BACKPACKER names Bigelow Pack 2006 Editors' Choice Award Winner
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, January 28, 2006 – The L.L.Bean Bigelow Pack has been honored as a recipient of a 2006 Backpacker magazine Editors' Choice Award, the most prestigious award in the outdoor industry, given annually to products in recognition of their outstanding innovation in design, materials and/or performance.
Backpacker Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Dorn and his staff of editors and testers presented L.L.Bean with the award at the annual Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Salt Lake City, Utah, on January 28.
The Backpacker Editors' Choice Awards, bestowed annually since 1993, honor the products that Backpacker editors have chosen as the best of the year based on months of trail testing by teams of highly experienced hikers and climbers. With no set categories for the awards and no set number of recipients, the products and the testing process drive the award categories.
The L.L.Bean Bigelow Pack was one of only 15 innovative products that have been honored with a 2005 Backpacker Editors' Choice Award.
"This year's Editors' Choice Award winners have emerged out of the most rigorous testing process in our space," said Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Dorn. "Our test team looked at more than 50 new products this year, and spent hundreds of days evaluating the gear on trails from Alaska to the Alps. What sets the award winners apart are great innovation, value, and dependability."
"We go to great lengths in testing for one simple reason: We want our readers to enjoy their time outdoors. When they pick up the magazine, they know they can count on our awards and product reviews – we're out there suffering so they don't have to."
The Backpacker Editors' Choice Awards are the gold standard against which all outdoor products are measured, and are a seal of approval that can help put an outdoor company or product on the proverbial map. Each year at the Outdoor Retailer show, retail buyers use the awards announcements as a must-buy shopping list, knowing that their customers will be asking for these products in the spring.
Since their inception, the Backpacker Editors' Choice Awards have come to be regarded as the most sought-after award for outdoor equipment and apparel found in the industry. The impeccable outdoor credentials and rigorous field-testing standards of the Backpacker staff guarantee that these awards are an undisputed mark of quality for the companies and products selected.
All winners must excel under extensive field-testing conducted by Backpacker's team of editors, who take hundreds of new products every year into the backcountry to put them to the test. This rigorous process ensures that the performance of the winners is truly worthy of distinction and meets the guiding principle behind the program: gear that is of real value to the readers of Backpacker magazine, who are very active, long-term outdoor enthusiasts.
The complete list of Backpacker 2006 Editors' Choice Award winners will be officially announced to the general public in the magazine's April issue, on newsstands March 14.
L.L. Bean, Inc. is a leading developer and retailer of quality outdoor gear and apparel. Founded in 1912 by Leon Leonwood Bean, the company began as a one-room operation selling a single product, the Maine Hunting Shoe. While its business has grown substantially, L.L. Bean still upholds the values of its founder and continues his dedication to quality, customer service and a love of the outdoors. In the past 5 years L.L.Bean has donated over $6.3 million toward conservation and land stewardship. The L.L. Bean Retail Store in Freeport, ME, is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and welcomes more than 3.5 million visitors every year. The company also has 15 factory outlets and four Retail Stores up and down the East Coast. You can visit L.L. Bean anytime at www.llbean.com or call 1-800-809-7057 to receive a free catalog.
Backpacker brings the outdoors straight to the reader's doorstep, inspiring and enabling them to go more places and enjoy nature more often. The authority on active adventure, Backpacker is the world's first GPS-enabled magazine, and it's the only magazine whose editors personally test the hiking trails, camping gear, and survival tips they publish. Backpacker's six regional editions offer accessible, close-to-home getaways with detailed, tear-out maps to dozens of nearby hikes, as well as practical tips on day hikes, camping and the best gear information available. This combination provides outdoors enthusiasts with the tools they need to make active outdoor travel and backcountry experiences an everyday reality. Backpacker's Editors' Choice Awards, an industry honor recognizing design, feature and product innovation has become the gold standard against which all other outdoor-industry awards are measured. Published by Rodale Inc., Backpacker has a circulation of 325,000 and is published 9 times a year. Backpacker's companion web site, www.backpacker.com, is updated daily and features more than 30,000 hikes, a searchable and comprehensive database of outdoor gear with reviews (www.gearfinder.com), a special section for female hikers, and an all-new map and GPS center.