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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territo's Passions

Climbing
Hiking & Camping
Paddling

Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on May 20, 2016

2 5

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

This was obviously packaged by someone who failed "Shipping 101." I had eagerly anticipated trying this product and thought about it all day while at work. Imagine my disappointment and downright hostility when I opened the packet to find a guacamole envelope swimming in a sea of powdered tortilla chips! I will not purchase this again nor will I recommend it to anyone else. Crappy shipping job Backcountry!

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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on April 23, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: Runs small
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 225 lbs
Size Purchased: US 13/UK 12.5

I've been hiking/climbing/paddling seriously since 1977, and I've owned a "few" pairs of boots during that time. Needing a new pair of mountaineering boots for a winter trip to Colorado, I decided to take a chance on the new Acrux-something I NEVER do, that is buy a newly released product before many others have tried it out. And that holds doubly true for something that is life safety dependent such as a harness, rope, or mountaineering boot.

I was absolutely elated when I took them out of the box. But my spirits were soon dashed when I tried them on. Too narrow...they fit perfectly otherwise.

But in the interest of fairness these were/are the best mountaineering-style boots I've ever had on my feet. Pleasantly light but with a ruggedness you sense rather than see. Quality was typical Arc'teryx-superb. Even the color is pleasant after having been optically assaulted by far too many garishly disgusting hues that clothing, equipment, and footwear manufacturers seem to be enamored with.

Unfortunately I purchased the largest size that Arc'teryx makes (in this product) so I'm out of luck and will have to find another brand. I own 10-12 articles of Arc'teryx clothing and XXL fits me perfectly. But that means layering is a chore unless I take time to mix and match "fit classes" such as expedition fit, next to skin, etc. If the company wants to continue to grow they're going to have to produce clothing for adults. I'm a weightlifter and obviously a bit larger than normal but all the stats I've seen suggests that people are getting bigger and Arc'teryx needs to keep up. For this boot, a US 13 wide would work with a US 14 being as close to perfect as can be achieved with a liner sock and Smartwool's Mountaineering Extra Heavy Crew sock. Come on Arc'teryx...get on the ball! I volunteer to beta test a pair and I won't charge you anything!

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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on March 31, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm a Deputy Marshal who sometimes has to look for foul people after dark. This headlight is with me. Off duty, outdoor adventures are my greatest pleasures and this same light is with me.

Having uttered those lofty praises, I have to be honest and say that this light is overkill for the overwhelming majority of outdoorsmen. Blue light is nice for nighttime reading and preserving night vision. It also doesn't mask blood if you're a rescue type who may have to treat a casualty after sundown. If you have blue you don't need red. Green is used with night vision devices which I've yet to see used on a trail or crag and is therefore superfluous.

Petzl should develop a new model with the following modes and market it to the outdoor community:
white dim flood, white dim spot, white bright spot, blue spot, strobe. No thanks necessary Petzl and yes, you can name it after me. Contact me if you want me to design you a more usable tactical light. I work cheap :-)

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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on March 31, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

The title should say enough. Although I favor some flavors above others, I like them all. After nearly 50 years of hiking, climbing, and paddling, I've finally found one thing that I will have with me on every trip regardless of where I go or mode of travel. My only very minuscule complaint is that they tend to crumble. But I suspect that the recipe would have to be altered to minimize the problem so leave them the Hell alone and I'll deal with the crumbs.

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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on March 10, 2016

5 5

When I got serious about climbing/hiking/paddling in 1976 or 77, freeze dried food either hadn't been invented yet or was virtually impossible to get. I certainly didn't know it existed until some time later. When I was finally introduced to the stuff I've tried every dish I could find from every manufacturer I could find and I still do that to this day. When something new is introduced I'll buy 1-2 just to see if I like it.

35+ years and several hundred different meals later, MH's Biscuits and Gravy is tied for second place as my all time favorite (that's if I disqualify the old bacon and meat bars that weren't freeze dried)! I'd say that's a pretty big compliment, especially coming from me since I am definitely a foodie and I've been known to cook scrambled eggs and caviar on the trail during one of my few phases when I wasn't counting nanograms.

WARNING: If I really am passionate about something or can't function normally without it they're going to quit making it. Guaranteed. So stock up before the bastards take it off the market!

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Bret M. Territo

Bret M. Territowrote a review of on February 21, 2016

Chill out!
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm temporarily stuck living in a place where winter is two weeks long...if there is one. So I have the opposite problem-keeping things cold. High temperatures make hyperthermia a very real threat. When perspiration cannot evaporate there is no evaporative cooling and core temperatures rise. The best solution is a space suit with built-in air conditioning. Perhaps Arx'teryx will include one in their 2016 lineup. It can't be much more expensive than some of their products I've bought from Backcountry.

The next best solution is frequently consuming cold liquids, and that's where OR's portable ice box comes it. This bottle parka works even better than the advertising hype would lead you to believe. The first few times I used them I put frozen water bottles in OR parkas only to find everything still frozen hours later. After uttering a liberal string of profanity I had to break out the Gigapower to melt my drinking water!

And I wasn't simply being a smartass earlier when I referred to the bottle parks as an "ice box." Throw in a soap bar sized freezing cube or a small freezer container filled with water then frozen. Then put in breakfast sausage, eggs, about 15g (1/2 oz.) of caviar, a poly-con or small plastic bottle of heavy cream, and a small roll of instant biscuits. In another one add ice as before and a very cold 375 ml bottle of Chapagne or sparkling wine. Wrap them in your sleeping bag. When it's time for vittles, deep fry the biscuits (drain well), cook the sausage, beat the eggs with the heavy cream and cook scrambled eggs with caviar. Serve to your favorite lady (or guy) with the bubbly.

In closing, I "blind purchased" two "Mil-Spec water bottle insulators" from a competitor of Backcountry just to see what they were. When they arrived, I very curiously looked to see who manufactured them. The "OR" tag was quite conspicuous. The Mil Spec parka is shorter but fatter than the commercial model. The insulation is obviously thicker on the Mil Spec, especially the top that covers the cap. Both models accommodate my Nalgene 32oz./1L collection as well as my Eurotrash "High Altitude Water Bottles" which I like much better than the Nalgenes. I'm going to get a few more of the Mil parkas even though they're significantly more expensive. I'll hang the better insulated units on the outside of my pack and pack the commercial units inside out of the sunlight.

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