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Addie Bedford
(addiebedford) - MLife

Locale: Montana
Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 13:02:27 MST Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 13:26:48 MST Print View

I love my Golite umbrella. The other things worth mentioning are the fiberglass rib construction makes it safer in a thunderstorm or lightning situation. It also enables me to do photography in the rain.

Edited by Meander on 02/07/2012 13:27:23 MST.

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 13:28:33 MST Print View

Maybe something to look at, though here we get sunny and windy a lot (article confirms what I thought in that is the conditions where most umbrellas fail).

Edited by hknewman on 02/07/2012 13:29:37 MST.

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 13:40:58 MST Print View

I've carried one for years.

Fabulous in continuous rain; I wear my rain jacket with the hood down and the zipper down at least halfway. My head stays much cooler, I sweat a lot less, and my torso stays well vented and dry.

Fabulous in the desert sun. Makes a greeat overhead solar shield when stopped during the heat of the day. I recline on my CC pad with my umbrella suspended overhead. I added loops of cord to the tip and to the bottom of the handle. That way, I can tie the umbrella overhead and adjust the angle by moving the staked line on the handle as the sun moves overhead.

Great for high altitude sun protection while hiking.

The umbrella's greatest enemy is a sudden wind gust. I had the canopy of my GoLite umbrella stripped away in a flash just north of Mojave. When it gets REALLY windy, I either put the umbrella away or hold it in front of my body with just my eyes and forehead above the canopy. Caveat: Walk much slower than normal this way as you can't really see what's directly below and in front of you.

I've had them rigged to my pack so as to be able to use trekking poles too, but found that more hassle than benefit. It's too easy to break a support rib taking the pack on and off and it's difficult to dodge overhead branches, pass under logs, etc. I'll stick to handheld. YMMV

Casey Bowden
(clbowden) - MLife

Locale: Berkeley Hills
Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 14:12:56 MST Print View

The author wrote: "My ultralight soft shell jacket weighs 3.5 ounces (99 g)."

What is the brand / model?

John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 15:30:33 MST Print View

Good article Francis!

Ever since I first heard of using an umbrella (in your book Hike Your Own Hike?) I've always taken one. Don't use it all the time, but it's handy to have when I want/need it. Was caught in a hailstorm one time with no tree cover and was really glad for the protection. Hailstones hurt.

I do admit to feeling self concious at times when I use it, but my preference for hiking in the shade overrules my fear of looking like a dork. Well, sometimes.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 16:26:42 MST Print View

The only "softshell" jacket at that weight that I can imagine is a no longer made Montbell jacket, not the windshirt. Would have to track down name.

Casey Bowden
(clbowden) - MLife

Locale: Berkeley Hills
Re: Re: Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 16:34:29 MST Print View

Thanks John,

I assume Francis meant "windshirt" instead of "softshell jacket" but would like to know for sure.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Re: Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 16:45:18 MST Print View

It could be the Montbell Stretch Wind Jacket, but he would have to clarify.

Christopher Yi
(TRAUMAhead)

Locale: Cen Cal
Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/07/2012 20:44:03 MST Print View

I take it if you use an umbrella, you don't use trekking poles?

Paul Schnoes
(psch) - MLife

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Umbrellas! on 02/07/2012 22:22:52 MST Print View

I have always been an umbrella advocate. Great to see an article about them here at last!

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
Backpacking with an Umbrella on 02/08/2012 00:19:59 MST Print View

Great stuff!! Ray Jardine was right from the start and definitely a Multi-Use Item.

Edited by Creachen on 02/08/2012 09:37:03 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/08/2012 00:39:23 MST Print View

"I take it if you use an umbrella, you don't use trekking poles?"

Oh, oh.

. .
(biointegra) - MLife

Locale: Puget Sound
Re: Re: Backpacking and Hiking with an Umbrella on 02/08/2012 01:02:02 MST Print View

Great article - thanks! Now on to develop that classy carbon fibre umbrella trekking pole ice axe combo thingyumbrella stick

Edited by biointegra on 02/08/2012 01:04:20 MST.

James McIntosh
(JamesMc)

Locale: Near Bass Strait
More umbrella tips on 02/08/2012 01:38:34 MST Print View

I've been hiking with an umbrella for about ten years now.

My standard responds when people ask why I carry an umbrella is "In case of rains".

I am not familiar with GoLite umbrellas but here in Australia we can buy good golf umbrellas ( with advertising on them) from a hardware chain for about $9.

Silver is definitely better for keeping cool in the sun though.

I glue a rubber chair foot on the tip of my brolly and use it as a walking pole when it's not needed for sun and rain.

I'm sure umbrellas will become more popular when they produce a 'technical' umbrella that costs $500 to compete with Goretex rain coats.


JamesMc

B. F.
(thrush) - F
Good read! on 02/08/2012 02:27:40 MST Print View

After a tour where it was colder (5°C / 40°F) and raining constantly, my friend instantly bought an umbrella. He was sick of his rain jacket because it was not working as long as it is wet outside. I was in a light fleece, perfectly warm, dry and comfortable, while he had such a bad mood that it was hard for me to talk to him. Thats the one point I would like to add, in contrary to the article an umbrella is especially good when used in rain at colder temperatures, because you stay warm and dry and you can even dry-wear your clothing with your body heat while under the umbrella, walking in pouring rain. I always take it and love it.

Tipi Walter
(TipiWalter) - F
Umbrella on 02/08/2012 04:48:45 MST Print View

I guess you guys have never backpacked in the Southeast or in the mountains of TN/NC or VA. Using an umbrella here would be pointless due to the overhanging rhododendron and brush. And as someone mentioned, unless the thing is attached to the pack you'll have one hand for the hiking pole and the other for the umbrella. Impractical.

Plus, the worst conditions here for cold rain usually includes high winds and wind-whipped rain with horizontal pelting---not good with an umbrella.

John Myers
(dallas) - F - MLife

Locale: North Texas
Umbrella & Trekking Poles on 02/08/2012 06:51:26 MST Print View

"I take it if you use an umbrella, you don't use trekking poles?"

Oh, oh."

I use both, each depending on the circumstances. I don't 'have' to use either one. I prefer using the trekking poles on steeper ups and downs, not so much otherwise. The umbrella gets used when it's raining or in the middle of a hot sunny day.

"I guess you guys have never backpacked in the Southeast or in the mountains of TN/NC or VA. Using an umbrella here would be pointless due to the overhanging rhododendron and brush."

Walter, that's correct. If I was ever hiking in an area like that I would probably leave the umbrella at home. I believe in using whatever gear suits you best for your circumstances. HYOH.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
umbrellas and being tall on 02/08/2012 07:50:32 MST Print View

How do umbrellas work someone that is very tall, like myself, at 6'5"? I have used umbrellas in normal situations before but it always seemed my feet and lower legs would get wet.

Matthew Zion
(mzion) - F

Locale: Boulder, CO
Re: Woo on 02/08/2012 08:15:45 MST Print View

Man after my own heart.

If I had a nickel every time I was asked, "6 lbs pack... but you carry an umbrella?"

edit: Soon as people see it in use they're, often, instantly converted.

Edited by mzion on 02/08/2012 08:18:06 MST.