Field Testing with Grete and the Testing Team


I thought I couldn’t get any more excited when the first snow was underway this season. This prediction was thrown wayward when I received a call from Oakley Field Testing. They were making plans to kick off the season testing the quality of Oakley Fall 2013 Outerwear, and what better place to test quality than the world class mountains of Snowbird, Utah and Alta.

Arriving in Utah reminded me of Team Planet, where a team of superheroes assembles to save the world. Scale that down a little…and you had the Oakley Field Testing Team. Testers arrived from the North, South, East, and West to gather in our mountain home for the week. We had designers from Oakley Headquarters, Heli-ski guides from Alaska, wise locals from the nearby canyon, and even another wide-eyed eager college kid like me.

Day one started with a 7am meeting before we hit the slopes. To sum it up, we learned that the week was going to require us to work very hard, and play very hard. As I basked in the fact that that was a specialty of mine, I realized it was also a specialty for everyone else on the team and that’s precisely why we were working with Oakley. We suited up in 2013 product, drove to the mountain, and entered the party of the packed Snowbird Tram. From the moment we entered that crowded, sweaty tram, we were already deep into our product testing.

The conditions were a little different each day, which was perfect for testing the performance of the outerwear in all types weather. Luckily our first day on the mountain was bluebird and we could experience the beautiful views from the mountain. The rest of the week varied between clouds, rain, and snow. Early season coverage and wet weather did nothing to hinder the fervor of this team; every chute and drop with enough snow was shredded. But while we were testing gear, there was an evil force trying to test us: the flu.

It was on the 2nd day that we noticed one of our members was missing in action. As the week progressed, strange coughs and headaches attempted to win us over. But we continued to ski hard, zip zippers, snap buttons, raise hoods, fill pockets, and pull drawstrings. The Oakley Field Testing force became even stronger when Oakley athlete and US Ski Team member Grete Eliassen joined us for a day. It was somewhere in the magic of all the zipping, buttoning, and the appearance of Grete Eliassen, that our fallen member rose from his quarantine and the entire crew was together again for the final day of the trip.

We came, we beat the odds, and we conquered. The Fall 2013 Tech Outerwear line is the best yet.

Thank you Oakley!