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aesery

aesery

The Evergreen State

aesery's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking

aesery's Bio

Love the great outdoors...anything green or blue --or both, like Cape Alava. Hope to get there soon (after the tourists leave)!

aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 27, 2011

5 5

I was truly skeptical about this bag, especially since I'd been burned by 'innovative' sleeping bag designs in the past. I decided to throw caution to the wind and replace a sleeping bag that was twice what the Flip cost(but had a big elastic hole in the back...). I just got back from an early Spring trip out to the Olympics and can attest to the Flip's versatility.

I started out the evening covered by the 50 degree side and sleeping on the 35 degree side. When the temperature dropped to almost-freezing, I turned the bag over (still skeptical) and slept like a baby for the remainder of the night. The second night was at a higher altitude and still I was adequately warm in just long johns! You won't be disappointed by this bag (which, BTW, is great for using as a blanket if you or your partner tends to sleep at a different comfort level than you do and you want to snuggle).

There's more than enough leg room (in fact, I had my pants rolled up in the bottom AND a stuffsack with an 8oz fuel canister), a handy pocket on the 35 degree side, and a relatively snag-free zipper. I'd like to buy a compression sack because I know it can pack down smaller.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 14, 2011

4 5

These boots rock! I bought them for snowshoeing, but I've found that they are great for the occasional Seattle snowstorm (I know, I know, all 5 inches of snow...), mid-winter trips out to northeastern Montana, and anything in between. You'll look at the plush lining and think that your feet will fry, but they really don't. I've worn them with Backcountry socks + liner socks and my feet were just right. You'll stay dry, have excellent traction, and they are easily paired with YakTrax in dicier situations.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 13, 2011

5 5

I upgraded from the awesome MSR Pocket Rocket, which is now in my emergency preparedness kit, and I haven't lusted for another stove since. There's one new moving part compared to the Pocket Rocket - so you have to clean the stove...no biggie. I've run the stove for two seasons and will only need to clean it in anticipation of a third season. You can set bigger pots on it because it's super-stable. The windscreen and heat reflector really work, so be sure to pack it with your stove (I didn't the first few times and STILL had no problem, even in breezy conditions). Be sure to keep your fuel in the bottom of your sleeping bag so it stays warm, otherwise you'll find the stove a little hesitant in the AM in cooler conditions. You also can't beat the price - this stove is as efficient, if not more, than stoves that you'll drop twice as much dough on.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 13, 2011

Overall greatness
4 5

I love this tent - I wish it was just a bit wider, but I haven't found myself spending a ton of time in the tent, even in the rainy PNW. It's lightweight, easy to set up (one person can do it), and the pole system is a lot of fun. You can pull it out of the stuff sack and it connects on its own (almost). I've been in two decent rainstorms and in windy conditions and have yet to experience any leaks. You can't go wrong by purchasing this awesome tent.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 13, 2011

2 5

This looked like a great bag. Lightweight, trimmed down, and supposedly rated fairly warm. Unfortunately, that's not the case and I'm out two C-notes because of my hopeful-but-backfired purchase. The down slides to either side of your body, leaving very little to keep you warm if you sleep on your back. The straps are cumbersome (I didn't use them after the first try) and the hole in the back doesn't make it very fun for side- or stomach-sleepers. I'm thoroughly disappointed because I expected more from Thermarest (since I love my NeoAir) and I've opted to purchase a Mountain Hardwear bag that's half the price. Sure it's a pound heavier, but it also doesn't have what my partner affectionately calls a '[posterior] hole' AND it'll keep me warm. I've slept in temps as warm as 55 and as low as 19 and froze my butt off anywhere cooler than 40 degrees. For the record, I sleep quite warm. Oh - and I'm 5'9" and the regular was too short for my comfort. Hopefully Thermarest will re-tool this for future seasons.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 13, 2011

5 5

This mattress packs down so small that I, like a few others, have panicked, thinking that I'd left it at home. It's comfy, it doesn't lose much air, and you actually don't have to inflate it as much as you think you do. Sure, it's a bit pricey, but I have not regretted spending my hard-earned money on such a durable, lightweight, and comfortable piece of backpacking equipment.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 12, 2011

4 5

These gaiters are idiot-proof (if I can put 'em on, anyone can). They've survived spring and summer seasons over and under rain pants. I've taken them in the snow and had NO problems. The height is ideal over pants, though they look a little goofy when you're wearing shorts, but I'll take goofy over being eaten alive by mosquitoes. The color is nice, too.

These gaiters are durable, comfortable, and lightweight. I would recommend spending the money for them - you'll save even more than I did when I bought them last year. You won't be sorry.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on April 12, 2011

5 5

I LOVE these socks!!! I've worn them 'in-town' but more importantly, I've worn the same pair (with and without liner socks) on 3-4 day backpacking trips. They're comfy, light, warm / cool (read: just right!), and best of all, there's no stink! I've washed the 3 pairs I have multiple times and they're still in beautiful shape. I only wish that Backcountry still sold the 'Ocean' color.

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on August 22, 2008

5 5

These shoes are great for making river crossings or for wearing around camp. They're super-comfortable and smash down to almost nothing. I can even jam them in the water reservoir compartment in my backpack. They rinse off really easily and I like that you can convert the shoe into a slip-on.

If you're an Ultralight junkie, these shoes are pretty good for hiking. The traction is amazing!

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aesery

aesery wrote a review of on August 22, 2008

3 5

Here's a hint: Gorilla Tape. If you're on a budget and you enjoy the idea of having an inexpensive, light tent (or can't bring yourself to buy the Wal-Mart tent that will weigh twice as much at least), get this tent.

After reading the reviews, I purchased the Solitaire and, when it arrived, I took the time to wrap the poles (tiny, BTW) with Gorilla Tape. As a result, it withstood my not-so-gentle setup and some decent wind overnight at Larrabee State Park.

There will be condensation on the foot end of the tent, especially if you're taller than I am (5'9") or choose to utilize your pack as a pillow. The great advantage is that, if you're somewhere relatively private (or you just don't care), you can do without the attached rain fly and roll it back to enjoy the stars and the breeze.

I can't believe at how small this tent packs down. I can jam it, my sleeping bag, and the sleeping bag liner in the bottom compartment of my backpack!

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