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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merritt's Passions

Climbing
Hiking & Camping
Running

Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on February 21, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

At 10, going on 11 years, we were struggling to find the right fit in a harness. He was too big for a kids and wasn't too keen I wearing a woman's. We looked around and thought to try this Black Diamond harness in ex small. It has fit the bill and is a great package starter kit for a new climber. I have always been happy with the quality of Black Diamond gear and this one is no different. He reports it is very comfortable and is happy where the waist and leg loops sit for falls and lowering. Light weight and durable.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 27, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

As the title mentions, this is my first pair of belay glasses.

They are a tight fit (for my 'UGE HEAD) and do not move around while wearing them. The lenses offer a good field of view and they are comfortable.

The one thing I would like to see them do differently is offer a more durable case. I am not a fan of the fold and stuff case they use currently.

Overall though, I have been pleased with how much less my neck aches while belaying!

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 27, 2018

5 5

Fit: Runs small
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 190 lbs
Size Purchased: 10.5

This is my second pair of these shoes and slipping them on feels like heaven. The knobby traction, which takes a moment to get used to, feels like I am walking on a bouncy cushion.

Very durable, super comfortable, and they look great. They are a bit tighter for the size than my normal running shoes.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 20, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share
Fit: True to size
Height: 4' 10"
Weight: 90 lbs
Size Purchased: Med

We got this for my step son for Christmas. He's10 and a little small for his age. In all the packs he tried on previously he was right in between sizes. What I like about this pack is the wide range of adjustment. I wanted to get him a back to last him into his teens and this was the only option I could find. He loves all the little pockets. Esp. the waist belt pockets for easy to grab things. We haven't had a chance to really test it out on the trail yet as the weather is not yet forgiving for his taste but I have high hopes that it will work very well. The only complaint he has had is he is not super fond of the color. It would be nice if each size had a couple color options.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 20, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I bought this bag for my girlfriend as a day pack but she uses it for everything now..work back, school bag and obviously hiking. Seems to be a great size for any day activities. The only thing she said she's missing is a more supportive waist belt but as long as the bag isn't overly weighted it seems to be good enough.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 3"
Weight: 125 lbs
Size Purchased: small

My girlfriend has taken up a lot more winter running and hiking this year and keeps trying out new clothing/gear to enhance her experience. I ordered this base layer shirt in hopes it would stop the madness! Seems this one was the ticket. She reports it keeps her warm, but still allows for wicking and sweating on the trail. It looks great on her, so I can't complain either.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I bought this hat for my girlfriend. She is ALWAYS cold. She has worn it almost every day..in the house, outside, everywhere. She reports its very soft and comfortable and warm but I've noticed the material is starting to fuzz up already. The knit fabric was nice looking, but the hat is already looking well loved only a month into wear.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 4' 10"
Weight: 90 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

My step-son is a minimalist when it comes to bundling up. It can been a struggle to get him to put on a coat when appropriate. So I bought him this jacket in hopes that it would look more like a jacket but be warmer then a typically hoody. He does like the look of it, but I don't feel like it's any warmer or heavier then other jackets he has. Eitherway, though , the material is nice, it's sharp looking and also does not seem to attact dog hair as much as a normal sweatshirt...which is an issue at our house. He is 10, average size for his age. We ordered a large and seems to fit well. A little room to grow, but not drowning him out.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

My girlfriend started winter trail running this season and was having issues keeping her feet dry. I have worn the Solomon speedcross shoe for years and I love it, so I suggested she try a pair in store to see how they fit. She did and loved them, so we got her the Gortex version for the snow and slush. She reports they have been her most comfortable yet. She previously ran in Altras and Brooks Cascadias and felt these have by far been the most comfortable.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 3"
Weight: 125 lbs
Size Purchased: small

I bought my girlfriend this vest for a good layer on the trail running or hiking. She's always running cold but still sweats as you would expect. This vest seems to keep her very warm but still gives her the flexibility for movement on the trail. It looks awesome on her. I got her the burnt orange color and it looks great as well as functional.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 2"
Weight: 140 lbs
Size Purchased: large

My mother in law is a cross country skier and she was looking for a water/wind proof layer while she was on the trail. I bought her this jacket for Christmas and the reports have been that it seems to be doing the trick. Her only complaint has been that the sleeves are a bit long, although she's still been happy to use.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

My girlfriend picked up winter trail running this season. The first few runs she said her feet got soaked from running in the snow. So, I bought these for her for Christmas and so far the reports have been that between these and some Gortex shoes, he feet are dry! Easy to use, holds position well and totally waterproof.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 3"
Weight: 125 lbs
Size Purchased: small

I've been trying to help my girlfriend find a warm winter coat for several months. I first bought her this coat in black and turquoise and she loves it!
She wanted a coat that was as warm as possible for the weight for the best price. This seems to be it. She has used it several times winter hiking and wears it on the way down. Usually (previous to said coat) she freezes, shaking and whining the whole way down because she's so cold. The times she's worn this one on the way down, she says she's actually been comfortable and warm so win for both of us! It looks sleek, lightweight and for the price point, she's been very happy.

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on January 12, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 3"
Weight: 125 lbs
Size Purchased: 8

I bought these for my girlfriend for a baggier climbing pant. They fit her a little loosely, as she normally wears a 6 but she seems to like the extra room for on the climbing wall. Her only complaint has been that they are a little long, but she cuffs them and doesn't seem to mind. Otherwise, they look great on her if I say so myself...

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Gavin Merritt

Gavin Merrittwrote a review of on December 31, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Pros:
Great when there is a large weight difference
Keeps your lightweight belayer from being smashed into the first draw

Cons:
Belayer needs to pay attention, if you clip quickly, so they can "unlock" it.
Climbing in an overhang seems to cause it to "lock" more often than vertical climbing

TL:DR;
This is a fantastic item for belayers who are concerned about carrying their larger partners weight during a fall. It very effectively slows down the upward drag, saving a ton of energy during the falls. However, you need to have a belayer trained or at least aware that this item can lock up when moving to quickly and be ready to unjam it, if necessary.

Overall we love using it.

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