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Colorado Trail in August
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Gordon Towne
(gordontowne) - MLife

Locale: New England
Colorado Trail in August on 04/18/2010 12:06:41 MDT Print View

I am planning a 10 day trip on the southern Colorado Trail this August, and am looking for some feedback on my gear list. Any suggestions would be appreciated. In particular, I'm wondering whether the bugs will likely be bad enough that I would want to bring my bug bivy, or should I leave it behind?

---Items Always Worn/Carried---
Icebreaker Apollo Short Sleeve V --- 3 oz
Smartwool Microweight Boxer Brief --- 5 oz
Nike Shorts --- 3.5 oz
Smartwool Adrenaline Socks --- 2.5 oz
New Balance MT100 Shoes --- 18 oz
Simblissity LevaGaiters --- 2 oz
Bandana (Generic cotton) --- 1 oz
Leki Carbonlite Trekking Poles --- 13.5 oz

Category total : 49 oz

---Other Clothing Items---

Defeet Kneeker Leg Warmers --- 3.44 oz
Montbell ExLight Jacket --- 5.7 oz
North Face Triumph Anorak --- 6.34 oz
Tyvek Pants --- 2.5 oz
Possumdown Socks --- 2.0 oz
Julbo Tracks Sunglasses --- 0.74 oz
Headsweats Sun Hat --- 2.36 oz
OR Ninjaclava --- 1.86 oz
Mosquito Head Net --- .68 oz
Possumdown Gloves --- 1.6 oz

Category Total : 26.13 oz

---Sleep System---

Gossamer Gear CCF Pad (cut to 3/4 length) --- 7.2 oz
Jacks-R-Better Sierra Sniveller Quilt --- 23.76 oz

Category Total : 30.96 oz

--- Shelter ---

MLD Trailstar --- 12.34 oz
MLD Bug Bivy --- 4.5 oz
5 GoLite Y Stakes --- 2.48 oz
5 MLD Ti Stakes --- 1.35 oz

Category Total : 20.67 oz

--- Packing ---

GossamerGear Miniposa --- 15.84 oz
Various stuff sacks --- 2.94 oz

Category Total : 18.28 oz

--- Eating/Drinking ---

Caldera Cone System --- 1.72 oz
BPL FireLite 500 Cookpot --- 2.78 oz
AGG Fuel Bottle --- 1.8 oz
S2S Spoon --- 0.4 oz
Platypus 3L Hoser --- 3.8 oz
Large OP Sack --- 0.95 oz

Category Total : 10.75 oz

--- Other Gear ---

Bear Bag Rope ---- 1.2 oz
Gerber UL Knife --- 0.6 oz
Petzl e-Lite --- 0.98 oz
Photon Micro --- 0.32 oz
Compass --- 1.2 oz
Other (toiletries, first aid, Aqua mira, maps) --- 9.4 oz

Category Total : 13.34 oz

Total Baseweight : 7 lbs 8 oz

Mike Clelland
(mikeclelland) - MLife

Locale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
gear list (nice!) on 04/18/2010 16:47:38 MDT Print View

Nice List!

Bandana (Generic cotton) --- 1 oz - there is a way to cut this to make it a little lighter, and still use it as a nice neckerchief.

Tyvek Pants --- 2.5 oz - What? Do tell! Are these homemade?

Headsweats Sun Hat --- 2.36 oz - What? Add this to your ITEM'S WORN and watch your pack weight plummet!

Mosquito Head Net --- .68 oz - Put this to use as a stuff sack. THe bugs will be minimal in August anyway.

MLD Bug Bivy --- 4.5 oz - The bugs are minimal (usually) in august, especially at higher elevations. This "might" not be needed.

Various stuff sacks --- 2.94 oz - Be careful here.

Petzl e-Lite --- 0.98 oz - I've used the e+lite for two weeks without a problem. The photon is pretty light, an understandable redundancy.

Other (toiletries, first aid, Aqua mira, maps) --- 9.4 oz ---- Okay - Over half a pound here? THat's a big number, you should scrutinize these items, I KNOW this weight can get lower.

Gordon Towne
(gordontowne) - MLife

Locale: New England
Re: gear list (nice!) on 04/18/2010 17:04:44 MDT Print View


The pants are not homemade, they're the same ones mentioned in this article:

I find myself using rain/wind pants so rarely that I don't see myself needing anything more.

The biggest thing bringing up the weight of my "other" category right now is sunscreen. I am worried about exposure during 10 days at altitude in the middle of the summer, so have budgeted several ounces of sunscreen in a small nalgene jar. I tend to get uncomfortably hot more easily than most, so prefer to wear shorts and short sleeves, rather than long sleeves for sun protection. Any tips on cutting this weight?

Stephen R
(32729) - F
Re: Re: gear list (nice!) on 05/26/2010 12:29:39 MDT Print View

Hi Gordon, I just stumbled across this post and have some input on your gear list.

Regarding your question about the bug bivy I would say leave it behind. I hiked the CT in August 2007 and encountered minimal, if any bugs. You will spend a lot of time above treeline and it's getting too cold for bugs up there by that time of year. A headnet should prove more than adequate.

On my thru-hike the only insulation I carried was a montbell thermawrap jacket. If I did it again I would add some extra layers to this system -- either a lightweight synthetic vest or at least a long sleeve synthetic or wool shirt. I would also consider an extra layer of pants. Either some long underwear or some puffy pants. The montbell downpants would be ideal.

Another item I noticed missing is rainwear for your hands. You will be hiking in monsoon season and it's likely you'll spend time trudging through the rain if you want to get any kind of mileage in. Since you're using poles you'll want coverage for your hands to keep them warm, assuming your Anorak doesn't already do this.

Consider a pair of MLD eVent mitts. Or at least take a couple of produce bags from the grocery store and some rubber bands/hair ties to hold them on your wrists. They will go a long way for your comfort for a very minimal weight penalty.

Best of luck on your hike!

Chris Gray
(ChrisFol) - F

Locale: Denver, Coloado
Re: Colorado Trail in August on 05/26/2010 23:12:00 MDT Print View

-Nix the gaiters, they are not really needed.
-There are lighter 2nd pair of sock options: dress or ankle socks.

-Look for the first freeze. If it happens, nix the mosquito net.

-Nix the bug bivy. The net should be enough or even more than enough.

-Look into a 2L platy without the hose. No need for 3L w/ a hose on the CT.

-You need to weigh your other indivudal because 9.4oz seems like a lot.

-I would add a windshirt-- the CT is above tree-line and in AUG, you will need one.

Aaron Armstrong
(traderaaron) - F

Locale: Colorado
Mosquito net on 05/27/2010 07:46:56 MDT Print View

I really can't think of a section of the Colorado Trail where you'd really need a mosquito net in August (maybe in the lower San Juans?), probably don't really need the bug bivy either.

And once it gets cold at night you don't have many problems at all with flying insects really.

ross erickson
(themaestro) - F

Locale: colorado
wind shirt on 05/28/2010 17:21:09 MDT Print View

wind shell i think is a must. great for above treeline and locks in warmth on those cold colorado mornings. great choice with the montbell ex light jacket. i love mine! you should be set with just 1.5-2 liters of water. you cross plenty of water sources. but their is a dry section near the beginning of the trail.
enjoy the hike

Chris Gray
(ChrisFol) - F

Locale: Denver, Coloado
Re: Mosquito net on 05/28/2010 22:58:05 MDT Print View

"I really can't think of a section of the Colorado Trail where you'd really need a mosquito net in August"

I annually (late July/mid August) section hike from Eddiesville with my FIL and 8 times out of 10 I am thankful to have brought my mosquito-net. In fact anywhere east of here is still likely to be rather warm, even in August. Then on the flip side, we have woken up to frost in July.

Colorado weather, go figure.

I would however say that the bug-bivy is overkill. bring the headnet, leave the bivy.

Edited by ChrisFol on 05/28/2010 22:59:40 MDT.

Kyle Crawford

Locale: SouthEast
Trailstar on 05/29/2010 23:11:51 MDT Print View

Is your Trailstar made out of Spinnex? Because the sil nylon is 15 oz on the MLD site. I'd be interested to see a pic of your trailstar in spinnex. Good luck on the CT.

Gordon Towne
(gordontowne) - MLife

Locale: New England
Spinntex Trailstar on 08/17/2010 06:48:38 MDT Print View

Sorry for the delayed response. Unfortunately this trip had to be postponed due to some more pressing family concerns, but thanks to all of you for your replies. They will help in planning for future trips.

Kyle, yes my Trailstar is a custom Spinntex version. I purchased it used off of another BPL forum member. Unfortunately I don't have a good picture of it, but I don't know that one would be particularly informative, as it appears very similar to the standard version. I have heard of some concerns about this shelter in a material besides silnylon, because silnylon's inherent stretchiness aids in a taut pitch. With a little bit of practice, I have found that it is fairly simple to achieve a good taut pitch even with the spinntex fabric. I have slept comfortably under it in fairly high winds without issue.