Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger

Olympics, Capitol Forest, Cascades

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Michael's Passions

Backpacking
Camping
Hiking
Trail Running
Paddling
Snowshoeing
Sport Climbing
Bouldering

Michael's Bio

I'm a National Park Service Ranger during the Summer, and a freelance writer for trails.com year-round. I log about 2000 trail miles a year, and try to spend at least 100 nights in a tent.

Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote an answer about on February 27, 2010

Dependent on where you are in the Puget Sound area, there are a number of good kayaking shops available to customize your boat. In the South Sound, I'd check with Alpine Experience, Olympic Outfitters, or South Sound Kayak. In the Seattle area, you have the REI flagship store, Kayak Pro Shop, or Northwest Outdoor Center. If you live further north, LFS in Bellingham, or Sterling's (also in Bellingham) would be your best resources. If you are on the west side of the sound, try Sport Townsend or PT Outdoors in Port Townsend.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote an answer about on February 27, 2010

Either the 11.5ft or the 13ft model would support his weight (about 198 pounds) and then some. They are also a bit wider, which lends the feeling of stability. As a beginner, it is best to go try out a few rental boats until he finds one that he is really comfortable with, and find a boat that matches the measurements of that boat within your price range.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote an answer about on February 27, 2010

The different length tails (which are now on different pages) represent floating capability. Your weight combined with the carried weight can help you determine just how long your snowshoe should be. A snowshoe too long for you will be herky, while a snowshoe which is too short will leave you post-holing through the snow.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 27, 2010

4 5

Very rugged water bottle, I use it most when traveling and on short hikes. It has lasted very well, and multi-tasked as a tent stake pounder in Montana. Using it as a tent stake pounder had more than one reason as well. The bottle was filled in Spokane and left in the back seat of the car, by the time we reached Libby **KACHUNG!** the bottle's bottom domed out. This clearly isn't an error in the manufacturing process, but the bottle doesn't do so hot with major atmospheric pressure/temperature changes in concert.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote an answer about on February 24, 2010

I'd go with the nylon strap. Don't get me wrong, I love leather strapped watches for looks, but leather will stretch and degrade over time. I have had the nylon wrist strapped version for around 6 years now, and it still fits like the day I bought it.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 24, 2010

5 5

I bought a Nixon Scout watch about 6 years ago and wore it through sandstorms in Iraq, snowstorms in the mountains of Southern Germany, surfing in the Netherlands, rock climbing in the Cascades, hiking in Glacier/Olympic/Rainier NP's, and everything in between. This watch is super sturdy, and will outlast 2-3 sets of batteries at least!

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 24, 2010

4 5

I'd give it 5 stars if I liked the sporks. Other than that, it does *almost* everything I need it to do. It compensates for that by being a storage space for my Snow Peak LiteMax stove and a canister. If you like pancakes, bacon, or fried eggs, you'll need a pan as the pot is just a bit too tall for cooking those items. It boils fast, cleans up quick, and is pretty versatile.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 24, 2010

4 5

This disarmingly small stove was recommended by a friend who runs an outfitting shop, and she was right, it's about as light as you can get! I keep it and a canister inside my GSI Dualist kit, and it's a perfect fit. Just put it in the bowl on bottom, and put the canister on top of it, viola! The only pitfall for this handy little stove is that it does not have a self-contained ignition source, so make sure to bring your fire making device of choice.

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 24, 2010

4 5

I got these pants not too long ago, and they have already proven themselves. These pants have seen rain, snow, stream crossings, and almost 50 miles of under-maintained trail. The rain just beads up and rolls off of these pants! The pockets are well placed, and there is a smaller pocket inside the right cargo pocket where I have been putting my compass.

My only gripe about these pants is that the zipper pulls are too small for numb hands (lost my gloves one day), to remedy this, I have taken some old boot lace and lengthened the pulls!

Other than that, these are great pants, very sharp looking, and very functional!

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Lost Ranger

Lost Ranger wrote a review of on February 24, 2010

5 5

First, as far as sizes go, I'm 5'10" 170lb and am wearing a men's medium. The shirt is a slim fit, so if you aren't planning to use it as a base layer, or close to the base layer, go up a size.

I have had this shirt for almost 2 years now, and I wear it year-round hiking in the Olympics and Cascades. It is usually a second layer over a merino wool base layer on those really cold nights. Here in Washington the weather is predictably unpredictable, so this fleece has seen just about anything nature can throw at it; from sub-zero temperatures to skirting a forest fire, sunny days to sideways freezing rain.

All told, I don't go out without this shirt.

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