Last weekend saw the great and the good of the outdoor world descend on Kendal; perhaps the closest thing England has to a “mountain town”, for the annual Kendal Mountain Festival. The weather was keen to set the mood for the occasion with the first snow of the season making its appearance on Thursday night, leaving many walkers scrambling for their winter kit and greeting the festival’s early arrivals with powdery tops on the surrounding hills.
The Rab team were out in force and, like last year, we set up in the Basecamp tent with brand partners The Association of Mountaineering Instructors. Across the weekend, our AMI Test Team members were on hand, providing climbing instruction to old and new climbers alike, helping them to polish their skills and get the knowledge they needed to take their personal adventures to the next level.Rab technical trainer Gemma was also in attendance discussing our latest designs, and it was a privilege to be able to demonstrate our new 1,000 fill-power down jacket, The Zero G, to so many interested attendees. Perhaps the greatest privilege however was being visited by so many people with their decades-old Rab jackets and told that they were still keeping them warm on the hill today. It’s impossible to put a price on that kind of feedback and it’s one of the things that makes attending KMF so worthwhile.
There are, of course, lots of other things that make the festival a pleasure to attend and some of our personal highlights include witnessing an interview between Rab athlete Greg Boswell and the “bear” that attacked him last year, watching the poignant and moving Hot Aches Productions film ‘Hard Rock’ about the life of climbing stalwart Ken Wilson and seeing our own Commitment Series films finally make it to the big screen.
With such a packed programme over the festival’s three days, it’s impossible to catch absolutely everything you want to see, but needless to say we’re already buzzing with expectation for next year’s event when we hope to provide an even wider array of free workshops and competitions at the Rab stand. (And of course, see those classic Rab designs still keeping you all warm another year on).