- Dec 2, 2018 at 9:36 pm #3567031
Companion forum thread to: Publisher’s Gear Guide (2018-2019)
My personal recommendations for ultralight and lightweight backpacking gear for 2018-2019 – gear that I’ve used all year in 2018 that includes the good stuff that’s staying in my kit for 2019!Dec 4, 2018 at 12:49 am #3567277Mark VerberBPL Member
@verberLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Nice list, thanks Ryan. A few questions:
Do you find the Bindi’s throw adequate cross country / way finding? I have used one for night time road running, but the beam pattern is very floody. For back country I continue to use a Zebralight H51 I picked up in 2010.
How do you deal with times you need light longer than the battery in the Bindi? One of the reasons I continue to use the Zebralight is a can quickly swap the batteries if I am out longer than a single battery charger.
Have you found any solar chargers that are practical? I would like to find a system which was solar cell, large battery, and rechargeable devices… but so far none to the specs / reviews I have read make me think this is really practical for a multi-week trek.
For rain gear you mention zpacks as a good value. previously you talked about using hmg “the shell”. any comments of about their relative strength / weaknesses.
MarkDec 4, 2018 at 4:34 am #3567315
Mark – for me the Bindi is a summer headlamp for incidental light in camp, reading in my shelter, etc. I prefer a handheld light like the Zebra as well for winter and nighttime hiking. Used in this context, I haven’t yet found any battery issues for the Bindi, and find that it lasts for 3-5 nights for my normal summer routines, depending on how late I get into camp and how much I read/write at night.
I haven’t found any solar chargers that I really like. I’m banking on the arrival of thin(ner) film panels in 2020 in small (5-7W) sizes, but larger sizes than the little mW panels on the side of small battery banks. Hoping we can get a 5W panel at 6 oz or less…
The Shell – I’ve ripped it and patched it a couple of times now. It’s pretty durable, but not immune to tearing/holes in sharp brush. It’s more durable than the Vertice, that fabric is a little more on the fragile side – only 7d. My first test with this jacket in light brush didn’t go awesome. That aside, it’d be a great thru-hiker coat I suppose, it’s very breathable.
The Arc’teryx Zeta FL I reviewed is proving to be quite a bit more durable than the Vertice.Dec 4, 2018 at 2:21 pm #3567349Brad RogersBPL Member
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
How do the Akyra’s fit compared to the Ultra Raptors?Dec 4, 2018 at 2:56 pm #3567351LesBPL Member
Mark, I have the HMG shell. I am on my second one, the first was starting to seep water under pack straps even in light rain. I contacted HMG and they said it was because of extremely heavy use and body oils in fabric causing issue. They sent me a brand new shell, told me to wash it regularly in mild detergent. So far I’d say it’s the perfect shell.
LesDec 4, 2018 at 4:50 pm #3567364
Brad, I’d say the Akyra’s have a very slightly smaller toebox – which is what I appreciate about them for more technical off-trail travel. La Sportiva appears to be undergoing negative size creep through the years, I find myself in larger and larger sized shoes with this brand. My normal shoe size (US) is a 9 (e.g., Altra), and my Akyras are closer to a 10.5!Dec 4, 2018 at 7:33 pm #3567397Victor HoytBPL Member
@vhoytLocale: Hudson Highlands
Great list. This is my favorite time of year because of these. A gear junkie’s paradise. I do have one question as a photographer. Why the Sony? I understand it has one or two advantages such as 4K video, a built in mic, and reasonable weight. But for less money, one can buy an objectively better mirrorless camera, that will take superior images. Granted it’ll be a bit heavier. Maybe I’m just biased, having been a “real” photographer once, but it seems like image quality trumps weight in this case. I assure you, I am not saying your choice is a bad camera. It’s very good, (and I read your disclaimer :-) ). I know it’s always easy to second guess this stuff. Im just curious.
VicDec 5, 2018 at 2:05 am #3567464Franco DarioliBPL Member
@francoLocale: Gauche, CU.
what camera would you suggest ?Dec 5, 2018 at 3:06 am #3567474Brad PBPL Member
I like my Sony A6000 mirrorless camera. Now the lens I use is a little heavy (and cost more than the camera).Dec 5, 2018 at 3:22 am #3567482
Victor, I have no doubt there are perhaps more capable cameras for the weight than the Sony RX100 series I use today. I suppose part of it is that I’ve learned the interface, the nuances of the sensor and its image processing algorithms, and I love the video quality. In other words, I may be attached…!Dec 5, 2018 at 12:47 pm #3567521Victor HoytBPL Member
@vhoytLocale: Hudson Highlands
Franco, The RX100 really is a great camera. Lots of people use them. So, go for it! But it’s pricey, so…
Advantages of mirrorless cameras (vs a point and shoot) with interchangeable lenses, are the ability to get great glass, get adaptors for lenses you may already have, and a larger sensor. For instance, there’s an adaptor for the Sony A6000 that would let me use the Zeiss 45mm from my Contax G1. One of the best lenses ever made.
I’m a Canon guy so if you want a recommendation, I’d go with the M6. It has a few quirks, but it’s under $500 with a kit lens. It has superb AF, a good digital processor, and a stable of amazing Canon IS lenses. It does not shoot 4K, so that might be a deal breaker for you. I won’t blather on and hijack this thread. Just my $.02.Dec 5, 2018 at 10:31 pm #3567673Franco DarioliBPL Member
@francoLocale: Gauche, CU.
Actually I wasn’t asking for myself, I know cameras.
I was interesting to know what you would suggest .
Here is a comparison between those two cameras :
By the time you add a 15-45mm (24-70mm equivalent) to the M6 , it is a bit bigger than the Sony with its 28-100 mm equivalent.
(I prefer the wider 24mm but the RX100 III has that )
BTW, no I don’t own any of the above mentioned cameras.Dec 15, 2018 at 6:49 pm #3569078Gerry B.BPL Member
@taedawoodLocale: Louisiana, USA
Because the Bindi is a 650 milliamp light, do you know if there is an issue using a greater than 1 amp charger that could reduce the battery life over time? Some products have protective circuits to prevent damage from such things as a 2 amp fast charger but I could not find anything regarding such about the Bindi.Aug 18, 2019 at 6:45 pm #3606606Ron MillerBPL Member
The Saxx Boxer Briefs come in many different “collections”, with many different materials. The link just goes to the entire group of Saxx boxer briefs. Which collection are you referring to?
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