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Kevin Garrison
(kgarrison) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area
Looking for Feedback on 11/21/2012 23:19:03 MST Print View

I've spent the last couple years refining my pack list and it feels like I'm getting close. My goal was to get my base weight under 10lbs. I've made it but I'm now wondering if it is worth investing in a new pack to drop another 6 oz or so. Thoughts?

Here's my back list:

Peter S
(prse) - MLife

Locale: Denmark
Re: Looking for Feedback on 11/22/2012 10:45:24 MST Print View

Well, you've reached your goal. Way to go! :-)

But it's very personal. I think more weight-savings is only worth it if you have a new specific goal. You could stop here, and spend you're money on something else. If it makes you happy to save more weight - go for it!

Loki Cuthbert

Locale: Portland, OR
changing packs... on 11/22/2012 22:52:33 MST Print View

do you feel that you're happy with the rest of your kit. What does pack with a 6oz weight savings offers you besides the 6 oz weight savings. Do you feel like it would improve your trip by being 6oz lighter or would your be sacrificing a level of comfort with those 6 ounces. If you're looking to develop a specific SUL kit maybe dropping down to the <10oz range for your next pack.

If I was looking at an 8 lb kit I wouldn't change my pack unless it was for more comfort, better fit, or to try to make the jump to < 5 lb pack weight

pack on 11/23/2012 08:39:27 MST Print View

Sure if the pack is more comfortable, sized better for your gear, or has some other feature you want. Everyone likes new stuff.

But you could also find it doesnt carry as well, isnt as comfortable, etc, and doesnt save enough wt to matter.

You can save ~4 oz just by using polycryo instead of tyvek ground sheet
You can use a lighter cook kit (OK yes you have to carry fuel and its heavy) and save ~5oz
You could save ~ 4oz with a quilt instead of the bag too,

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
nice on 11/23/2012 16:52:36 MST Print View

Pretty solid GL if you ask me. If you want to get it SUL, that's another story.

I am interested in picking your brain about your sleep system. I own the exact same bivy and sleeping bag as you do, but have since stopped using the bivy due to condensation--mostly in the foot end on both the bivy and the bag. Do you have this issue? If so, how do you deal with it? I was thinking of modifying the bivy by adding a small zipper in the foot box to act as a vent, but never got around to it. I also got sick of worming my way in and out of the bivy, but that's another story.

Also, are you a cold sleeper? That's a pretty warm bag for summer. I use it mostly in the fall/spring.

Here is my current favorite set up for next spring in case you are interested:

Kevin Garrison
(kgarrison) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: nice on 11/24/2012 12:29:48 MST Print View

Thanks for the feedback. Regarding my sleep system, I haven't had any condensation issues with the TiGoat bivy but to be honest, it only gets used when I expect rain.

You're correct about the Plasma being a warm bag. I typically use mine as a quilt. I have a 45F Ultralamina but it actually weights an ounce or two more than my Plasma so the Plasma generally gets to go. The majority of my time is typically spent in the high sierras although I was fortunate to spend time in the Sawtooth and Beartooth mountains this summer. Both were spectacular.

I'm kind of stuck on what to do next to optimize my load. My original focus was on the big three. I then spent a lot of time evaluating different cook systems. I made my own pressurized penny stove; I tried MBD's M4; and I also own a JetBoil. The BCB is my favorite at the moment. I really like the fact that I'm no longer adding half used gas cans to my gear pile.

I'm trying to decide what to do next. I know that I can drop some ounces by further optimizing my pack. I'm also looking at my trekking poles. MLD's LT4s would help me drop another 12 oz. I have a Trailstar that I use frequently and I'm not sure how easy it would be to use a fixed length pole with it.

Although I've reached my less than 10 lb goal, I really enjoy the challenge of continuously optimizing my load. I don't feel like I've sacrifice any thing at my current <8 lb weight. It also helps when my wife joins me as I end up carrying additional gear for the two of us.

Kevin Garrison
(kgarrison) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area
Your Spring Pack List on 11/24/2012 12:59:24 MST Print View

I really like you're spring pack list. I've been looking at Zpacks for a while. I haven't made the plunge, however, as Cuben still makes me nervous. My 14-year olds have a tendency to throw things at fragile gear with amazing accuracy.

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
Re: Your Spring Pack List on 11/27/2012 05:27:44 MST Print View

Thanks, my list has gone through lots of changes, but each time it nearly always gets all that much nicer out there for me.

Don't worry about Cuben. I have not had any issues with any of my Cuben gear and recommend them to lots of people. I keep my kids and my cat away from my gear closet, in fact it is literally locked up.

I mentioned SUL earlier. Here is my new and improved almost SUL summer gear list, maybe it can help/inspire you to give SUL a go:

I have not only backpacked quite a bit in my day, but I have also done a lot of traveling in general. Which means I have slept on park/train station benches numerous times, for example. So to me, as long as it's warm enough outside, sleeping on a small torso foam pad on a bed of moss and/or pine boughs does me just fine. On my Xlite I generally get just as good a night's sleep as I do at home--sometimes better, even.

This list could also easily go XUL given the proper conditions, but I wanted to make a list that I could take on a multi-day section hike if I wanted to. For a quick and easy overnighter with warm temps and hardly a chance of rain, I could ditch my shelter, stove/fuel bottle and go no-cook/campfire cooking, plus nix the base layer, socks, and scale down my first aid, survival kits, and flashlight to get to around 3-3.5lbs. If it was very warm--say I go backpacking in Spain in July again--I could ditch the sleeping bag and add a simple cotton sheet, plus my Zpacks solo bug tent if needed(which apparently they no longer make, which is too bad, if you ask me).

Oh, I should add that I forgot to add my new headlamp to my spring list. It only pushes it to 7.5lbs and is actually one of my most favorite new gear items--and I even went a bit "heavier" as far as headlamps plus batteries go. Everyone has their luxuries, and for me 90 lumens max and long battery life is one of them, along with my Ti mug.

Remington Roth

Locale: Atlantic Coast
Two pairs of boots on 12/05/2012 15:09:49 MST Print View

Something that jumps out at me is that you have two pairs of boots listed. Dropping one of the pairs would drop either 20oz or 26oz. That's pretty significant - of course it's your call though.

You have a really solid list here with some light and functional gear.

As far as replacing the pack, if it were me, it would all depend on if the right deal and funding presented itself. I wouldn't be in too much of a hurry.