Author Topic: My 72 Hour pack  (Read 9121 times)

Offline thedigininja

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Re: My 72 Hour pack
« Reply #25 on: August 21, 2014, 05:32:48 PM »
I need to replace the old synthetic full length coat that saved my ass. Line one of those with mylar (a cut up emergency blanket) and you have a priceless piece of winter hardware. Not exactly designed for stealth though and you look like a right crack pot with your shiny jacket but you don't really care when the very dirt you've dug in to for the night is below freezing.

There's capitalism for that!  :D

Dammit! I should have taken out a patent on my awesome hobo gear. $300? Mine worked me out around the equivalent of $10.
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Offline TrailingSpouse

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Re: My 72 Hour pack
« Reply #26 on: August 30, 2014, 12:07:07 PM »
This is a winter gear thread now?

I used to do a fair bit of trekking in snow progressing from the Mournes in Northern Ireland to the Alps and topping off with the Himalayas  :)   Mountain marathons... Climbing Instructor...

This was all some time ago - been a bit of a city boy recently.

Much of this below has already been mentioned :) and its not comprehensive - just some thoughts really.

Agree about the wide mouthed flask - or if you are like me, EXTRA wide mouthed :p  Careful where you put it : "Funny tasting apple juice!" but that's another story...

Socks, socks, socks.  Sleep with wet ones close to your body - they'll still be wet in the morning but at least they'll be warm. I never got on well with layering socks - so I just buy the heaviest most expensive hiking socks I can find.

Boots are critical - but I always seem to be cursing whatever I have on. Leather or Goretex - there's pros and cons to each.  Never lost a toe to frostbite - but even the white ones hurt a lot.  Sleep with boots in your bag rather than risk them freezing over night.

Gaitors. When I've not had them - I've usually regretted it.

Snow shoes could be a life saver.  Wished I'd had them a few times.  On one trek we could cover maybe 2k before the sun hit the snow (brutally cold though) but as soon as the sun came up we started sinking to our waist with every step, falling through into melting streams and bogs... hell.  This was compounded by being at 5000m with giardia and wolves circling on the horizon.  Actually the wolves helped me go on - if I had given up I'm sure they would have been on me pretty quick.

Same for crampons, rope, ice axe, dead man, ice screws etc - but that's getting specialised.  Mission specific I guess.

Sandals - solid lightweight ones for giving your feet a break in camp/ at night, and also for e.g. fording a river where you don't want to get your boots wet but need to protect your feet.

A foot care kit (notice a theme here?) cold wet feet blister more easily.  Long nails eat through socks.  A great uncle of mine DIED of trench foot in WW1.

Waterproof stuff sacks - for your socks amongst other things :)

More socks.  I don't really carry spare clothes - I'd rather be smelly than hump the additional weight.  But socks - such a moral booster - nearly as good as a cup of tea  :D

Suncream and goggles.  Especially at high altitude where the UV is stronger. Snow reflects like water - so you get double trouble.  Had snow blindness on one trek - walked for three days with my underpants over my head - peeping out through the fabric. Hehehe... ouch.

Layers of clothing.  Options, options, options e.g. it could be very hot in terms of radiant heat but with a freezing cold wind - requiring a thin but wind proof outfit.  Then the sun comes down and its so cold you can't think.  So, be in your tent, in your sleeping bag with a cup of something hot in your hands BEFORE the sun goes down...  A blizzard is a completely different beast... full waterproofs, and layers... Tricky to get it right - especially if active then not, like on a multi-pitch climb, or playing hide and seek :p  Has anyone solved the sweaty back problem?

Gloves. I seem to get cold extremities earlier than most.  Tried lots and finally settled on a thin pair of thermal gloves inside a massive pair of fleece-lined goretex gauntlets.  Its worth thinking through what might happen if your fingers are so cold you cannot feel them.  On this basis I put extra large tags on zips for example.  Also try e.g. opening a folding knife under those conditions. Check all your gear - can you operate it in mits? 

Keep the weight down *doh*.  Noodles rather than rice perhaps - they cook in two mins as oppsed to 10.  At altitude boiling water isn't as hot... so takes longer to cook = more fuel = more weight.

Quality fuel container. One fall and its A) leaked all over your pack contents B) well... no hot food or drinks.  Happened to me once - snapped the top off a plastic screw lid (cold makes some plastic brittle) Fortunately I had condoms... although my trekking partner gave me funny looks.

Pump-up muti-fuel stove - you need that furnace for melting snow, and they will burn kerosene, petrol, whiskey, perfume...

BIG stainless pot - again RE melting snow - otherwise you will be contantly feeding it just to get a mouthfull.  Also for making a snow cave...

Water purifying tabs - at altitude boiling water isn't at 100deg so it may not be sterilising.

A reflective tarp - I used to have one that had the same footprint as the tent - got a lot of use for various things.

Sleeping bag. I used to use a down sleeping bag on the warmth to weight ratio basis.  But it WILL get wet - at least mine always did - then its useless.  Plus you need a better kip mat as the down compresses under your body.  I've had one synthetic bag (Ajungilak 5 season) for twenty years now.  Its still going strong - still warm if wet, doesn't compress so much under my body - but its twice the bulk of an equivalent down one. 

Kipmat.  Never got around to buying a self inflating kipmat - but always wanted one.  But you need something - closed cell foam, is fine.. 

Tent - too much to say here and there's pros and cons of whatever design.  I had a 2-man Wild Country Quasar that was pretty pricey but lasted me nearly thirty years.  It went all around the world, jungle, mountain and desert, and weathered many a storm.  Full sized doors at both ends plus mosi nets that were fine enough to even keep out Scottish midges. The two openings are amazing for controlling ventilation. A bitch to pitch if I'm honest. Finally threw it away with a tear in my eye just last summer.  They still make them today with an almost unchanged design. Now with family we've moved on to the trusty old Vango Force 10 Mk5.  Whatever - understand the different factors influencing microclimate.  Sun, wind, reflectance, evaporative cooling, nighttime radiative cooling, thermal chimneys etc etc and how the landscape alters the ways these factors interplay   Choosing where to pitch your tent could make all the difference.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2014, 12:08:52 PM by TrailingSpouse »

Offline Burt Gummer

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Re: My 72 Hour pack
« Reply #27 on: August 30, 2014, 01:21:16 PM »
Happened to me once - snapped the top off a plastic screw lid (cold makes some plastic brittle) Fortunately I had condoms... although my trekking partner gave me funny looks.
I'm so glad I'm not the only one with cold weather camp experience anymore!
I'll write up a chat latter got to run.
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Offline JoJo

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Re: My 72 Hour pack
« Reply #28 on: August 31, 2014, 02:56:12 PM »
For those of us on blood thinners WoundSeal powder. It stops bleeding instantly. A packet of four applications weight about 1 1/2 ounces and is 1"x3".
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Offline JohnyMac

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Re: My 72 Hour pack
« Reply #29 on: September 01, 2014, 07:45:45 AM »
In my youth I /we (My buddy and I) did a lot of snow trekking. IMO, it was the perfect time to be on a trail or hunting. There was nobody around hence we had the PA. & NY forests of our youth to ourselves. Before we had driving licenses one of our parents would drop us off at a "X" on the map and we would be off on an adventure for a couple of days to be then picked up at "Y." I often laugh about parents today who would never drop off their 15 year old kids in the middle of "bum fuck" nowhere, complete with shotguns and pistols in the middle of January or February to go trekking off in 6" to 3' deep snow. Boy things have changed.   

I wish I could remember the tent we used as it fit our bill well. It was a three man one with a fly. IMO you need the three man tent for the extra room with gear and all in the winter. In the summer we just used a tarp that was able to be changed to different configurations.

My buddy carried the tent and I carried the pols and under tarp. This may sound crazy but we use to light a candle which was mounted on a clip on ashtray with a thin hurricane lamp over it, in the tent. It gave off the perfect light and actually gave off quite a bit of heat.

To dry out our boots at night we had these bean bag type things that we would heat next to the fire and then once warm we would put them into the boots and loosely cover them. For the most part, they were dry the next morning.

We never used those small stoves that you bring fuel for and pressurize. We always made a fire. I will say though when we did some backpacking in CA. & NM, some area's wouldn't let you build a fire. You could only use those pressurized cooking stoves. I do understand "the why" but the ambiance just wasn't there.

In those days I never used a synthetic sleeping bag. I used a down bag that (At that time) cost $200-. About 10 years ago I bought a synthetic bag and as TS wrote, it does take up a bit more room and weighs a tad more however I would not go back to the down bag again. One suggestion I have on sleeping bags is buy the extra long one. I am only 6' tall but the extra room it gives you is well worth the higher price and a tad more weight. I use to use the extra room to dry out things and keep things from freezing at the bottom of the bag with no loss of room. My buddy always suffered from cold feet. So he would put warmed up water in a empty canteen before he went to bed and stored down at the bottom of his bag in the winter.

While my buddy used a 2/3 length closed cell mat I used a 6' long one. We both had inflatable pillows covered in a flannel that I had cut and sown to fit.

Last we would always eat chocolate before we turned in at night. I don't know if it really did increase our body heat or not but it became a tradition when we turned in.

Just some ramblings in no particular order.
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