Dec 16, 2008 at 3:34 pm #1232682Addie BedfordBPL Member
Companion forum thread to:Dec 16, 2008 at 3:47 pm #1464789George MatthewsBPL Member
Very interesting to see the range of favorites from those at the front of the herd. Although I'm plodding along near the back – but not in the last row that gets eaten by wolves – I love the Beartooth Merino Hoody and BPL FireLite Ti Trappers Mug. Both have made 2008 a great gear year for me.Dec 16, 2008 at 3:52 pm #1464791Jay WilkersonBPL Member
@creachenLocale: East Bay
A Great list of gear!!!My three favorite pieces of gear for the year are as follows:
MLD Serenity Shelter (custom) 10.2 oz
BPL Ion Stove SUL!!!!!!!!!!
Thermarest Trail Pro 72x20x2 32oz. A good nights sleep is very important to me-worth every pound .
-JayDec 16, 2008 at 4:20 pm #1464803David StenbergBPL Member
I always look forward to the Staff Picks and the Picks from those on the forums. Here are mine:
1. BPL Long Handled Spoon–best eating utensil in the backcountry
2. BMW Torsolite–best pad I have ever used!
3. Steripen Adventurer–Allows me to drink as much as I want fast; no wait for purification! Only downside is battery life.
-DavidDec 16, 2008 at 4:47 pm #1464810Devin MontgomeryBPL Member
@dsmontgomeryLocale: one snowball away from big trouble
Ryan on the Merino Hoody – "While you've been waiting for this product to come to market, I've had the privilege of wearing it all year." Braggart!
Since I'm in law school, amassing debt hand over fist, my picks are all super light and super good deals. My three:
– Gossamer Gear G6 Whisper – discontinued, but only $60 for a wicked light pack. This pack changed my life!
-Equinox Silnylon Poncho-tarp – $40 bucks and 10oz for shelter and rain gear. It might not be made for extreme conditions, but it works great for weekend trips in moderate weather – the kind I make the most.
– REI Kilo Flash Women's and REI Lite-Core self inflating pad (short) – After sale and coupon, I paid only $89 (with in-store pickup) for both a 20 oz 35 deg down bag and a 18 oz, comfortable sleeping pad for my wife. She's getting them for Christmas, and are integral in my plot to convert her! I found the deal thanks to BPL forum.Dec 16, 2008 at 5:10 pm #1464825Matt LutzMember
Montbell UL Thermawrap Parka – fantastic UL insulating parka. Don't get the jacket – it only has 50 g/m of Exceloft as opposed to the parka's 80.
ID eVENT Shortie Gaiters and MLD eVENT rain mitts- In the category of gear that does exactly what it is designed to do with nothing unnecessary added, these two pieces of clothing take the cake. They are perfect because there is no longer anything to take away.
TarpTent Double Rainbow – My brother and I spent two weeks in this shelter in May and loved every minute of it. The headroom is great, the total floor area and usable space are massive for a two person shelter and the vestibules are actually usable.Dec 16, 2008 at 5:38 pm #1464834John QuinnSpectator
In no particular order, here are my (3) favorite gear choices for 2008 –
– ZPacks Z1 Ultralight Sil-Nylon backpack – at 4.2oz. and Joe's exceptional customer service, you can't go wrong.
– Mountain Laurel Designs bug bivy – when the bugs are biting and you want to get a good nights sleep, there is no better choice.
– Gossamer Gear Lightrek 3 trekking poles – I don't go anywhere without them, especially at only 4.8oz/pair.Dec 16, 2008 at 5:52 pm #1464837KYLE PARKERMember
BPL Thorofare Pants
GG Lightrek 4 poles
SMD Serenity Net ShelterDec 16, 2008 at 6:01 pm #1464840Jonathan RyanBPL Member
@jkrew81Locale: White Mtns
BPL Thorofare pants
Inov8 Flyroc 310/Roclite 315 (love them equally for different purposes)
Ibex Meru Beanie hat
ID eVent Rain Jacket
MLD SuperZip PackDec 16, 2008 at 8:30 pm #1464865David ChenaultBPL Member
@davecLocale: Queen City, MT
-Osprey Talon 22
-Patagonia Traverse Pullover
-Spandura scree gaitors (velcro heel attachment!)Dec 16, 2008 at 9:01 pm #1464871Doug JohnsonBPL Member
@djohnsonLocale: Pacific Northwest
Gotta agree on the Merino Hoody. I received mine just after submitting my top 3 but it's a genius piece of gear- definitely on my top 3 for 2009 list!Dec 16, 2008 at 9:19 pm #1464873Mark VerberBPL Member
@verberLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Inov-8 shoes… for me it's a toss up between the more grippy and cushioning 295 roclite and the more durable sole with slight more natural feel 310 Flyroc.
Injinji Tetratsok… which when combined with the Inov-8 shoes have meant NO blisters no matter how many miles I put in or how wet my feet were.
Platypus BigZip SL Hydration System… fast and easy to fill, reasonably light, tube quick release works well making it easy to switch between being part of a gravity filter system and a hydration bladder on the trail.Dec 16, 2008 at 10:30 pm #1464875Fred ericBPL Member
@fre49Locale: France, vallée de la Loire
MSR twin sisters for trips in winter or under heavy rain.
valandré mirage with short zip
event shorties gaiters
this year my BPL 1100 pot wont be in the list, i recieved the new one after my wife lost one with the bushbuddy inside ( was fun hiking in the snow using cooking oil in a small tea candle metal cup to cook food for 5 days..)
but the new one seems different the lid isnt fiting as a start.Dec 17, 2008 at 3:42 am #1464888Mary DBPL Member
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
Items I've most appreciated in 2008 (more than three):
Any tent designed by Henry Shires. IMHO, they are better ventilated and have less condensation than any other single-wall–and a lot of double-wall–tents on the market.
My Western Mountaineering Ultralight Super sleeping bag, which kept me snuggly warm in temperatures well below freezing. I didn't have a thermometer, but the water in my dog's dish froze completely solid.
Pacific Outdoor Equipment Insulmat Max Thermo (how's that for a mouthful!) insulated air mattress. Even more comfortable than the mattress on my bed at home. The newer version is the POE Ether Thermo, whose name is slightly less of a mouthful. Despite the lighter name of the newer version, both old and new weigh the same.
Six Moon Designs Comet pack. It performed admirably even when I had to carry close to 37 lbs. My back, shoulders and hips were fine, although my knees and feet screamed. What I learned from that incident is that if you want your ashes scattered out in the wilderness, please pick a place that's close to the trailhead and easy to reach. Human cremains weigh at least seven pounds. It's asking too much of your relatives to carry them to a place that's 4 days' hike from the trailhead.
ULA Amigo Pro gravity water filter. It saved me considerable lower back pain caused by bending over a water source pumping. It also saved me considerable time sitting by buggy streams stirring with a Steripen.
Sunday Afternoons Adventure Hat. I'm allergic to most sunscreens, and this hat eliminates the need for sunscreen except on snow or close to bodies of water. Unlike other hats I've tried, it's very comfortable, has lots of ventilation and doesn't bump against my pack.Dec 17, 2008 at 6:41 am #1464899Jeremy CleavelandBPL Member
@jeremy11Locale: Exploring San Juan talus
Montrail Hardrocks + Dirty Girl Gaiters ("Switchbacks") + Holstein Cow Socks
Cilogear 60 liter Worksack! Great for hauling climbing gear around and backpack guiding
Paramo Aspira Jacket
Liberty Ridge Windcoat with hood and full zip (homemade)
DMM alloy offset nut #7 (climbing gear)
Black Diamond Microstoppers (climbing gear)
Primaloft Pants (homemade, full side zips) – 11 oz, don't need them much, but when I do they are amazing!Dec 17, 2008 at 7:21 am #1464911te – waBPL Member
you were looking for under insulation that is affordable, easy to use. Jacks R Better have a down 2/3 length Underquilt that is made for the Hennessey lineup (but will fit any gathered end hammock) on a special order program. it is not listed on the website. Contact Pan or Smee for info. I understand it is a 3 season quilt that wont work for most winter conditions, (maybe here in southwest, HI, or the south..) but its great for next spring. No, I dont work for them even if I sound like it! mike.
my fav 3:
reading a book in bed never seemed so easy
montbell inner snap neck vest
sub 4oz is a great core warmer
orvis traveller 8' pack rod, 5wt
great reason to hike to sub-alpine lakes
(favorite DIY gear is hands down my bridge hammock system – tarp, quilts included)Dec 17, 2008 at 8:48 am #1464929Praveen MBPL Member
@prav66Locale: By the foothills of the Colorado Rockies
My 3 picks…
Panasonic G1 camera :
I've gone through over a dozen cameras & this is my current pick for trips where photo quality matters. Full zoom, real SLR quality & optical stabilization in the smallest/lightest package of its kind currently in existence.
Innov8 Terroc 330 :
After using Inov8 it's hard going back to other shoes. My previous Montrail hardrocks feel like over-cushioned lead in comparison. Inov8s are extremely light, have great grip, decent durability and they really let your foot move and flex naturally as evolution intended. For me that means less injuries and blisters in the long term. The Terrocs work best for my wide toes.
ULA Conduit :
It's not the lightest pack for it's capacity and it's heavy on the shoulders when weight creeps past 20 lbs yet for most multi day trips it's still my favorite pack. It's so comfortable, feature packed and sensibly made that I find myself missing aspects of it whenever I try & go lighter and end up coming right back.Dec 17, 2008 at 11:13 am #1464965John MackeyMember
Gossamer Gear "The One" tent
My favorite tent: only 17 ounces, bathtub floor, very easy to set up, full rain and insect protection, and very versatile. What's not to like? Could it be better? Sure–make a Cuben version and get the weight down to only 10 or 11 ounces.
Feathered Friends Swallow Sleeping Bag + Nunatak down balaclava–custom bag for me made without a hood and with an excellent neck collar, made with NANO fabric–listed at 20 degrees, 25.9 ounces + 3.6 ounces for the Nunatak Balaclava. I think the neck collar and the Nunatak Balaclava make this a 10 to 15 degree bag with a wide comfort range. Western Mountaineering, Marmot, and Nunatak get most of the sleeping bag kudos on this board (and they all do make excellent bags). However, Feathered Friends does too and their customization on fabric, size, length, quality of down, etc., combined with their production speed (compared to Nunatak) and excellent service give them an edge IMO.
Gossamer Gear Lighttrek 4 Trekking Poles
These new adjustable trekking poles rock! Their big advantage over Ti-Goat's adjustible poles (which are also very nice) are the superior handle grips.
IPOD Nano 16 GB
For only 1.5 ounces I can listen dozens of full audio books and thousands of songs and have 20 to 24 hours of battery life before recharging Don Wilson–Rilke's "Letters to a Young Poet" is available for download at audible.com. Thanks for the tip on this book.
Simblissity Scree Gaiters
These gaiters fit very well and don't require a strap under the shoe (which always wears out very quickly). Not waterproof, but also very breathable and not too warm. Perfect for non-snow hiking with trail runners.Dec 17, 2008 at 12:51 pm #1464987Jon RhoderickBPL Member
@hotrhoddudeguyLocale: New England
Black Diamond Megalite
4 Season protection for under 3 lbs, with extra room when you dig it out, try that with a tent.
Smartwool Midweight long sleeve zip comfortable from an incredible range of temperatures, just pull the sleeves up, and zip it up, may be replace by the Beartooth Hoody which seems to take it even farther.
Montbell Thermawrap Action
Not so well known as all other Montbell gear, the fleece makes me comfortable enough to take it on cold active pursuits, compresses well, and has thumbholes.Dec 17, 2008 at 1:14 pm #1464993Kathleen BMember
@rosierabbitLocale: Pacific Northwest
New to me this year that I've really liked:
1. WM Ultralite sleeping bag.
2. Merino wool hoodie made from sewing a balaclava to a l/s shirt based on Bill Fornshell's idea.
3. Bicycle spoke added to my cooking pot for a bail/handle.Dec 17, 2008 at 2:31 pm #1465011James LantzBPL Member
@jameslantzLocale: North Georgia
1) Tarptent Tyvek Sublite
2) Big Agnes Clearview 72" mummy
3) GoLite Ultra 20 quilt
4) AGG Caldera Cone with Snowpeak 600 mug
5) GG Mariposa PlusDec 17, 2008 at 2:47 pm #1465015Miles BargerBPL Member
@milesbargerLocale: West Virginia
MLD Zip – It's been replaced by the more durable Exodus, but my first generation Zip was tough enough to function as my day and overnight pack for a full season of on- and off-trail guiding in Denali National Park and come out looking good as new. Light, tough, simple.
Mont-Bell Peak Shell – At 11oz, it's far from the lightest jacket out there, but the combination of breathability, features (really nice hood, hand pockets, big pit zips), and durability made it the perfect choice for a wet Alaskan summer. I practically lived in this jacket, including 5 weeks of solid rain spent slogging through blueberry bushes, willows, and mountain alders, and there's not a hole to be seen.
RailRiders Weatherpants – Indestructible. Just as perfect guiding in Denali as doing sub-zero WFR scenarios in the Tetons (with a set of Patagonia R1 Bottoms underneath), these pants are comfortable, cool/warm as needed, quick drying, very wind resistant, and bomber. Despite a lot of abuse, they still look brand new.
Other gear of note
Patagonia R2 Jacket – My go-to fleece. Supremely breathable on the move means that wind cuts right through, but throw on the rain jacket or wind shell that you're always carrying anyway, and you're quite toasty.
Patagonia R1 Hoody – My second skin. Breathable, warm, built-in head and hand warmth, long waist, and tough. If it stays below 50F for the day, this is it.
Backpacking Light Cocoon UL 60 Hoody and Pants – For the volume of a medium stuff sack and a total weight of 17 ounces, you get an insurance policy against being cold. These were especially wonderful to have above the Arctic Circle in late September; they kept me warm standing around camp and easily pushed my 32F bag into the teens.
Western Mountaineering Summerlite – For 19 ounces and a teeny stuffsack, I'm comfortable from freezing on up. The hood and full-zip let me use it as a quilt, hatches-battened bag, and everything inbetween. Combined with my Cocoon clothing, it's a solid three-season bag.
Books – Sibley's Field Guide to the Birds of Western North America, Wildflowers of Denali National Park, Dena'ina Plant Lore, Discovering Wild Plants, Kantishna, and so much more. The more you put into the world around you, the more you receive. Learning about where I was and carrying that weightless knowledge into the backcountry added to all my experiences in untold ways.Dec 17, 2008 at 3:37 pm #1465031Rick DreherBPL Member
@halfturboLocale: Northernish California
Is this the one you're thinking of?
It's more than I prefer to spend, but it *is* wearable, which changes the equation. Hmmm….
RickDec 17, 2008 at 3:42 pm #1465033Rick DreherBPL Member
@halfturboLocale: Northernish California
Doug, Doug, Doug,
It's December '08, mon. Don't jump the gun just yet! Haven't you received your Cuban-carbon fibre hoody/shelter prototype?
RickDec 17, 2008 at 4:06 pm #1465036William WebberMember
Innov-8 shoes rock. They have become my favorite for trail hiking. Light, comfortable.
Injini socks are helpful – even if they look very ninja-ish.
Crocs are super – light, great for High Sierra Camp shower and bathroom trips.
Photon Micro Lights with the new extra bright LED. (I don't like the Freedom which is microprocessor controlled, I like the original.) At first I didn't believe these could replace a flashlight or headlamp, now I'm a believer. Ok, a headlamp is still best for reading a book, but I clip a Micro Light to my zipper pull for everything else.
The new, returns-to-its-roots Marmot Windshirt. After improving the original DriClime Windshirt to the point where it was more of a city jacket than true windshirt, Marmot returned to its roots with an ultra-simplified version, with no side pockets and a simpler chest pocket. The shirt-tail hem mean one of the BEST uses of the Windshirt is as a next-to-skin "shirt" tucked into your hiking pants, for cool or wet weather use. Yeah, what shirt has a nylon shell and zipper – think outside the box, because the DriClime (very thin base layer material) innder coupled with the nylon exterior and arm pit vents makes this piece mimic the design of the Pertex/Buffalo "pile" shirts at an affordable, for US shoppers, price – in rain next to skin, the Windshirt breathes well, and keeps your skin, even if the fairly rain resistant exterior should "wet out." Also doubles for adventure travel and cooler airplane cabins – compact and warm, like 200 weight fleece in still air, but oh-so-much better in the wind or rain.
Fisher Space Pens, in the "micro-stick" version sold at REI for $9. Writes for a surprisingly long time despite the small size, and writes upside down too.
Cliff Mojo bars in the nut flavor. Finally an energy bar that isn't chocolate or other "too sweet" flavored, has 20 grams of protein, and under 200 calories.
A toss-up between the various narrow neck Platypus plastic film water bottles and the wide-mouth ones from Nalgene. Both compress down when not in use; the Nalgene versions are heavier, since the cap is much larger, but the wide mouth adds a lot of versatility.
Thumbs down on drinking tubes. Tried them – but prone to leaking at the connection, hard to clean, mostly add a "taste," and it isn't that hard to pull a Platy out of a side pocket for a water break.
Golite Jam and, presumably, the Jam2. All you really need for High Sierra Camp treks at Yosemite – even with a sleeping bag (the tent cabins have ineffective, nasty blankets).
Sleeping quilts instead of sleeping bags. Mainly because I do the High Sierra Camp routine, but many use them for outdoor or tent or bivvy sack camping too. Why waste insulation on the ground – that's what the ground pad is for.
The Spyderco Dragonfly knife. The only small knife – 1.5" blade – with the craftsmanship of larger knives and good steel to boot. When other companies are shifting to Chinese fabricators with dubious materials and quality control, Spyderco continues to have their knives made in Seki City, Japan, Mecca of fine pocket knife manufacturers.
The entire Capilene 1, 2 line from Patagonia – not because they now include better odor control, but because THEY FINALLY HAVE LONGER TAILS that won't keep pulling out of my pants.
Patagonia or Ex Officio synthetic underwear (briefs). Keeps your junk dry.
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