From FutureLight to the VECTIV carbon plate; The North Face (TNF) are no strangers to innovation. Indeed, we’ve seen it before in the Exploris shoes and the Apex Flex jacket, and we can see it again with the all new Advanced Mountain Kit (AMK).
Coined the ‘pinnacle of mountaineering’, the AMK is The North Face’s most sophisticated alpine system to date. It sits comfortably amongst their summit series, though is more technical and specialised than ever before. This is largely due to its athlete-driven focus, having been designed and tested in collaboration with TNF alpinists David Göettler, Hervé Barmasse, Hansjörg Auer, David Lama, Andres Marin and Jess Rosskelley.
The main idea was to create a climbing system that suits the modern mountaineer in their faster and lighter alpine pursuits. Whereas previous alpine expeditions might have taken place over a number of days, due to modern training techniques and new technologies, some athletes now tackle mountains within a matter of hours. These faster pursuits therefore require something a little less heavy than the classic Himalayan suit, but without any compromise on protection and quality. As The North Face put it, ’human exploration in the high alpine is evolving’ and the AMK is built to follow suit.
With 21 new styles, 5 new technologies and three years to develop, these guys have been working on this system since 2017. Though the release was pushed back due to the pandemic, it’s well worth the wait. Here’s a breakdown of the new technologies, what goes into each layer, as well as what we learnt at the AMK launch in Chamonix.