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gillis109try this thread
tomPietrowskiMotivepurses will be able to offer some help he is good with all that stuff. I'll pm him for you an get him to give some advice.
CamembertAbout the tent: Get a tent where you set up the outer shell first! If it rains or snows you dont want to put the inside up first! I never understood why US tents do that..
jadavisIf you get fast at setting up your tent you can get it done while it's pouring rain and be still be comfortable and dry. Snow is even nicer since it has such a low water content and generally can be shaken off easily. Tents where you set up the fly first have always struck me as a little odd, but that's me.
CamembertOk but tell me what is the advantage of putting up the inner tent (sorry dont know the english term) up first?
jadavisIf you are bringing a tent then a -40 bag is overkill and I woudn't suggest a bivy haha. Honestly a 0 or 15 degree bag might treat you well if you are in a tent and not somewhere super cold. I sleep warm so my perspective is skewed, though. You also should consider insulation material. Down generally packs smaller and is warmer for its size, but synthetic can handle getting a little wet better. And make sure you have a good sleeping pad to go under it. The last thing you want is for it to compress and let you touch the floor.
As for pack size, a 45 L pack won't be big enough. Keep in mind you'll at least be needing food, warm layers, a stove (preferable jammed inside a pot you can use to melt snow), fuel, and a sleeping pad as well as the tent and sleeping bag. On top of that it should all fit inside your pack because carrying stuff on the outside is messy, makes it get wet, and gets in the way. I know it doesn't sound like a lot, but it takes up space quick. I would shoot for a 70 L pack at least. You should look at climbing packs too (Black Diamond has some good ones). Climbing packs are narrower than regular backpacking packs which gives you range of motion with poles and also distribute more load to your shoulders, which I kind of like. Before buying a pack you definitely have to go to a store and try it on. Have them put some heavy stuff in it and see how it feels. The last thing you want is a pack that doesn't fit your back properly and makes it hurt.
I don't have any experience with Alps tents, but it looks reasonable. I've had really good experiences with Sierra designs tents. I know they're a little more, but they tend to last for a super long time.
With gear like this quality definitely pays off. So save a little longer if you need to. You can get a super ghetto setup, but a nice one will last many years.
robotdnaAs for the pack, I've figured I can pretty much fit most everything in a 55L pack, assuming I lash the freakishly large sleeping bag on the rear. Is that okay? Everything is in the pack, BESIDES the bag. I can get a waterproof stuff sack, maybe??
IDMT_BC024You're sleeping bag is the piece of gear that you baby, you don't allow wet gear around, you don't strap on outside of your pack, and you want to spend money on. Irregardless of if it's synthetic or down. There're the ski boots of winter camping gear. And an insulated pad is also absolutely necessary.
jadavisGetting a slightly larger pack and putting the bag inside is definitely the way to go. Sure, you have to spend a little more on a pack, but the bag is far more protected. If your bag were to get wet because the bag leaked or got torn then you could end up in a really bad spot. Again, I would recommend a climbing pack. They're more durable and distribute weight well for skiing applications (also usually are easier to strap skis to if you need to). The BD Mission 75 is big, but it's also a pretty sweet pack and gives you the option of more days if you ever want them. Mountain Hardware packs are also alright for skiing. Mainly because out of all the packs I've used they have been the easiest to strap skis to. Honestly I don't think they're the most comfortable packs, but they've got these large-ish loops down by the belt that fit skis perfectly and don't let the bindings fall through, making it super easy to carry skis on its sides.
If you don't have a pad, your options are air or foam. Air pads are nice because they pack small. Their drawbacks are that they can pinch and allow contact with the ground if you are bony or if it's not inflated fully/leaking and they can be punctured, which makes them useless. Foam pads generally take up more space, but they can't be pinched to allow contact with the ground, they can't be punctured, and they don't absorb water (don't get an open cell one). You can also use both if you feel like, but it takes up more space.
robotdnaSo you're using straps on the side to hold your skis that aren't necessarily for skis but work fine? Can I do that with any pack that has two side clips?
jadavisYes, you can do that with any pack that has straps on the side. I was just noting that climbing packs handle it better. Ski edges are hard on fabric and climbing packs tend to be more resilient. I also like how they distribute weight between your shoulders and hips (backpacking packs put almost all of it on your hips). Mountain Hardware packs are especially good for carrying skis because they have two super sturdy loops down by the belt that help keep your skis stable while they're on your pack. Beyond that Mountain Hardware isn't the greatest. You don't really even need to be able to throw the skis on the pack, I just think it's a nice option if you want both hands free for climbing something.
Also, get a compression sack for your bag. If you get a down bag you can get it super small so it fits in the bottom of your pack nicely.
The more I think about it the more I would suggest you get the BD Mission 75. My brother has that pack. He loves it and I'm always jealous of it haha. You'll have more stuff than you think and it's better to error on the side of having extra space. Just think about it: tent, bag, sleeping pad, stove/fuel, avi gear, extra clothes (including spare gloves), a puffy, food (you eat more when it's cold), water bottles, space for skins when their off, and various other small items such as headlamp. There'll be other things too.
Another thought about your tent. If it didn't come with a ground cloth, try and find the ground cloth made for it or fashion one yourself. It saves space and is drier if it's the perfect size for the tent.
paige.What do you guys think of this for a cold weather bag for high altitude mountaineering in the Andes? I was looking for something in the -15f range so -30f seems like overkill but this looks like a great deal. I know they recommend that women subtract 10-15f from the temperature ratings so this would be expected to function more like -20f. Plus I already have a +15f bag and I am cold in that before the freezing level so if anything I sleep even colder. The short length shouldn't be an issue because I'm only 5'4.
Alternatively I've been considering this, but I don't know if a slightly better temperature range would be worth an extra $300. At that point it almost seems worth gathering a bit more money and going for feathered friends/WM.
robotdnaI looked at Mountain Hardwear, but those seem out of my price range. $300. Whoowee. The Mission 75 seems like a great option. I'm nervous as to how the side straps and fabric will hold up to skis, especially a fat ski.
And yes, I guess I will need lots of room. I use Day Wreckers too, so I have to store them somewhere I guess. Is that a pack I could cinch down and ski with comfortably though?
robotdnaThat Eddie Bauer one is a really good price for down, holy cow. I'd go for that. Are the reviews good?
Also, you may want to consider a waterproofing liner and exterior since it's down. And, I know you said you want a small, but it's not a bad idea to get one in long so you can put your gloves, boot liners, etc in the bottom to warm them overnight. With a down bag, that's why the waterproofing is necessary.
That's a really good price though.
jadavisThe straps might get a little scuffed, but nothing too bad. I've put my Bent Chetlers on my Mountain Hardware pack, which is about 5 years old by the way, and it has held up very well. I wouldn't worry about it, but if you do you could always put something on the pack to guard it. Just make sure the straps stay tight and don't allow the skis to slip around much if you ever need to put your skis on it.
The Mission 75 cinches down really well if you keep it packed vertically. You'd be able to ski with it comfortable both full (this feels odd just because of the extra weight) and with just a few things in it for a day trip from your camp. It feels more stable than a backpacking pack while skiing because the weight is distributed evenly between your hips and shoulders.
I can't say anything about Eddie Bauer/First Ascent bags, but I own a Marmot bag and it's awesome. I try to keep really good care of it and I think I've had it for a good 4 or 5 years as well and it's still going strong. For sizing reference, I'm 5'7" and my regular has enough space for stuff at the feet if you keep some of it between your legs.
robotdnaIf I took the lid off and cinched it down could I use it as a resort pack as well? Maybe I'm asking a little much now haha.
Thank you so much, the Mission 75 seems to be the way to go. Also, I heard that sizes of packs really don't matter that much, so should I just go for the large size on the Mission so it's 77L and gain that two extra litres? That's basically a Jetboil and a half. Or should I stick with the sizing that would match me best normally?
jadavisI wouldn't remove the lid since it helps with compressing things and keeping snow out, but it's not very bulky anyway. You could use it as a resort pack if you really wanted, but you would be better off getting a smaller one that isn't as nice for that. Not that it wouldn't work, you'd just have a lot of extra space. This next point also doesn't matter as much, but to some people it does. People might think you look funny because it would be overkill.
I'd stick with the size that it recommends. If you go too big the shoulder straps lift off your shoulder at the top and that makes it more uncomfortable because the straps push into your collar bone and can't hold as much weight. Also you want the back padding to fit to the correct spots on your back. If you need more space there usually is a way to pack things slightly better that gives it to you.