Innovations

No engineer can sit alone and proclaim a design innovative. True innovation is defined by consensus, in the field, by thousands—if not millions—of customers. Our focus on delivering that level of performance has allowed a number of our products to attain such a level of recognition over the last 35 years. The timeline below represents our legacy of achievements—a direct result of our commitment to create products that enhance the outdoor experience.

  • 1972

    Therm-a-Rest

    Driven by the need to get a better night’s sleep outdoors, founders of Cascade Designs invent the revolutionary self-inflating Therm-a-Rest® mattress. The lightweight, portable mattress allows mountain climbers and outdoor enthusiasts to sleep better in warmth and comfort.

  • 1973

    MSR Model 9 Stove

    Dehydration is discovered as a main cause of Acute Mountain Sickness. In response, the world’s first remote-burner stove, the MSR® Model 9™, is developed to efficiently melt snow for drinking water at high altitude and becomes essential equipment for mountaineers worldwide.

  • 1974

    MSR Bike Helmets

    In response to requests from the cycling community, the MSR Climbing Helmet design is tweaked to better meet the safety needs of cyclists, becoming one of the first bicycle helmets in existence.

  • 1975

    MSR headlamps

    Marking their first use in a consumer product, lithium batteries are incorporated into MSR® headlamps, extending burn time and increasing reliability in the outdoors.

  • 1976

    MSR Pit Zips

    Durable, weather-proof outerwear becomes more comfortable with the incorporation of the first zippered underarm vents (a.k.a. “Pit Zips”) into the MSR® brand line of rain jackets and parkas.

  • 1984

    MSR WhisperLite Stove

    To improve the quality of the outdoor experience, the legendary MSR® WhisperLite™ backpacking stove is developed to operate quietly in its natural surroundings and sets the standard for lightweight, liquid-fuel backpacking stoves.

  • 1986

    SealLine double closure dry bag

    Keeping important gear dry in wet environments becomes easy with the introduction of a double-stiffener closure for SealLine® dry bags, creating the most waterproof roll-down closure on the market.

  • 1987

    MSR Coyote Snow Pickets

    Mountaineering safety takes a huge step forward with the unveiling of MSR® Coyote™ Snow Pickets, uniquely designed to provide a 20% increase in holding power over similar snow anchors.

  • 1991

    MSR WaterWorks Microfilter

    Meeting backcountry users’ needs for a reliable water treatment device, the MSR® WaterWorks® filter is the first of its kind to incorporate both carbon and ceramic technologies for superior performance.

  • 1994

    Therm-a-Rest Synergy System

    Cascade Designs builds on their innovative Therm-a-Rest® technology with the launch of the Therm-a-Rest® Synergy System™ sleeping bag, the first of its kind to feature a built-in sleeve for a sleeping mattress.

  • 1995

    MSR Denali Llama snowshoes

    The groundbreaking MSR® Denali™ Snowshoe utilizes the first injection-molded plastic snowshoe deck to offer versatility and extreme durability in all snow conditions. The molded decks incorporate steel traction blades and first-of-their-kind modular tails.

  • 1996

    Platypus Hydration bottle

    Frustration with cumbersome water storage products leads to the creation of the Platypus® flexible hydration solutions. Lightweight and durable, they can be tucked away for easy packing when empty.

  • 1998

    Platypus Big Zip Reservoir

    The inconveniences of filling and cleaning hydration storage systems are eliminated with the revolutionary Platypus® Big Zip™ reservoir. Featuring a first-ever wide-mouth opening, it allows for easy access to the reservoir for cleaning and filling.

  • 2003

    MSR MIOX Water Purifier

    Originally developed with the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to allow soldiers to purify any water, the MSR® MIOX® purifier is introduced to the outdoor market. The MIOX purifier is the first to bring electrolysis and mixed-oxidant technology to consumers.

  • 2004

    MSR Hubba Hubba tent

    Ushering in camping innovation, the MSR® Hubba™ 1-person and MSR® Hubba Hubba™ 2-person tents utilize a one-pole hub and swivel design to deliver the perfect combination of light weight and livability that make it the best-selling ultralight tent in the world.

  • 2005

    Therm-a-Rest Women's Prolite mattress

    Featuring extra warmth in the torso and feet, women-specific Therm-a-Rest® ProLite™ Series mattresses are designed to meet women’s frequent requests for a warmer lightweight mattress. Two years later, women’s versions of the Therm-a-Rest® Trek & Travel™ Series mattresses are introduced.

  • 2007

    MSR Reactor stove system

    The ultra-efficient and windproof MSR® Reactor® Stove System is introduced after years of development. Providing the ability to rapidly boil water in challenging conditions, it is the first stove ever to employ radiant heat and primary air combustion while regulating canister pressure.

  • 2008

    Platy CleanStream Gravity Water Filtration System

    Filtering water becomes as easy as hanging a reservoir of water with the introduction of the Platypus® CleanStream™ Gravity Filter. With no moving parts, an ultra-efficient, hollow fiber membrane makes pump-free filtering possible by harnessing gravity to deliver 4 liters in just 2.5 minutes.

  • 2009

    Therm-a-Rest NeoAir mattress

    The Therm-a-Rest® NeoAir air mattress redefines ultralight comfort for ounce-counters. Without added insulation, a patent-pending internal structure provides unrivaled air mattress warmth and stability with two inches of loft. The revolutionary design allows direct inflation, eliminating the need for pumps or bellows.