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greg

greg

Pacific Northwest

greg 's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking
Paddling
Snowshoeing
Skiing
Climbing

greg 's Bio

I like outdoor gear. Maybe too much.

I usually work too much during the year and don't leave myself enough time to go and explore the outdoors like I would like to.

I am a total smart ass. I also play the part and most likely I really am the 'village idiot' when out doing stuff if I am in any sort of group. I can't handle uncomfortable situations when people are uncomfortable just hanging out. I am usually the first person out on the limb doing and saying things to lighten the mood and hopefully it invites others to do the same. It seems to work but it has a tendency to offend certain people. What are you gonna do? Oh well. Life is too short. Make sure you have some fun.

greg

greg wrote a review of on January 23, 2015

To press or not to press..
4 5

The Reactor is such a great set up to melt snow and boil water. Having a coffee press that integrates into the pot is really cool. The rubber gasket can be a little tricky but you get used to it.

I am more of a tea drinker than a coffee guy and it works great with loose tea as well.

I have two Reactors in the 1.7 liter size and I just keep it in one and grab that one when I think I might want coffee or tea in the morning.

Nothing is better than watching the sunrise on Mount Rainier with a hot cup of tea or coffee first thing in the morning.

I would recommend it to anyone who has a Reactor stove and pot.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 18, 2015

5 5

These have turned into my favorite shoe to wear.

I have people remark about them everywhere I go. "Nice Shoes"

They don't have any waterproofing but they are great to wear while working out.

I have said it before.. They grip like crazy in the right conditions. They will also lay you out flat on your ass in the wrong conditions. They aren't great in wet and smooth conditions. You could be running down a trail and if you are in the loam you'd be fine. Step on a wet log or rock and you could end up on your ass.

I still love them.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 15, 2015

4 5

I was going to go with SMC snow pickets until I grabbed both, then held them together and compared the weight.

In the 60cm it was really noticeable and then even more so when you are going to carry two.

The SMC's are like $23 dollars and the MSR's are $30. Plus, the MSR's have the nice rubber nubbin on top to wack at.

I think if anyone compared the weight it is a pretty easy choice of which one to get.

The websites I found say that the SMC 60cm is 13.6 oz and this page says the MSR is 14 oz.. No way in hell. I held them side by side and the SMC's are much heavier.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 13, 2015

4 5

So the new rope arrived..

Wife.. "Why do you need a new rope?...?....? Hello.. HELLO!.... "

Me... "What?..?"

Wife.. "Why do you need a new rope?..?"

Me.. "Yeah, I heard you the first time.."

Wife.. "Well..?"

Me.. "I'm thinking.."

Wife.."You're thinking..?"

Me.. "Yeah.. Ok, it is really light."

Wife.. "So what is wrong with the other ropes you have?..?"

Me.. "They aren't very light."

Wife.. "That is the answer you are going to go with?"

Me.. "Yep.. Final answer."

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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 13, 2015

Nice fleece beanie
4 5

Fit: Runs small

It is a basic fleece beanie. It is what I was looking for.

If you have a large head this thing will be too tiny for you. I am a small medium in hats and this thing almost feels small on me. So I will say it runs small for anyone with a large dome.

Just an FYI.. The black one doesn't have the red dot with mammut's mammoth on it.

They have what looks and feels like a silk screened mammut logo emblem on the right side along the brim.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 12, 2015

4 5

It was really the only ultralight down puffy that fit me through the chest and back. I am 5' 7" and about 190lb. The large fits perfect and feels just a smidge long in arms and body but nothing excessive.

I think there are better jackets from other manufacturers out there but their sizing is a bit scrawny to fit me.

It is a nice jacket but it really is sparse compared to Marmots Quasar and even Patagonia's Ultra light down jacket.

It wouldn't have been my first choice if the Marmot Quasar fit me.

It is a very lightweight jacket that does a great job keeping you warm. I have been wearing it walking to the gym at 5:30 in the morning and I am surprised how warm it is even when I am walking back home being sweaty.

My biggest concern with the jacket is the durability of the ghost whisperer fabric and the tiny zippers the thing has. They zip up alright but unzipping them seems like it puts strain on the zipper.

It just feels like a jacket that you will own for a season or two and it will be finished, then you will be replacing it.

I didn't feel that way with the Marmot Quasar or the Patagonia Ultralight and even the Arcteryx Cerium SL. They have a more durable feel and seem like a jacket you would own for many seasons to come.

I have seen too many Ghost Whisperers that have been tenacious taped and kinda look like shit for what isn't a cheap jacket.

It seems to be a great jacket for its performance and light weight but I question its longevity.


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greg

greg wrote a review of on January 12, 2015

4 5

I searched and searched for a lightweight down puffy.

Patagonia, Mountain Hardwear, Arcteryx and Marmot's. I tried them all.

I like the Marmot but it doesn't fit me through the chest and back. It is 44" through the chest. I am just a bit over that and this thing was a bit more than snug. The 'Angel Wing' shoulders leave a ton of room in the shoulders which could be looked at as a good thing or a bad thing. It is a strange look when you raise your arms and you have the shoulders sticking up.

I ended up getting a MHW Ghost Whisperer because the fit is better for me, though I prefer the Marmot's quality and little touches it has.
The hood cinch, the 900 fill down, the Pertex 10 denier nylon, the lining inside the jacket and it even has a chest pocket.

I would have gone with the Quasar if it fit.

Just an fYI.. The red one has black Marmot lettering on the chest, shoulder and a Marmot logo on the back of the shoulder. It looks good.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on December 29, 2014

3 5

Fit: Runs small

WTF are the people at Arc'teryx thinking with their sizing?

Don't get me wrong.. I love the jacket but the sizing is just too weird.

I have many different Arc'teryx products from pants to jackets to packs to gloves. I have never had issues with their sizing before this jacket. I am usually between a medium and a large for jackets and tops from them. This one is tight as hell in a large through the chest.

What is it with the new metrosexual cuts and sizing coming out? I am not tall at all and this large is fine through the arms and torso on me.

I have to warn anyone that the sizing is just weird as hell with this jacket. The jacket is a great piece and I would prefer it to any other thin down puffy out there. The sizing just isn't going to cut it.

I will give it 3 stars though if the cut was normally sized I would give it 5.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on December 28, 2014

4 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
Fit: True to size

I was a bit shocked how thin the material is. I did a search for fleece pants and these along with a few others popped up on the page.

My wife likes them and has been wearing them but they weren't what I was expecting to show up.

It would definitely be more of a spring or summertime pant than a wintertime pant to wear outside. They are stretchy and she says they are very comfortable. Would they keep you warm on a cold day? I don't see how they could.

They are a very nice pant but don't be surprised by the thinness of the material.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on December 28, 2014

3 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
Fit: True to size

The first thing out of my wife's mouth was that they itched. "Why are they so itchy?"

I am guessing because they are made out of wool and wool is itchy.

They seemed like a good pant in the looks department and the weight of the material is substantial.

These are a no go and are being returned.

I am having a difficult time trying to figure out what star rating to give them.. I just want to warn others that they have an itch factor to them. I will give them a middle of the road rating and let others decide for themselves.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on December 27, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
Fit: True to size

My wife has quite a few fleece pieces already but I wanted to get her a slightly warmer one than what she already has.

Patagonia fleece is the fleece to get. She already loves her R2 and the quality of Patagonia fleece is second to none.

The R3 definitely is... I will say 'furrier' looking than the R2. It has a slight look to it like someone skinned Elmo or one of his furry little friends from Sesame Street. It is not a shag carpet look but it definitely has a furry texture to it.

I wasn't sure how she was going to like the blue color but she hasn't taken it off since she unwrapped it.

You can tell it is made as a performance fleece more so than it is for just wearing as a run of the mill fleece jacket. The fleece is in certain areas but not throughout the entire jacket. The side panels and inside of the arms along with the elbows are a different material which is definitely more noticeable in person than what you can see in the photos above. I have the mens version and I personally like it that way for layering and the daily abuse it takes, so it makes sense of why they built it that way.

A great fleece.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on December 27, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

These things are perfect as a comfy house shoe with the ability to take the dog for a walk if you so choose.

They are a very well made shoe/boot/slipper.. You can tell the quality in the construction and in the way they are packaged.

They don't come in half sizes so I sized up. My wife is a 7.5 was surprised they were a size 8. They fit her perfect even without a sock on. I would say size up not down if you are looking for a half size.

Definitely a worthy purchase if you are looking for a warm and comfy slipper with a more robust nature than the usual flimsy characteristics most slippers have.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 28, 2014

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Decisions decisions..

With the price so low I just got both. The three is a manageable size for one person. The four would be best for a camping trip.

I do a 5 course meal at our local outdoor concert venue. With just two people it is a very easy and manageable thing. Four people isn't that bad either. We have had up to 8 people and is a full on pain in the ass. I felt like I had a hodge podge of different bags to carry everything before. looking like a band of gypsies as they pretty much haul away anything that isn't tied down.

The three is perfect for hauling and organizing all the ingredients I need. I prep the ingredients at home and plate everything on site.

The color coded pods make for easy organization. I also love their cooler cubes that you can integrate into the mix.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 28, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size

I expected the Midweight 3 to be much thicker. I am glad that it isn't.

When layering the Midweight is a perfect choice. I have some Heavyweight base layers from MHW which is overkill most of the time. I also have some Silkweight from EB. I don't really count the UnderArmour I have because it makes you feel cold. It is just weird stuff.

Patagonia's Capilene is hands down the best underwear out there. I was only using a pair of lightweight guide pants on Rainier and added these for our ascent of the mountain. It was the perfect combination even though it wasn't the best of conditions. We all looked like frosted donuts by the time we reached the summit. I was fine the entire time on my legs. I would have overheated if they would have been any heavier weight.

If I was looking for a set of underwear I would start with the Midweight Capilene and then get a heavier or lighter weight later.

The Midweight 3 is just so versatile when layering.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 25, 2014

5 5

Fit: Runs small

I have the Goretex Backcountry version but wanted to try a larger size and didn't want the same color again. Just going up a half size made a world of difference with my feet and being able to use my favorite insoles.

I wanted to get a shoe for our trip to europe when I didn't want to wear a dress shoe. I think these make a pretty good statement of being someone from europe or looking like Eurotrash. I am going to say Germany. I am like Dieter from Sprockets.. ' I am as happy as a little girl. '

These shoes aren't really for urban environments or city use. They grip like crazy in the right conditions, but put them in a damp or wet smooth slick surface and finding any traction is almost impossible. There were many times I felt I was walking on a freshly zambonied ice rink.

These shoes are great, they help in keeping your feet from getting wet from puddles or just when it is raining. I will most likely be using them out on the trail here very soon too.. Though I don't usually run. I will also be using them as a basecamp shoe whenever I go back up to Camp Muir. They are a very light shoe that provides some sort of moisture protection. I was so jealous of the people who had a normal shoe and didn't have to clunk around in their mountaineering boots in the evening.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 21, 2014

3 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
Fit: True to size

Ok, think of the price then think of what you should get for $35 dollars.

Columbia sportswear is for your normal average person or someone that is on a budget.

My wife wanted another fleece for wearing around the house and I obliged her. Yeah, it is great piece for that.

It is a good deal for what you paid for. I would compare it to what you would expect if you went to a ski resort or resort town and they had branded fleece for sale. Nothing special and in time it isn't going to wear well.

You paid next to nothing so it shouldn't come as any surprise when it wears out.

If my wife wanted a piece for outdoor activities I would have gotten her a fleece that would have been 3 to 4 times more expensive. Because you get what you pay for.

For a growing child or for someone who thinks walking the dog is going out into the great outdoors.. Yeah, this is one you should look at.

As a gift for grandma or anyone who looks like they have no clue what to wear when they try and put on their play clothes... This would be a great gift to give them.

*EDIT* So it looks like I pissed off a few of the people I was talking about in my review.. Clueless people. I sold Columbia Sportswear at the shop I managed. We sold all the high end brands like Patagonia, The North Face, Marmot etc etc.. Columbia Sportswear is basic stuff. It was for people who didn't want to spend too much or they were buying gifts for others or for outdoor gear for their children or wife who doesn't do anything extreme. It is a decent deal but it isn't made to be a performance layer. It isn't. You wear it during basic outdoor activities and you just buy another one when the piece wears out and loses any sort of fluffy feeling or your kid outgrows it. Call it a family brand.
Sorry some of you uptight people got your panties in a bunch. Would I buy a kid a Patagonia fleece or a TNF fleece? Sure, But most people buy Columbia and call it good. It is good but you get what you pay for.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 21, 2014

4 5

Fit: True to size

What is it with manufacturers lately? Most larges aren't very large.

This shirt gives me plenty of room and is sized correctly for what a large is supposed to be.

The last few casual dress shirts my wife has bought me have fit like complete shit. I don't see how I can be 5' 7" tall and have the majority of large shirts out there almost feel tight or be too small through the shoulders and chest. And lets not forget the lengths either. They fit me just right or are even short on me. If I was 6' tall or taller I would be showing my mid drift. Showing off my belly button lint makes a real statement.

Is the new style looking like the weird douches that try and squeeze into skinny jeans? It is like the scrawny malnourished look of 90's supermodels has hit mens fashion.

There are Big and Tall stores.. Maybe I missed the Short and stout ones?

Patagonia seems to do pretty well with their sizing. The length is the only real issue for me. I am not usually a tucker when it comes to shirts.

It almost seems weird finally getting back into a shirt that fits the way normal sizing should be.

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greg

greg wrote a review of on November 12, 2014

4 5

This thing just showed up and I have been sitting out on the back deck drinking a beer and staying toasty warm next to it even though winter has finally arrived in Seattle and the temperature is right at freezing.

The bag is going to be awesome to store and carry it. The folding legs are sweet too.

One of the biggest reasons I hate car camping is the fact people are idiots and many times you can't have a campfire going anymore even where there is a huge fire pit and there nothing to catch fire anywhere close by. Plus, I hate smelling like smoke the next day or when you get home and everything smells like a campfire.

This thing puts out some heat. It comes with two wire roasting sticks for wieners or marshmallows. I wasn't quite sure how well it would work for cooking but it would actually do really well with a grate over the top of it and using a pot or frying pan. Plus, you can adjust the flames so easily.

With all the fire bans usually in effect this thing will make camping much better than not having anything at all.

I will also use it when I drag the flatscreen out onto the deck during the summertime when we have movie night out under the stars. Sometimes it gets a bit chilly later in the evening and this thing will be perfect to have out there providing some warmth and ambiance.

I will just call it a new age campfire.. Because some idiot will burn down the forest if they let them.

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