Lightweight Layering Systems For Backpacking To Big Wall Climbing

The North Face Verto Climb Collection

Traditionally focused on the performance of individual pieces of gear, brands are now taking a holistic approach to outdoor apparel design. For Spring 2013, both The North Face and Sierra Designs have created entire collections, from base layer to outerwear, where every component is specifically designed to work together in order to cut weight and bulk yet still provide durable protection, enabling you to carry less and go farther.

Following up the successful release of the Verto emergency shell this summer, The North Face has created an entire lightweight system geared towards the multi-pitch, big wall mountain climber. The complete four-piece Verto Climb Collection weighs only 2 lbs, including the Verto Pro Jacket, Litho Tee, Satellite Pant, and the Verto Micro Hoodie.

Weighing in at 5.6 oz., the Verto Pro Jacket ($199) is made with Pertex Quantum GL and Gore Windstopper to provide wind and water protection with extra durability. The Verto Micro Hoodie ($249) is a featherweight, 800-fill down jacket made from FlashDry and Pertex Quantum GL. Both jackets feature a pocket that double as a compressible pouch, allowing you to stow unused layers clipped to your harness.

The Litho Tee ($80) is a 100 percent merino wool jersey, while the Satellite Pant ($130) is constructed out of the breathable, stretch-woven Apex material and features an anatomical lumbar fit that is harness and hipbelt friendly.

Sierra Designs Cloud Layering System

Ideal for backpackers who like to travel fast and light without sacrificing performance, the three-piece Cloud Layering System from Sierra Designs offers warmth, weather protection, and versatility in a package that weighs only 22 oz. Working as a unit, this three-piece system gives versatile weather protection whether you are on the trail or at camp, and in any kind of weather.

The 6 oz. Cloud Windshell ($119) is the foundation for the Cloud Layering System. Made with 100% polyester with 2-way stretch, the Cloud Windshell offers breathable protection from the wind and cold while you are on the trail, creating a microclimate close to your body to minimize evaporative heat loss.

When you stop moving, throw on the Cloud Puffy ($249) over your Cloud Windshell for short breaks or when hanging around camp to help maintain the microclimate. Lightweight (12 oz.) and packable, the Cloud Puffy is insulated with 800-fill DriDown hydrophobic down for supreme performance in all weather conditions.

The two layer Cloud Airshell ($125) is designed to be used only when it rains. Ultralight and packable, the 4 oz. Cloud Airshell packs down to the size of a couple energy bars to maximize space in your pack. 

Both The North Face and Sierra Designs layering systems will be available for Spring 2013. 

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