flan-man

flan-man

Cascades and Olympics

Patrick's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking
Skiing
Climbing
flan-man

flan-man wrote an answer about on July 15, 2011

They are heavy and clunky compared to mountaineering boots. However, with the lugged soles scrambling around on rock isn't all that bad. Using boot crampons isn't bad, you just need to make sure you get a good fit. And why go anywhere in these boots and snow unless you're skiing?
Really, why go anywhere without skis?

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on June 29, 2010

4 5

This has proven to be a very well thought out pack. TNF did a good job designing this. It's great for bc skiing in, with plenty of room for short or long days. The coolest feature that really stands out is the skin compartment on the bottom of the pack. It's really nice to not stick wet/snowy skins in ontop of your coat.

The only reason I'm giving this 4/5 is that it's not a top flap/lid, the top zips. This makes it a little less versatile for carrying a rope along or quickly stowing a coat. Overall a great pack, that I would recommend.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on October 21, 2009

5 5

The Dukes are (finally) an AT capable downhill binding. If you ski hard then these are for you. I've toured for years on numerous bindings, but I never realized what I was missing until I got a pair of Dukes.

The compromise is they don't tour as nicely. The climbing bar is pretty weak, I've bent one and no longer use the high position when on a sidehill. They are clunky on the flat, but not too bad when ascending. They are obviously heavy, but after being out a few times your legs get stronger and you're fine. I still use more touring oriented bindings for multi-day tours, but don't hesitate to grab my Dukes for day trips (under 5000-ft).

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on August 27, 2009

5 5

Oakley sunglasses are second to none. After going a few years with Natives, I got these Straight Jackets with VR50 transitions. They are really versatile and the fit and air flow is great.

About 5 years ago I switched to Natives because I wanted interchangable lenses. I've found that most of the time I use the Orange(medium tint). The VR50 Transition is a little darker but the clarity and contrast of the Oakley's are much better. The VR50 are not that dark, so I'll switch to a different pair of glasses for sun on snow or sun on water days.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on August 20, 2009

4 5

Just got these and since it's August I haven't skied in them yet. Quality looks good. Adjustable waist and removable suspenders are nice features. The material and lining looks pretty tough without being bulky.

Ground's website says they're waterproof, and they seem breathable with good venting.

True to size: I'm a 34-34 and the large fits great.

Should make a great resort pant. Let it snow!

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on July 10, 2009

4 5

Excellent grip on dry, ok grip when wet. Continentals tend to run small so I'm running the 25s as everyday commute/training tires. They're pretty lightweight and roll well. The 25s are definitely slower than many of the 23s I've run over the years, but are a nice compromise with more ride quality. These tires are predictable and stable in the corners, which is my big complaint with the panaracers i've tried. These GP4000s have lasted well for training miles, and I'll likely get them again (maybe in a 23). In the winter/wet I switch to Continentals 4season.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on June 22, 2009

4 5

Great for those summer trips when you just want to keep debris out of your shoes. They aren't really waterproof, but I've used them many times in the snow and they work well. I really like them on warmer spring/summer trips where I don't want my entire calf sweating under a full gaiter.
These are light and do the job of covering up that nasty gap between the top of your boot and your socks.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on May 6, 2009

5 5

This coat is amazing. I've used it for about 3 years, and it fits well and is very warm. I've used it when snow camping at -10F in CO and found it to be a great at keeping me toasty. The hood adds a lot of warmth and the whole coat is like wearing a sleeping bag. It's always in my pack on winter trips and has not let me down! This coat does not pack up very small, about 6" by 9", and with the hood attached it is a chore to get in the stuff sack. On day trips I usually remove the hood for less bulk. The hand warmer pockets are great and the internal mesh pocket allows you to warm up your fuel or nalgene. The great thing about this down is that besides being super warm, it's windproof and pretty water-resistant. Unless it's a downpour or wet snowstorm I don't need to use a gore-tex shell over this coat.
I'm 6'3" 200lb and have a size L, and typically layer it with a fleece or softshell. It's kept me from shivering through the night or day more times than I can remember!

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on May 6, 2009

4 5

This boot is great for AT and a great all arounder for most. I'm used to relatively stiff dh boots, and this is definitely a compromise in performance from my 120flex nordicas. However, the weight savings is phenomal over a dh boot. The front/rear flex is a little soft, but should be fine for all but the hardest chargers. I'm about 230 lbs with a pack, and lighter people should find this boot is plenty stiff. These boots drive the big skis just fine (Goliaths, XXL). The only things I'd change are the tongue is kinda a pain to get back under all the buckles and the front buckle is really difficult to unbuckle. Overall, a good AT or intermediate/advanced inbounds boot.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on May 6, 2009

5 5

This pack is tough, durable, versatile and well thought out. I've been searching for a good replacement pack for 2 years and this is it! I just took this pack on a 4 day ski tour across the Olympic Mountains, WA, and it easily cushioned and handled the 60+ pounds. The pockets are well laid out with nalgenes on each side as well as side pockets for small items. The side and top compression straps work great and make this pack versatile for smaller trips. There are ample attachment locations for ice ax, crampons, skis, skins, pads, etc. The built-in rain cover was plenty big to fit over my tent, crampons and everything else I had strapped on, and stayed on in 70+ mph winds.

The only negatives are that the skis did tear a small hole in the back of the pack when carryed diagonally, but this pack wasn't really meant to carry skis and the pack held up fine to crampons and general abuse.

The vari-quick fit is the best adjustment for torso length EVER! It may just be the best thing since sliced bread.

Bottom line: This pack will get it done.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on April 10, 2009

3 5

This was a great stove. I used it for 3 years in all seasons. It doesn't do well in the cold as the canisters can't stay at a high enough pressure, but it's great above freezing. It boiled water quickly and simmered very well. It also seemed very efficient on fuel consumption.

The only problem is that after 3 years it died. There's no flame output and it's seems to be gunked up or something. I've tried contacting Primus several times, but haven't gotten any response from customer service.

Overall, it was great while it lasted...

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on April 10, 2009

4 5

Great gloves. These gloves aren't quite as dexterous as the BD Prodigy's I had before, however they are much more versatile. The shell on the marmot has the water proof membrane as well as some insulation, making it a nice glove on it's own. The liner mine came with is windstopper fleece which is great for approach hiking or the uphill skinning/climbing. Overall I find my hands are much drier than with my BD Prodigy's (since those shells were just leather), which translates to much warmer in the Cascades.

The downside on these is they are expensive, but that's the glove market, these are certainly competitively priced with any other gloves I've seen. However, the finish quality on these gloves is *MUCH* higher than my previous BD gloves.

I'd buy these again.

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flan-man

flan-man wrote a review of on February 17, 2009

1 5

BD just doesn't seem to make solid gear any more. I was in the shop trying on different boots and so I figured I'd try on the Factors. I buckled in, leaned forward and heard a snap. The shop guy and I looked at each other, then looked down and saw the walk mode had just broken. This problem has been reported by others. I just won't buy anything more from black diamond until someone else has done the real-world testing.

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