The North Face Aides Ventilation and Load Control with Optifit

New Pack Suspension Design Focuses on Superior Fit That Allows For Improved Air Flow

ALAMEDA, California — Aug. 2, 2012 — The North Face, the world's premier supplier of authentic, innovative and technically advanced outdoor apparel, equipment and footwear, is improving pack load control and maximizing ventilation with the unveiling of the new Optifit system - a unique approach to backpack suspension design that focuses on the key points of contact between the user and the backpack.

Traditional pack design either pulls the load close to the body for stability, sacrificing airflow, or the pack body is set further away from the torso for ventilation, forcing the user to choose between breathability or load control. The Optifit system attacks that paradox by focusing on the five primary points of contact between the user and pack; the right and left shoulder, the right and left iliac crest and lumbar curve. Identifying these points allowed the design to be free of any unnecessary foam or material, creating intrinsic airflow channels while keeping the pack close for a stable carry. As an added benefit, the design allowed the suspension system to have unrivaled adjustability, offering a customized fit, without needing to stock a huge range of pack sizes or parts.

"We are excited for our Optifit systems and what they can offer the user in terms of being great for stabilizing loads while still allowing for superior air flow, and freedom of movement” said Product Director, Equipment, Andrew Coutant.

The Optifit system is twofold; the Matthes Crest and Conness series of packs feature the Optifit X system designed to manage heavier loads while the Casimir series features the Optifit F system which provides superior fit and ventilation in a lightweight package.

The Matthes Crest boasts an evolved X Radial frame, designed to manage heavy packs while still delivering great freedom of movement to the user. The pack is an extremely durable top loader with an additional panel zip opening for quick access to gear. It has a removable top lid, ski carry loops and a clean aesthetic for those looking for adventure to start where the trail ends.

The Conness has the same industry leading spension system as the Matthes Crest, but touts multiple pockets and gear‐attachment points, a removable lid that converts to a lumbar pack and a dedicated sleeping bag compartment with separate entry for the consumer seeking more access and organization.

The 27L,32L,36L Casimir series features the Optifit F system which offers a fully adjustable hipbelt and harness, unrivaled in this category of packs. Top loading and panel loading deigns, multiple external pockets for easy gear organization, large hip belt pockets and reflective hits for safety are all part of the Casimir feature set. At just 2lbs 3ozs this 36L framed top loader offers a compelling new option to customers looking for a lightweight pack.

Optifit builds on 45 years of innovative pack design, development and testing to deliver the most technically advanced load-carrying solution for any activity.

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About The North Face®
The North Face, a division of VF Outdoor, Inc., was founded in 1968. Headquartered in Alameda, California, the company offers the most technically advanced products in the market to accomplished climbers, mountaineers, snowsport athletes, endurance athletes, and explorers. The company's products are sold in specialty mountaineering, backpacking, running, and snowsport retailers, premium-sporting goods retailers and major outdoor specialty retail chains.

Press Contacts:
Lindsey Sine
The North Face

Jessica Hollister
The North Face