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Innovation: Got a Light?

Fall Line

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No more squinting at your trail map on the Peak quad during a snow squall at Whistler. Just turn on your Marmot Phenomenon EL jacket ($750) for a better view. The coat contains “Electroluminescence” panels, which provide what the lab boys call “safety and close proximity illumination.” We call it a ski jacket with a built-in map light and locator beacon. Three AAA batteries power the panels. The coat has a switch with three positions: on, off and blinking-in case you need to signal the mothership to beam you up from the summit. Marmot sees ski patrollers, guides and rescue workers-folks who need to see and be seen-as the first to zip up. (CMH heliskiing guides will field-test the jackets this season.) We predict more real-life applications: say, providing light to change a tire in Mad River’s parking lot or to find the condo keys you dropped in the snow after last call at Deer Valley.

Sept. 2004