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Wind Rivers--August '07
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David Passey
(davidpassey) - F

Locale: New York City
Wind Rivers--August '07 on 09/25/2007 18:58:41 MDT Print View

Well, after a couple of years of reading the forums on this site, I attempted my first truly ultralite trip this summer into the Wind Rivers.

The trip was absolutely terrific! Many thanks to you guys for your endless insights and commentary. The forum participants here are thoughtful, considerate and helpful.

My pack came in somewhere between 10 and 11 pounds, including consumables. I scarcely felt it the entire trip. My kit was so simple and easy, a snap to pack and unpack. I experienced all types of weather, so the trip was a true test of ultralight gear in many conditions.

My group was a traditional "heavy pack" group, and I was the butt of many jokes throughout the trip, but I had my victories:

1. At one point, a fellow hiker asked if I had enough warm clothes. I told him what I had brought in my pack, and he then admitted that I was more prepared with my kit that he was, notwithstanding he was carrying literally 5 times the weight! (What could have been in that pack?)

2. As a highpoint of the trip, on the first evening, we got hit by pounding rain, wind and lightning for 3 hours. I was nervous about my down bag and the Spinntwin. But I shouldn't have been; the tarp stayed taut (it was a good pitch, in a meadow, in the lee of a boulder), and I got only a bit of spindrift, which the bivy easily repelled. In fact, I cooked my dinner, while everyone else huddled in their tents waiting for the storm to let up. It was a WONDERFUL way to experience a rain storm in the mountains--so close, so involved, but protected.

(The GG Spinntwin is truly a work of art--a beauty of design and function.)

The trip was a short. All I could schedule was 2 nights and 3 days. I went with friends and hiked a circuit around the Cirque of the Towers in the Wind River Range. The first night we camped at Big Sandy lake, the second day we climbed Jackass Pass and camped at Lonsome Lake in the Cirqe basin and the third day we hiked over Texas Pass and hiked out past Dads lake et al.

I carried:


--GG whisper (with hipbelt)
--GG torso pad/1/8 in leg pad
--GG Spinntwin
--WM Highlight
--BPL Nano bivy
--Homemade golf club treking poles


--Smartwool zip T (worn)
--Railriders pants (worn)
--smartwool socks (worn)
--Montane featherlite
--Homemade MLD style poncho tarp (also serves as a backup shelter)
--Micropuff vest
--fleece hat and mittens
--warm socks

--repackaged acquamira
--beer can pot/alcohol stove kit
--two twenty oz gatorade bottles (attached to shoulder strap with bungee)
--repackaged miscellany in ditty
--a couple of stuff sacks for organization

Frank Deland

Locale: On the AT in VA
Wind River on 10/16/2007 17:59:29 MDT Print View

Sounds like a great hike. My sister and brother-in-law live in Maine, but often return to the Wind River Range. They have lamas carry their gear. I am interested in hearing more about your GG SpinnTwin. I am seriously considering it because of its good reviews and lightweight. I am concerned that it does not have a beak, so I am thinking about adding one as others have suggested. What is your opinon? Were you able to pitch it low enough to block wind (when you were not under the lee of a boulder)? My daughter and I are hoping to use one while hiking the JMT next August. (I am used to tarp camping, but have done so mostly in the woods, not exposed to ridge weather.

Edited by rambler on 10/16/2007 18:00:17 MDT.