Photo: Outside magazine online
The Tree Hugger 32 is a new pack due for release by The North Face this northern hemisphere Spring of 2010. Obviously the name has a certain resonance for us, but the details of the pack also sound curious.
Largely because the main body fabric is from a worsted merino wool in a gridded ripstop pattern. Apparently the wool has been allowed to retain some of its natural oils to add some degree of weatherproofing. Besides the body cloth, there are an impressive list of recycled components.
Video from Broadband Sports
These include the strap webbing, the back panel's foam and mesh cover are from recycled polyester.
Additionally the buckles are of reground production waste and the lash points of reused truck tube rubber. It sounds like the inner frame stave is likely to be also from recycled aluminium.
In keeping with the green theme, the colours have a woodsy look and the style appears simple and relatively uncluttered. We are assuming that the number in the name refers to 32 litres, which is good size for backcountry outings or hauling home the groceries.
While merino wool has many performance characteristics, it's not a material renown for abrasion resistance so it will be interesting to see how this curious adaptation of the fibre pans out.
The Tree Hugger 32 first made its appearance at the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market in July 2009. We attempted last year to contact The North Face for more details, but to no avail. Though it does seem the pack is on its way, because online retailer Altrec is listing it as coming soon.
::The North Face
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