Chris on November 1st, 2009

One of the biggest complaints I hear about softshell is that it weighs too much.  I’ve decided to gather some examples to determine whether or not that is true. Patagonia Speed Ascent versus R2 and a Patagonia hardshell The Patagonia Speed Ascent jacket is their high end softshell for cold conditions.  It has R2 fabric […]

Continue reading about Is softshell heavy?

Chris on October 28th, 2009

In the past, I compiled data and compared the various –20F high quality down sleeping bag options.  Now, I’m doing the same comparison chart of high quality down (700 fill power or greater) sleeping bags for 3 season use.  These bags are rated in the 15F to 25F temperature range. Fill Power As I covered […]

Continue reading about Sleeping bag comparison 3 season 20F down

Chris on October 14th, 2009

In my search for the perfect pair of pants to use while traveling, and on the trail, I tried The North Face Paramount pants, which didn’t last very long due to a blown seam, which left me rather disappointed. I bought another pair of convertible pants because I really like the idea of pants and […]

Continue reading about Marmot Cruz convertible pants gear review

Chris on October 5th, 2009

My hands are a really important body part.  My hands enable me to do all the things necessary to keep myself alive and well in the mountains; handling ski poles, ice tools, dressing myself, cooking, feeding myself. . . I am very serious about keeping my hands warm and happy.  I’ve gone my whole life […]

Continue reading about Gloves and Mittens – keeping your hands warm

It has been well established that layering is a superior approach for dressing for outdoor pursuits.  However, the traditional layering method of base, insulation, and shell often does not meet my needs. I have spent a lot of time in the cold working out this method for layering, that allows for changing weather conditions, and […]

Continue reading about Layering – A Versatile Approach for Extreme Cold Weather

Chris on September 30th, 2009

Comparing sleeping bags can be pretty difficult.  Manufacturers quote a variety of numbers and measurements and prices vary dramatically.  It can be hard to sort through it all and make a good decision. I’ll talk about a few important quantifiable considerations, and leave the qualitative decisions to you. Fit is a qualitative factor that should […]

Continue reading about Sleeping bag comparison: –20F down bags

Chris on September 26th, 2009

Wind layers are a vital piece in my layering system.  In cold weather, rain isn’t a concern, but wind can cause rapid heat loss.  Preventing this with a very light breathable layer is critical.  I wear my wind layer right over the top of my base layer.  That way as I add insulation, I don’t […]

Continue reading about Marmot Driclime vest – gear review