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Marla J's Passions

Camping
Trail Running

Marla J's Bio

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on February 26, 2012

4 5

You might want to consider ordering a down a size. I have other capilene baselayers in the same size (women's small) that are a little loose, but I was swimming in this one. It's so long in the torso, I don't think even the XS would fit. For reference - I'm 5'3", 105 lbs. Really nice otherwise so I'll give it 4 stars.

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on July 11, 2011

5 5

Light, simple to set up/take down, and just the right size for one person plus essentials inside the tent. The vestibule is small to keep the weight down, but big enough for my pack.
I cut a piece of plastic to size instead of buying the footprint it works fine. This tent works best if you use 4-6 of the stakes rather than completely free-standing to keep the vestibule tight and minimize condensation. A pole splint is included--nice touch.

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on May 23, 2011

5 5

My dog, Hailey(see guru photo), has never carried a pack before but got used to this one quickly and doesn't mind carrying it. She drinks just fine out of the bottles-no need to carry a bowl. The pack goes on easily and stays put on the trail. I like the extra visibility of the bright orange, especially during hunting season. I can use the handle on top to help her jump from the back of the truck, and the leash loop on top is much handier than fiddling with her collar.

Having her carry a liter of her own water lets me take her on longer hikes, and not having to put her poo bags in my pack is a real plus.

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on May 23, 2011

5 5

When I first pulled these out of the box, I could hardly believe how light they were. I love the light weight and they still have plenty of cushion. The contragrip tread provides great traction on both mud and on looser surfaces, and it doesn't collect a lot of mud like some deep patterns do. It feels really strange on pavement, so don't try to use this as a hybrid shoe.

This shoe has pronation control and a lot of arch support. I use green Superfeet in nearly all my shoes, but ended up going back to the original insoles as the Superfeet actually made the arch too high--never had that happen before. For me, it's a great combination of cushion and support, and I've even worn them backpacking.

The mesh across the toes is a tight weave and keeps most trail debris out while breathing well.

The fit is narrow in the heel with a wider toe box, and they run a half size larger than most other brands. Overall a great trail shoe and I already ordered a 2nd pair. I just wish Backcountry carried the GTX version in women's sizes!

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on May 23, 2011

5 5

I've tried handheld bottles, hip packs and several hydration packs in an attempt to find a comfortable way to carry water and a few essentials on long runs and fast hikes. The Nathan is by far my new favorite. It doesn't bounce, is lightweight, and the front pockets provide immediate access to snacks, lip balm, phone/GPS, etc without having to take off the pack.
Two things make it less than perfect for me. Fisrt, the drinking valve allows air to flow back into the tube unless you keep it in the closed position, and it's not that easy to open/close on the run. I swapped out the hose for one off an old CamelBak with a bite valve-probelem solved. The other nit pick is that this pack only comes in one size. I'm small (5' 2", 102 lbs) with a short torso and the sternum strap goes from just below my bra line at the highest adjustment point to my waist line at the lowest adjustment point. This actually works fine and is amazingly comfortable, with only downside being that it puts the hose clip in a pretty useless spot. Not a huge deal--I just put the hose across my chest and tuck it into the little strap.

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mar100323562

mar100323562 wrote a review of on May 11, 2011

5 5

I haven't done much running in these yet, but I love them for hiking. I wore them on a steep 10 mile hike with no break in and got no blisters. I hate heavy, stiff boots and have always done most of my hiking in trail runners. Because of the higher cut and GTX liner, these are the perfect blend of protection, light weight and flexibility. They weigh half of what my other (supposedly lightweight) boots weigh. The quick lacing takes a bit of getting used to, but works fine and once you stash the extra in the pocket on the tongue you never have to worry about catching a lace on brush.
I think they will be good for winter trail running, but suspect I'll find them too warm for running in warmer, drier weather. I won't hestitate to use them for backpacking and snowshoeing.
Note on sizing: These run a little bigger than most shoes, so recommend you order a half size down from your normal size (I wear a 7 in most shoes, but have plenty of room in the 6.5) My feet are very narrow and low-volume, but I was able to get a good fit with thick socks and a "Superfeet" insole.

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