OR Snow Show 2019 – Awards!

The 2019 Outdoor Retailer Snow Show was a hit. Black Sheep spent 3 days on the ground running from booth to booth checking out all the new invitations that the public should be able to get their hands on within the next year! It was hard and took a lot of thought, but here is what really stood out to us and is taking Black … Continue reading OR Snow Show 2019 – Awards!

Review: Arc’teryx Oriel Leggings

I call the new Arc’teryx Oriel leggings my magical sending tights. Obviously, I can’t claim that wearing them will make you a better climber but, personally, I find that I climb more confidently in them. Maybe it’s because they move so well that they don’t distract from the climbing. I enjoy just about every feature – from the generous pocket that fits an iPhone Plus … Continue reading Review: Arc’teryx Oriel Leggings

Scarpa Phantom Tech

Winter OR 2019: Footwear

This year’s Winter Outdoor Retailer / Snow Show was a bit underwhelming. There wasn’t as much new and innovative kit to check out as I’ve come to expect. And unfortunately footwear was no exception though there were definitely a few highlights. Five Ten and Lowa, didn’t have anything new for winter while other brands such as Salewa weren’t even at the show. However, that’s not … Continue reading Winter OR 2019: Footwear

Review: Arc’teryx Proton FL

PROTON FL HOODY Arcteryx recently released the Proton FL, a soft-shell hoody that moves with you, sweats with you and packs away when you don’t need it. It uses a Fortius Air 20 fabric which gives it light air permeability and has good breathability from the Octa Loft, the 100% polyester breathable insulation. This good looking hoody will make a great addition to a mountain … Continue reading Review: Arc’teryx Proton FL

Comparison Review of MSR Pocket Rockets

Comparison Review: MSR Pocket Rocket 2 & Pocket Rocket Deluxe

Pocket Rocket. The name says it all.  This compact, lightweight, butane powered jet stove is well known in the outdoor world. Not limited to just climbers or hikers, the Pocket Rocket is perfect for anyone.  You might be a fisherman who needs a small stove for your boat, or a tree planter who wants a lightweight stove in your lunch kit.  The list goes on. … Continue reading Comparison Review: MSR Pocket Rocket 2 & Pocket Rocket Deluxe

Review: Petzl Nao+ Headlamp

The Petzl Nao+ is my lighting tool of choice for any mountain missions that start or end in the dim hours of the day. With 750 lumens, it’s so bright that Petzl had to include a warning label not to shine it in someone’s eyes up close! Using Reactive Lighting or Constant Lighting the burn time will vary from 6.5hrs (at 750 lumens) all the … Continue reading Review: Petzl Nao+ Headlamp

Beal Escaper

Review: Beal Escaper

The new Beal Escaper is unique, innovative a little terrifying until you get used to it. Designed to be a rappel release device it allows you to rappel on a single strand but still retrieve the rope from the bottom. Needless to say, I had a lot of questions when I first saw the device: How does the Escaper perform with different anchor set-ups and … Continue reading Review: Beal Escaper

Review: Mountain Hardwear Super/DS StretchDown

Is this the start of a new era? A question worth asking for a product that’s as innovative as Mountain Hardware’s new Super/DS StretchDown. Combining a softshell type stretchy fabric with down insulation is innovative and truly a game changer. With this jacket you get the warmth you need from the 800 loft down in the performance fit package you’d expect from a soft shell. Needless … Continue reading Review: Mountain Hardwear Super/DS StretchDown

Sub 9mm Climbing ropes

Comparison Review: Sub 9mm Climbing Ropes

Sub 9mm Climbing Rope Comparison It wasn’t very long ago that people looked to 10mm beasts of a rope for an everyday workhorse and ropes under 9mm in diameter were few and far between. Well that’s no longer the case with 5 different options currently on the market and undoubtedly more to come. Companies like Sterling, Petzl and others already have 9.0mm ropes available and … Continue reading Comparison Review: Sub 9mm Climbing Ropes

Review: Scarpa Maestro

A whole new style of climbing shoe, Scarpa introduces the Maestro range of climbing shoes. Scarpa really went back to the drawing board with these shoes, producing a high performance flat-profile design, with all-day performance and comfort. Replacing the Techno-X, the Maestro has big shoes to fill (pun intended). I would not consider this a remake for the Techno-X but more a totally new shoe … Continue reading Review: Scarpa Maestro