Hans Ludwig

Hans Ludwig

    New Feature

    Browse Your Followers or See Who You're Following

  • #11454of 20606

Hans's Bio

Hans Ludwig

Hans Ludwig wrote a review of on January 8, 2012

5 5

This is my fifth Camelbak and seventh hydration system. All I can say is when it comes to hydration systems, you get what you pay for. Camelbak is certainly pricy but worth every extra penny. It’s hard to put into words all the thought Camelbak put into the details of this bag. So I wrote an ekphrastic tome.

I really didn’t think you could make a better bladder but they did. The 2011 bladders feature a quarter-turn opening large enough for ice cubes and easy cleaning, Camelbak’s signature bite valve, a baffling inside the bladder keeping it flat, and a detachable hose. The Pit Boss’s bladder nozzle automatically shuts off once the insulated hose is detached; meaning you no longer have to monkey around fishing the hose though the zippable, insulated hose-sleeve before you can get a refill. All you have to do is open the insulated pouch, unclip the bladder (leaving the hose in place), refill, clip it back in, and you are good to go.

The arrangement of straps and clips on the outside is my favorite feature. Reinforced loops on the side allow for packing of skis in the A position. The compression straps make it possible to hold skis (or snowshoes) parallel on the sides. Retractable, adjustable, and reinforced straps on the upper left and lower right of the front allow you to carry skis in the diagonal position. Horizontal straps in the front allow you to carry a snowboard vertically and the bladder insulation flap (next to your back) allows you to carry a snowboard horizontally. Bottom line is there are plenty of straps and things to attach all the winter things you could possibly need.

The Tri-zip feature is great. I can open the top flap (which is actually a pouch) to access the main pouch without unclipping my skis or snowboard. The third zipper allows easy access to the whole main pouch; albeit by unclipping the two horizontal straps. The main pouch is HUGE. It can easily fit a day’s food, first-aid kit, parka, fleece, and a helmet. The top flap/pouch opens from the back (right next to your head) allowing access without removing attached skis or board. This pouch is just big enough for all the little knick-knacks that get lost in a big pouch (map, compass, knife, tools, wax, gloves, keys, wallet).

There is a designated shovel pouch in front fits a 10” wide blade. Another nice feature is the top loading, quick-access, side probe pouch. I use it for my probe, shovel handle, and tail mix. I can get at it without putting the pack down.

All straps come with elastic bands to tuck extra strap away so they won’t snag trees or get confused while you are tightening something you can’t see.

I put this bag to the ultimate test this weekend. My wife and I set out to ski/board down 2700 vertical feet of a local mountain. I made a bad call and navigated us into a couloir which was above our skill level. 700 ft into the run we decided boot our way down the rest of the slope to the highway. I ended up carrying her skis, my board, and snowshoes at the same time. The load never shifted. 5 hrs and 2000’ of vertical later we got back safely.

Camelback also makes a slightly smaller women’s version —the Roulette, with a S-shaped frame — and the more in-bounds oriented Tycoon and Ante (for men and women respectively).

(0)

 

0 Comments

Hans Ludwig

Hans Ludwig wrote a review of on January 6, 2012

Solid. No frills.
3 5

I've had a Trace II for a few years. It's a fine helmet. No frills. Nothing special. Feels very safe & solid. The fit is round and roomy for big heads like mine (as opposed to oval or pinching at the top).
The fact that the removable clip opens upward (in the direction a goggle strap would slide) renders it pretty useless. Apparently all Anon (read: Burton) goggles securely attach to the clip. The round, smooth helmet makes it really easy for goggles to squirt/slip off so a clip is necessary.
This can easily be mitigated by attaching a rubber band to the clip.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Hans Ludwig

Hans Ludwig wrote an answer about on January 6, 2012

The fact that the removable clip opens upward (in the direction a goggle strap would slide) renders it pretty useless. Apparently all Anon (read: Burton) goggles securely attach to the clip.
See my review.

(0)

 

Hans Ludwig

Hans Ludwig wrote a review of on January 6, 2012

2 5

Last month, I bought Brunton's 26DNL-CL and have not been too impressed. Two problems: one small and one huge.
1) The clinometer needs to be cajoled into vertical (i.e. with more cajoling than what feels accurate). On northerly aspects the compass needle tends to go near vertical (aligning with the magnetosphere) and this gets in the way of the clinometer (which only goes to 60°).
2) The worst feature of this compass is the hinge design which attaches the sighting mirror to the baseplate. The baseplate and the top are one piece of molded plastic with two folded slivers of plastic functioning as a 'hinge.' The problem is a lack of torsional rigidity between the top and the baseplate.
(*I know this sounds like nit-picky minutiae but hear me out*).
To take the bearing of a feature (like a distant peak), you adjust the compass-housing & mirror with one hand and while holding the baseplate with the other; keeping the mirror steady with the thumb. Minimal torsional rigidity means the mirror rotates through more than one axis in relation to the baseplate. I.e. The v-sight & centerline of the mirror are not true with the direction of travel arrow on the baseplate & index pointer on the compass housing (because you keep the angle of the mirror steady with slight pressure from your thumb, thereby torquing lid slightly). When you use the mirror to take a bearing (aligning your eye with the index pointer through the centerline of the mirror), you end up rotating the whole compass to compensate so the peak is aligned with how the lines appear in the mirror; yielding a false reading when you use the v-sight, or the mirror as a guide when you rotate the compass housing.

Bottom line: Brunton's 26DNL-CL is inaccurate as a sight compass while awkward and lacking in standard features as a baseplate compass.

If you need a sighting compass, spend the extra money to get a compass with all the features (adjustable declination and clinometer) and a decent hinge like the Brunton 15TDCL.
http://www.backcountry.com/brunton-15tdcl-mirrored-compass
Otherwise save your money and weight and get a nice baseplate compass like K&R's Horizon Map Compass.
http://www.backcountry.com/kasper-richter-horizon-map-compass

I'm so glad Backcountry is 'out of stock' for this item.

(0)

 

0 Comments