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#109869 - 01/22/09 03:33 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: jpanderson80]
just_another_Joe Offline
member

Registered: 11/30/06
Posts: 117
I second what JP said about gear being just a tool that is used to get out and enjoy the outdoors. It isn't about your stuff, it is about seeing the scenery and having good experiences. The BPing tools just get you further on the trails than the dayhikers go.

At the Gossamer Gear website, there are BPing gear lists, including some for less expensive gear. Read bulletin boards at gear shops for used stuff. Search on eBay for several weeks to get a feel for the prices on what you need. Be patient. Look at the thrift stores in college towns for off-season gear. Shorts are cheap now, down jackets are cheap in Phoenix during the summer. Read both sides of the tags in clothing to find the fabric composition, to avoid cotton. Those Campmor bags are good until you graduate and can afford to spend more. Don't go snow camping, it takes too much good gear that you don't own yet. Gearing up is an on-going process, you don't ever graduate, you just keep learning what does and does not suit your trips.

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#109881 - 01/22/09 05:22 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: just_another_Joe]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
snow camping never was very appealing to me so i am not going to worry about getting really nice gear for that at the moment. I have been doing some looking around through my drawrs and was hoping to find some old fleece jackets and stuff and ended up finding some really great, what we call in lacrosse, shooting-shirts. They are just real light weight fabric that isn't cotton, i can't remember what fabric it was and since i am at the library right now i can't look at the tag. But i think they are going to be great. I also have some really nice thin addidas athletic socks with a type of vent system on the top of the toes that i am sure will do the trick. Now that i have told you of my discoveries, i have some questions to shoot at you guys.

I have a beanie made out of acrylic 100%. is this material any good? it kind of feels along the lines of a cotton type material and is a little bit thick. but i really love the beanie so eithor way i will probably end up using it smile. but just out of curiosity...

Next on the agenda, gloves. What exactly is the deal with the gloves? I can see a beanie to keep your head warm at night and if it is raining and stuff. The only thing i could find about gloves with some searching was it keeps your hands from getting torched by the sun if you use walking sticks, in my case i don't. Is there some special secret that gloves have that i don't know about?


Edited by IdahoHiker (01/22/09 05:24 PM)

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#109883 - 01/22/09 05:37 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
jpanderson80 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/06
Posts: 292
Loc: Memphis, TN
Those shooting shirts sound perfect. Acrylic is fine. Carhartt makes some of their hats out of acrylic, and I use one on the trail. I want to say that Thorlo socks are acrylic too.

Gloves... I use a light fleece pair from Columbia. Nothing fancy. I find that by simply keeping my hands warm, that I feel warmer all over. Gloves also come in handy at night for sleeping if you are pushing the limits of the rating on your sleeping bag. Some superultralight hikers use a pair of socks over their hands. (Not my idea of fun!)
_________________________
I always forget and make it more complicated than it needs to be...it's just walking.

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#109885 - 01/22/09 05:41 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: Jimshaw]
Brumfield Offline
member

Registered: 12/23/07
Posts: 255
Loc: Expat from New Orleans, now in...
Hey, Jim, you could try dipping the water into a container and running away from the lake shore.. or use deet. I like my Katadyn Siphon filter. Easy to wipe clean, 5 quarts per hour. (1 pint in 6 minutes) With a little planning you can have water ready when you need it... and with no pumping or broken pump handles. The Siphon filter does its thing while you set up or break down camp. With a 0.2 micron ceramic filter it does a pretty good job of keeping the gut-eaters out of your drinking water. If your water supply is stagnant, has things peering out at you from below the green and fuzzy surface, or if it's located down hill from the local pig farm, just add a little Micropur before filtering to be sure. Brum
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#109887 - 01/22/09 05:58 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: jpanderson80]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
hahaha. jpanderson, my beanie is carhartt. small world. as for gloves i have two pairs that i think might work. One is for hunting and one is for fly-fishing. My hunting gloves are fleece/neoprene combo. fleece on the back neoprene on the front but the finger tips are cut off (easier to get to the trigger for chukar and grouse hunting) They do a great job at keeping my hands warm for the most part and i like being able to control things better with out the tips. My next pair is a really thin type of neoprene material i think. I haven't used them much and they have been in the bottom of my fly-fishing bag but when i do use them on really cold winter fishing days, they do wonders. I think i will probably end up using the cut off finger ones though. thanks for the glove info though.

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#109888 - 01/22/09 06:02 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
jpanderson80 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/06
Posts: 292
Loc: Memphis, TN
I used my mountain biking gloves for a while... the fingers are cut out on them too. I never had a problem with them.
_________________________
I always forget and make it more complicated than it needs to be...it's just walking.

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#109905 - 01/22/09 09:52 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: jpanderson80]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
Here is my clothing list that i have compiled and where i found them. please feel free to critique.

1 polyster athletic short sleeve shirt(closet)
1 north face 100% vented long sleeve fishing shirt (ebay baby!!!)
1 nylon cheapy pair of shorts(found in the bottom of my drawr grin
? looking for a pair of nylon zip off pants
3 pair of addidas athletic socks (drawer)
? haven't looked into underwear yet becuase all i have right now are cotton ones.
1 pair of neoprene/fleece gloves (hunting bag)
1 carhartt acrylic beanie (on my dresser)
1 columbia fleece pullover (another ebay steal)

What i don't have listed are a swimsuit and a pair of fleece pants or soemthing of the sort. I figure i will go for a dip in my underwear if i feel to go for a swim, no big deal. And as for fleece pants i am not sure if i really need them? any suggestions on my list or my ideas above would be great.


Edited by IdahoHiker (01/22/09 10:20 PM)

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#109912 - 01/22/09 11:09 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada

I carry fleece pants in winter, not other times. look at my lists. If I'm to the point I'm cold enough to need fleece pants I hop in my bed.

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Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
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#109916 - 01/23/09 01:58 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: phat]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
well until there are some more critiques on my list i will bring up the next question of sleeping bags. Any suggestions for mid range bags between $100-200ish. I am looking for the best bang for the buck pretty much. also try and an idea of what i should be looking for in a sleeping bag besides temp. and weight specs would be awesome. If $100-200 won't cut it for a decent bag please give me some recommendations for higher priced bags as well and maybe i could snag one on sale or something of the sort. I would just like to get a nice bag that will last me a while and not weigh 5+ pounds like my current one.

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#109929 - 01/23/09 09:07 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: OldScout]
JAK Offline
member

Registered: 03/19/04
Posts: 2569
I don't get the wear one carry one on the zip off pants. Why bring two of anything, especially an outer layer. Underwear and socks maybe, but even those I only bring in different sizes and thicknesses. If clothing gets wet, wear it until it is dry. I bring the same clothing for 20 days as 2 days. Totally agree with wearing wool, but washing underwear on the trail isn't that tough either. Soak in boiling water, squeeze dry, wear on head until dry. smile

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#109934 - 01/23/09 09:56 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
jpanderson80 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/06
Posts: 292
Loc: Memphis, TN
I noticed that you have one long sleeve and one short sleeved shirt. You could eliminate one shirt by using the long sleeve in spring/fall and rolling up the sleeves if you get hot. If you need to get warmer, put on your fleece. If you need to get warmer than that, I always use my rain jacket. If I need to get warmer than that than either I'm not hiking and I need to get in my bag OR I am hiking and it so cold outside that likely the temps will be far lower than my 20* bag rating and I'm getting out of there. (That doesn't happen very often were I live.)

I'd drop a pair of socks. One to wear while walking, the other to wear at night and the next day. (I rotate.) I wear trail shoes, so I expect them to get wet. But it makes creek crossings much eaiser and faster.

Underwear has been discussed here before. You may want to search the archives. I enjoy the Patagonia boxer briefs. They are pricey, but man oh man they feel great. And note that I have also used them for swimming because they dry so quickly.

You haven't discussed rain gear. For 3 season (which is all seasons were I live) I only use a rain jacket. It doubles as an outer layer for extreme cold and wind and serves as my pillow at night. You may have a different system in mind, but I thought I'd ask.
_________________________
I always forget and make it more complicated than it needs to be...it's just walking.

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#109935 - 01/23/09 10:18 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
jpanderson80 Offline
member

Registered: 07/28/06
Posts: 292
Loc: Memphis, TN
Sleeping bags are a crazy adventure all in themselves. Some manufacturers seem to outright lie about temp ratings while others are spot on. My advice is to learn as much as possible about bags. Visit all the websites. Then looks for deals. Be sure to visit Feathered Friends and Western Mountaineering. Other 'major' name brands make good bags too, but FF and WM are often considered supreme. Also consider the debate between down vs. synthetic fill.

I purchased a Western Mountaineering Ultralite bag 2 years ago. I wanted a bag with continous baffles, a full zip, down, and fit my 5'5" frame well. I wanted the full zip and continuous baffles for the most versatility... I can rearrange the down for more/less warmth and use it like a quilt if I want.

For $100-$200 you can certainly get a decent bag. Do your research on customer reviews. Watch for clearance sales. Another option... make yourself a "Ray Jardine" quilt for around $130-$150.
_________________________
I always forget and make it more complicated than it needs to be...it's just walking.

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#109952 - 01/23/09 03:39 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: jpanderson80]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
I forgot to mention what i have for rain gear. All i have is a nice poncho. i am not sure where or when my parents picked it up a couple years ago but it is really light, has eyelets on the corners and the middles and it also has a longer back side to accommodate for backpack covering on the trail. I am fairly sure it will be able to fulfill my rain gear needs.

I probably will drop a pair of socks and probably end up dropping some of my other doubles clothes i have as well.

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#109955 - 01/23/09 03:53 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
as for the bags, i did some research on the FF and MW bags and they seem to be a bit steep in price. Unless i get a great deal on one, they will just have to go one my distant wish list. I did do some research on the pros and cons to down V synthetic and came up with HUGE lists. Can anyone break it down to a list of major pros and cons that isn't 20+ long and extremely scientific? thanks

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#109957 - 01/23/09 04:12 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: JAK]
OldScout Offline
member

Registered: 03/17/03
Posts: 501
Loc: Puget Sound, Washington
Originally Posted By JAK
I don't get the wear one carry one on the zip off pants. Why bring two of anything, especially an outer layer.


I like to hike in long pants. Go figure. So, anyhoo, usually one pair of pants is soaked with sweat at the end of the day and I rinse those out and them hang up to dry. I put the other dry pair on. Also, sometimes it rains (I live in the great Pacific Northwest). Once I hit camp I take the wet pair off and put the dry pair on.

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#109960 - 01/23/09 04:51 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
grandtheory Offline
member

Registered: 01/17/09
Posts: 53
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By IdahoHiker

? haven't looked into underwear yet becuase all i have right now are cotton ones.


I like Perry Ellis "Portfolio" boxers. 90% nylon and 10% spandex. I wear them on a daily basis. They are very comfortable.
_________________________
"The panic grabbed my leg, you know, it pulled me in."

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#109971 - 01/23/09 08:41 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
sabre11004 Offline
member

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 513
Loc: Tennessee
I think that I would more arrange my clothing with nothing in mind except layering. I usually carry two base layer items, two mid-layer items and then a water proof shell. That's it. I get very bogged down when I am carrying a lot of clothing so I try to make it very simple and unchanging except for when I trek in different kinds of weather and then you may adjust what you carry as far as how heavy the item is or what it is made out of. I use only synthetics and they seem to work very good in most types of weather whether it is cold, hot, rainy, or sunny. I also wear sock liners inside my socks and will carry two or three pairs of these so I can always have a fresh pair and dry pair of socks at any time...Hope that helps you out...sabre11004...

The first step that you take is one of those that will get you there !!!!!!
_________________________
The first step that you take will be one of those that get you there 1!!!!!

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#109973 - 01/23/09 09:12 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: sabre11004]
thecook Offline


Registered: 10/03/08
Posts: 541
Loc: Minnesota
Down vs synthetic sleeping bags

Synthetic:
Cons- heavy, large volumn when packed
Pro- cheaper, possibly more durable short term, possibly warmer when wet

Down:
Con- expensive, possibly more easily damaged, won't keep you warm if soaked
Pro- lighter, packs smaller, lasts longer if well treated

Personally, I would recommend that a college student look at a Campmor 20 degree down bag, an REI sub-kilo on sale, or order a Ray Jardine quilt kit (synthetic) assuming that you will be camping out down to around freezing. If it never gets that cold you have a lot more inexpensive options.
_________________________
If I wouldn't eat it at home, why would I want to eat it on the trail?

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#109982 - 01/24/09 12:54 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: thecook]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6769
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Assuming that IdahoHiker will be hiking in the Idaho mountains, he needs a bag that will take him at least a few degrees below freezing, even in summer. Of course, as many have pointed out, putting on insulated clothing inside the bag can help extend its range. So can a breathable bivy sack or (if it's below freezing) a vapor barrier.

Just remember that most 20* sleeping bags, except the really expensive kind like Western Mountaineering, are more like 30* bags. There is unfortunately no standard at all in the US for rating bags. There is an EU standard (rather complicated) which is a lot better. However, for those manufacturers who sell their bags in Europe, you may have to go to their UK site. And I've found that they seem to sell different models (or the same models with a different name) in Europe.

If the REI Sub-Kilo is still on sale, that's the bargain of the century--snap it up if you can get one! If not, the Campmor down bag I mentioned.

Pay attention to girth measurements--measure your own (preferably over your insulating jacket) and compare to what's given for the bag. You don't want a bag that is so narrow you're uncomfortable (or, worse yet, compressing the insulation), and you don't want one that is too big, giving you too much dead air space to warm with your body heat.

thecook has pretty well summarized the down vs. synthetic thing. A couple of notes: If properly cared for (don't store any bag compressed), even a lower-quality down bag lasts longer than synthetic, which doesn't recover as well from being squashed multiple times. (2) Despite manufacturers' hype, a soggy synthetic bag is no warmer than a soggy down bag (been there, done that). However, it's a bit easier to dry out and regain the loft with a synthetic bag. Wet down tends to clump. If you don't have a dryer and tennis balls (and you won't when out in the wilds), it's harder to get the loft back with down--you'll spend a lot of time pulling apart the clumps. Better yet, regardless of the insulation type, don't let the bag get wet! Check your camp site to be sure it won't turn into a lake in case of a cloudburst (once again, I've had bitter experience). Use a trash compactor bag pack liner (as mentioned in one of my earlier posts here) or use a mylar turkey roasting bag to protect your sleeping bag. Keep your shelter where you can access it first without opening up your pack, set it up, and unpack your pack under cover. If you're using a tarp instead of a tent or tarptent, consider a bivy sack (make sure the top fabric is breathable) to protect your sleeping bag from splash or wind-driven rain. Don't cover the bag with a non-breathable material, or the moisture in your body will condense on it and then get your bag wet. When it's below freezing, the moisture from your body (which is always there) is apt to freeze on the inside of the outer shell of your sleeping bag and will wet the insulation--this is where a vapor barrier (inside the bag, over your base layer) is a good idea.

My own perspective is to take synthetic insulating clothes and a down bag, so all my insulating eggs aren't in one basket, so to speak.

Re your clothes, it's great that you found so much in your drawers and closet--I should have said that's the first place to look--my bad! The "nylon cheapy pair of shorts" will do fine doubling as a swim suit. In the wilderness, nobody worries about "street clothes" in the "pool." If you take both shorts and long pants, don't bother with zip-off pants (the zippers, I've found out, can be a real nuisance). The main purpose of the zip-offs is so one item doubles as both long pants and shorts. If you want them, though, Campmor's "Trekmor" pants are $30. I did see some on sale last July at Big 5 Sporting Goods for about $22. I assume those athletic socks are synthetic. You could get a pair wet and wring them out by hand to see if they're relatively quick drying. If you do the same with a pair of cotton socks, you'll have a good comparison. Forget the fleece pants for summer hiking. Thin baselayer bottoms will do fine. Lightweight is best at wicking moisture from the skin, which is what you want. Unfortunately this is not a good time to find lightweight baselayers (formerly known as long underwear) on sale, but look around. Watch Campmor because even when their stuff isn't on sale, it's often cheaper. The Duofold polypropylene baselayers are only $10.99, but they only have midweight right now.

The poncho should be fine, but I'd suggest either knee-length gaiters or silnylon rain chaps with it. Hiking through wet brush or grass after a rain or even a heavy dew can get you wetter than walking in the rain. I haven't hiked in Idaho, only Colorado and Wyoming, but I'm assuming you also don't have the waist-high brush we have out here in the Cascades, which pretty much requires full rain pants to slog through. I know that where I've been in the Rockies, knee-high gaiters are plenty long enough. You also want a wind shirt--find a cheap unlined nylon jacket and put DWR treatment on it--to keep your arms a bit dryer. (Those should be available in the spring, if you can't find a thrift store model.) (If all you can find is a nylon jacket with a flannel lining, cut out the lining.) The wind shirt also helps to keep bugs off you in camp and at rest stops and, of course, repels the wind. Lots of times the wind shirt is the only wrap you need, especially when you're on the move. If it's just drizzling a little, the wind shirt, which is more breathable, may be enough to keep you dry. Also, look for a cord or something simiiar to belt the poncho snugly to you when it's windy. The poncho also protects your pack (although, like a pack cover, it won't help if you fall in a creek). It sounds as though you're just about there on clothing--congratulations!

Just a warning--in return for all this free advice, we expect to see some trip reports next summer about backpacking in the Idaho mountains (or wherever you go)! Please let us know how your gear works out!


Edited by OregonMouse (01/24/09 01:15 AM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#109991 - 01/24/09 03:45 AM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: OregonMouse]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6769
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
IdahoHiker, I just ran into this: Everything at REI Outlet is 20% off the sale price through January 29. That includes the Men's REI Sub-Kilo--here's the URL for the Long (they have the regular, too): REI Sub-Kilo bag--long

At ~$136 plus shipping, this is a steal! It's a better bag than the Campmor 20* bag we've suggested, but about the same price. It's not quite the $85 that some people have been getting in some of the stores, but it's still a really good price! Not a top quality bag, but a good intermediate bag. It should meet your needs for quite a few years. Do check the specs for girth, measure your own over an insulating jacket, to make sure you'll fit inside.


Edited by OregonMouse (01/24/09 03:46 AM)
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#110000 - 01/24/09 01:18 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: OregonMouse]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
Oregonmouse that pretty much sums up everything i have been curious or wondering about. Thank you so much for the info and you bet i will be posting pictures and stories and probably more questions as summer begins. thank you again.

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#110001 - 01/24/09 02:20 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
Good and bad news. So i took my sleeping bag out of the back of my truck and opened it up and did some specific research on the bag. Turns out that it isn't half bad. It does weigh something like 3lbs 4 oz, which isn't to bad i don't think. It has also got pretty good reviews on all the sites. Now to the bad. I have neglected it. I have been storing it bundled up in my truck for about a year now, on top of the fact that it is already 5+ years old. That REI sub kilo is such a deal. I am kind of torn between getting the sub kilo or waiting and seeing how my old bag holds up. any ideas?

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#110002 - 01/24/09 02:33 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
grandtheory Offline
member

Registered: 01/17/09
Posts: 53
Loc: Indiana
Just my two cents, but I would hold on to your bag until you are ready to go camping. Between now and then, I'd keep my eyes on www.steepandcheap.com where you might find an even better deal than the REI sale going on this month.
_________________________
"The panic grabbed my leg, you know, it pulled me in."

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#110003 - 01/24/09 02:40 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: grandtheory]
IdahoHiker Offline
member

Registered: 01/19/09
Posts: 38
Loc: Idaho, Moscow
That is kind of what i was thinking. I think steepandcheap is going to be the death of me though. I can't stop watching for new items. And i have a good 2-3 months before it is crunch time and i start to go backpacking for work and leasure so i think i might just wait it out.


Edited by IdahoHiker (01/24/09 02:50 PM)

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#110004 - 01/24/09 03:13 PM Re: NEEDING SOME GEAR HELP! [Re: IdahoHiker]
grandtheory Offline
member

Registered: 01/17/09
Posts: 53
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By IdahoHiker
I think steepandcheap is going to be the death of me though. I can't stop watching for new items.


Amen!!! I like the Firefox application that allows you to see what is on S&C even if you aren't on their site. You can find it on the Alerts section of the site.

One killer deal, one item at a time... until you are completely broke. smile
_________________________
"The panic grabbed my leg, you know, it pulled me in."

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