The British brand are celebrating their 50th birthday next year by relaunching a brand new Extrem range for autumn/winter 16.
Originally introduced in 1986, Extrem has become a byword for innovation, technical excellence and extreme adventure. After samples of the first ever Extrem products were used by Joe Simpson and Simon Yates during their epic trip to Siula Grande in 1985, the range has accompanied leading climbers and mountaineers on over 90 major expeditions around the world. Extrem products have been to the top of all 14 8,000m mountains, to the Arctic and Antarctic, and have played a role in many first ascents and other bold climbs on every surface and in every climate on the planet.
In building the Extrem reputation and enduring legacy, Berghaus has taken the integration of athlete insight to a new level. For the 2016 collection, the likes of Leo Houlding, Mick Fowler and Angelika Rainer have played key roles at crucial stages of product design and development. Working closely with Berghaus’ dedicated Extrem and MtnHaus innovation teams, they, and other members of the athlete team, have advised on and tested concepts, early prototypes and final samples of the autumn/winter 2016 garments. Ground-breaking features, exceptional design and tailoring, and the best fabrics and components available, have been combined to create the most technical range of mountaineering clothing that Berghaus has ever released.
Extrem 8000 Pro Jacket
Berghaus believes that the new Extrem Pro 8000 is the most advanced mountaineering shell jacket now available. It is made out of 3L GORE-TEX® Pro Shell, in a combination of two face fabrics. Key wear areas around the hood, shoulders, hem and lower arms have an extremely durable 70D face. The main body features an exclusive lightweight 40D face, developed in partnership with WL Gore especially for the range. Not only is it extremely tough, but it also delivers outstanding water shedding performance, helping to maintain its light weight and breathability during extended use.
The Extrem Pro 8000 jacket includes the introduction of Berghaus’ new Xpanse™ concept, designed to provide the ultimate level of adaptable and adjustable garment technology for mountaineering.
• Xpanse™ Hood. The new Xpanse™ hood is revolutionary. Berghaus has used a system of magnets to allow the hood to expand for use with a helmet and then snap back into place when the helmet is not in use, delivering exceptional fit and weather protection in either state. The wearer has simply to pull up the hood to expand it, and then release it to allow it to close. The system uses less excess fabric, which also serves to reduce weight and improve comfort.
• Xpanse™ Faceguard. This front gusseted extra expansion panel with breather holes provides an option for additional protection over the mouth and nose during the most hostile conditions.
• Xpanse™ Back. The Xpanse™ Back offers a new and unique approach to stretch and garment construction. A storm proof box pleat and internal lightweight stretch mesh provide unrivalled freedom of movement across the back and shoulders, perfect for when reaching the harder moves. Providing around 20% better freedom of movement than standard construction, the Xpanse™ Back also amplifies ventilation at the rear of the jacket.
Berghaus has applied uncompromising attention to detail in every aspect of the Extrem 8000 Pro’s build, from pattern cutting to the highly specified seam construction, with a 3mm seam allowance and 13-14 stitches per inch (seven to eight is standard). A seam free continuous panel around the front, sides and rear waist enhances comfort under a harness. Bonded zip, pocket and placket construction feature throughout the jacket, along with high tensile shockcord. Pleated volume in the cuffs accommodates mountain gloves and the centre front zip features bottom engagement inset to prevent snagging and ensure ease of connection. The hem uses ‘v’ cut tailoring to create a slim profile under a pack and/or climbing harness and allow unrestricted step high movement, and there is a stitch free bonded hem shockcord channel.
Other features on the Extrem 8000 Pro include: two large hand pockets with 3D panel construction to ensure they gape and allow fast venting during high exertion; hand pockets incorporate extremely lightweight internal mesh to allow fast airflow; two large Napolean chest pockets; a discreet left arm bicep pocket with bonded ultra slim YKK® AquaGuard® zip; an internal zipped security pocket; YKK® AquaGuard® pocket zips for added weather resistance; microfleece comfort lining on the inside neck; extremely robust and tactile Cohaesive™ cordlock adjustment system around the face and lower hem.
Ramche Down 2.0 Jacket
Building on its predecessor’s success, the Ramche 2.0 is lighter, warmer and more durable. Packed with genuine innovation, it is set to take mountaineering down to a new level. Berghaus pioneered water resistant down with the launch of Hydrodown®, delivering sustained water resistant insulation performance in extreme conditions. For autumn/winter 2016, Hydrodown® forms part of the Berghaus MADEKIND initiative and uses Nikwax’s PFC-free hydrophobic down, which provides water repellency during use for up to 16 hours. All Berghaus down is also RDS certified to guarantee ethical sourcing, with consumers being able to use a product serial number to identify online exactly where the down in their jacket came from.
The Ramche 2.0 uses 183g of 90/10 850 fill goose Hydrodown® and three zone bodymapping ensures the optimum distribution of the insulation, while offset baffles construction eliminates cold spots in the core of the body. A crucial enhancement to the down comes in the form of new Reflect™ aluminium mesh.
Reflect Mesh is a heat reflective technology that improves thermal efficiency by up to 10%. The mesh, which has every fibre coated in aluminium in a permanent treatment, has been sewn into the core of the Ramche 2.0 and reflects heat back into the jacket without inhibiting breathability. Extensive testing by Berghaus proved that locating the Reflect™ mesh in the core (sitting between the offset baffles) was more effective than lining the jacket with it, as a lining was too close to the body allow for noticeable heat reflection.
7D face fabric
The Berghaus materials team has developed a brand new face fabric for the Ramche 2.0. A super-lightweight 7D 100% polyamide material (22g/m2), the material is windproof, water resistant, breathable and twice as strong as its predecessor. It combines a 7D yarn for weight with a 30D ripstop yarn for strength, leading to a weight saving of 12%.
Mick Fowler used a sample of the Ramche 2.0 during his successful expedition to Gave Ding, and sent Berghaus this feedback: “The Ramche 2.0 was absolutely brilliant in temperatures that dipped to around minus 30 degrees Celsius. It was also really tough compared to the previous version. At one point I got it caught in my abseil device and had to abseil a fair way with the fabric caught – but there was only superficial damage!”
Other features on the Ramche 2.0 include: a low-profile helmet-compatible hood with front face adjustment and adjustment at the rear of the head, and stiffened with micro wire; an internal stretch gaiter on the hood to improve fit and prevent cold air entry; two way YKK® VISLON® centre-front zip, designed to be used with a pack and/or harness; two large hand pockets with wind strips behind the zips; ergonomically shaped easy-grab zip pulls for use with gloves; single-handed adjustment at the lower hem to keep out the elements and prevent heat loss; adjustable cuffs with easy-grab tabs that can be handled with gloves; and durable hook and loop fabric around the cuffs that work well in wet, snowy and icy conditions.
The original Ramche jacket has an excellent reputation, earning extremely positive reviews from Berghaus athletes, mountain guides, specialist media and retailers. The Ramche 2.0 is 13% lighter (452g for size large), 10% warmer, has a face fabric that is 100% tougher, and delivers a 23% increase in warmth to weight ratio. Sitting at the top of the Extrem insulation range, it aims to set a new standard in mountaineering down performance.
The 30th anniversary Extrem range will be available from www.berghaus.com and selected specialist outdoor retailers from September 2016.