a close up of the jacket at base camp coming back from the mountain.
It does the trick. Used it about a dozen times in the catskills and adirondacks. I do agree the poles are not that good. Just need to learn how to work around it. As for as not tightening, I rubbed the expanders againsted a rock to add friction and that did the trick. I do notice that these snowshoes kick up a lot of snow compaired to my friends.
I have taken this ice axe to Mt Washington in NH and Mt. Elbrus in Russia. Can't complain, it does the job.
I have mixed reviews with these mitts. The shell is 100% waterproof which i love and the softshell liner gloves well by itself in warmer weather, but the gloves doesn't have much insulation value. Wont recommend them if you are expecting temperatures to drop below 25F.
Used it twice and it's about your average tent. The weather conditions were pretty calm at around 25F so can not comment on the water and wind protection the tent could provide. It kept us pretty warm inside the tent. The tent I was using before this one is Sierra Designs Electron 2 person. The Big Agnes Elkhorn 2 is slightly smaller and only has one door which makes this tent a little lighter. Mine weight about 5lbs 2oz with just tent, vestibule, and poles.
I got no qualms about the bag. The mesh back keeps the bag off your back for ventilation. I used it for day hikes and ultra light overnight backpacking trips. Was able to fit all the essentials for an overnight plus sleeping pad, sleeping bag, pillow, water filter, stove, 2 nalgenes, jacket and food without a problem. I even used it as a summit pack for Elbrus. The rain cover was really useful in several occasions.