I came to Chamonix prepared for the Envers with a double rack, twin ropes and our Osprey Mutant packs. Between weather and work, we squeezed in a day and a half of climbing at the Envers. Lucky us!

Cathy Flanagan rock climbing at the Envers, Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France.

The Refuge de l’Envers is perched above the Mer de Glace Glacier, on a buttress of rock that splits seas of granite.

Cathy Flanagan rock climbing at the Envers, Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France.

It’s a three-hour approach to the Envers after taking the Montenvers Railway from Chamonix. From the Montenvers we dropped down ladders, cables and moraine to the withering Mer de Glace Glacier. Each year the glacier drops, exposing more teetering moraine. We hiked a mile up the Mer de Glace, then climbed ladders to the Envers Refuge. Typical of the Alps, route finding was a no-brainer.

Cathy Flanagan rock climbing at the Envers, Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France.

After the approach, Cathy and I dropped our packs and climbed La Piege. Two hundred meters of 6a+ granite crack climbing just five minutes from the refuge.

Cathy Flanagan rock climbing at the Envers, Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France.

The next day we climbed Amazonia, a 370-meter 6a+ on the First Point of the Nantillions. Here’s Cathy leading a polished slab on the second pitch. For us the route was 13 pitches of clean granite climbing. It’s not the orange granite like above the Vallee Blanche on the Midi or Capucin, but it’s still really good.


Cathy Flanagan rock climbing at the Envers, Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France.

Cathy near the summit of Amazonia. It took eight quick rappels to get down. We’ll be back for more!



Osprey Packs Athlete Joe Stock is an internationally Joe_Stock_Osprey_Packs_Athletecertified IFMGA mountain guide based in Anchorage, Alaska. He has been climbing and skiing around the world for 25 years with extensive time in the mountains of Alaska, the Southern Alps of New Zealand, the North Cascades of Washington and Colorado’s San Juan Mountains. Since 1995, Joe has been freelance writing for magazines starting with a feature article in Rock & Ice on climbing the Balfour Face on Mount Tasman in New Zealand. Since then, he’s published numerous articles on adventures and mountain technique in rags such as Climbing, Backcountry, Alaska, Climbing, Trail Runner, Men’s Health and Off Piste.


September 26th 2015 - Written by: Osprey Packs

Nolan’s 14: Follow Ben Clark’s Epic 93 mi Traverse in Real Time

Ben Clark Nolans 14 Osprey Packs September 2015 Day 2

On Friday September 25th at approximately 6:00 am MST Osprey Athlete, mountaineer, filmmaker and ultra-runner Ben Clark kicked off his 6th attempt to complete Nolan’s 14. Nolan’s 14 is a challenging traverse that links 14 of Colorado’s 14,000-foot summits, one that covers nearly 100 miles of some of the Sawatch Range’s toughest terrain, one that must be completed in less than 60 hours.

Ben shared his thoughts on this attempt earlier this week and earlier this month.

Follow Ben’s Nolan’s 14 journey this weekend:
Delorme: share.delorme.com/BenjaminClark
Instagram: @bclarkmtn and @ospreypacks


Sunrise 14er Ben Clark Nolans 14 Osprey Packs September 2015

Osprey employee Scott Robertson pretty much sums up everyone at Osprey’s awe and appreciation for Ben’s efforts and accomplishments with the following reflection: (more…)

September 15th 2015 - Written by: Kelsy

Short and Sweet…Wait, I Mean Steep: Climbing Mt Sneffels

Osprey Packs Marketing Director, Rob BonDurant

Photos by Osprey Packs Marketing Director, Rob BonDurant

On the weekend of August 22nd, I was joined by 5 other Osprey employees on a mission to climb Mt. Sneffels just outside of Telluride, CO. The plan was pretty basic and thrown together at the last minute, but the weather was shaping up to be great and we had an awesome crew that was both excited and eager for the adventure ahead.

Osprey Packs Rob BonDurant Sneffels Colorado Starry Sky

Geoff, Rosie, Scott, Rob, Vince, and I all left work Friday evening and piled into cars headed for Ouray, CO – a short 2 hour and 15 minute drive away. After a pit stop in Telluride for some food and cheap beer, we made our way around the Sneffels Range to Ouray. After trying and failing (multiple times) to get past a section of the “4wd Only” Yankee Boy Basin Road in my Subaru Outback we made camp by the creek about 2 miles away from the trailhead. With a clear night in front of us we made up our cowboy camps and got to rest under a blanket of stars.

I always enjoy the hustle and bustle of a campsite early in the morning before a big objective –6 people and 3 dogs all scurrying about getting their packs in order, eating breakfast, drinking coffee, and conversing with one another at the same time makes for a lively environment to start the day. Admittedly, time slipped away from us more than we’d liked it to that morning and we started up the Yankee Boy Basin Road just after 7:00am. We had seen a multitude of cars and trucks drive past our makeshift campsite earlier that morning so we knew it would be a busy day on the mountain.Osprey Packs Rob BonDurant Sneffels Colorado

The first 2 miles leading up to the trailhead were simple. We moved quickly up the slopes of the 4wd road, occasionally making way for a family of four in their Jeep Wrangler (or another type of engineering marvel that gobbles up rocky terrain as if this road should be its daily commute). The sun was shining and the views were stunning, for all of us in the group it was our first time in this basin and on this mountain – 4 of the 6 in our group have only moved to Southwest Colorado in the past year!


At the trail-head we began to see what was in front of us: just over a mile of terrain left to cover, but over 1,500’ of elevation gain in that distance. Pushing on with Scott and Geoff out front with the dogs we made great time ascending the loose, scree-covered col. At “the notch” below the summit we took turns in groups staying with the dogs, and groups heading up for the summit at 14,150’. Spending almost an hour near the summit resting and enjoying the views, we ran into our US Sales Director, Brad Bates, and his wife Vicky celebrating their wedding anniversary in style. After a few more minutes enjoying the thin air, we made a plan with Brad and Vicky to rendezvous at our campsite for beers and started our descent down the mountain. The steep, loose scree made for some interesting moments on the way down, but we all made it down in one piece. Well, almost all of us… Vicky fractured her wrist in 2 places after slipping on the descent. Like the true badass she is she came down to camp, drank some moonshine, and then went to get her injuries treated.

Being able to haphazardly throw a plan together and also have 5 of my coworkers added the mix is my favorite aspect of being an Osprey employee: Every person I was with shared my excitement for adventure and was willing to spend 24 straight hours with each other, despite the fact that we still don’t know each other very well. My coworkers are my friends, and my friends are pretty damn cool.

11218694_425842334285698_3743412576669805275_nWritten by Osprey’s very own Mychal McCormick, our International Sales Coordinator. Mychal has been with Osprey for 2 and a half years now. In his downtime, you can find Mychal perfecting the art of bocce ball as he pursues his semi-pro career under the pseudonym of Demetri Lemeux. On the weekends, Mychal enjoys quiet strolls up the numerous 13,000 foot mountainous peaks that surround our headquarters in Southwest Colorado. From time to time, he makes a quick escape to the residing desert in our neighboring state of Utah. Follow his adventures on Instagram.

June 14th 2015 - Written by: Kelsy

10 Questions with Osprey Athlete Sven Brunso

10 Questions with Osprey Athlete Sven Brunso



1. What place inspires you?

The Alps are the place that brings me inspiration. The magnitude of the mountains, nearly limitless access, the ski culture and food make for an unbeatable experience. Every time I visit the Alps I fall in love with skiing all over again.



2. What one item do you always have in your pack?

Hot Egyptian Licorice Tea in a thermal bottle. Nothing is better than some hot tea in the mountains. Sipping some sweet and spicy tea soaking while up the mountains is a pretty incredible combo.


3. Who do you most admire?

Early mountaineers that made historic ascents with rudimentary gear. The early mountaineers were extremist as they did amazing things with little fanfare or potential reward.

4. What is your favorite food?

Kaiserschmarrn. An Austrian dessert made with pancakes, rum, raisins, powdered sugar and plum sauce. It’s so good that sometimes I will eat it twice a day while skiing in Austria.

5. Which Osprey pack are you using right now? What is your favorite feature about your pack?

I love the Kode series. On really big days in the backcountry I use the Kode 42 ABS pack. I can take a puffy, extra gloves, a big bottle of tea, all my avalanche gear and my skins. On regular days I will take the Kode 22 as it has plenty of room for everything I need and it feels like I am skiing without a pack. I love that both the Kode 22 and 42 have a great spot to stow my helmet on top of the pack.

Kode42_F13_Side_HoodooRedKode22_F13_Side_NitroGreen (more…)

June 4th 2015 - Written by: Kelsy

Go Pro Mountain Games: a Celebration of Mountain Sports in Colorado


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Ready for 4 days of celebrating outdoor sports, dogs, art, mountains and live music against the stunningly beautiful backdrop of Vail, Colorado? We sure are – Osprey Packs will be returning yet again to the nation’s largest celebration of outdoor sports!

Summer 2015 GoPro Mountain Games events include steep, freestyle, sprint and full contact kayaking, rafting, mountain and road biking, World Cup Bouldering, amateur climbing, fly fishing, stand up paddling, slackline and trail, mud and long distance running……wow, that was a mouthful. Oh yeah, we hope you like the multiple free concerts, adventure flix, eye candy and Gear Town!


See you at the 2015 GoPro Mountain Games!

Check out the complete schedule for a full listing of of events


PC: Taken by a GoPro

Why should you meet us in Vail at the GoPro Mountain Games?

Here are a few reasons:

The Games: Professional and amateur athletes from around the world converge upon the mountains and rivers of Vail to compete in t for more than $110,000 in prize money – make sure to register here to compete among the best.

Live FREE Music: Nothing can top off your day outdoors than the live music that leads us into the night – check out the artists who will be performing!

Thursday, June 4th:

6:30pm – DJ DojahDCIM100GOPRO

7:45pm – Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe // Run DMC Remixed


Friday, June 5th:

6:30pm – Natty Vibes

7:45pm – Iration


Saturday, June 6th:

6:30pm – The Silent Comedy

7:45pm – G. Love & Special Sauce

Following the IFSC Bouldering World Cup Finals

We saved the best for last! Here’s what will be going on at our booth and why you should stop by the Osprey booth, while you are in Gerber Gear Town:

  • 20% off Packs at Osprey Booth — We’ll be bringing a select number of our innovative hydration and daypacks with us to Vail. Stop AG Fit Station_Final_resend by the booth to see what packs we have on hand for you to try on — we will be offering 20% off all packs in celebration of the games!
  • Professional Pack Fitting – We want you to find your pack AND your fit. Share good times, talk gear and get fitted by the friendly Osprey Packs event crew — in addition to being fun, they are the Pack Fit Gurus of Colorado! If you are looking for the perfect fit for you and have yet to visit an Osprey Retailer, then stop by our booth with all of your Pack questions and we will point you to the one right for you!
  • 20% off at Ptarmigan Sports – If you can’t find what you are looking for at our booth, visit Osprey retailer Ptarmigian Sports (located in Edwards, CO) for a broader selection of our larger backpacks with the same special 20% off deal! Ptarmigan is located at 137 Main Street, Edwards, CO & they’ll be offering 20% until June 12th!
  • Feel it to believe it – try out our revolutionary Anti-Gravity Fit: Our award-winning Anti-Gravity™ Suspension system provides seamless comfort that contours the body, allowing a trail experience like no other.  Combined with custom capability and a full feature set, the Atmos AG™  sets a new standard in ventilated backpacking. Want to see what all the fuss is about? Interested in what this innovative suspension system feels like? Getting ready for an epic summer backpacking trip? Stop by our booth to try AG for yourself at our Anti-Gravity Fit Station.


Follow the action with GoPro Mountain Game’s official tags and platforms:


September 24th 2014 - Written by: Joe Stock

Aiguille du Peigne

Osprey Packs Athlete Joe Stock is an internationally certified IFMGA mountain guide based in Anchorage, Alaska. He has been climbing and skiing around the world for 25 years with extensive time in the mountains of Alaska, the Southern Alps of New Zealand, the North Cascades of Washington and Colorado’s San Juan Mountains. Since 1995, Joe has been freelance writing for magazines starting with a feature article in Rock & Ice on climbing the Balfour Face on Mount Tasman in New Zealand. Since then, he’s published numerous articles on adventures and mountain technique in rags such as Climbing, Backcountry, Alaska, Climbing, Trail Runner, Men’s Health and Off Piste.


Half of the reason for coming to Chamonix is to climb with other guides. I’ve spent the last two weeks climbing with Andrew Wexler, an IFMGA guide from Canmore, Alberta. We’ve been buddies for 15 years and been on our greatest adventures together: the Ptarmigan Traverse in a day, the Eklutna Traverse in a day, full-length ski traverses of the Neacola and Tordrillo Mountains and a ski traverse from Anchorage to Valdez. These will probably remain the apex of our athletic careers. Since then we’ve become more work-focused, but that feels right.

Now Andrew and I get to guide and play together in Chamonix. This is one of our free days. We chose the Aiguille du Peigne in the Aiguilles du Chamonix. This is a moderate alpine rock route that starts with the classic Papillion Arete.

The lower altitude of Aiguille du Peigne seemed right for a forecast calling for afternoon thunder showers. Most of the route is easy fifth class like this.



Some places the rock kicked up to 5.8, with lots of exposure.



This is the crux pitch, a delicate traverse to a chimney with perfect finger and hand cracks in the back. The pitch was streaming with water, but the finger locks and hand jams were so solid it didn’t matter. Behind is the north face of the Aiguille du Midi.



Andrew’s beautiful photo of me leading moderate rock on the summit ridge. The new Osprey Mutant 38 worked perfect. Thanks Osprey! Chubby bolts made for four easy rappels, then we lost the rap route in the fog. We ended up slinging horns for rap anchors to get back to the normal descent route.  Thanks for a great day Andrew! See more of Andrew’s photos on his site globalalpine.com.

September 15th 2014 - Written by: Kelsy

Hakuba Sanzan



Unless you’ve been living under a very big rock, you’ve heard the tales of Japan’s surreal terrain, neck deep powder on tap — day or night. The hype was buzzing extra strong this season and we were itching to go get a taste of it one way or another. When the plans finally took shape, it was May! Not exactly the prime month for free refills of pow, but if we didn’t pounce on the trip this year, it might have never happened, right? So we went with the flow and booked a ticket.

Touchdown Narita airport where the culture shock began. In a bustling world far from home, we circled through security not once but twice, but it worked out for the better. Our extra lap bumped us right into a Japanese snowboarder wearing a Canada toque, fresh off a winter in Canmore. Turns out our new friend Yuske (last name), local snowboard legend, also rode a G3 split and represented the Caravan crew we were trying to meet. Off to a good start. Yuske led us and our bulky bags through the maze of Tokyo train systems to a meet up with the Caravan crew, G3’s Japan distributors. After food, drinks, and a classic night in a ‘capsule’, we were eager to escape the bustling city for the mountains. Our bus to Hakuba pushed us upstream through nonstop currents of cities and people in constant motion before dropping us at the source…the mountains.


A world apart, we found mountains quite reminiscent of our Coast Mountains back at home, with multi-peak linkups just waiting to be skied. After a week of fun, we were ready for the bigger days. Fortunately our pension owner in Gakuei-kan was an instructor, guide and pro back in his day, with a wealth of Japanese ski touring history to share with us, shaping ideas for where to head next. The plan hatched for the Hakuba Sanzan, linking the 3 highest peaks in Hakuba in a day.


Meeting at precisely 6:00am on his orders, we hopped in the van and headed up with a vengeance. With only a brief pause before the off-road section, he pinned it and we held on for the ride. This wasn’t his first rodeo. Even the river wouldn’t have stopped him but we insisted on saving his car (and us for that matter), so we jumped out and let our feet do the rest. Most people enjoy the luxury of a 2 day trip with a mountain lodge overnight stay, but with our fine thread budget it wasn’t an option. So we slogged in the spring heat and enjoyed it for all it was worth, transition after transition – hike, skin, ski, repeat.
But even we were hardly roughing it. With a cafe 500 ft from the last summit, we couldn’t say no to a soup and coffee before bagging the last peak. Solid weather, fun skiing, and our unstoppable shuttle driver all made for a great trifecta of the three high peaks of Hakuba.
With one amazing Japan ski trip in the bag, we’re already plotting a mid-winter return for the legendary winter conditions. With any luck we’ll once again land in the hands of friendly,  seasoned locals, and the powder refills will flow as constantly as the sake from our first night in Tokyo.
Story: Andy Traslin


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