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debmonster

debmonster

NYC resident who likes to play in the Catskills, Berkshires, Adirondacks and Whites. Also anywhere on the AT.

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Deborah's Passions

Hiking & Camping

Deborah's Bio

Volunteer backpack trip leader for NY/NJ Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC). Dream hike: Thru-hiking the Long Trail in Vermont. Favorite vacation: 135 miles on the AT in GA/NC.

debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on January 24, 2011

3 5

I've been using this glove/mitt combo for the past month in very wintry conditions while hiking in the Catskills mountains of NY. Temperatures have ranged from 5 degrees to 35 degrees and there has been anywhere from 6 inches to 3 feet of snow. I've been hiking both on-trail and off-trail, so I haven't always had the luxury of a nice, clear trail to follow and sometimes need to use my hands to brush away snow-covered trees obstructing my path, or to help push myself up a hill. I find the softshell glove to be adequate warmth until down to about 25 degrees or so and then I need to add the outer mitten for anything colder than that. The combination of glove and mitt work very well together and the wrist leash of the mitt allows for me to quickly remove the mitt without dropping it, so that I can take a photo or perform some other function that requires more dexterity. The outer mittens will also work very well on their own in wet but warmer weather.Softshell Glove:One problem that I've noticed is that the softshell glove's palm is not waterproof and gets wet somewhat easily, either by my sweating inside the glove on a warmer day, or by my placing my hands on a snowy rock while trying to hoist myself up a steep section of trail. If the palm of the glove gets wet, it doesn't dry and my hands start to get extremely cold, so I end up having to carry an extra pair of warmer gloves to put on under the mitts after the softshell gloves get too wet.Mittens:The outer mitts, on the other hand, are excellent and incredibly versatile. They are very lightweight on their own and make a huge difference in warmth when layered over the softshell glove or another glove. They will also work very well in warmer weather when I need a waterproof mitt to use above treeline in alpine zones such as the Adirondack High Peaks or the White Mountains in New Hampshire.Conclusion:I probably should have just bought the outer mitts (the OR Endeavor Mitts) and used them with a waterproof softshell glove bought separately, since the inner glove that comes with these are only usable for a few hours before getting too wet for proper function in winter conditions. However, in cold, dry conditions they would probably be great.

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on October 8, 2007

4 5

The Hydrolock really improves the use of my Camelbak by making me confident that it will never leak. The only mild complaint I have is that it sometimes drips a few drops onto my shirt after I close it if there is water in the mouthpiece. This is solved by blowing the water back into the reservoir (which I do in winter anyway to keep it from freezing in the tube).

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on October 8, 2007

5 5

I use this windscreen with my Brunton Optimus Nova stove for winter backpacking. Very light and fits around my stove perfectly. It totally blocks the wind and really helps to burn fuel more efficiently.

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on October 8, 2007

3 5

This is a very lightweight pack cover, but the only mechanism to keep it on my pack is the elastic drawstring secured by an adjustable toggle. Unfortunately, a few times the pack cover would slip off the sides of my pack, exposing the outer edges to rain. I ended up replacing it with a Sea to Summit Ultralight pack cover, which weighs exactly the same and has an elastic strap that clips across the pack behind my back, keeping it in place.

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on October 8, 2007

4 5

I use this burner sheet as a base for my stove in winter and it works great to keep the stove insulated from the ground and helps contain any fuel spills. It rolls up into a tiny space and is even lighter than the MSR Trillium base. My only semi-complaint is that I thought it was a bit overpriced, but (obviously) I decided it was worth it!

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on October 8, 2007

5 5

I use this compression sack to hold my clothing on warm-weather backpack trips. It squishes everything down to a tiny package about the same size as my cookpot. Very light, but still pretty strong. Not waterproof, so I wouldn't use it to carry my down sleeping bag if it's likely to rain, but it's a great item if you prefer to use a small backpack.

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on February 15, 2007

4 5

I was using the Go-Lite Lair tarp for a while but have been reaching for my "Little Agnes" (as I like to call the SL-1) more often, thanks to it's superlight weight, spacious interior and excellent protection from the elements. I've used it in torrential rain, summer heat & humidity and late spring frost, and was comfortable each time. My only complaint is that the vestibule is rather small and makes it a bit tough to get in & out of the tent during rain without a small amount of water getting in (this is easily erased with a small camp towel).
However, I was amazed at how much internal room there is when I am inside the tent. I have plenty of space to put my pack at my feet, and enough room on either side of me for my clothing stuff sack, toiletries, book, etc.
The tent packs down to 6x12 using a compression sack and carrying the poles separately. Overall, I'm amazed at the combination of light weight and comfort!

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debmonster

debmonster wrote a review of on February 7, 2007

4 5

I have used these pants for winter hiking, backpacking and cross-country skiing in the Northeast US. I'm very happy with them; they fit very well - not too snug but not baggy at all - and are perfect for activities when you are constantly moving. The material is substantial enough to keep me warm in temperatures below freezing, but still breathes and lets moisture escape so that I don't sweat. The vents on the side of the legs also help to do the same. The inner lining feels very comfy against my skin. My only complaint is that the pockets are very tiny and poorly placed. I can't reach them when I have a pack on. I wish there were at least one pocket on the side of the leg where I could store small items. Overall, an excellent softshell pant!

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