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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowle

The Wasatch Front, Alta, Mt. Rainier, BCC, LCC, Pacific Northwest, Seattle Cyclocross

Scott Scooter Sowle's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Running
Biking
Skiing
Climbing

Scott Scooter Sowle's Bio

Living in the heart of the Wasatch Mountains gives me ample places to hammer on my gear including cycling, mountaineering, hiking, climbing and backcountry skiing. It's so great to have Backcountry.com in our backyard also.

Grew up in the Tri-State area of Indiana, Michigan and Ohio with a love of skiing, cycling and hiking. Arrived in Park City when there were more dogs than people and alpine touring was via old cable bindings and leather boots and in later years graduated to using Lange plastic cuffs to stiffen leather tele boots. Road cycling was awesome and then came along the MTB which were made to handle the Wasatch trails along with the awesomeness of Southern Utah. Grabbed a hold of cyclocross later in life and love sneaking into the PNW and hitting those muddy courses.


Speaking of the PNW, it's another great spot for the mountaineering geek in me. Tackling Mt. Rainier, Mt. Baker, Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood and many snow capped peaks in between have been very challenging and rewarding.

Priorities: Helping others gain a smile in life!

As if you can't tell, my favorite color is Green!!

Get out and do it!!!

Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on August 31, 2015

Friends and Osprey Never Let You Down
4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Ok, so sometimes a friend may let you down, but hopefully not purposely. The Osprey packs have never failed to let me down and they still are on the same path with the Variant. I guided a friend into purchasing this pack and he's totally amp'd about it. He's also allowed, or should I say I begged, to test it out on a few crags and hikes.

*Fit & Color*
He got the Diablo Red and in a size medium and may allow it become notably dirtier before black. It will be a bit cramped for his size if he chooses to use it during the winter months with heavier layers beneath the shoulder harness (6' 180 lbs.) but he felt more comfortable with this size.

*Performance*
The streamlined and lightweightness of this pack should make it a great backcountry ski pack. It has all the bells and whistles including dual ice axe/tool loops along with two gear loops on the hip belt and also includes a rope system at the top. It was stated that it doesn't have a dedicated shovel pocket, but I found that the crampon and/or gear pouch can also accommodate a moderate size avy shovel. Having the ability to remove the lid is great for smaller loads and the Flapjacket closure will keep out H2O from soaking your gear.

I wasn't able to, or I should say, I didn't hammer on it in the crags hard so I'm unable to give a honest review of the durability, but feel the 420 d nylon and 310 d cordura will suffice for some years of use. You'll be glad to know that Osprey has a great warranty department.

"Osprey will repair any damage or defect in our product for any reason free of charge – whether it was purchased in 1974 or yesterday. If we are unable to perform a functional repair on your pack, we will happily replace it. We proudly stand behind this guarantee, so much so that it bears the signature of company founder and head designer, Mike Pfotenhauer"

Summary:
I feel this will be my next backcountry ski pack after having tried it out. With all other Osprey packs I've owned or tested, they've never let me down and believe they're one of the top Cadillac models of weekend/backcountry packs.

The photo is my friend Thomas, a Bob Marley lover, in the Wasatch Mountains.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on May 5, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 6' 0"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: 33

Never thought much of climbing in jeans until I picked up these. The Modus are the most comfortable pair of jeans I currently own. They stretch well and moves at your crag can be made in ole style! I'll definitely will be picking up a couple more soon and they're great for those night long pub crawls on your bike.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on April 13, 2015

Aeon Jacket is Rock Solid!

I've been hammering the Aeon for nearly 6 months, thanks to Mountain Equipment and Backcountry.com and it's never let me down. From climbing Utah granite walls, skiing the Wasatch Mountain backcountry, cycling and even a couple of harsh pub crawls this jacket still looks new. It sheds water (and adult beverages) like none other, is very breathable, the rip stop fabric can take a beating and breaks hurricane winds on unclimbable or skiable peaks. The Aeon is in my pack every trip because it can handle it all.

I've been so impressed with the Mountain Equipment quality that I'm looking to give some of their mountaineering bibs a hammering soon.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on April 1, 2015

2 Seasons Fog Free

I've had the Knowledge OTG for 2 ski seasons and they've not disappointed me. You can hardly hear the fan, in fact a few times I've taken them off to confirm the fan is on. The only time I had a problem it was my fault for not leaving them out of the bag overnight to dry out. This caused them to fog up between lenses. I've hiked many backcountry trips here in the Wasatch Mountains and never remove my goggles. The Smith Turbo goggle models all are a huge plus when sending it on a powder day.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on March 2, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

The Fritschi Freeride keeps me coming back. These are my third set for a quiver of skis and I've been charging the backcountry hard without failure.

I'm 175 lbs, 6 foot expert resort and backcountry and been around a few years. They far surpass my first AT gear consisting of old leather alpine boots and cable bindings.

Easy to unlock and adjust for incline when skinning up. Yea, weight weenies, they're heavier than tech bindings, yet I can still pass you up all day. It's not about the weight and all about the heart and soul.

My only complaint is that you may need to take your pole and clean out the snow at the heel in order to lock them down.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on February 27, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Just had a chance to demo a pair of these in 184 cm today at Alta, Utah.

Conditions: 4-7 inches of light snow on top of hard pack.

Performance: It was my first day back from a tibial plateau fracture and I wanted a bit shorter and forgiving ski to test my rehab out. My first run on groomed left me impressed how quick you can turn these boards. The long rocker in the front does tend to give some flop, but at high speed it disappeared. The next run in side country gave me a view of their effectiveness in the pow and I wasn't disappointed. Returning back to the resort I found them good in soft crud and didn't have a problem with them in the bumps. A total of 12 hard charging runs gave me a impression of a decent all mountain ski.

This was the first time I'd been back on Dynastar since they made the Course and they brought back good memories. They may end up in my quiver of skis soon.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 20, 2014

Kudos to the Brits on the Aeon Jacket
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size

Thanks goes out to Backcountry.com and Mountain Equipment for hand-selecting me to review the Aeon jacket for the benefit of the Backcountry.com Community.

Fit:
Being a slim athletic built guy at 6' and 165-170 lbs I'm impressed with the Aeon medium jacket fit. It was like Mountain Equipment built it custom just for me. It's not a big baggy fit like a few of my light weight jackets and the sleeves were perfect length.

Color:
I'm normally a big fan of green but the Harbour Blue made me realize there is more than one color in the rainbow and love it.

Performance:
The Aeon was out of the bag and on within a few minutes of receiving it for a quick bicycle commute downhill in 30 degree temps where it gave me the wind and chill protection I expected and on the return uphill materials breathability proved to be Goat worthy.

I've had a couple 6 - 7 hour round trip hikes in Utah's Wasatch Mountains in temps from 40 degrees to the low teens. The Aeon has proven to be tough while bushwhacking through the heavy brush, provided maximum wind protection and the zippers work flawlessly. ME doesn't mention the wired brim on the hood which is a feature I miss on my other "Go To" light weight jacket.

Summary:
This jacket is light weight, windproof, breathable and seems to be very durable. I've not had the opportunity to put the Aeon to test in the rain but noticed that melting snow does bead up well or have I had the chance to climb some crags in it. I did notice that the hood won't accommodate my old style Petzl Vertex helmet, but did try it with a couple of new BD helmets and it worked well (Guess that's incentive for a new helmet).

Years of having the Marmot Precip as my "Go To" jacket has come to an end as the Aeon will now be in my packs at all time.

I'll be posting an update after Sending It on crags, skiing and rain during the next few weeks. Meanwhile I gotta say nice job Brits on the Aeon!!!

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on November 10, 2014

Aeon Windproof and Go To Jacket

First, my thanks go out to Backcountry.com and Mountain Equipment for hand picking me to review the Aeon jacket for the Backcountry.com Community, which I'll be posting at the end of the week.

This past weekend the Aeon went on a 7 hour hike up Broads Fork Trail, Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah and it proved it's ability to keep the wind at bay. Really love the hood as it has a wired brimmed that kept it from sagging down in your face unlike many other jackets. The Aeon is fast becoming my new Go To jacket!!!

Gonna put it to test on a climb during this week and see how well it holds up in the abrasive Utah rocks.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on November 4, 2014

Mountain Equipment Aeon First Thought

Thank you to Backcountry.com and Mountain Equipment for hand-selecting me to review the Aeon Jacket for the benefit of the Backcountry.com community.

I just received the Aeon and took it for a whirl on a 6 hour backcountry hike up Ferguson Canyon in Utah's Wasatch Mountains.

I'm 6' and 170 lbs and the medium is a perfect fit. So far I'm impressed with it's breathability and windproof. The material which features a ripstop weave, just as Woody has mentioned below, didn't have a problem when bushwhacking through the brush. My favorite go to jacket is a bit noisy and Mountain Equipment has done a great job eliminating that noise with their fabric.

Watch for a full review of the Aeon to be posted in the next couple of weeks after I continue to hammer in it on more hikes and a few free climbs in the Wasatch Mountains.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Having recently picked up the new Ascension model and then having a friend from Seattle mention he still had my old ones, I'm now prepared for the big mountains and have spares for a friend.

There was nothing wrong with the old models, Petzl needed to bring out something new due to untrusting junk copies being sold. I find the new ones are a bit more comfortable and awaiting to use them on a big mountain soon.

Why do I mention "Big Mountains"?

I have many friends who have and are still attempting 8000 + meter peaks and they all have the Ascension. Take a look at a few of the Everest vids and you'll see nearly are using them.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Petzl products are to be trusted and the William's ease of use during cold weather makes it ideal for mountaineering. I've got both the screwgates and triacts, very pleased with both. I've used them with the Petzl Pirana, belays, and top roping. Years of use and still ticking!!!

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm not sure how long I've had my Petzl Pirana, but it's given many years of reliable rappelling service in canyons, walls, backcountry skiing and mountaineering adventures. Very easy to control friction and you'll just toss your old figure 8 in a box for friends. I've been using it with the Black Diamond Rocklock biner http://www.backcountry.com/black-diamond-rocklock-carabiner?

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

While living in Seattle I had the opportunity to pick up the first MSR Reactor with 1.7 L setup and put it to use on many glacier adventures. While on the summit of Rainier we put it head to head with the Jetboil and boiling time was nearly a third less. It works great in wind, you can regulate the flame and it's lightweight.

I've noticed since MSR has since changed to the 1.0 pot that many are having difficulties with packing it. Having a couple of friends at MSR I sent off a message to find out if they're improving it or a recommended method to packing it and awaiting an answer. I'll post it when received.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

Staying In The Limelight with Marmot
4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

My buddy brought his Marmot Limelight 2 man tent to Southern Utah during a few days of car camping and hiking and gotta say it was an awesome addition. I normally just throw the pad and bag out on the ground and fall asleep watching the stars. Given the opportunity to try the tent out a couple of nights I couldn't pass it up.

The first night we set it up on the Colorado River near Negro Bill Canyon. It took my friend a total of 2 1/2 minutes to get it done. With a 3 pole system, two which are connected together it was a no brainer. Once everything was up I threw the pad and bag in and jumped in. I'm 6' and had no problem of setting up and this two man tent gave us plenty of room. I love the gear loft and roomy vestibules.

The next night we went further into the backcountry and I ask my buddy if he had ever done a quick pitch. He stated, no, so I showed him how to do it with the poles, rainfly and footprint. I had it pitched within 1 1/2 minutes. He was amazed and had never thought of it before.

This is a bit heavier tent then I'd like to carry into the backcountry but I felt it was great for car camping. The quick pitch option was awesome and the roominess great. I'm sure I'll see this tent a few more times while living in Utah.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on November 1, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Winner, winner, chicken dinner. That's what they say in Vegas and after a trip to Southern Utah's great backcountry I've found a new headlamp winner.

My friend brought along his Black Diamond Icon and I had my favorite Black Diamond Storm. I've totally been stuck on the Storm for the past 3 years with it's waterproofness and light weight but after 3 early morning and night hikes I've got to admit I'll be switching over to the BD Icon as it was a superstar in a head on competition.

Yea, it's a bit heavier than the Storm, nearly twice the weight, but the Black Diamond Icon just plain kicked butt when it came to brightness, in fact it was so bright I didn't need to bother using my headlamp.

I examined the battery case and feel that the waterproofness is as adequate as the Storm and the waterproof rating is the same. It took a little getting use to the battery pack on the back of my head, but for a majority of the climbs and mountaineering adventures I'd be using it on I'll be wearing a helmet. I'm thinking that the battery life may even be better with the Icon.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on October 23, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Yea, it was a late night order so I could replace a headlamp that was left on a peak. I wanted a couple more Backcountry.com 32 oz. bottles, but didn't look at the size when ordering. Man I was a bit surprised when I opened the box to a miniature bottle. I actually thought they had sent me them by mistake or as a souvenir. After looking at the invoice and my online order I knew then that I did a Homer Simpson. As it is I've found a good use for them by putting my powder drink mix in them, so I'm actually happy with em. I love Craig Armstrong's use (review below) for his awesome climbing cat partner.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowlewrote a review of on October 23, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

What can I say, this is the fourth Storm I've owned and I love it, of course a couple of friends loved them also and kept them. I did leave one on top of a peak for some lucky person. The reason I keep coming back is their great durability. I hammer on gear and this Storm keeps on giving me an awesome return when night hiking, mountaineering and even as a second lamp for cycling. I've used this in the Pacific Northwest's rainy days and never had a problem of it shorting out. (I think Brandon Outen's review earlier "Great for Night Swimming" is a great testimony of it's waterproofness) A time and battery saving feature is the battery lock so you no longer need to take out a battery or turn one upside down while in transit.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on October 20, 2014

Active Mid-Layer for the Mt. goats

The Marmot Alpha Pro was the main jacket for a 2 day ridge line traverse and climb in the Lone Peak Wilderness Area, Utah. Cool windy days and a early morning chill this was the ticket. A great piece to throw on at night while watching a herd of mountain goats fight and play high in the Wasatch Mountains.

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Scott Scooter Sowle

Scott Scooter Sowleposted an image about on September 26, 2014

BD Adjustable Poles - Greatest Sticks

I've been using Black Diamond adjustable poles for all my adventures in the mountains. From hiking, mountaineering and backcountry skiing, they've never let me down. The locks work flawlessly and baskets never pull fall off if properly mounted. I've hammered and banged the pair I currently have on the scree and rocks while scrambling and have yet to make a dent or bend in them. My only problem has been friends don't want to return them after loaning them out, so I now have a couple pairs on hand, one for me and one that I'll most likely end up giving out on the next adventure. Can't wait to give the BD 3 a try later this year and will post a review soon. Meanwhile grab up a pair and enjoy a lifetime of backcountry.

Scooter

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