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#120492 - 09/07/09 06:41 PM Light-NOT
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2751
Loc: California
I fell off the light train this summer. Why? I had packed several little packets of "light alternative" clothing and gear but never used them. Trip 1: still winter although July - throw in the down vest (and never left it out the remainder of the summer). Used my lighter pack and hung food. Next trip I remembered the miserable evening trying to get the stupid hanging line on the right tree branch while mosquitoes were swarming, so the bear cannister now became part of my gear (never to leave my pack for the remainder of the summer). Also throw in another bottle of DEET. Trip 3 - darned- had to walk 10 extra miles on the last trip because I really needed an ice axe and crampons. This time I threw in the ice axe and crampons - Murphy's Law of the uncertainty of gear - if you throw it in, you will not need it. Trip 4 time for lighter pants - darn-- still mosquitoes well past when those little critters should be wiped out - skeets can bite trough my light pants. Trip 5- leave out the ice axe (lucky me- I did not need it) but am out for 8 days - that odd amount of food that overloads my light pack - switch to the bigger pack. Trip 6- nice to have a partner for a change- but I have been out 3 weeks and am fully aclimated - he is not. Guess who carries all the food? Switch to external frame and my experimental pack - add an extra half pound. We also are fishing - add the frying pan and lures. Throw out the down vest? - no way - snow is predicted for the day we go in! Trip 6 - going to the most remote part of the range - throw in an extra days food. Good move - got pinned down in a 3 day storm at the most difficult palce to get out of. Big rain before snow. Solo tent leaks like a seive. Just plain worn out. Trip 7 - man it is cold - freezing solid every night. Switch the one-man for the 2-man tent - cannot afford to go buy another one-man tent on the spur of the moment. So it goes. Well, I sure am in good shape now! Oh my aching back.

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#120496 - 09/07/09 07:25 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
Jimshaw Offline
member

Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 3938
Loc: Bend, Oregon
Hi Daisy

You sound like an advertisement for carrying heavy duty gear and spare food! eek Thats so not you... wink

what solo tent leaked?

I am prepared for a epic camping trip with the group in 2 weeks, and I'm driving in! I hope the hikers are prepared. I've had freeze warnings emailed to me now 2 nights in a row.

So which pack did you end up carrying, and what tent. Comon, I'll bet it weighed 45 pounds leaving home for ten days...
Jim
_________________________
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

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#120500 - 09/07/09 09:00 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Jimshaw]
bigfoot2 Offline
member

Registered: 09/17/06
Posts: 1432
Loc: Eugene , Oregon
Originally Posted By Jimshaw


I am prepared for a epic camping trip with the group in 2 weeks, and I'm driving in! I hope the hikers are prepared. I've had freeze warnings emailed to me now 2 nights in a row.

Jim


Jim, Jim, Jim....that's a warning for BEND, at about a zillion feet above sea level crazy Trust me when i say NO SNOW will be encountered on the hike.

BF cool
_________________________
Hammockers aren't stuck up, they're just above it all.

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#120514 - 09/07/09 11:26 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Jimshaw]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By Jimshaw

I am prepared for a epic camping trip with the group in 2 weeks, and I'm driving in! I hope the hikers are prepared. I've had freeze warnings emailed to me now 2 nights in a row.


What, you mean there are places to go hiking that it doesn't freeze at night? man, this down south thing will be hard for me to adjust to wink wink
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#120517 - 09/07/09 11:33 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: phat]
thecook Offline


Registered: 10/03/08
Posts: 541
Loc: Minnesota
Yeah, occasionally it doesn't get down to freezing grin. If you want to feel more at home, come visit me in Minnesota!
_________________________
If I wouldn't eat it at home, why would I want to eat it on the trail?

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#120535 - 09/08/09 12:28 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Jimshaw]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2751
Loc: California
My total weight for the solo 12-day trip was 42 pounds (including what I wore and trekking poles). Excluding water (I only carry half a liter of water and generally drink right out of the streams). My home-made revised Kelty external weighs 3.5 pounds - not heavy but not light either. By the way, my home-made pack performed wonderfully.

The tent that leaked was my MSR micro-zoid. Not the tent's fault - it is 5 years old with lots of use and is simply worn out - and the leak was a steady drip. I re-sealed seams this spring but the leak was through the fabric. The tent floor is also not waterproof -wicks up moisture now. Not only did the tent leak, the zippers are on their last legs. I could only zip the fly by using the outside zipper pull. Sometimes it took 3-4 tries to get the netting zipped. Two years ago, this same tent was absolutely bombproof. Things do wear out. I bought a new tent in June - did not like it, so sent it back. The TarpTent I wanted to buy was out of stock by the time I ordered it. So the "no new tent" deal was my own fault for procrastinating. The 2-man tent was a Mountain Hardware Approach (5 pounds). It was like camping in a castle!

Oh, forgot to mention the main reason for carrying the bear cannister - got visited by a bear on one trip - he rolled the cannister around but that's it. The campers at the next lake down hung their food and the bear got it all. After that I took the bear cannister on every trip. Also, at the end of summer I was roaming around in places where grizzly bears have been seen.

I have never been a minimalist on clothing - I need twice the clothing to keep warm as the average person. Maybe I should have invited that bear into my tent to keep me warm!

And the extra weight when my parnter joined me - when you take family, it's about them, not being light-weight. He is a comfort-driven backpacker so that is the way we went.

What I am saying that going light is a nice goal, but sometimes you need to be flexible and bite the bullet in response to changing conditions and other's desires. It is amazing how lots of small "ounce" changes add up to pounds!

On the positive side, I completed all my trips regardless of weather. It was a slightly unusual year with weather. Oh- does the fact that I lost 8 pounds count? Less fat to carry around. Ha-ha! That more than offset my extra gear.


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#120539 - 09/08/09 01:14 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By wandering_daisy

What I am saying that going light is a nice goal, but sometimes you need to be flexible and bite the bullet in response to changing conditions and other's desires. It is amazing how lots of small "ounce" changes add up to pounds!


I'd agree with that completely, In some sense I'm used to it because my pack weight goes way up in winter. I *need* every bit of comfort then. It also gives me my yearly dose of "comfort" heaviness - big stoves, big bags, non-FBC style cooking, etc.

But with me, lightweight is *all* about comfort. I do need to sort of perpetually be vigilant, that any added ounces are "worth it" to me, or replace something heavier for equal or better or adequate comfort.


Quote:

On the positive side, I completed all my trips regardless of weather. It was a slightly unusual year with weather. Oh- does the fact that I lost 8 pounds count? Less fat to carry around. Ha-ha! That more than offset my extra gear.


Hmm.. Well, I've lost 47 pounds since my first trip of the season in april - a 20 pound pack still seems to feel like a 20 pound pack though - I unfortunately do not yet levitate down the trail like a giant fat zeppelin trailing hiking poles and levitated by a Virga shaped gas bag on my back - Although If I could pull it off maybe I could be sponsored as the Granite Gear blimp wink wink wink



_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


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#120583 - 09/09/09 01:41 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
Paul Offline
member

Registered: 09/30/02
Posts: 778
Loc: California
I think this is a good illustration of the idea that going lighter is not about a particular number. It's about having the lightest stuff that does what you need it to do. You needed a bear canister - from previous posts we know yours is a Bearikade - the lightest one. You needed warm clothes, I expect yours are light for what they are. With 12 days worth of food and all the rest, you needed a bigger pack - but 3.5 pounds is still lighter than most big packs. 42 pounds for 12 days with a serious tent and plenty of warm clothes is damn light. Every trip requires different gear, as you so clearly show. As long as each piece of gear is selected to be light compared to other items that perform equally well, then I'd call that travelling light.

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#120615 - 09/09/09 06:02 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Paul]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
I'll second what Paul said - he saved me a bunch of typing.

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#120649 - 09/10/09 07:53 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Lightweight in NOT a number. When I go into the Grand Canyon I often go the first 36 hours without a water source. Two gallons of water and six days food is 28 pounds. I never sacrifice safety or comfort for weight. It is a personal decision whether you are willing to sacrifice comfort and for how long.

I try not to sacrifice the purpose of the trip for weight. Resupply and hiking directly from water source to water source helps you reduce weight, but sometimes the purpose of the trip is to explore an long ridge with no water. Remeber why you are out there and carry the gear that complements your goals.
_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

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#120793 - 09/12/09 07:57 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
You take what you need for the circumstances. Going up to high altitude in places like the Wind Rivers involves considerable exposure to really severe conditions. People have to be out for most of the summer (as you were this year and two years ago, and as I was as a child and teenager) to realize the variety of extreme conditions you can encounter in the high Rockies. The Winds are, IMHO, one of the most beautiful places in the world (even with the dead trees), but they can also be extremely harsh and unfriendly, if not downright deadly. They are a bit unusual in that there is an enormous amount of area well above timberline, with no real shelter. Even when traveling the Highline/Fremont trails, lots of times you'll be camping with, at most, some stunted alpine snowmat "trees" for shelter, and often just big boulders. (This is, obviously, background for those who haven't been there.)

I take notes on my gear during every trip and revise my list immediately afterwards. After my aborted (due to sick dog) Wind Rivers trip, I added some stuff (mostly to cope with not being able to camp under trees, most of which were dead or dying, resulting in condensation in the tent and wet meadow grass to walk through every morning), but I also found that I took far too much food for both me and my dog. The result is a wash in total pack weight for both of us. I took quite a bit of extra food for Hysson (dog), but my-daughter-the-veterinarian says that the larger portions were probably what caused him to barf. She says to feed him no more than I do at home, and divide it into three meals instead of two (which will mean a slightly longer lunch stop to let him digest).

My friends (with whom I did the car swap) carried bear canisters, and said afterwards that the convenience--no need to hang--was well worth the extra weight. They never saw a bear or any sign of one (nor did I), but of course they're out there!

Just out of curiousity, which Tarptent are you looking at?


Edited by OregonMouse (09/12/09 08:20 PM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#120800 - 09/12/09 09:16 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: OregonMouse]
wandering_daisy Offline
member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2751
Loc: California
I was looking at the Sublight Sil. My thought was that in most cases it would be all I need, and in really rotten conditions I could take my bivy sack for condensation problems and still be light weight. This was before the SCARP 1 came out. Now I am looking at that one. I really like TarpTEnt designs, but not the material.

My biggest resistance is that there are some properties of SilNylon that I do not like - stretch, slippery, misting in high wind.

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#120887 - 09/13/09 11:03 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: wandering_daisy]
dash4689 Offline
member

Registered: 07/11/09
Posts: 18
Loc: TX
I bot a Scarp 1 last winter and have used it twice for a total of 9 days & 7 nights. Two of the problems you mentioned have ready solutions. 1) To prevent you sliding down hill in the tent when pitched on unlevel ground, just "paint" stripes with the seam seal (as recommended for the tent) every 12". That prevents your Therma Rest from sliding. Be sure also to do the same with your Therma Rest so your sleeping bag doesn't slide on it. 2) Stretching fabric can be accommodated with bungee cords. On one end I tied three 36" lengths of cord in a loop engaging the three tie-outs. The bungees absorb any stretch the tent gives, keeping it taut at all times. 3) I haven't solved the misting problem but Henry Shires has suggested a second coating of the waterproofing on it. I will do that just as soon as I confirm it is truly misting and not condensation. BTW I love the tent, and can't wait till I can take it out again.

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#120902 - 09/14/09 04:47 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: dash4689]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
So far I have had no misting with silnylon tents. That includes two from Tarptent and one from Six Moon Designs. You could get some spatter when there's condensation on the inside of the tent and heavy rain or hail hitting the outside, but I never did. After seam-sealing, I have tested all my tents with a hose, the nozzle set for high pressure, for about 30 minutes, to make sure there's no leakage. I haven't noticed any misting then, either.

Condensation is more of an issue, especially somewhere like the Wind Rivers where you're usually either above timberline or in a forest of dead trees. This isn't a problem specific to silnylon or single-wall tents, though. I've had so many issues with double-wall tents, in which severe condensation on the fly leaked into the inner tent, that I'd far rather have a single-wall tent where I can easily wipe off the condensation. Camping away from water sources and (especially) in the trees eliminates most condensation. If I were going to go back to a double-wall tent, I'd look closely at the Scarp--I especially like the idea of being able to pitch the fly first and put up the inner tent under its shelter. I understand that most European tents have this feature, but American tents don't. Regardless of the number of walls, though, there's still going to be condensation unless you can camp under a tree. Ventilation is most important, although even that doesn't help much when you're down in a deep valley on a windless night.

While painting spots or stripes of sealant diluted with mineral spirits on the tent floor and your pad does prevent your having to chase your sleeping pad around the tent during the night, I've found that it won't overcome the laws of gravity. If you're on a slope, you're going to slide, regardless of what your tent floor is made of! At least that has been my experience since childhood (and that's a long time!).

As for silnylon's stretching, the Henry Shires tents I've used are designed so you can easily tighten the guylines while still in your sleeping bag. By the way, I've found that my spinnaker Gossamer Gear Squall Classic stretches when wet, too! I'll have to run a backyard test to find out if it's the fabric (which isn't supposed to stretch) or the guylines that are stretching. Older style tents used to shrink when wet, so you have to adjust the guylines either way.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#120909 - 09/14/09 10:54 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: OregonMouse]
dash4689 Offline
member

Registered: 07/11/09
Posts: 18
Loc: TX
Oregon mouse, thanks for your comments. It's interesting to learn from you that you have not experienced misting through silnylon fabric. I have talked to several people who have experienced it. Perhaps there is some variability in the product, or something about the weather conditions that affect the rain-proofness of the fabric.

As for the slickness of the fabric, painting floor stripes with the seam sealant helps in marginal cases, but is no cure-all. Nevertheless, it's good enough to expand the number of possible sites you can pitch a tent on unlevel terrain.

BTW, the Scarp inner tent is attached to the rainfly with clips. You don't need to pitch them separately if you don't want to. Pitch the rainfly with 1 pole and 6 stakes and you are completely set up and ready to move in. I love it!

Also, in the several rainstorms I've experienced in the mountains and tests I have run back home in the yard, I have NEVER experienced water penetrating into the inner tent. This is even when the tent was sagging badly because I had not re-tightened the guy-lines after a rain.

The inner tent is amazingly water resistant. I attached bungee cords so I didn't have to get out in the rain to re-adjust the tie-downs. Saving that hassle is worth packing a couple ounces of bungee cords.

I am told that bungee cords wear out quickly, but that surgeon's tubing provides a more durable solution. I haven't tried it yet but detailed instructions are available at

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/...le_pagination=1


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#122951 - 10/26/09 09:13 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: dash4689]
Kent W Offline
member

Registered: 10/15/09
Posts: 607
Loc: IL.
I dont know as I havent used a silnylon tent yet. Is the stretch the tie downs. If so I may have a solution. I have about 800 feet of light nylon cord. This cord is reinforce in the center with several strands of Kevlar. The Kevlar controls stretch. If any of you Tarptent users, Would like to try some and test it, Please contact me . I would be happy send you what you need for your tent. Just let me know your test results!

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#122969 - 10/27/09 10:44 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Kent W]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By Kent W
I dont know as I havent used a silnylon tent yet. Is the stretch the tie downs. If so I may have a solution. I have about 800 feet of light nylon cord. This cord is reinforce in the center with several strands of Kevlar. The Kevlar controls stretch. If any of you Tarptent users, Would like to try some and test it, Please contact me . I would be happy send you what you need for your tent. Just let me know your test results!


No, the stretch is in the material of the tent. Tarps have a similar problem when made of silnylon.

With the hammock, I use Kelty triptease (nylon/spectra blend) or other rope for reflective guy lines, and add loops of shock cord for tensioning the lines. Initially setting up the tarp with a lot of tension results in waking up in the morning with a lot less stretch in the shock cord loop, but enough tension on the tarp. I may go to rubber tubing for fair weather tensioners.
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#122998 - 10/27/09 09:17 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: lori]
Kent W Offline
member

Registered: 10/15/09
Posts: 607
Loc: IL.
What diameter shock cord? I am making a silnylon tarp tent??

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#123004 - 10/27/09 11:57 PM Re: Light-NOT [Re: Kent W]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Are you making tensioners for the guy lines of the tent?

A shorter and easily replaced option might be those rubber O rings you buy for plumbing. I use four of them on the tie out loops of my summer tarp, but they need replacing as they dry out and lose their stretch.

The shock cord tensioners work better on longer lines, as on a tarp used for a hammock - the instructions are here.
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#123017 - 10/28/09 10:43 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
I just use regular line tighteners, and tighten it up after initial setup. I find shockcord just makes things "bouncy" in wind and I prefer to just get it tight. with sil it means I'll have to set it up tight, then tighten it again a little later. it's no big deal.
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#123020 - 10/28/09 11:32 AM Re: Light-NOT [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Sometimes, you want things to give a little. I probably would have lost my tarp for good without them, in one particular instance. I'm finding that the O rings give enough but don't bungee back and forth a lot.
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