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Alpine climbing is the ultimate mountain sport and its core principles have remained unchanged since its beginnings. Self-reliance using trad protection on multi-pitch routes, understanding objective dangers and correctly assessing your own abilities form the basis for successful climbing tours in alpine terrain.
When it comes to climbing equipment, the motto has always been: “Carry as much as necessary, and as little as possible.” But if you are deliberately carrying as little as possible, you need to
be able to absolutely rely on the functional performance and durability of each piece. Salewa’s updated Agner Alpine climbing collection is wholly based on this principle. Each piece is engineered to be sufficiently robust with only the necessary functional features, and no more. The collection was designed together with professional climbers and mountain guides. The latter group has particularly high demands when it comes to the practicality and durability of the products they use. The result is a collection for men and women that is characterised by simple, minimalist designs, the highest quality and no-compromises functionality for alpine climbing. These characteristics are highly regarded by professional alpinists and newcomers to the sport alike, as every climber has to be able to cope with bad weather and abrasive rock.
There are three new products in particular that deserve special attention: The new Piuma 3.0 climbing helmet is one of the lightest on the market and offers enhanced impact protection at the back, front and sides. The Wildfire 2 approach shoe is designed for scrambling, easy climbing and more technical approaches to big walls. And the rock-resistant, Durastretch Agner Anorak, which is made specifically for climbing in alpine terrain where the weather can quickly deteriorate.
PROTECTING TODAY’S CLIMBERS WITH TOMORROW’S TECHNOLOGY
Every climber knows what it feels like to look up at the crux of a route and wonder if it will go. Feeling the sun on your neck, the sweat on your back as you hope the move works. No matter what grade you climb at, a lightweight, protective helmet is essential for alpine climbing, ice climbing and mountaineering. With the new Piuma 3.0, Salewa is offering a helmet that is lightweight, cool and comfortable to wear and comes with optimal ventilation. In addition, its compact, low-profile design maintains a full field of vision and freedom of movement.
Weighing just 175 grams, the new Piuma 3.0 is the lightest helmet that the brand has ever developed for climbers and mountaineers. With its new EPP-PC in-mould construction, it is engineered for enhanced energy absorption and special all-round impact protection at the front, back and sides. A polycarbonate insert at the top provides additional protection from falling stones. The Piuma 3.0 meets UIAA (Union Internationale des Associations d’Alpinisme) safety standards and is certified according to UIAA 106 and CE 12492. Thanks to the new “Dry Head” ventilation concept, the Piuma allows air to circulate freely around the head. Large ventilation openings and intelligently-placed padding support climbers on hot days and difficult sections with additional air flow. The inner lining is removable and washable. With its minimalist adjustment system, the Piuma adapts quickly and easily to fit all head shapes. Once adjusted, the helmet sits snugly
to allow a full field of vision, in particular when looking upwards. Elasticated clips provide a secure and uncomplicated fixation for a headlamp or ski goggles.
As climbers are very clear about their requirements, the Salewa product team invited numerous experts to test the new Piuma 3.0. One of them is Simon Gietl, alpinist, state-certified mountain guide and exceptional all-round mountain athlete. This is what he says about the new helmet: “The modern hybrid construction makes the Piuma 3.0 very light. In fact, it’s so light, you almost forget you’re wearing it. The fit is great. At the same time, this helmet has high safety reserves. This crucial aspect is extremely important to me in steep, mixed terrain and ice climbing routes.”
- Construction: EPP-PC in-mould construction with EPP (expanded polypropylene) foam shell and a strong lightweight polycarbonate outer lid
- Weight: 175 grams
- Features: minimalist fit & adjustment system; headlamp fixation, designed to also work well with large battery packs; headlamp clips for quick, easy and intuitive use, fit system and padding available as spare parts – uncomplicated repla- cement
- Area of use: Alpine climbing, mountaineering, ice climbing
Sizes: S/M (53-58 cm), L/XL: (57-62cm)
- Colours: grey, green, white, blue
- Available as unisex model from April 2022.
A MOUNTAIN APPROACH SHOE BUILT FOR HIKING COMFORT, SECURE GRIP AND CLIMBING PRECISION
The most beautiful routes in the Alps often have the longest walk-ins. At dawn, while nature is still slumbering, climbers grab their packs, ropes and gear and head on out. The closer they get to their chosen route, the more technical the approach. Moving over scree and narrow, exposed trails requires good endurance and concentration – especially on the way back down. After a long, hard day’s climbing, even the most experienced alpinists have to be especially careful on the descent. Now with the Wildfire 2, Salewa is presenting more than just an approach shoe.
The new Wildfire 2 is Salewa’s next-generation, lightweight technical shoe for mountain approach activities with agile and versatile performance and adaptable fit technology. The approach shoe is equipped with 360° scree protection that protects both the toes and robust mesh upper. The South Tyrolean mountain sports brand also scores highly with its Salewa Switchfit System that was introduced in 2019. By threading the lacing through an additional eyelet, the foot is pulled forward into the toebox, compressing the toes similar to a climbing shoe. This then gives greater precision for technical sections and easy routes. When it comes to climbing credentials, the Wildfire 2 is further supported by its proven Pomoca sole unit that ensures
good grip and friction in varied terrain and both wet and dry conditions. It delivers best traction and long- lasting performance. The dedicated climbing zone at the toe offers further control on edges and in delicate situations. On tough approaches and steep descents, the Wildfire 2 benefits from a comfortable fit and cushioning EVA midsole, together with progressive climbing lacing and a wider toebox. Above all, climbers value the flexible roll-off that the shoe gives on long descents.
The family-owned South Tyrolean company values sustainable production and long product lifecycles.
As such, Salewa has developed new internal sustainability guidelines that go way beyond standard legal requirements. It labels its products that fulfil these strict socially responsible and environmental-friendly standards as “Salewa Committed”. The robust mesh upper and lining of the Wildfire 2 are made with 100% recycled fabrics. The shoe is manufactured according to rigorous chemical guidelines, without PFCs, under fair working conditions.
William Starka, Senior Product Manager Footwear & Equipment Salewa: “The Wildfire 2 is an agile, dynamic approach shoe for progressive mountaineers. Our Switchfit system has revolutionized this footwear category. Field tests in the Dolomites have demonstrated the system offers significantly increased precision, climbing performance and hiking comfort. We have received consistently positive feedback regarding the adaptable fit and combined climbing and hiking mode.”
- Materials: Recycled PES mesh, Kevlar, TPU film Weight: 355 grams
- Drop: 11 mm
- Features: Salewa 3F System, Climbing Lacing, MFF+ footbeds (narrow & standard footbed included), Switchfit System, EVA midsole, Pomoca Speed Mountain outsole
- Available in a women’s and men’s version from spring 2022.
AGNER DURASTRETCH ANORAK
PROGRESSIVE CLIMBING PERFORMANCE
Alpine climbing days are long climbing days. The classic alpine routes of the Dolomites mean starting early to climb the first pitch at dawn, and sometimes only topping out at dusk. To provide climbers with the right clothing solution, the fabric experts at South Tyrolean mountain sports brand Salewa have developed a new, highly robust, flexible and hardwearing pull-over jacket. It’s designed so that you hardly notice that you are wearing it while climbing, yet it can withstand wind and weather and cope with extensive temperature differences from frosty mornings to midday sun and cool evenings. The new Salewa Agner Durastretch Anorak is designed to support alpine climbers on long lines, and long days.
With the new Agner Durastretch Anorak, for summer 2022 Salewa is presenting a technical climbing jacket for all-day use with a particular emphasis on abrasion resistance and freedom of movement. The athletic cut of this figure-hugging softshell is engineered to let climbers climb at their best, without restriction. The ergonomically formed sleeves with climbing-specific underarm gusset and four-way stretch fabric further promote enhanced freedom of movement. The anorak’s Durastretch fabric has an especially dense weave, which makes it highly wind resistant. The two-way, three-quarter front zip makes for fast ventilation to dump heat during harder pitches or in warmer conditions, and is easy to open single-handed from both sides. The large inner pocket is sized to accommodate a pair of climbing shoes, to keep the rubber warm and ensure optimal friction for when things get serious.
In addition, the Durastretch material is highly breathable and copes well in a wide range of temperatures. Alpine climbers exploring classic multi-pitch lines that alternate between dark, shady cracks and chimneys, and sun-soaked slabs and walls will appreciate the versatility that this lightweight anorak offers. To store small essentials, there is a raised sleeve pocket.
The Agner Anorak comes in strong green and blue tones for high visibility between climbing partners and general mountain safety. In addition to its fresh colours, this technical style also conforms with the “Salewa Committed” guidelines. Giulia Gamba, Product Manager Apparel, explains: “Technical apparel is all about performance – it’s the foundation of all new product development, as it’s key for safety and comfort in the mountains. Now, with the Agner Anorak, we are taking performance to the next level: this jacket is made using recycled and particularly hardwearing nylon and is completely PFC free – this is an important step for us to protect and preserve the natural environments that we climb in.”
- Durastretch Recycled Nylon Bambooskin with a PFC-free DWR finish 196 g/sqm
- Lining: Durastretch Ripstop Recycled Nylon Bambooskin with a PFC-free DWR finish 207 g/sqm
- Inserts: Durastretch Bicromatic Recycled Nylon with a PFC-free DWR finish 151 g/sqm
- Features: Abrasion-resistant, four-way stretch fabric for high freedom of movement, weather resistance and long-lasting durability
- Area of use: Alpine Climbing
- Weight: 395 grams (Men), 315 grams (women) Colours: pale frog/ electric blue
- Available in a women’s and men’s version from spring 2022.