Mountain Hardwear™ Exodus™ Test Team to Backpack America's Toughest Trails

With the introduction their new Exodus Backpacks, Mountain Hardwear has elevated the Test Team to a new level. For the first time the company went to its customers looking for 30 outdoor enthusiasts who would devote a portion of their spring or summer to testing the new Exodus backpacks.
Author:
Publish date:

The Mountain Hardwear Test Team is not new. The basic concept has been around since 1996 when the company passed out Gore® WindStopper® vests to retail employees at product clinics and asked for performance feed back. Since then, the Test Team has been revived for several significant technology launches. But with the introduction their new Exodus Backpacks, Mountain Hardwear has elevated the Test Team to a new level.

For the first time the company went to its customers looking for 30 outdoor enthusiasts who would devote a portion of their spring or summer to testing the new Exodus backpacks. The search was promoted on through the company's web site and with an email blast to past customers. Thirty-one new members were chosen by an internal panel of judges who based their decisions on the candidate's trip plans and their ability to share their stories, personal reflections, experiences and struggles through photography, creative writing, or research.

The Exodus Test Team members range in age from 21 to 51 and are planning their adventures which began in May and continue throughout the summer. Their trips range from the circumnavigation of Vancouver Island in British Columbia to hiking the entire Appalachian Trail. “We received hundreds of inspiring applications, which made it very difficult to choose the best candidates,” said Ryan Hodgkin, a marketing manager for Mountain Hardwear. “Our Exodus Test Team will cover more than 20 U.S. states and one Canadian Province. This will give our innovative Exodus Backpack system the rigorous testing we are hoping for.”

In addition to testing the new packs, Mountain Hardwear wanted to use the promotion to focus attention to and support some of the non-profit organizations dedicated to building and preserving the most revered long-distance hiking trails: The Appalachian Trail (2,144 miles, from Maine to Georgia); The Continental Divide Trail (3,100 miles from Montana through Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado and New Mexico) and the Pacific Crest Trail (2,650 miles from Washington through Oregon and California). Mountain Hardwear has agreed to provide funds for trail construction and maintenance to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, support the Continental Divide Trail Alliance's Explorers Program, and the company sponsored the Pacific Crest Trail Alliance Trail Fest, an event to increase awareness of the trail. Exodus Test Team Members are encouraged to consider completing a trail stewardship project connected with their Exodus Tester Trip.

If you are interested in following the progress of the Exodus Test team go to www.mountainhardwear.com throughout the spring and summer to receive dispatches from Test Team members in the field.

Related