Jan 18, 2019

What kind of gear are you looking for this off-season?

Curious what everyone else is shopping for while the wait times are short for cottage-manufactured ultralight hiking products? Post yours in the replies below. Personally I'm looking for a bivy-sack to use under a tarp in summer and in my Seek Outside tipi in the Fall - sorta like this one: https://www.massdrop.com/buy/borah-gear-ultralight-m90-bivy/talk#discussions What's yours? Ultralight knife like a Tyto 1.1 or Benchmade Altitude? New stove like a PocketRocket II or Windburner? Are meals your thing; maybe Peak Refuel or Heather's Choice... let hear it!
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Duncan and RustyBridges
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I'm not a bivy kind of guy, I DO want some space particularly if the weather goes south on me, which it seemingly always does. But I would invest in something like this as we do hammock camp, or some combination thereof - https://www.rei.com/product/128163/rei-co-op-quarter-dome-air-hammock & I think some of these will double as a bivy, I couldn't find the exact one I was thinking of.
Picked up a ULA Catalyst to augment my Circuit. Not exactly a cottage industry or summer gear, but also bought a Windpro II stove. And blew the budget on a whole lot of winter gear.
I just recently came across some good articles about integrating VBLs into tarp / winter camping and I'm considering springing for either a liner or suit. Hopefully in the next couple weeks I'll pitch in the local park with some cheap-o versions to get a sense of what that's like on the ground & get a feel for temperature management. Happy "hunting"!
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MonnoM
I just tried out using the VBL method in a 3-hour hike in 18 degree weather with subzero windchill and I'm totally sold on it. Wore my rain gear between a base layer and outer layer, nitrile gloves between glove liners and wool mittens, and oven bags between liner socks and heavy woolen socks. Stayed toasty, even during stops. I've been tempted to try the WM HotSac in my sleep system, but decided I don't want to emerge from it wet. Keeping the base layer/rain gear combo on allows me to not have to expose wet skin when getting up in the morning.
iaswr
Nice, I had success with latex gloves & newspaper bags in my boots up in Strathcona park last week. Now that I think about it, the first year I went tree planting (many moons ago) I was hilariously under-equipped with shitty gear... but when we had a sudden sub-zero cold snap with thick snow I was the only one warm enough to keep planting, thanks to my ghetto army surplus rubber rain suit. >:) For anyone else interested in exploring cheap-o VBL options this seems to be a good candidate for an experimental bag liner https://www.amazon.com/Bivvy-Compact-Ultra-Lightweight-Sleeping/dp/B01M9CBOP3/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8&th=1 And if you're worried about getting soaked in one, lots of experienced folk recommend silk or nylon mesh for your base layer. I've got silk & mesh already, and this retailer sells mesh https://www.wiggys.com/clothing-outerwear/base-layer/ I don't terribly mind having to change in the morning / evening, but then again I'm not out on epic winter thru-hikes; generally 3-4 days max in the winter.
I hear ya Rusty - trying to decide if selling my Kuiu Ultra frame and bags will be enough to finance a Stone Glacier EVO (or close to it)... I think its our version of "cabin fever". FWIW - I have a Big Agnes 1P Copper Spur and its surprisingly roomy - even more so on a clear night when you don't need the fly; but its still 2+ pounds. That's why I gave up on the tarp tents (also had a contrail), no option for just a bug screen. Figure a tarp/bivy combo might hit the sweet-spot for quick and light trips overnight. With the Borah Gear, you have the option to cowboy camp and not have the morning dew wet out your bag, or throw the tarp over if the sky isn't clear.
I’m also in the market for some niche gear for this upcoming season. Specifically something for weekends with clear weather. Like you I’m currently looking into a bivy to go along with my tarp I got as a Christmas gift, it’s quite small and not as versitile as I hoped it would be but I’m still expirementing with it. I’m pretty much sold on borah gears bivy but I’m still deciding whether or not it’s even worth the purchase, I really enjoy cowboy camping and don’t know if I’ll even like how being in a bivy will feel. Also, I’m in the market for a 2 person tent, though I hike alone, I find myself staying at particularly beautiful camp spots more and more just to enjoy the day. I feel like a more spacious tent would add to this experience with another level of comfort. But then again, I go through this every year around this time, I don’t backpack in the winter and to fill that hole I buy gear that I don’t particularly need, having said that I’ll probably end up splurging on a Yama swiftline 2 even though my x-mid is on the way, gotta spend my tax returns on something right Edit: I almost forgot, a multi colored Ohm 2.0 ... just ‘cause
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