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Posts Tagged ‘Open Range Service Group’

2nd Annual Military Mountain and Cold Weather Work Shop – Feb 20-22

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

I attended last year’s conference and I can tell you that it was a great mix of military mountaineering user representatives and industry. This year’s Military Mountain and Cold Weather Work Shop takes place next week in Stowe, VT 20-22 February.

Coordinated by Open Range Service Group, the Military Mountain and Cold Weather Work Shop is centered around practical exercise and use of the feature products of the attending vendors in a fantastic outdoor setting. Attendees will not only get to try gear out, but also cross pollinate experiences and TTPs.

As many of you know, travel and budget restrictions are hitting DoD hard. Consequently, they are introducing the Military Mountaineers Endless Knot Foundation. ORSG is teaming with past and present Mountain Soldiers to create this new opportunity. The Endless Knot Foundation will provide a venue where Military Mountaineers can unite and give back to the disciplines that they all have in common: the Military and the Mountains.

What’s more, any profits from this year’s work shop will be going to the Military Adaptive sports program. Retired Sergent Major Pat Viljanen is working with the program and will be on hand at the event, running clinics and giving a presentation on this truly amazing program.

Any questions, please contact Bill Pelkey.

MSR – Luxury Lite Mesh Cot

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

Introduced during OR Summer Market, MSR’s Thermarest brand is offering the Luxury Lite Mesh Cot. I just tried this sample out during an industry get together courtesy of Open Range. It’s very cool. The longest component is 12″ and it can be broken down for carriage or stowage.


As you can see, it gets you just off the ground but the design flexes to support your body. Definitely beats sleeping in the dirt.


The mesh cover is lightweight and available in a variety of colors. Lengthwise, it is supported by 2 shock corded poles. It is suspended off of the ground via 12 circular nylon feet which accept aluminum poles that arch for tension to keep everything taught. It’s a real slick set up. What amazes me is how compact and light it is. It’s under 3 lbs complete. This is how big it is stowed.


Open Range Service Group can support unit or agency orders.

Open Range Service Group Military Mountain and Cold Weather Workshop

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

In late January, Open Range Service Group coordinated the Military Mountain and Cold Weather Workshop, a two day round table workshop designed to bring together Military and DoD personnel with industry leaders in the area of military equipment for cold weather and mountainous operations. Held in Essex, Vermont the location is well known to those in military mountaineering circles. The forum of discussions provided insight on operational requirements based of lessons learned, current technology and future developments to support mission requirements and future needs. Topics covered ranged from advanced fiber technology and materials used for insulation in cold weather protection garments, individual mountain equipment to include stoves, sleep systems and lighting. A third day was dedicated to actual ice climbing training that utilized products discussed in the workshop briefings.

Denali Climb for the Fallen, 2nd Ranger BTN, Open Range Service Group from Marc Womack on Vimeo.

The conference kicked off with a presentation on the Denali Climb for the Fallen by members of the 2nd Ranger Bn and led by Open Range Service Group. This video is a synopsis of the ascent. The group summited Denali on Memorial Day of 2011. This key presentation really set off the tone of the entire event and while the climb was completed under training conditions, the environmental challenges faced by the crew were the same as in combat. This led to excellent observations on kit, nutrition, health and techniques. In later presentations, I was able to make direct correlations back to the initial address which was very helpful considering I had never undertaken a climbing expedition.

I attend a lot of seminars and trade shows and I have to say that this event was well worth my time. The subject matter was poignant and the speakers and attendees were a great mix. There was heavy attendance by military and industry personnel involved in mountain and cold weather ops. I was really impressed with the backgrounds of military and civilians alike and everyone added to the discussion but from different perspectives. While ultimately, everything is based on civilian climbing, different units adopt different techniques and gear at different speeds.

If you have the opportunity to attend one of ORSG’s events in the future, make sure you do it. I can’t think of many conferences where you can talk about new techniques and technologies and then try them out. If it’s even half as good as this one, you won’t be disappointed.

I want to give out a special thanks to my hosts Open Range Service Group and in particular, sponsor Primaloft.

Also, be sure to ask ORSG about their excellent performance t-shirts from New Balance commemorating the Denali Climb for the Fallen. Proceeds from sales of the shirts go to the Pointe du Hoc Foundation.