And so the chaos begins. I headed down to the Salt Palace; about an hour late because I wanted to grab my Sundance press credential beforehand. That way I could stay down at the show and not have to rush back before Headquarters closed at 6 p.m. One of these days it would be nice if the OR folks clued in and moved the event to a weekend that doesn't conflict with Sundance or the Ski Industries of America show in Denver (that one starts next Wednesday).

Despite a calm, less frenetic pace inside the Palace, the exhibitor space has been sold out for months and 18k buyers, media, and manufacturers were out cruising the aisles. That's good news for SLC because instead of a normally slow January period, the hotels are booked solid and the restaurant patrons spilling onto the streets. More than 800 manufacturers had booths to display next winter's hot items.

[caption id="attachment_12876" align="alignnone" width="525" caption="Columbia has new base layers and heated boots."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_12879" align="alignnone" width="525" caption="My new glasses coming from Costa Del Mar. New feminine frames don't sacrifice quality. Polarized lens that filter out those damaging yellow tints."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_12880" align="alignnone" width="525" caption="CW-X Makes support bras that 'compress' in the rights places without squishing your chest."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_12881" align="alignnone" width="525" caption="The back support is pretty too."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_12883" align="alignnone" width="350" caption="Super cute fleece from Kuhl Clothing"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_12886" align="alignnone" width="350" caption="The North Face's Guide Pro vest. No need for a whole pack anymore!"][/caption]

Or if you must carry a backpack, use one that will save your life in an avalanche.