Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard

Ohio State Parks, Smoky Mountains, Boundary Waters.

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Ian's Passions

Backpacking
Hiking

Ian's Bio

I love the adventure and challenge of a great backcountry trip. Life today for most people is easy and we forget what it feels like to survive.

Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard wrote an answer about on January 6, 2012

I love my ama dablam. Realy warm and incredibly light. Packs down into its own pocket too if you want to stow it away in your pack. Sometimes i question its durability though. The shell is fairly thin and it could possibly rub thin under packstraps. Really big hood on it if you plan to use it with a helmet. I know the Ama Dablam is popular for mountainering to go under your hard shell. The Ama Dablam is 6oz lighter and 800 fill which means it will compress smaller but I don't think it has a DWR coating. 800 fill is going to beat 650 fill everytime. As a ski jacket I think the guides hoody wil suit you better for durability. For warmth and compressed size i would go for the Ama Dablam!

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Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard wrote a review of on January 3, 2012

5 5

All of the reviews for the Marmot Helium bag seem to be for the men's version. I bought this bag for my wife to use in the spring and fall backpacking seasons. Some bags, big agnes rectangle bags in particular, claim to be rated to 15 degress but most fall short. This bag easily keeps my wife warm down to the low 30's upper twenties with no complaints, we have never tested it below a temperature of 25 degress. My friend bought his girlfriend a Big Agnes lulu which is also rated as a 15 degree bag but synthetic. The loft between the bags is incredibly different (so is the price). The helium lufts up 3+ inches higher with a noticably more even distrubtion of down. The fit on the regular is great for my 5 ft 3 in wife, enough extra room to bury into the bag or keep your clothes in the footbox. My only complaint is the stuff sack, it takes me about 5 minutes to get this thing packed in and I rarely get the sinch all the way closed. Maybe the down will compress further with more use and this will become easier. You get what you pay for in a sleeping bag and this is one of the best bags in the market.

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Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard wrote a review of on January 3, 2012

5 5

Pricey tent but you get what you pay for. You get all of Marmot's excellent tent features plus the extra large size. Easily fits a family or a couple with cots and extra gear. Fully set up with all guylines staked out, the tent is very firm. It can easily withstand steady wind without shifting and the full coverage fly is fully taped and waterproof. The fly covers all the way to the floor seam of the tent and stakes out to keep water from touching the seam. The vents on the fly are tiny, in hot and humid weather sleeping with the fly on is uncomfortable. With the fly removed there is a large amount of mesh that allows for great ventilation. Set up is fairly tricky with a peak hight of 6.2 inches. You have to heave the fly over the tent and pull it down to the clips. There is an incredible amount of room inside the tent and you can easily stand up straight in all corners due to the design. The hanging pockets and vestibule ground covers are great additions. I would recommend the ground sheet to keep your tent floor clean and safe. Expensive price tag but a great value with the design and additional features.

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Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard wrote an answer about on December 20, 2011

I think your going to have leftover water in here any time you use it. Without the inflow tube submerged in water, you will be pulling air into the filter. This will cause you to loose the pressure needed to move the water through the filter and through the ouflow tube. I would take the filter apart and pour it out before you pack it away for an extended time. While in the field, simply pump till no water comes out and save it in your storage sack until you use it again.

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Ian Pickard

Ian Pickard wrote an answer about on December 20, 2011

Use the hook to attach to your pack, choose a strap or a loop, and then sinch it tight. The hook is to pull the rain cover tight across the pack to help it from pooling water.

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