Mar 3, 2006 at 2:19 am #1217940
What are your opinions on using wind pants?
I would like to use one in stead of waterproof rainpants as a more breathable form of “rain protection” and you can use them as an extra layer against wind and cold over your regular pants (or over your shorts), that is when you are not using a poncho.
So far I found ;
Montane Featherlite pants (4 oz.)and Montbell UL Wind Pants (2.4 oz!). Does anyone has experience with one of those or know of some other light alternatives?
ThanksMar 3, 2006 at 2:30 am #1351752
Sorry, I can’t be real helpful here with your decision. Just want to mention one thing. While there are exceptions, Quantum used in the Montane Aero seems to be definitely an exception as are some other fabrics, some fabrics used in windgear are actually less breathable than some GTX and eVENT raingear in terms of gm/m^2/24h ratings, yet they also aren’t waterproof? What’s the point of them then, go figure??? Their only advantage would therefore be low weight and maybe lower cost. Don’t know what the MB ballistic airtight fabric with Polkatex DWR is rated at in terms of breathability. I purchased those MB wind pants a couple of weeks ago for use this spring, but have not tried them yet – perhaps, come April, or sooner if rain starts coming down hard.Mar 3, 2006 at 6:00 am #1351753
@pa_jayLocale: on the move....
I have 3 pertex microlite items (wind layers and shelled high loft), including the montane litespeed which matches their featherlites. I’ve decided to snag the latter this season for when rainpants + poncho are overkill. I wear light stretchwoven softshell pants alot anyway, so I think the featherlites layered over them will be a good alternative. Microlite is quite breathable, less so than quantum but I only notice when pushing really hard for hours. I enoy the durability and protection over quantum. Like many my strategy will be to mitigate the need to wear the poncho-tarp in typical NE all-day drizzle, etc. Over shorts, that would be pretty minimal protection if poncho is shorter (35 F and rain is common for me), but in warmer conditions probably ideal, since worst case scenario at least your not soaking pant legs underneath, ie. faster drying than w/ softshells. Given my experience the featherlites should do very well. (an MLD poncho, longer than some, gives almost complete coverage anyway, tho knee-hi gaiters might occassionally be in order). No experience w/ polkatex but I ~definitely~ second Paul’s comments. I tend to shy from proprietaries in favor of what I already know performs. ex – my litespeed layered over a schoeller jacket has worked great in winter when temps rise enough for freezing rain –you just have to either stay reasonably on the move to prevent wetting out, or hunker down in poncho and wait. Mosey-ing of course would favor ul chaps instead.Mar 3, 2006 at 7:00 am #1351756
Santa brought me a pair of MontBell UL Wind Pants for Christmas and I love them. They allow me to wear very thin shorts on the trail vs. the convertable pants that I used to wear.
FYI, I also sleep in them. Instead of a bivy sack, I use a windshirt, windpants and a bug headnet. That way I have the protective elements of a breathable bivy without the claustraphobia of being zipped in.Mar 3, 2006 at 7:08 am #1351758
Michael, How do you find the breathability of the MB fabric in those wind pants? Just curious, where do you live that it’s now warm enough to sleep without a sleeping bag? Are you in Austrailia? Or do you use quilts?Mar 3, 2006 at 11:07 am #1351766
Better than Australia – I live in Texas!!
The wind shirt and wind pants are sized for layering. On cool nights I also wear a WM Flight Jacket, MontBell Down Pants & Sierra Designs down booties. I seldom wake up covered in sweat (fairly low humidity in Texas) so I assume that the moisture is moving to the outside. I’ve used this down to the mid 40’s on several occassions with good results.
I don’t consider myself to be a “normal” backpacker. I’m more of a dayhiker that just lays over for the night. I carry clothing/gear that protects me from rain, wind, insects and UV rays – so I feel that a tent is redundant. I carry insulating clothing that is suitable for the range of expected temperatures – so I feel that a sleeping bag is also redundant. Remember that Adm. Byrd’s crew did not use sleeping bags. They slept in their down parkas (per R. Jardine in his Pacific Trail Handbook).
The difference between a day hike and an overnighter for me is a ground cloth, some tent stakes, some triptease line and a flashlight. Has worked well for me up to now. It makes hiking a very simple experience.Mar 3, 2006 at 11:18 am #1351768
Sounds like quite a system you have there. Good for you. No bag, no bivy, no tarp: Michael, be careful, it sounds like you’re already XUL or HUL – Bill, might be gettin’ jealous. [Bill, if you read this, I’m just funnin’ with you.]
Hey…by the way…Texas…heard of that little place…what part of Connecticut is that in?Mar 3, 2006 at 11:28 am #1351771
That would be SOUTHERN Connecticut!Mar 3, 2006 at 11:50 am #1351776
Very good reply. Very funny. Gotta’ tell you, when I was in the military, there was no one prouder of their home state than Texans. Their love for their home state was very impressive. Montana was another state that I remember some Marines and sailors being very proud of, but it was the Texans who raved the most about their home state.
For all I know, y’all might have some ranches larger than my entire state?Mar 3, 2006 at 12:02 pm #1351782
@bugbombLocale: South Texas
BenMar 3, 2006 at 2:35 pm #1351788
I’m from what used to be called Texas, but is now called Colorado and I support the local merchant GoLite and use their Reed Pants. They only weigh 5 ounces and the only thing I do not like about them is they do not have ankle zips, so I have to put them on or take off without my shoes/boots.
I would not want to wear them if I expected to do any bush-wacking, just because I do not want to take the chance of tearing them up.Mar 3, 2006 at 6:55 pm #1351801
What’s your overall impression of the Reed pants’ breathability and its breathability as cp. to GTX for example?Mar 3, 2006 at 10:19 pm #1351810
Overall I feel comfortable in the Reed Pants. Unlike the Marmot PreCip pants, I have never felt ‘clammy’ or experienced moisture build up inside the Reed Pants. Although, if I knew for sure I was going to bushwhack on a trip I would bring the PreCip because they feel more durable at twice the weight of the Reed.Mar 4, 2006 at 1:20 pm #1351835
@thegeoguyLocale: Sonoma County, CA
I’ve been using the MB UL windpants for a couple years now. Light, very comfortable; no obvious breathability issues to me. They are my typical “evening wear”, over a pair of Patagonia silk weight bottoms.
However, abrasion resistance/durability is quite poor. After a couple days in the Sierra (first trip using them), just wearing them around camp (sitting on logs and granite), had a number of holes in the seat. I now use a sit pad around camp (for comfort/insulation, not because of the wind pants), and have noticed fewer problems. I just figure at this point that they have a limited life, so I will enjoy the heck out of them for a relativley short time.
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