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#167443 - 07/02/12 10:41 AM Condescension in backpackers
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
My hiking group goes each 4th of July to the same lake, to camp, fish and swim.

One of the traditionalists - slow miles, heavy gear - watched me get out the alcohol stove. He offered his stove for my use, as if mine wouldn't work. He offered his pump filter because the Sawyer Squeeze I am testing "looks like too much work."

But then, he gets up Sunday morning early, packs up everything, and starts for the trailhead because "I am too slow, you all will catch up to me." It took him a good five hours to go the six miles to the lake on the first day out.

We didn't catch up to him. I caught fish for breakfast and we lingered to cook and eat it. Because we could, because we knew it would take us two and a half hours to do the return trip. (It took less.)

I have to wonder why backpackers think that gear that is clearly working for me is so inadequate. Why would I bother carrying something that doesn't work?? I ignored him and boiled my water with the stove, filtered the rest with the Sawyer, and went on with my lazy day at the lake.
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#167445 - 07/02/12 11:18 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
Glenn Roberts Offline
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Registered: 12/23/08
Posts: 1378
Loc: Southwest Ohio
I don't think this is unique to backpacking. Think how often something similar happens at work (or when dealing with aging parents - or so my kids tell me.) People tend to feel most comfortable with what they are familiar with (sometimes I think inertia makes the world go round.)

I've always said the six most dangerous words in the English language are "We've always done it that way." (Or, if you prefer, substitute "never" for "always" - same result.)

The only attitude I can tell you to adopt is "Illegitimi non carborundum."

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#167446 - 07/02/12 11:28 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: Glenn Roberts]
Cranman Offline
member

Registered: 01/21/12
Posts: 133
Loc: Central NC
In your example it's a "old timer" but I have seen similiar from younger folks that just know their jetboil is superior because it boils water almost instantly....and can't understand why I am ok with a homemade alcohol stove.

To each his own, and it sounds to me that you got the better end of the deal, more time to fish and relax!

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#167447 - 07/02/12 11:30 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
aimless Offline
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Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 2860
Loc: Portland, OR
The answer to people like that is to smile and be as nice as pie to them, then do exactly what you intended to do all along. smile

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#167448 - 07/02/12 11:36 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: Cranman]
ETSU Pride Offline
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Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 931
Loc: Knoxville, TN
Ha! I'm sorry, Lori, but it's a little funny. laugh

Around here, I don't have those kind of comments. When I get remarks about my gears, people are amaze at its size and lightweight. For instance, I was dayhiking a couple weeks ago to Mt. LeConte and there is a lodge at the top that tourists shell out 80 some bucks a night for. I usually avoid this place during summer months for obvious reason. This was my first hike to LeConte during the busy season for the lodge. I took my stove so I could have tea to go with my sandwich. Some couple was taking pictures not far from me and saw me pulled out the Pocket Rocket and was amazed by what I was doing. Their comment, "I cannot believe that is a stove!"

I've had people pick up my tent and would say, "This thing is insanely light, does it keeps you dry? Has to be a trade-off, right?!?!?" haha.
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#167454 - 07/02/12 12:12 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: ETSU Pride]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I dunno lori - I think there's enough Condescension on all sides. I've seen lightweighters be pretty Condescending to traditionalists, etc. I've definately seen lots of Condescending hammockers too (and even though I love my hammock, it's not the solution to everything..)

Having said that, come on, most people are catered to by the gear marketers and stores.. You wanna know why people do that stuff and stick with it? Go into a gear store and play newbie. Say you wanna buy stuff to go on trips up to 7 days - and do it like "super size me" - if they suggest it, you gotta buy it.. if they suggest two things, buy the bigger and tougher.

I bet you'll walk out with an "Expedition" backpack, (it can carry all you stuff.. an has GEAR patches.. oh what are those? that's for your ice axe and crampons and ropes and stuff.. oh you don't have those now, but you'll be manly/womanly enough for those soon....)... "four season" tent. (hey you could get this, but it won't work in -40 on denali - if you get this you'll be able to go anywhere!!) water filter that will filter the volume of the amazon and weigh half as much.. outback oven, dragonfly stove, base camp cooking set.. enormous synthetic bag because "you'll need to sleep in it wet". You get the drill, and an "expert" told them they needed this much "just in case". (I mean, you might some day go up denali...)


Makes for an interesting thought doesn't it.. a "super size me" exercise.. weigh what you get suggested....



Edited by phat (07/02/12 12:14 PM)
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#167455 - 07/02/12 12:18 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: ETSU Pride]
lori Offline
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Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By ETSU Pride
Ha! I'm sorry, Lori, but it's a little funny. laugh

Around here, I don't have those kind of comments. When I get remarks about my gears, people are amaze at its size and lightweight....
I've had people pick up my tent and would say, "This thing is insanely light, does it keeps you dry? Has to be a trade-off, right?!?!?" haha.


I was also testing a 28 oz tent and got this too. Five people congregated on it when I got my hat out - funny how they think it won't keep rain off unless it weighs a lot.

I hose tested the tent for a good 15 minutes in the yard to make sure my seam sealing was good. So, yes, it works!
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#167456 - 07/02/12 12:21 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
phat Offline
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Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
And I suppose to be completely fair about it. really, it also depends you your goals..

If your trip style is to hike a short distance, camp for several days in comfort and lounge around - you're going to take *more stuff*. you're going to take stuff for comfort when you're in camp. Heck, I do it when I do that.. it's just that's not my usual style of backpacking.. normally I spend my entire day walking. I don't need amusements in camp, because I camp pretty much to eat a late supper and sleep.

Some people think walking all day is Bat S### Crazy.. Their idea of a good time is to get somewhere, sit in a chair, read a book, fish, lounge, play cards, etc. etc. There is nothing wrong with this!

I do this too sometimes, and sometimes then I do take "expedition" type gear.

So I think part of it is sometimes pretty simple - you're not hiking the same hike as they are.
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#167491 - 07/02/12 06:40 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
balzaccom Offline
member

Registered: 04/06/09
Posts: 1731
Loc: Napa, CA
I also wonder if Lori's old timer had a bit os sexism in him as well...offering to clear up any problems she might not know how to handle.

A (female) friend once told me a wonderful story about going backpacking with six other women. One night a couple of young guys were camping at the same lake, and came over to say hello. As they chatted, the two guys kept looking around. Finally, one had to ask:

"So are you women all alone out here?"

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#167493 - 07/02/12 07:19 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
hikerduane Offline
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Registered: 02/23/03
Posts: 2123
Loc: Meadow Valley, CA
And some the only way they will get out is if they are comfortable and can eat certain food, going with the only way they know, not open for suggestions. As vocal as you are here Lori, I'm surprised you didn't bend his ear. smile
Duane

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#167495 - 07/02/12 07:24 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
ndwoods Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/02
Posts: 572
Loc: Santa Cruz CA, Sierra Hiker
I don't think it had anything to do with backpacking. If you were in a grocery market and ran into him he would probably tell you the food you picked out was wrong!:) My motto with people like that is I'm just glad I don't have to live with them!:)
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#167507 - 07/02/12 10:59 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: hikerduane]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By hikerduane
And some the only way they will get out is if they are comfortable and can eat certain food, going with the only way they know, not open for suggestions. As vocal as you are here Lori, I'm surprised you didn't bend his ear. smile
Duane


I may have stared at his four pound tent a little pointedly while packing away mine...

I'm sure he loves his gear every bit as much as I love getting, trying, selling and moving on to the next piece of gear. I hate my tent marginally less than the less five.... It might be around for more than a year.
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#167509 - 07/02/12 11:03 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: balzaccom]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By balzaccom
I also wonder if Lori's old timer had a bit os sexism in him as well...offering to clear up any problems she might not know how to handle.

A (female) friend once told me a wonderful story about going backpacking with six other women. One night a couple of young guys were camping at the same lake, and came over to say hello. As they chatted, the two guys kept looking around. Finally, one had to ask:

"So are you women all alone out here?"



I suspect it had something to do with it. There were a lot of really outdoorsy women on this one and he got really quiet while we were all talking peak bagging, triathalons, hiking long distances and climbing.

crazy
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#167511 - 07/02/12 11:11 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat
And I suppose to be completely fair about it. really, it also depends you your goals..

If your trip style is to hike a short distance, camp for several days in comfort and lounge around - you're going to take *more stuff*. you're going to take stuff for comfort when you're in camp. Heck, I do it when I do that.. it's just that's not my usual style of backpacking.. normally I spend my entire day walking. I don't need amusements in camp, because I camp pretty much to eat a late supper and sleep.




Well, sure, a lot of this is true of him. But a lot of why he goes is a lot of why I go. He's a photographer. I am enough of one that I bought a better camera to take with me on my eight day high Sierra jaunt. I am sure he will not want to do the class 2-3 cross country passes, nor will he want to have hiked the miles per day we will be doing to get out into Evolution Basin. But he will probably plan to, someday, with his huge DSLR, after he sees the pictures I bring back.

He didn't really bring anything else to do. He said he'd taken enough pictures and so off he went home. He had a little tripod chair, but that was about it for extras. What he had that was heavy were the backpack, the bear canister (HUGE and full of food he didn't eat), the tent, and the sleeping bag. And some fleece layers.
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#167513 - 07/02/12 11:22 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat

I dunno lori - I think there's enough Condescension on all sides. I've seen lightweighters be pretty Condescending to traditionalists, etc. I've definately seen lots of Condescending hammockers too (and even though I love my hammock, it's not the solution to everything..)

Having said that, come on, most people are catered to by the gear marketers and stores.. You wanna know why people do that stuff and stick with it? Go into a gear store and play newbie. Say you wanna buy stuff to go on trips up to 7 days - and do it like "super size me" - if they suggest it, you gotta buy it.. if they suggest two things, buy the bigger and tougher.



he got his pack at Costco for forty bucks. They don't really sell you gear, they sell you everything in huge lots tho. I think he is more "spend everything on the camera and nothing on the gear." cool

I know the folks at the stores can be bad about this... it would be interesting to experiment ala "super size" gear - but I couldn't do it. Most of the store peeps in my area are in my hiking group and know who I am. wink
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#167514 - 07/02/12 11:25 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
Trailrunner Offline
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Registered: 01/05/02
Posts: 1835
Loc: Los Angeles
I get a lot of condescension in my tent when it's not properly ventilated.
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#167516 - 07/02/12 11:40 PM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: Trailrunner]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By Trailrunner
I get a lot of condescension in my tent when it's not properly ventilated.


LOL, you remind me of something someone said last weekend - she didn't guy out her fly very well, and Sunday morning she asked me if I had a lot of precipitation in my tent. grin
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#167518 - 07/03/12 12:15 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
BradMT Offline
member

Registered: 08/23/04
Posts: 148
Originally Posted By phat

I dunno lori - I think there's enough Condescension on all sides. I've seen lightweighters be pretty Condescending to traditionalists, etc.



My experience is the gram-counters have 90% of the condescension market. In fact, the OP is one in reverse, albeit veiled.
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#167519 - 07/03/12 12:27 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: BradMT]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By BradMT
Originally Posted By phat

I dunno lori - I think there's enough Condescension on all sides. I've seen lightweighters be pretty Condescending to traditionalists, etc.



My experience is the gram-counters have 90% of the condescension market. In fact, the OP is one in reverse, albeit veiled.


You can believe that if you like.

I'm a pragmatist. If it works for you, great. I do what works for me.... Just don't expect me to sit there for long letting you force me to think the way you do, if I don't agree.

Trying to fix what isn't broken? Yes, that is in fact condescension. Whether it's because I'm the little lady or the crazy person with the pop can stove.
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#167520 - 07/03/12 12:53 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
BTW, other than his little spasms of Mr. Fixit, this guy is a really nice, awesome person to spend time with. Just like 99% of both of my hiking groups.

If all I ever have to complain about are the foibles of newbies (how many packs that aren't mine will I have to carry this year? so far none...) and misguided but helpful people, I am truly living a charmed life.
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#167522 - 07/03/12 01:27 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By lori
BTW, other than his little spasms of Mr. Fixit, this guy is a really nice, awesome person to spend time with. Just like 99% of both of my hiking groups.

If all I ever have to complain about are the foibles of newbies (how many packs that aren't mine will I have to carry this year? so far none...) and misguided but helpful people, I am truly living a charmed life.


Honestly if that's the worst you can complain about him lori - count yourself fortunate.. There's much worse jerks in the world. HYOH smile


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#167526 - 07/03/12 02:05 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: balzaccom]
phat Offline
Moderator

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

A (female) friend once told me a wonderful story about going backpacking with six other women. One night a couple of young guys were camping at the same lake, and came over to say hello. As they chatted, the two guys kept looking around. Finally, one had to ask:

"So are you women all alone out here?"


I've said it before, I've said it again, I think twenty-something men these days are just plain stupid, in general (please accept my apologies if you aren't, I know there are exceptions).

I've lost track of how many times, on (very lovely) epic hikes I've run into groups of 6 to 9 twenty something women, either on their own, or with one guy, who is looking miserable to be away from his video games the whole time. It's not just canada! I've seen this on South Coast Trek in tasmania, Skyline in Jasper, West Coast Trail in BC, and in Ireland! It's *not* a coincidence!

like. good lord, I had dreams like this in my teens (the reality on the trail at the time was guys in kodiak boots, frame packs and vegreville tuxedos..) now it's *totally different*.

It's rather nice, because at my (not yet old) age I am still considered "safe" - so I can be talked to, asked advice, rousted out of my tent to mcGyver something up to retrieve a camera dropped 4 feet into a pile of logs (all the while the one guy is hiding in his tent).

What the heck is wrong with these guys!

Although in all seriousness, it *sounds* funny, but I'm really actually becoming concerned about the lack of men in the sport. Young men are *not doing this stuff* young women *are*.


Edited by phat (07/03/12 02:08 AM)
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#167527 - 07/03/12 02:18 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori
BTW, other than his little spasms of Mr. Fixit, this guy is a really nice, awesome person to spend time with. Just like 99% of both of my hiking groups.

If all I ever have to complain about are the foibles of newbies (how many packs that aren't mine will I have to carry this year? so far none...) and misguided but helpful people, I am truly living a charmed life.


Honestly if that's the worst you can complain about him lori - count yourself fortunate.. There's much worse jerks in the world. HYOH smile




There are more condescending guys in the group - it's just hard to take them seriously some of the time, and thankfully, they don't come out with me much. One in particular amuses me to no end, he was bragging about his fishing acumen, then proceeded to lug around a gallon ziploc full of water to store his dead fish in.

wink
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#167528 - 07/03/12 02:25 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: lori]
phat Offline
Moderator

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

There are more condescending guys in the group - it's just hard to take them seriously some of the time


Good thing you don't come out with me then. Heck, I'm so full of it most of the time my eyes are brown and you need to wipe my hair off after a good story wink

Comes with the gender.

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#167530 - 07/03/12 02:41 AM Re: Condescension in backpackers [Re: phat]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By phat
Originally Posted By lori

There are more condescending guys in the group - it's just hard to take them seriously some of the time


Good thing you don't come out with me then. Heck, I'm so full of it most of the time my eyes are brown and you need to wipe my hair off after a good story wink

Comes with the gender.



Oh, I don't know, I get along with egos of all sizes. Search and Rescue is full of those after all.

I'm sure you're easier to get along with than you think. You're still married, after all. grin

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