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vanp4185

vanp4185

vanp4185's Passions

Biking
Paddling
Hiking & Camping
Skiing

vanp4185's Bio

mechanical engineering student, skier, mountain biker...a general outdoor enthusiast.

vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on March 4, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 6'
Weight: 165 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

This medium-weight fleece jacket is a great layer for skiing or a stand-alone everyday jacket for cool mornings. Chest pocket easily fits a smartphone, and paneling design keep the jacket from bunching up when sitting or climbing. Smooth outer finish of the fabric helps dirt and dust to be easily brushed off, and should prevent a lot of pilling from velcro backpack straps.


Semi-athletic fit means room for additional layers but not a lot of excess material.


The thumbholes in the sleeves are a little short (sleeves get tight if I use them), but I don't use them often so not a big problem. Another slight annoyance is the windbreak fabric behind the zipper, which can get caught if you aren't careful with the initial zip-up.

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vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on January 24, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

After getting the backcountry bug a few years ago, I proceeded to create an avalanche safety system (beacon, probe, shovel) for future trips. This system's cornerstone is the Mammut Element.

I didn't want to skimp on my beacon, and did a lot of research and some field testing. I tried an Ortovox, though when I twisted the beacon's switch from "send"to "receive", and the switch popped off and spat the batteries on the grass, I knew that the Mammut was a superior product (To be fair to the BCA Tracker line, I wanted flagging abilities...something that should never be needed, though is nice to have).

With no instruction, I was able to turn on the beacon and switch from "send"to "receive" easily and quickly. The location indicator is easy to read even in bright sunlight, and the beacon emits a clear note as the searcher walks the beacon into the victim's location.

A plus is a small, red LED that blinks occasionally inside the send/receive/off switch, to indicate it is in search mode. This is easily seen from the position of the wearer, while the beacon is holstered. The harness is comfortable and secure. Overall, a great product.

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vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on January 17, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

After running these guys for almost 3 seasons, I am absolutely amazed at how versatile these skis are.

They carve like hard-charging piste skis, comparable to a performance/race ski on most days (ice requires a bit of work). They mash through wind pack and mashed potatoes, and will float you through powder (at speed...you need to be hustling to get the tips to press up and get on plane).

I would second the review saying they get a little shaky at high speed, but on a boilerplate day and at high speeds, the issue was more the snow than the ski...snowcat marbles are hard for even a race ski to work with.

I have mated mine to a pair of Marker Dukes for the occasional AT run...a great match. The ski techs at the local shop were drooling over the setup.

I just hope Line keeps making them...

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vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on January 17, 2015

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

After running my race helmet through some hard falls over the past few years, I figured it was time for a new helmet. I first looked at the POC Receptor. However, I found that the Receptor was a little too short front to back. The Fornix has just a little bit more space front to back, and that made all the difference, fit wise. I would describe the fit as snug but comfortable...truly like a glove.

The Fornix Backcountry is warm in the wind, has great venting for warmer days, and is so far holding up well. It is also one of the lighter helmets on the market, which is a plus.

I would say my only complaint is the fit adjustment dial...I feel that it loosens just a little over the course of the day, and needs re-tightening. No biggie, but maybe something for them to look at for next year.

Overall, a great product.

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vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on December 31, 2014

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

I originally purchased these as a non-waterproof boot option for fast-paced day hikes in the summer. I expected them to last a few months at most, given their light weight and use of mesh (often the mesh is the first part of my shoes to break down). However, 7 months later these guys are still going strong. In fact, I would rate these as some of the best hiking boots I have ever owned. A true lightweight, supportive day or overnight hiker. The toe design allows for use in light snow or wet grass without getting soaking wet feet, a plus for a non-waterproof hiker.

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vanp4185

vanp4185wrote a review of on September 27, 2012

3 5

I recently purchased a pair of these gloves to replace my now-discontinued Novara gloves. While these gloves are well made, I found that the thumb was a bit short, and, as a result, the thumb crotch area felt as if it might tear when I opened up my palm. If you have larger palms/shorter thumbs...these are great gloves. For longer-fingered riders with smaller palm, I'd keep looking. 3 stars: good glove, odd fit.

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