BPL Community Profile

Raymond Estrella (rayestrella) - BPL Professional Member

My Locale Northern Minnesota
About Me I have been backpacking for over 30 years, all over California, plus many western states and Minnesota. I hike year-round in all weather, and average 500+ miles (800+ km) per year. I make a point of using lightweight gear, and smaller volume packs. Doubting I can ever be truly UL, I try to be as near to it as I can yet still be comfortable. I start early and hike hard so as to enjoy the afternoons exploring/chilling. I usually take a freestanding tent and enjoy hot meals at night. If not hiking solo I am usually with brother-in-law Dave.

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All Forum Posts by Raymond Estrella

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Forum » Thread

Won't break from humidity
There is not enough "water" in the air to fill the tubes. If the tubes are not filled with water freezing won't burst them. So I don't think it is possible to worry about a new un...

In GEAR » Sawyer Squeeze Freezing While Being Shipped
January 24, 6:20pm

Why no spec chart? Yeah I guess we can go look at SD: http://www.sierradesigns.com/p-474-cloud-15.aspx Does it use a variable fill ratio, or is it an even amount of down front and back? S...

In Editor's Roundtable » Sierra Designs Cloud 15 Review
January 23, 1:06pm

sat phones
Dave and I carried one for a few years so that we could run the company from the field on week+ trips. They work best at high points like passes and such. If you are in canyons you can get signals ...

In GEAR » Experiences with satellite phones?
January 20, 7:08am

Ski pants?
"And then Roger could afford a shirt and some decent looking ski pants." Careful now. Rog probably made those pants...

In Editor's Roundtable » 2012 Backpacking Light Staff Picks
January 18, 12:43pm

XTherm noise
I really don't notice it. But in winter I usually have a pair of foam earplugs to use because the winter wind will keep me up at night. They do add a fraction of a gram though... ;-)

In GEAR » XTherm does the noise lessen later?
January 18, 12:32pm

Well I haven't popped mine or any of my other flavors of NeoAirs. I have certainly had it in sandy areas but no shredding yet. http://tinyurl.com/adkdyl5

In GEAR » Has anyone actually popped a Thermarest XLite?
January 16, 12:32pm

They are both made by Easton, just the heads differ. I have had no problem with breakage yet. I have hit them with rocks and a steel hatchet. http://tinyurl.com/9fysgze

In GEAR » MSR Carbon core vs Easton FMJ
January 08, 6:21am

I carry the Photon Freedom Micro LED Lights and they are easy to change batteries if needed. Just your knife tip will open it, no screwdriver needed. I reviewed them here: http://tinyurl.com/b9d...

In GEAR » Photon and other micro-lights
January 06, 6:21am

Oh no worries Ian, I saw these bags (and quilts, as they have a couple of them too) at the OR Show. They asked me if I wanted to try one and I told them that honestly I am not the best person to...

In GEAR » Thermarest Sleeping Bags Specs
January 04, 2:07pm

Thermarest Sleeping Bags
Well you aren’t comparing apples to apples there, but I get what you are saying. Those are MSRP’s and as we all know the actual price will be set by the individual retailers. I am happy t...

In GEAR » Thermarest Sleeping Bags Specs
January 04, 12:19pm

All Reader Reviews by Raymond Estrella

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Osprey Exos 58
Osprey Exos 58 Backpack Size: Large Year manufactured: 2009 Weight listed: 2 lb 10 oz (1185 g) Actual weight 2 lb 9.8 oz (1180 g) Volume listed: 3700 cu in (61 L) Load weight capacity sugg...

In Backpacks - External Frame
June 15, 7:47pm

Big Agnes Seedhouse SL2
I bought one of the first Seedhouse SL2s in 2004. Last year I bought the new, lighter version pairing it with carbon fiber poles and Ti stakes to make a total weight package of 2 lb 15 oz (1.33 kg). I...

In Shelters - Double Wall Tents
February 16, 3:37pm