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Tang

Tang

Adirondacks, NY

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Owen's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Paddling
Snowshoeing
Skiing
Climbing

Owen's Bio

Living and Teaching in the Glens Falls, NY region, I live for weekends and school breaks where I get to explore the Adirondacks in my backyard. Everything from backpacking and canoeing to ice climbing and cross country skiing, being outdoors keeps me sane.

Tang

Tang wrote a review of on March 3, 2012

5 5

Bought this on SAC for the amazing price of $80.00, and I have to say, it has performed in every way imaginable, with a few quirks. I bought it in June, 2011, so I decided I wouldn't review it until it spent a season ice climbing, snow shoeing, and XC skiing in it. Those activities have come and gone in the Adirondacks, and i must say I was impressed with the performance. It held the wind at bay while belaying in -4 temps, and breathed well while exerting myself in 32 degree ski tours. The hood is perfect to fit over a climbing helmet, though it does droop a bit without. The Napoleon pocket is clutch for granola bars or sunglasses, and the sleeves are long enough for my 6' 4", 200 lb frame (ordered a Large.)

Two minor gripes: The hand pockets are too low for harness/hip belt wear, and the bungees that tighten the hood are too light, and awkwardly placed inside the hood with a strange place holder that makes it weird to get a perfectly custom fit.

I still think this deserves the full 5 stars because of its performance, style, and how cheap I got it. If BC fixes the two minor flaws, this will definitely be up there as a top hooded softshell.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on March 3, 2012

4 5

I picked these puppies up for 60 bucks on SAC, and accidentally ordered 2 pairs. I'm glad I did. These are supportive, hold the trail exceedingly well, fit perfectly with my feet, were true to size, and have lasted me 2 years of hard use. They became my gym shoes, my cross training shoes, and they took me up a daily 1 mile mountain when I worked at a summer camp in the Adirondacks. Which brings me to their 1 flaw: the bottom two grommets.

My version is a few years old, and though the lacing system is rock-solid, quick, and will hold tight after miles of hard use, the friction is too much for the non-reinforced bottom (closest to the toe) grommets. I'm including this review on a newer version because I see they haven't fixed the problem yet. The grommets wore through when there was plenty of shoe left to use, the tread wasn't worn out, and the overall construction was holding up beautifully. I still wore them because I tied some knots so the laces wouldn't pass through the plastic-reinforced grommets, but I could never tighten them down as well afterwards.

All in all, however, I would highly recommend these shoes for those in the market.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on May 10, 2011

5 5

After only 1 winter season of use, I can say this baby is a must for those who don't want the cold to keep them indoors. The best way for me to describe this is as a replacement for your old heavyweight fleece (think TNF Denali jacket) in terms of insulation. It will heat you up plenty during aerobic exercise, but isn't designed to keep you warm whilst sitting still in sub-freezing temps.

My usage: I took this snowshoeing in VT, Colorado, and the Adirondacks, NY in a mix of wind, snow, and sun. Under a hard shell in the snow and wind, this was perfect at keeping me warm and dry, and once the pit-zips were open, allowed me to dump good heat when the sun came out. I also used this on a ski sojourn, and it also performed admirably, though once the sun went down I got a little nippy on the chair lift (only had a merino baselayer on under it) I warmed up to just-right temps once I started coming down the mountain.

All in all, this is a great, lightweight alternative to a beefy fleece, and due to packability, will accompany me on my backpacking journeys in the 'Dacks this summer for fire-less High Peaks night chills.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on April 25, 2011

5 5

I've used this pack for over a year now, and what a year it's been! The Presidential Range, overnights in the 'dacks, a snowshoe trip in the Rockies, this pack excels in all conditions. I upgraded from a p.o.s. Eureeka external frame, and I will never go back. This pack may have a few more lbs to it than some people would like, but they all go towards making it as comfortable as possible over long hikes. Not only are the straps and waist belt designed to feel invisible, the weight is so well distributed on your hips, and hugs so close to your back, that you barely feel a pack at all. This has enough room for a week long trip in the summer, or a 3 day-er with winter gear, and its simplistic design ensures nothing gets lost, but everything has a place. The zip access to the main compartment comes in handy when the pack is in your canoe and you don't want to open up the whole top.

I'm 6'4", 210lb, and I bought a Large pack, but actually needed a Medium waist belt. Overall, this is the pack I have been looking for.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on November 18, 2010

4 5

I don't have these exact Sanuks (have the "Chiba") but I feel thes are about the same as the ones I have. They are fantastic "sandals" fit for bumming around, wearing around town, or stashing in your pack for a lightweight camp shoe that takes up little space. I, like many people here, ordered a size up (usually a 10-10.5, got an 11) and it was a great call; they fit perfectly.

They would be a 5, but for two things:
1. A touch pricey, and I feel little "crumbs" inside my shoe when walking around that either kicks in from the outside, or comes from the shoe itself.

2. My feet have never smelled so bad. I usually have very stink-free feet, but man these things and their "anti-microbial footbed" make my feet smell terrible.

These things haven't stopped me from wearing the sandals non-stop (maybe that's why the smell.) They are insanely comfortable for such a simple design, and it feels as if you are wearing nothing at all.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on October 9, 2010

5 5

I have done many summers leading 5-day backpacking treks in the Adirondacks, and I had always worn a mid-cut, lightweight hiking boot. I was in the market for some new boots, and when I looked at these initially I balked: they look too heavy and stiff for my tastes. Like a cross between an approach shoe and a mountaineering boot.

After I tried them on, I changed my opinion completely. These are MUCH lighter than they look, fit my (narrow) feet like a glove with no pressure points on the laces, and while they aren't as flexible as I'm used to, that might be a good thing as I get older.

I took them on a "break-in" 3-day trip over Labor day to the Pharaoh wilderness. 2 eight mile days with a 30lb pack with a 7 mile mountain hike in between. Nothing rigorous, but these boots didn't give me a single blister, and my feet weren't screaming to be out of them at any point. It was bone-dry, so I can't account for the eVent, but the rubber is sticky enough for any rock, and there is enough ankle support without inhibiting your motion.

Overall, this is a dynamite boot, and I'm glad I went for something new. I can't wait to test them out in snow shoeing season, and I feel that these could last me long enough to hand down to the kids I don't have yet.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on December 19, 2009

The Driest I've Ever Been
5 5

Without rating the price, and just the performance I can honestly say that this i the best jacket for keeping your dry I've ever seen. I've taken it ice climbing in sideways sleet, I've canoed all over the 'Dacks with it, and I have used it to keep my nice shirts dry on wet NorthCountry mornings going in to work. But I must say that what impressed me most was when I sat for 5 hours in the parking lot at the Meadowlands in a tailgate with pouring rain. There was no shelter but this jacket, and I needed nothing else. I stayed dry, warm, and happy as can be in this jacket while my Mountain Hardwear Exposure II bibs let some water in.
Which brings me to my only negative point: This jacket is so good that water just runs right off of it, soaking your pants. So if you don't have a good pair of goretex rain pants, your legs will bear the brunt of this amazing technical piece of clothing.
Size-wise I'm 6'4", got a large (on severe discount, so I only paid 270) and it fits like a glove. The torso is not too tight, so it allows layering, the articulated elbows move with me so it doesn't crawl up my arm while I'm swinging ice axes above my head, and the back is longer than the front, which makes my seat stay dry. The hood fits perfectly around a helmet (and I usually detest hoods) and I still have full peripheral vision after adjusting the hood. I love it. You will too, if you've got the scratch.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on January 13, 2009

5 5

I got these bibs last year, and through multiple XC ski trips, and 4 or 5 ice climbing weekends, they have proven themselves to be worthy. I got them on super sale, and I would have gladly paid the sticker price for how they perform. I haven't noticed a major sticky zipper problem, even with big mitts on, and the waterproofing has more than held up to both multiple falls in the snow, and climbing on some seriously wet ice. Although the Gaiters are mostly useless, the crampon-guard at the bottom cuff of the pant is wonderful. The picture doesn't do it justice, but they look pretty decent, and bibs are the way to go for serious winter sports.
The only problems I've encountered stem from the fact that I am 6'4", 185lbs. and got a large (once again, because of the sale.) They are a tad short on me, but the overalls are elastic, so I barely notice when I'm in the thick of things.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on March 31, 2008

5 5

Got this jacket on sale just in time for the end of ice climbing season, and it delivered. Warm as hell as a belay jacket in Adirondack sub-zero standing around, and so lightweight and packable I had no reservations about throwing it in my pack for some back-country cross country ski trips in the Marcy dam area. I am 6'4", 180, ordered an XL and it hits right at the waist, but for a belay jacket that's exactly what I want so it doesn't interfere with my harness. Overall, this jacket is fantastic, although I agree fleece on BOTH sides of the pockets would be fantastic.

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Tang

Tang wrote a review of on March 5, 2008

5 5

These shorts are fantastic, great for climbing, swimming, hiking, and all-around outdoor play. They stretch to your movements, dry quickly, and look pretty sharp. I would say that the 2006 model was much better than the current one. The snap closure, and velcro fly was much sleeker when it came to answering the call of nature without taking off the harness. Also, the "belt" feature in this model bunches something fierce, and looks awkward. It also shrinks a tad in the wash, but all in all I LOVE these shorts.

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