The AK457 Guide Jacket started out as a FYi initiative to design a purpose built jacket for working mountain guides. We spent a couple of seasons working with the guides at Baldface Lodge to figure out the functional architecture, and to test and improve the jacket for their needs. At the time Baldface received the entire production run, making them the most exclusively outfitted operation on the planet. A couple of seasons later AK457 was launched in Japan as a premium technical mini-collection, and the Guide Jacket evolved and went back into production. Here is the latest iteration of the Guide Jacket currently offered in Japan. Needless to say, these garments are the most technical AK outerwear we ever worked on. Japan always gets the good stuff!

2012 AK457 Guide Jacket

AK457 feature in honeyee.com

Masa and Hiroshi discuss AK457 on honeyee.com

2011 AK457 Guide Jacket

The evolution of the Guide Jacket continues..


2011 AK457 Down Jacket

A preview of the Japanese AK457 2L Down Jacket; The 2L Down is even lighter than the global LZ Down(!) We were able to shave more weight by using tighter and lighter fabrics throughout, as well as even higher loft premium down.
A waterproof breathable down jacket goes a bit against conventional wisdom.. everybody knows down loses much of it’s insulative value when it gets wet (and being in the coast mountains, I was skeptical), however when combined with a seam sealed breathable Gore shell it performs incredibly well.

Burton x FYi x fragment = [ak]457

Introducing (officially) [ak]457.
What is it? A joint collaboration between Burton Japan, FYi, and fragment… [ak] 457 can be best described as technical equipment for mountain enthusiasts. It’s Function with a capital F. It’s pure backcountry gear. And like many of the best things in life, it’s only available in Japan…
The purpose built [ak] Guide Jacket returns in 2010, with a special limited production run for Japan. We designed this jacket specifically for the working pro’s that spend 100+ days a year guiding the rest of us to the goods. A very small number of the uber-technical guide jackets have hit Tokyo.. and will be very hard to get ahold of without some serious underground connections.
This is just the tip of the iceberg for the 457 program (you have to realize that we are working over 2 years ahead of what’s hitting the marketplace). The 2011 line is already locked, and we’re deep into 2012 currently. Many good things to come… stay tuned to frequency 457.

Takashi Sato @ FYi

Takashi Sato from Burton Japan was in B.C. this week, visiting FYi, to work on AK457. Takashi-san is responsible for development and production. We reviewed the 2011 samples, and kicked off design and development for 2012.

We spent a day product testing at Whistler. Here, Takashi is taking in the great B.C. views in December…. ‘ummm, I don’t see anything’…. Exactly, that’s the view of B.C. in December.

There currently is no further information available on AK457. It’s so underground we can’t even confirm that it exists.
Maybe it doesn’t…

Masa @ Montoak

Going deeper on AK457 with Masanori Takeuchi.

Burton Japan

The AK 457 design and development posse; TR, Takashi, Masa, and HF.

Hiroshi-san in the 2010 AK Hover jacket.


Today we will be working with Burton Japan on the development of the upcoming AK457 program. This is a special collection for Japan launching in fall of 2010, with a focus on technical backcountry functionality. I can’t be more specific at this time, aside from saying Japan specific fit, Japan specific Gore-Tex, and that this collection will be manufactured in Japan.