Jul 25, 2012 at 2:31 pm #1292325
Having seen many positive reviews of Montane clothing, mostly from UK-based bloggers, I started looking for US retailers without much luck. Yesterday I called Sport Hansa, the US distributor, to ask who I might try to order a pair of Terra pants from. They are located on the Colorado Front Range, and just moved from Louisville to Longmont a few weeks ago. To my surprise, I was invited to their office to try on anything in their inventory and purchase from them direct.
I drove up from Boulder at lunch today, and was warmly welcomed by Kim and Garrett even though they're busy preparing for OR in Salt Lake City next week. Kim gave me a rundown of Montane's history in the US, and told me that the brand is still looking to gain traction. They'll have a bigger presence at OR than in previous years, with direct support from Montane in the UK, so they are hopeful of growth.
Of potential interest to BPLers, Sport Hansa also distribute Terra Nova, Kulipika wooden cutlery and Growers Cup coffee, along with the non-UL Helle knives (beautiful craftsmanship), Wetterlings axes, and Gronell boots. I've never seen so many TN shelters in one place! I got to play with a well-worn TN Ultra 20 cuben fiber backpack. It was a strange realization that the straps were distinctly heavier than the pack material.
After an hour and a half of very pleasant conversation and trying a variety of items, I left with a pair each of Terra and Terra Pack pants, Featherlite pants, and a Slipstream windshirt. Without going into details, the prices were very appealing.
If you're looking for Montane and can't find what you're looking for through US retailers, contact Sport Hansa direct and they should be able to help you out. If you're local to the Boulder area, they'd love to have you come visit in person.Jul 25, 2012 at 3:50 pm #1897544
Franco DarioliBPL Member
I love my Montane stuff
This is me last w/e.
Montane Venture jacket.
Oversized so that I can layer at camp .
eVent rain pants (with eVent OR gaiters) I remain dry under them,
Terra pants (you can't see them…) I like the Cordura bits and the light and fast to dry rest of the fabric.
Zip off don't work for me so I like the side zips with mesh under, great for walking when warm/hot and bugs are about.
In warmer weather I have a lighter smock (about 220g) that is the size of an orange folded up but also keeps me dry.
occasionally I take the Featherlite pants, about 70g, good enough in light rain and as wind pants. Nice at camp.Jul 25, 2012 at 4:08 pm #1897550
Hi Franco, now I've got my hands on some of their gear I can understand your sentiments exactly.Jul 25, 2012 at 4:12 pm #1897552
Tom KirchnerBPL Member
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
"I love my Montane stuff"
+1 The Terra's are great pants, my standard for all things mountain.Jul 26, 2012 at 7:27 am #1897674
@sgiachettiLocale: Boulder, CO
Thanks for the tip, Stuart. I'll have to check them out sometime. Cheers.Jul 26, 2012 at 3:01 pm #1897785
Thanks Stuart! It was a pleasure to meet you as well. Enjoy your gear!
~GarrettJul 27, 2012 at 2:59 pm #1898056
Craig RoslerBPL Member
One of the best pieces of gear, of any type, that I have ever bought is my beloved Montane Jetstream wind shirt. It has been with me everywhere, and is always in my kit, save for the dead center of the raging Southern summers. Wind shirt, added warmth, shockingly good in the rain (lets me keep the heavier jacket in my pack until it _really_ opens up, and for an extended period). Insanely light and packable. Often I just jam it into my pocket.
I would love to see Montane products more widely available. They would immediately be at the top of my "must try" list. Glad to hear the US distributor will be getting more parent-company support. Best of luck! Keep us apprised.
Happy miles, all.
CraigJul 27, 2012 at 3:14 pm #1898057
Craig – you're not alone. Montane faltered over here when they broke off their previous distribution agreement with Liberty Mountain. Sport Hansa told me they have established strong relationships with a handful of retailers and webstores, and in the last year they have handled a considerable number of small orders from new retailers.
I asked about one of the big local stores, to whom Sport Hansa supply Terra Nova and Gronell, and was told that the sticking point is that retailer's relationship with Rab. Perhaps the mindset is that there is only room for one British brand on the shelves at a time, or maybe it's that Rab didn't leave the US market abruptly a few years ago.
Either way, my take is that we, the consumers, need to tell the retailers that we want Montane in sufficient quantity for it to be worth their while to take the risk and purchase from Sport Hansa. In the meantime, if you can't find the product you want, contact Sport Hansa directly and find out if they can help you.Jul 29, 2012 at 10:21 am #1898388
Thanks for starting the Montane thread. I had the pleasure of meeting Garret & Kim earlier this spring for a Sport Hansa open house. Great folks, representing some great & uniquely useful products – I expect to see more retailers carrying Montane in the future.
I have the Montane Mowhawk & Medusa 32L alpine pack. Absolute top shelf quality, the Mowhawk w/ eVent is a little heavier – Men's medium is 14.8oz on my trusted scale – and will be ideal for colder months in alpine conditions when needing a durable hardshell – perfect fit, bomber hood, waist fit & cuffs for snow travel conditions. I have found eVent much more breathable and cold cooperative than GoreTex & PacLite. Take a look at the Montane "Air" for a sub 11oz lightweight eVent shell. Their pants line-up and wind shirts also look very promising – I'll be looking for the Terra Pack pants soon as the weather cools down.
The Montane Medusa 32L is a 2-lb (900g) alpine pack that is very well designed – all of what you need and nothing more. I'm able to pack it for multi-day 3-season, including hulling 9-lbs of heavy camera gear & keeping it below 30lbs. Once again, perfect fit & a nice ride for fast hiking and scrambling. The pack forms a "waist" around the center when packed up – the pack only touches your back at the bottom, leave the shoulder straps a little relaxed to keep the upper pack off your shoulders. I would love it if they designed a 45L pack of the same, for overnight winter alpine use.Jul 29, 2012 at 4:56 pm #1898440
Chad “Stick” PoindexterBPL Member
@stickLocale: Southeast USA
I have had interactions with Kim a few times and they have all been great. Although, I have not had the opportunity to meet them in person though. Glad to hear that word is getting around about them and Sport Hansa though. I hope that they continue to grow. Thanks for sharing!Jul 30, 2012 at 2:19 am #1898496
Stephen MBPL Member
@stephen-mLocale: Way up North
I have used various Montane items for about 5 years and love every single item, but my favourites have to be the Prism 2 primaloft hoody and Quickfire Event jackets, (older verse of the Air)
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