Summit meeting of the profes­sionals for some real-world testing

The third athletes’ workshop in the Coburger Hütte

After two workshops in Jetzendorf during which the athletes on the LOWA PRO team came up with new ideas for the models in the Performance line with members of LOWA’s devel­opment department, the group set off in September 2016 for a three-day event at the Coburger Hütte. The mission: to relent­lessly test the new Performance products.

Mt. Everest, Nepal, Tibet

“I’m really looking forward to seeing how the ideas have been refined and to trying out the footwear outside on the terrain – we’ll separate the wheat from the chaff there.”

Luis Stitzinger | LOWA PRO Team

The devel­opment team intensely worked until September on ways to incor­porate the features suggested by the PRO team into the boots. The major challenge was to integrate all of the athletes’ wishes and to develop a new line that would meet the highest Alpine demands.

For the field trials, the LOWA PRO Team athletes Ralf Dujmovits, Rudi Hauser and David Göttler joined repres­ent­atives of the devel­opment and marketing team for a three-day conference at the Coburger Hütte where the new boots would be put to extreme tests. The cabin is located in the Mieming Mountain Range in Tyrol and is located at a slightly higher elevation than the lake Drachensee. The area offers optimal terrain to determine whether the new features performed as the devel­opment envi­sioned they would.

Day 1

On the first day, the entire team was issued the high-end moun­tain­eering boot ALPINE PRO GTX, the approach boot APPROACH PRO GTX and the climbing shoe ROCKET in Ehrwald. The day began by climbing an ascent known as the “Hoher Gang” and a rather leisurely hike on a lower slope. The athletes and the LOWA team used the time to talk about new plans and bring one another up to date. The group then crossed overgrown scree and then headed to the foot of the Steilauf­schwung (steep climb) that was covered in numerous serpentines that were only partially secured. It was a good oppor­tunity to test the boots’ grip.

  • Ralf Dujmovits heads to the summit.

    Ralf Dujmovits heads to the summit.

  • Having reached the top, the experienced LOWA athlete takes in the imposing view.

    Having reached the top, the exper­ienced LOWA athlete takes in the imposing view.

  • Back at the cabin, Dujmovits...

    Back at the cabin, Dujmovits…

  • ...talks with his colleagues from the LOWA PRO team about the new models.

    …talks with his colleagues from the LOWA PRO team about the new models.

Discussions were held in the evening following the three-hour ascent. Alex Nicolai, the Managing Director of LOWA, talked about the high­lights of the new Performance line and explained the features. Initial impressions were expressed in the relaxed atmo­sphere.

Day 2

The team was divided into groups on the second day. The performance of the ROCKET was put to the test in the climbing centre “Coburger Hütte” at the foot of the Drachenkopf Mountain. As part of the second group, Ralf Dujmovits and David Göttler tested the features of the ALPINE PRO GTX on the rock. The devel­opment team also went along and listened carefully to the feedback so that they could incor­porate the profes­sionals’ input into the tech­nically refined Performance products.

  • The mountains around the Coburger Hütte served as the venues for all tests and were the ideal place to subject the new models to challenging conditions.

    The mountains around the Coburger Hütte served as the venues for all tests and were the ideal place to subject the new models to chal­lenging conditions.

  • Image photo with the APPROACH PRO GTX LO, 2016_Athlete testing_CoburgerHütte

Day 3

On the final day of the tests, the group headed to the Tajakante via ferrata. Gerlinde Kalten­brunner and Rudi Hauser were using the APPROACH PRO GTX and took on the approach to the via ferrata. Ralf Dujmovits and David Göttler led their team with the ALPINE PRO GTX on the “regular” way to the summit. Once on the top, the group took time to take an obligatory summit photo and to provide some detailed feedback about the features. The group talked about new visions as they jointly made their way down to the hut.

What did the three days of intensive testing ulti­mately achieve? Many new ideas, detailed feedback and the conclusion that LOWA’s Performance footwear has every reason to be described as such.

  • The joint photo at the summit cross is naturally a must.

    The joint photo at the summit cross is naturally a must.

alexander-nicolai_8822_erweitert

“The three days spent with the athletes at the cabin and the oppor­tunity to try out and discuss things really paid off.”

Alexander Nicolai | LOWA CEO