It’s good to see Karrimor take a nostalgic return to making rucksacks with the new Alpiniste which has just gone on sale in two different sizes.
Back in the 70s, Karrimor sought the advice of a Scottish mountaineer called Dougal Haston to create a new rucksack and the result was called the ‘Haston Alpiniste’. It became the first true alpine climbing pack used by other mountaineers at the time. The photo above shows the original pack and comes courtesy of Kai from www.larsonweb.com who describes his love of Karrimor’s past rucksacks, in particular the various generations of the Alpiniste. Well worth checking out. I too loved the Karrimor packs of the early 80s, in particular, the Jaguar which was my very first rucksack which I took on Scout camps and on UK hillwalking trips.
Karrimor’s 2012 Alpiniste rucksacks aim to try and continue the tradition and retain the simple looks of the original. These new ones come with a removable hip belt so you don’t have to wear it with one, useful for when wearing the rucksack with a climbing/abseiling harness.
The lid is extendable, allowing us to load up with either a down jacket or rope on the top for easy access. There are also ice axe loops and other gear loops. Wand pockets also feature. Finally there’s a hole to push through a hydration-sac straw. It also looks like the front flap comes down to expose a zip; until we get more photos or our hands on one we can’t tell, but it looks like it’ll be an interesting design and if the quality of the stitching is good, this will be a great sac for walking with in the rain.
The Alpiniste 45+10 has a SRP of £110 and the Alpiniste 35+10 is only a tenner less at £100. Three colours are on sale; Flame, Bluebird and in Black.