Wyoming, climbing, skiing.
Is the plate shown in the (single) image the XS, S, or L plate? Are there different numbers of holes because of the size?
I have the Moss Stardome II, which is the fury with two doors. I'm actually jealous of the weight savings from taking out one door, but I love this tent too much to really complain. The old version had a transition-tent-like ceiling panel that made this into a very good backpacking tent for the Sierras or the Wind Rivers, but I've also used this tent in Rocky Mountain National Park during an impressively rainy 4-day trip. Stayed dry and secure through thundersnow and thunder showers, high winds and cold nights.
My only complaint is that this tent is not really designed for tall people. My brother and I (both 6'1") were COZY in the tent, and consistently had to sort of crab-walk out of the vestibule door in the mornings. This made for rather awkward procedures when it rained, as brushing against the zipper tended to put water on us.
I could definitely see this working differently if you were camped on snow, and could therefore dig out under the vestibule a bit. Still, I cannot imagine a better double-wall tent for mountaineering, and look forward to kicking the crap out of it in the future.
Has anybody swapped out the toe-bail on the level wire for the telemark-specific toe-bail that Petzl sells?
I've owned a lot of 40L packs and when I try to cram everything I need for a day of cragging into this beast, it fits easily where before I was strapping stuff to the outside. So while yes, it is listed as 33L, I'd estimate that its actually closer to 45L.
You have to take the rope off to get inside. One of my many minor gripes about this pack. Also, the rope retention system is really hard to operate with gloves on, so try to plan ahead and put what you might need in your pockets instead of in the top pouch or main compartment.
Not in that Paris-Hilton-psuedo-slang sort of way, but literally, this thing does not breathe as well as some other options out there. It definitely makes it preferable in the winter, but it can get uncomfortable when rock climbing in the summer. On the other hand, this is one of the lowest profile helmets out there, which is great. A lot less clunking under a low roof with the Salamander, something I've run into with other, higher profile (and therefore better breathing) helmets. It has a lot in common with skiing helmets, not the least of which is the padding on the chinstrap. I get the impression that since Grivel is mostly an ice climbing and mountaineering company, that was deliberate. The headlamp clips are also kind of lousy in back too. If they switched to the squared off hook thingies that are used in front, it would work a lot better. In addition, the little notches that the bungee goes through don't really keep the bungee in place. The current system is not really compatible with 3-strap headlamp designs (e.g. Petzl Myo XP). As it stands, I have to disconnect the top strap of my headlamp and reattach through the bungee loops. Makes it super secure, but takes a lot more time to adjust.
So the picture shows a new front plate for the G14, but no front points or any other replacement parts. What's actually in here? What do our two options actually mean ("N/M Front W/O Forged X2" and "Com Front W/O Forged X2")?
I went with Zeroes over all other options because at the time (Alien recall, pre-Mastercam) they were the only single-stem microcam on the market from a top-end manufacturer. In deep, parallel cracks, or in horizontals, literally any cam that fits in the placement will do. However, in shallow, vertical placements, you need flex both perpendicular and parallel to the cam's axles to make sure a fall won't completely lever them out. Thus, zeroes over C3s and TCUs. Since I've owned mine, I've come to prefer them over Aliens, since you've got individual cam manipulation (which makes them much, MUCH easier to clean). While they also have that advantage over Mastercams, I personally don't like the sizes of Metolius cams which is why I never really considered TCUs or later Mastercams. That's an issue of personal taste though, so buy accordingly. I still prefer the larger per-unit range of the Aliens, but I understand why most manufacturers are loathe to use such a large cam angle on such a small cam.
I'm about to find out. Will advise once I get my new bails from right here. I actually picked up the G14 replacement bails to swap out the GSB binding. The process itself is incredibly easy, only really requring tools for removing the metal tab. After that, the hard part is wrapped up in not stabbing yourself as you get the bails to seat in correctly (mostly jiggling and squeezing). Be advised that this process WILL VOID YOUR WARRANTY.
I was a bit worried when I got it that the Axis might not be big enough for what I bought it for. Having loaded it up for a day of ice cragging (tools, crampons, screws, rope, extra clothes, lunch, first-aid kit, helmet, harness), I can say that not only does it carry it all, it carries without a hitch. Its loaded with lots of little things, like the helmet pouch and the rope strap, that aren't quite perfect yet, but I fully expect BD to correct those in the future. For instance, I'd prefer that the helmet get strapped down on top of the rope, not the other way around, and the buckles to secure the helmet pouch are hard to find and operate. I'd really like to see a winterized version with an insulated sleeve for a drinking tube as well. Those are, however, for the next generation.
I was also a bit skeptical about using a panel loader (all of my climbing packs have had top pouches aka "brains", and in principle it simplifies rope retention). The absence of such, however, definitely gives the pack a lower profile, so the whole thing climbs a lot better.
Which is kind of weird. After a day or so of use (and working out a better way to make the liners work, pulling my long-underwear sleeves over the velcro on the gloves and go), these fit great and work great. Good for everything from cold ski-tours to days at the resort. Haven't tried them climbing yet, but I will later this month, at which point I will update. Definitely prefer this design over a traditional mitt. I just wish they had a snot patch, as the cold, abrasive nylon is not great for chronically runny noses.
Upon further review, these things climb like a champ. One of the most dextrous shell gloves I've ever owned.
Breathes well, keeps your head warm. And I got one of the (now very hard to find) Wyoming beanies. Makes sense, since that's where I live, work, and play, but still.
This thing is tiny. I picked up the Avalung version and I had to work pretty hard to get shovel, probe, 2-liter camelback reservoir, and spare layer in to it, even harder to cram climbing skins as well (I don't like to put them in my coat if I'm not running laps on a short hill). The main problem is that I use a Voile Telepro shovel, which has a massive bail. I still have space inside, but zipping up the pack at the end of all that is pretty difficult. I'm glad I got it on sale because I know that the zippers will blow out pretty early in the life of the pack. Still, the extremely low volume and sleek, low profile design are *exactly* what I wanted in a skiing pack given the sorts of back-country stuff I do. This pack is ideal for short tours, or one-run days, or any time where you don't want to bring the kitchen sink and you don't want a deflated, oddly carrying pack despite your minimalist aspirations. I am/was of two minds about the avalung since I didn't see myself ready to actively court avalanches, but its a nice tool to have, especially in a pack that you can wear all day without complaint.
When I bought this rope, I had a specific goal in mind: climb it into the ground. I'm about to buy my second one, 18 months later. That's not to say it isn't durable. It is quite durable. It's just been a hard two seasons. It is still as soft as the day I bought it, despite dozens of whippers and long sandy pitches. I've power toproped on it, and even jugged on it a few times. Its just that the sheath is so fuzzy from all that wear that I keep fearing I'll have a core shot soon. They say two seasons is about par for moderate to heavy usage, I bought this rope hoping to test that. And now I'm going to buy another one, because I know it'll hold up to the abuse.
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