Forum Replies Created
Oct 3, 2020 at 4:34 pm #3678340
I like the leopard skin!!!! It surly would be a conversation piece on the trail.
4” diameter, 6” tall. I don’t have any old wetsuits….
…jimAug 7, 2014 at 10:58 am #2125610
Six Moons Design Skycape with a dual entry. I've had SMD tents for several years and love them…
SMD doesn't seem to have much exposure on these forums so check them out!Oct 24, 2012 at 8:32 am #1924115
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When you refer to running does it mean running on improved flat surfaces or trail running?
Isn’t there a difference between hiking on an unimproved surface vs. running on an improved surface?
What are your reference points?Mar 28, 2012 at 6:56 am #1860379
I am envious! My daughter, Jukebox, finished the trail in 2009 at age 18. It has been my dream to thru-hike for several years but I have only been able to section hike. I did manage to do a few sections with her including her finish at Springer Mountain.
And if you really want to be southern all-y’all need to be safe and have a good time!!Mar 20, 2012 at 12:27 pm #1856660
Check-out this link:Nov 2, 2011 at 10:34 am #1797802
I always try to pack a little something extra fro the first night out. Sometimes it is pre-seasond chicken, steaks and usually also includes fresh veggies!!
It isn't truly ultralight (at least for the first day) but sure sets the tone for the rest of the hike!!!Oct 26, 2011 at 10:46 am #1795230
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As usual you hammer the subject with lots of data.
I agree with Inaki. I think running the same test with a completely non breathable top might show if there is a significant difference between a complete vapor barrier and an expensive breathable jacket. Would the results be significant enough to justify the added cost?Mar 10, 2011 at 8:03 am #1706927
My daughter started with a steripen on her AT thruhike in '09. It broke about 1 month into the hike. She started using AquaMira and a bandana for a pre filter.
Steripen replaced the product and I have used it on several section hikes. It ceased working on my last section hike and I replaced it with a Platty system.
I will stick with the low tech solution.Oct 20, 2010 at 7:10 am #1656252
Thanks for the article. My son and I did the trip about six years ago. This was before I knew about ultra light backpacking. At that time my mantra was keep it light. We were a group of 8 boys and 4 leaders. All of the boys weighed in at less than 30 lbs fully loaded with 2 L of water and three days of food. Two adults were in the 35 lb range and two were in the mid 40 lb range. The two 40 + lb leaders complained several times during the trip. Between them they carried an 8 LB bibler tent along with other “luxury” items. Their experience would have been much better had they kept their weight down.
While we didn’t suffer any but-pees we did have a lot of fun with the minibears. Our boys fashioned several versions of “deadfall” traps and became quite successful in trapping and releasing.
Most young men aren’t very religious. Philmont has a voluntary program crews can participate in that only takes a few minutes a night. Our crew reluctantly decided to try it. By the time our trek was over they had fully embraced the program and felt it enhanced their experience. In conjunction with the “roses buds and thorns” talk every night this program helped forge strong bonds between the members of our crew.
We had a leader that was extremely compulsive about the rules and regs almost to the point where it was tainting our preparation. I think his compulsion actually softened the impact of these rules when we started our trek. Just "go with the flow" and you will have a reat time.
The Philmont trip helped cement my passion for hiking. I hope at some distant time my son can take his son on a Philmont trip just as you have done. If you are a scout don’t pass up on this opportunity. If you are a leader get in shape and go. It is a trip that will stay with you forever.Sep 17, 2010 at 7:30 am #1646464
Didn't Ryan write an article on alternatives to TP?
Who packs-out the TP???Sep 13, 2010 at 1:37 pm #1645249
Is a good cup of coffee in one hand and a microbrew in the other.
I just had that experience over the weekend….Sep 1, 2010 at 8:55 am #1642223
Roger; thanks for being a lightning rod and undertaking this task. It’s great to see someone establishing comparison criteria for such a complex task.
I am curious how many readers use the packs listed (or similar packs). If they do use these packs, how are they used? Are they used for multi-day trips with or without resupply? Are they used for winter trips or three season trips? Are they used for quick overnights?
I still use my Gregory Z-pack but only for a winter trip where extra gear is needed. My weights on these trips are generally over 30 lbs because of the heavier gear needed. For my three season trips and multi-day trips I use my SMD with stays. For the two to three day it has been my SMD but I plan on using my recently completed MYOG frameless pack.
Does BPL have the ability to take a reader poll? I think this would be a great companion to this article and in sharing the experiences of the BPL readers.Aug 25, 2010 at 8:50 am #1640306
I believe that Western Mountaineering is the standard for lightweight down sleeping bags. I gave my old alpinlite to my daughter for an AT through hike and bought a new one for myself. I tok an old WM bag and converted it to a quilt and my son loves his Alpinlite.
I don't have to buy another sleeping bag. Between the quilt and my Alpinlite I have all seasons covered. I also use my WM down jacket to extend the temperature range of my Alpinlite.
BPL spends lots of time reviewing other manufacturers. They need to provide more reviews for WM products.Aug 5, 2010 at 8:27 am #1635060
I started backpacking about ten years ago using my car-camping gear and a 6500 cubic inch pack that weighed almost 8 lbs.
Since then I’ve purchased about five packs, six sleeping bags, 7 tents, etc… I kept spending money on lighter and lighter gear and found that even with the lighter gear I reached a plateau at about 15 lbs base weight.
My advice is
1) Decide what kind of hiking you will be doing. With a wife and children it will probably be 3 season on well traveled trails.
2) Be thoughtful in selecting gear that meets those needs. It doesn’t have to be ultralight but should be the best quality you can afford.
3) Get gear for your wife that is comfortable. I got my wife a down big-agnes sleep system that is not the lightest but is very comfortable. Make sure she has a pack made for a woman.
4) Get your child light bomb-proof gear. My son used a Kelty bag for several years until he learned to take care of his gear. The weight premium wasn’t huge and was off-set by using a closed-cell pad.
5) Everyday house-hold gear can also help reduce weight. Gallon zip-lock bags can be lighter than cotton stuff sacks. Plastic water bottles are lighter than nalgenes. I also us a home-made cat stove that saves me about 1 lb, making the stove is an activity you can do with your child.
6) Lastly, leave it behind! You probably carry much more than you need. These forums will help you question every piece of gear you carry.
If you are real ambitious try making your own gear. I was just at JoAnne’s fabric with my wife. They now carry 1.5 oz reinforced rip-stop nylon for $6.99/yd. There are lots of sites (including BPL) that offer plans and instructions for tarps and packs.
My most-used multi-day pack is my Six Moons Designs Starlight. I also use their lunar solo tent and a Western Mountaineering Alpine light bag. For the quick overnights I use a Z-pack and a homemade down quilt with a simple silnylon tarp.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to be a purist, just keep it as light as you can afford. Welcome to the world of backpacking.Jul 23, 2010 at 6:59 pm #1631862
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Does the back panel add any stiffness to the pack? Did you consider putting your poles on the outside edges of the back-panel for extra stiffness?
Any thoughts of a pad pocket between your ribbed back-panel and the main body of the pack?Jul 19, 2010 at 5:13 pm #1630453
I have found an old White Model 77 with a green finish dating from the 1930's on Craig's list. Price $20.
I have found a manual on-line, price $0.00.
I will use some of my Wife's needles from the Bernina (I think they will fit!) Price $0.00
Price of 2 yards of 60" Spinnaker fabric $20.00
Straps/buckles/ foam are all in my extra stuff bin. Cost $0.00.
Since I am currently underemployed this is the only way I am getting new gear this year.
I am in the process of cleaning and lubing the machine.
I will wait for the article coming out tomorrow before I start cutting any fabric.
I will post photos when I finish the project.
Thank you all for your excellent advice.Jul 12, 2010 at 3:31 pm #1628320
I wish my mom were still around to help….. ah well….
Can you send/post some of the e-mails she received on how to sew through webbing on her Bernina?Jul 12, 2010 at 3:23 pm #1628317
Thanks for all the comments.
I have found several old steel machines on Craig's list in the $30 to $40 range. There are several black singer machines made in the 20's – 40's. There are also some white (kenmore?) machines from the 40's and 50's.
What should I be looking for, which is the best option and how can I get new needles?May 14, 2010 at 7:06 am #1609725
I too am a scouter. My first trip was with over 50 lbs and included a kitchen sink! I just got off an 80 mile AT section with my brother, also a scouter. It was his first extended backpacking trip and we averaged just over 12 miles per day.
I started at 18 lbs including my "elephants" and he was at 21 with more "elephants." It would have been a much different experience if he had packed with his normal "scouting" attitude which includes almost every piece of gear you can imagine.
Thanks BPL for the help in changing my attitude!Jan 1, 2010 at 4:52 pm #1558641
Reconfigured Western Mountaineering bag to use as a quilt;
Western Mountaineering down jacket;
Home-made soda can stove (various versions)
Janet; When does the pack review come? I need a smaller pack and would love to see some comparisons….Jun 29, 2009 at 12:33 pm #1511124
I went with a crew in 2005. Two of the leaders didn't follow advice and ended up with packs in the mid forty pound range. Everyone else was below 35 lbs. By the fourth day they regretted carring all the weight!Mar 24, 2009 at 1:37 pm #1488485
1) No hydration sleeve, I put all my water outside the pack;
2)No shoulder strap pockets, try to eliminate zippers on the hip-belt pockets
3)Keep the outside pockets, all my wet stuff goes outside, tent included;
4)Cinch top is ok if there is some way to "shorten" the height of the pack, otherwise roll top closure, Add two loops above the lifter straps so something bulky can be tied to the top (like extra food for longer un-supplied trips);
5)Adjustable straps if possible, similar to Six Moons designs;
6)Keep the load lifters.
The pack looks big. Any way to roll the top down further?Nov 24, 2008 at 7:17 pm #1460513
I have both a Squall and Lunar solo. I was very pleased with the squall and have used it in the southeast and on the AT in all four seasons. The biggest issue I have with the Squall is the front entry. I have to get up at night at least once to empty my bladder. As you can imagine every time I moved in the tent (except when the condensation was frozen) I got moisture on my down bag.
The Lunar Solo has helped and I have found that using the additional guy points helps raise the height of the tent reducing contact with the inside of the tent.
Henry, the Squall has found another use. I gave it to my daughter (Jukebox) who has, almost, completed a SOBO through-hike of the AT.
I have encountered some of the Florida rains, about 1" in 20 minutes and gale force winds, with both tents and they both fared well. In the high winds and heavy reains the Tarptent sagged more than the Six-moons design but that is probably because of the extra guy-points.
Thanks for updating the analysis and I do use an old double wall tent when I expect temperatures below 20 degrees F.
I'm looking forward to the next comparison of lightweight double wall tents.Jun 18, 2008 at 7:06 pm #1439006Feb 26, 2008 at 6:07 pm #1422176
My life is fast. Often times it is too fast.
Like Diana lightweight backpacking is about being more comfortable allowing me to enjoy my hikes. I have a medical condition that will cause me to go blind suddenly and without notice. I treasure each of my hikes as if they may be my last. When I summit that mountain or come to a vista I stop and burn that image in my memory so I can replay it at any time.
Fastpacking may be for some but I am and will continue to be an "Ultralight slow-packer."
Thanks for the article….