BNE, Australia is my home town. USA and NZ are other places I visit every so often
Sea kayaking is my gig and I am anal about gear performance.
Of all the drybags I have (like 20!) these ones are the most dependable.
While not exactly supple and a little bit chunky I see no abrasion/wear after prolonged use. The slightly sticky fabric seals well when rolled down properly. Not submersible leakproof but no drybag is, nor intended to be.
Great little light (not exactly ultralight backpacking style) and I love the dimming feature when less light is needed.
On one occasion the light stopped working and I thought I just exhausted the batteries. Later, at home, I tried again and it worked perfectly, for hours.
Is there a thermal cut-off if it does overheat, or something?
Great light otherwise.
I purchased this soft shell to use in town as I find any soft shell too bulky for backcountry use. I chose this one because it has the lightest fabric and the environment I use it is rather warm-ish (no sub freezing temps). Looks good enough for (casual) business meetings without feeling I just got off the mountain.
This jacket and the ultralight shirt run one size smaller than usual. In all my other gear from Patagonia I am always XL but with this jacket I need XXL. I have to return the XL and unfortunately BC ran out of XXL in the color I want (on sale). The jacket otherwise looks great and packs stupid small.
the Hydrosilk is snug and feels great against the skin. No rough seams to chafe my underarms and the fabric dries fast. Great protection from the blazing Australian sun. Quality gear.
I went back to Kokatat after 6 years of using/wearing out the Kokatat MsFit. The OutFit Tour has the pockets a bit more forward on the chest giving me better clearance when paddling. I like the new recess-pocket for the knife on the left shoulder so the kinfe sheet won't stick out anymore like on my old MsFit. The pockets are well placed and I can acess my compact camera with ease. The shoulder straps are outstanding having the webbing tuck away nicely and not having the excess flopping around.The workmanship is superb, something that I expect from Kokatat anyway.
While the mount is good and sucks very well (much better than other suction caps) the metal hardware is NOT stainless steel.
Using it in salt water will corrode the bolts and after a while will become rusty.
Since GoPro cameras are often used in lousy weather or marine environments, the bolts shold be changed to stainless steel
A wide brimmed hat that can take the breeze.
Other hats I have for sea kayaking fold over my face when the breeze picks up; not this one!
The elastic band is sewn only on one edge creating a gentle retention that does not constrict on the head but stays put.
A great hat that seems well made and should last.
PAce gloves are excellent for sea kayaking: dry fast and are low profile for low decked kayaks. Full review at: http://gnarlydognews.blogspot.com/2011/05/review-merrell-pace-glove-shoes.html
of all the brands I have tried so far the Lowa Tempest is the most durable shoe for a heavy person.
The upper holds up incredibly well; the lining eventually wears out on the heel
The sole is mega sturdy and does not wear
Not a bad shoe for sea kayaking though the sole on the previous model (Maipo) would delaminate too soon.
Sole sturdy enough for oyster rocks
I have been wearing Puckerwear shirts from Patagucci :-) since 2001.
And I still regularly wear my first shirt. I have not found this kind of quality anywhere else.
Smart enough to wear at the office but easy enough for "action weekends"
I have used Thermarest for now almost 20 years.
From the original aluminium valve to the NeoAir.
Best night sleep is now on NeoAir.
Super compact and light.
Downside: I spend a few minutes inflating it by mouth instead of self inflation.
More details for a comaparison with Exped at http://gnarlydognews.blogspot.com/2009/06/sleeping-mats-less-is-more.html
I have several gas canister stoves and I wanted to use some off the canister and solidly supported by the tripod that this gadget offers.
Worked great for about 1/2 hour then the flame started to dwindle and eventually shut down.
No gas was coming to the stove.
Disassembled the unit in the field (need some tools), cleaned and tried again.
Worked for a few minutes and shut down again.
At home I have removed the "O" rings between the hose and the valve (both ends), removed the safety valve (redundant since the canister has one) and reassembled the unit sealing the threads with white plumber's tape (PTFE).
I am finally "cooking with gas" (the stove now works at full blast, if needed)
Werner makes quality products and backs up any warranty issues.
Have paddled a Camano for a few years now and it is the most versatile paddle I have (other paddles are Ikelos and Athena, from Werner).
Great for touring and the occasional surfing/playboating.
I had a ferrule develop some slop but I had it replaced under warranty even if it was more then 12 months old.
Bent shaft is a must since it's easier for correct paddle angle when setting up for a roll and "self centering" when touring (much less grip needed to avoid flutter)
I have been paddling with a Camano for a few years now and despite having other paddles from Werner (Athena and Ikelos) the Camano is the one that does everything fairly well. I can tour for hours or catch some surf. Bent shaft it's a must for me since it gives me better feedback of blade orientation when underwater setting up for a roll. If you can afford it, treat yourself to a carbon one.
The ferrule on one Camano developped some slop but I had it replaced under warranty even if it was more then 12 months old.
This is my second Pioneer compass that I use for sea kayaking.
My kayaks come with a forward of front hatch recess for a Silva 70 type compass but I decided not to mount the compass there and go for the Pioneer instead.
The Pioneer is sturdy and has enough rubber protection to prevent accidental damage. The dial is easy to see and gives you an accurate reading (enough for compass viewed in the cockpit of a sea kayak).
I wish it would have an illuminated dial for night navigation but I am curently working on a modification to make that possible using small LEDs and remote battery/switch.