Phil Maher

Phil Maher

Sonoma, Yosemite, Sierras, Cascades

Phil Maher's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Climbing

Phil Maher's Bio

My philosophy: All gear should be edible.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher posted an image about on June 27, 2013

Sighting feature

Front and back azimuths viewable through lens. Aim it at your target, get your heading, start walking. Even losing sight of your target in thick brush or canopy, you can stay on course. Absolutely no need to adjust your declination with this type of direct-sighting compass. Just not the best compass for map overlays though.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a review of on May 28, 2013

5 5

I haven't had this jacket for very long, but I've already come to appreciate it as being what I hoped it would be. Some pieces of gear you get a sense about, even with minimal testing, and this is one of them. It has a regular, true-to-size fit. Feels like soft fleece on the inside and has a courser wool-like feel on the outside. Even with 28% Merino wool, it performs like it's all wool, making it warm, even when wet. The fabric is what I would probably describe as around a typical 200wt fleece, but it's done a better than expected job of giving me protection in the wind, most likely because of the blend, and the weight/warmth ratio is entirely doable. Cold wash, no dryer or hot sun, just line-dry or lay it down flat. Collar rides perfectly on the neck, zippers are solid and smooth to operate with one hand. The chest pocket is deep and roomy, going well over to your side and below the arm-pit, big enough for gloves and a hat. I can see this jacket being great alone, under a shell, or as a mid-layer. I fully intend to use the hell out of it, and if first impressions hold up, it's going to be a real go-to piece for me.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a question about on November 21, 2012

Hey, I've got a Flight Series soft shell with TKA stretch that I can't remember the name of, but it's proven to be a great mid-base layer under my shells. Only problem is that it's cut like a waist coat and it tends to hike too far up my back when I'm bending over for things like cooking and dealing with gear. Anybody have any suggestions for something similar that still has the stretch, but is maybe cut a bit longer and has a drop-tail? Brand doesn't really matter, it just has to fit and work.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a review of on July 22, 2012

2 5

I've got a couple other reviews and comments from throughout the last few years here somewhere, but here's the latest- I am so done with this filter! I owned one of the very first of these sold to the public and it's been a constant mix of really good and really bad ever since. Worked fine at times, but it was always something- filter issues, back flushing issues, cartridge replacements long before they were due (even pumping from pristine sources), dropping and chasing small and numerous parts in creeks issues, pumping problems like vacuum locks and low flow rates... and finally, on our last trip, four strokes and failure (piston froze up almost completely)...my Hyperflow was dead weight that never left my pack again. We would have been totally screwed without another system or boiling. Totally pointless at that moment. I was pissed and irritated for the last time. Now, I do love my MSR Autoflow (the last trip's savior), and when that's not enough, I use and invariably rely on my Katadyn Hiker Pro. I wanted to like this, but the little problems that I was initially willing to overlook just got to be more than I was willing to deal with anymore. We have to trust our filters, and this gets too sketchy sometimes.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a review of on July 14, 2012

5 5

So here's a follow up at the two year mark....Well, I've ditched every other filter system I have, including my on-the-fly standards. I now carry only this and a few Katadyn tablets for emergencies. Let's face it, when you take a break on the trail you want to relax, not pump water. Screw that! This system is faster and easier, even when we only have a few minutes, it works and it works for me. I don't spend any more time than I used to getting drinking water, and now I do it with a fraction of the effort. It might weigh a bit more, but performance is the word, not constant, pain in the ass, pump till it hurts effort and maintenance on another filter at the price of a shaving a few ounces. In camp it's a gift. One trip to the water source...fill a few Nalgenes while you hang out and enjoy your free time, then fill the bag again and head back to camp....today's and most of tomorrow's cooking and drinking water for 2-3 people, DONE!!! I have no idea how many gallons I've pumped, but it's a lot. Still on the same cartridge, easy to flush, still flows as fast as day one. This is still a piece of gear that shines as a favorite! This might be a little redundant in terms of my earlier review, but jeez, it's still going strong and doing what it's always done well. How often can you say that anymore? It might sound sort of fanatical, but getting an Autoflow was sort of life-altering when I look back on the last 30 years of trying not to get Giardia.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a review of on February 19, 2011

5 5

Well, calling it 2 servings is questionable, but I would imagine that many people would agree with me that this stuff is like the Holy Grail of dehydrated food. Great taste, filling, nice carbs and calories. Stay with the recommended amount of water, but mix it really well and give it extra time to hydrate the beans and macaroni. Even though it doesn't need it, add more paprika, chili powder, or hot sauce to spice it up even more. To sum it up, here's a typical end of the day conversation when we're out on the trail- What do you want for dinner? "Chili Mac" How about tomorrow? "Chili Mac" How about every night for the next week or so? "Chili Mac". Seriously, get a whole bunch.

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Phil Maher

Phil Maher wrote a review of on February 18, 2011

4 5

Yep, definitely a novelty. Tastes just like an ice cream sandwich, but you better be really into dessert to bother, and there are definitely more satisfying sweets out there to choose from. The flavor is more or less there, although it's not going to be anywhere near as rewarding as the real thing. It's like a giant, brittle vanilla Lucky Charm block that is almost guaranteed to be shattered into little pieces by the time you pack it and eat it. Sort of dissolves in your mouth instead of melting. It's funny to see it come out of the package, so it does tend to lift your spirits since you can't help but laugh because it's so bizarre. Pretty good, worth a try just to check out, too much packaging for what it is. If the kids had their way, it would be all they would eat.

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