We aren’t talking about a fancy dress onesie, we are talking about a custom made, down filled, weatherproof onesie. A onesie warm and protective enough to keep you alive in the most severe alpine conditions on earth.
In 2013 mountaineer and Mont Ambassador Chris Warner came to Mont with a request; an outfit to assist him on his ascent of the highest peak in the Karakoram Range, the volatile and demanding K2.
Mont designers knew there was going to be nothing funny about this onesie.
Let us take you on a tour of the user-focused Mont design and manufacturing process at Mont HQ in Canberra, Australia.
Chris wearing the first sample made from basic measurements previously taken of him.
After getting a feel for the suit, Chris gave his feedback on the form, function and fit. Adjustments to the pattern were made, and the real suit production begins.
The pattern pieces are expertly cut by Danny from a roll of waterproof, windproof, breathable Hydronaute XT fabric.
Mont machinist Saun constructs the intricate shell of the garment. The shell includes articulated elbows and knees for ease of movement, reinforced ankle cuffs, knees and seat, down filled draught tubes to seal gaps in the zip, elasticated cuffs, internal and external pockets, lightweight mesh to divide down chambers (baffles) and drawcords to seal off all possible escape of warmth when the temperature dives.
Each down chamber or baffle in the empty shell is filled with calculated weights of pure goose down with a minimum loft rating of 800.
Trims, zips and drawcords are added to complete the garment. Inset: Mont Pattern Maker Kaleen makes some measurements to check everything is in order.
Chris Warner at high altitude in Pakistan wearing the Mont High Altitude Down Suit, the ultimate onesie.
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...on the morning that the reserves were to be opened, I was awake at 3am, on the road by 4am and walking away from the car in the foothills of Mount Wellington at 5am.
My five favourite Mont gear picks after a winter and summer season in the European Alps with over 200 days of climbing, skiing and paragliding in the mountains from shorter day hits to multi day adventures.