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Big Wall Hooped Bivy Bag

Black Diamond Big Wall Hooped Bivy Bag

$239.95

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Bipod Bivy Bag

Black Diamond Bipod Bivy Bag

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How to Choose Between Sleeping Bags

Three and four-season sleeping bags come in two varieties: down insulated and synthetic insulated. Each insulation offers a distinct set of advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to do some research before you pick your sleeping bag. Temperatures, weather, and sleeping style are all considerations when making your choice.

Down
Down is the lightest, warmest, and most packable form of insulation. However, down loses some of its insulating properties when wet and tends to be more expensive than synthetic insulation. Shop Down Sleeping Bags
Related Content How to Choose the Right Camping Sleep System
Synthetic
Synthetic insulation can better handle wet conditions and usually has a lower price tag than down, but it's also bulkier and heavier. Take this into consideration when planning long trips. Shop Synthetic Sleeping Bags
Related Content How to Take Care of Your Sleeping Bag

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How to Buy an Alpine Touring Boot

Free Your Feet From the Resort

Traditionally, a ski boot was designed for going downhill with as much speed and power as possible, with little thought to the comfort when going uphill. With an aggressive sole material like Vibram, lightweight shell material, and the now-standard lever to switch between walk and ski modes (to free the cuff to rotate or lock it in place), the alpine touring boot changed everything. This is the boot to take into the backcountry.

Binding Compatibility:

An alpine touring boot is either compatible with a standard alpine ski binding (DIN normalized binding), a TECH binding, or both. There’s little difference between the boots except for the extra heel and toe fittings required for a boot to be TECH compatible.

Flex Rating:

A stiff boot will have a high flex rating (120-130+), while a softer boot will have a lower flex rating (100-110). Stiffness benefits you during the descent, but it might cause you pain on the skin track—consider whether you prefer superior comfort or performance.

Weight:

A carbon cuff or tongue, lightweight plastic shell, minimalist buckle design, or honeycomb structure help reduce the weight of an AT boot so you can move faster and feel less fatigued during a long tour.