Aye, many a bit o' gear were discussed over gnocci, pizza, and risotto. It was great to finally meet Grant in person after a lot of emails and phone calls. As a certified gear freak (he showed me the certificate), Grant of course had a suitcase full of UL shelters & packs in the trunk of his car and I was lucky enough to check out the new Gorilla Pack. It's similar to my Mariposa Plus, but the fabric is tougher and it's more compact.
One thing that really impressed me was the seeming indestructibility of the material they're using for the outer mesh pockets. It's very fine and feels almost as tough as the pack material itself. You get the sensation that the pockets would never snag on anything because they're so sheer and, even if they did, they could still fend off the best thorns nature has to offer. Just holding the Gorilla in my hands I could tell this pack was the incarnation of something many have long considered an oxymoron: a truly ultralight bushwhacking pack. Hmmmmm...I think there's enough room in my gear closet for one more pack. Seriously, just one more. I mean it this time!