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Big Bend Conservancy

Over-estimating your experience or under-estimating the terrain in a place like Big Bend can result in serious injury or death. Use the information and advice found here wisely. Climb/Hike/Camp/Drive at your own risk.

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First test hike done - lessons learned

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Offline presidio

  • Soaptree Yucca
  • Mountain Lion
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Re: First test hike done - lessons learned
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2018, 08:16:30 PM »
Just plan on sitting in your easy chair over a few nights afterwards in order to re-fluff the down filling.

There's a MUCH easier way. Throw the somewhat damp, or totally dry, bag into your dryer.

Set it on low heat, for silk/delicates/whatever they call it.

Toss in a tennis shoe or rubber ball (shoe works better due to odd shape) and let the thing go to work.

I have a 40+ year old Holubar down bag (remember that brand from Colorado?) that has been through this routine many times.

If it's a dry bag at the outset, run it about 30 minutes and then pull to inspect. If the fluffiness does not meet your standard, cook it some more.

You can do the same with a synthetic fiber to improve its loft.

Static electricity is your friend in the drum.

If it's a down bag, definitely do not leave it stuffed when not hiking. Get or make a large cotton sack so that it can relax and breathe. Good advice for synthetics also.
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Wendell (Garret Dillahunt): It's a mess, ain't it, sheriff?
Ed Tom Bell (Tommy Lee Jones): If it ain't, it'll do till the mess gets here.
--No Country for Old Men (2007)

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Offline Losthiker68

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Re: First test hike done - lessons learned
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2018, 08:39:53 PM »
I don't know that my boots "suck". They are Altama desert combat boots, not cheap WalMart boots. They did fine on 3 day thesis trips up and down cactus-covered hills in North-Central Texas and I've gone ankle deep in bogs with them and never got my feet wet. I never had the ankle pain but it was a lot of start and stop, not non-stop.

I assumed it was the weight of the boots but maybe its something else.
Take a course in good water and air; and in the eternal youth of Nature you may renew your own. Go quietly, alone; no harm will befall you. - John Muir

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Offline Quatro

  • Diamondback
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Re: First test hike done - lessons learned
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2018, 09:12:42 PM »
I have a 40+ year old Holubar down bag (remember that brand from Colorado?) that has been through this routine many times.

I've got a pair of those.  One has been my go-to bag for a bunch of years.  After my last trip, I weighed it though.  Over 5.5 lbs.  I'm gonna have to change it out.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro - HST

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Offline backpacker56

  • Coyote
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Re: First test hike done - lessons learned
« Reply #18 on: October 09, 2018, 08:57:03 AM »
I don't know that my boots "suck". They are Altama desert combat boots, not cheap WalMart boots. They did fine on 3 day thesis trips up and down cactus-covered hills in North-Central Texas and I've gone ankle deep in bogs with them and never got my feet wet. I never had the ankle pain but it was a lot of start and stop, not non-stop.

I assumed it was the weight of the boots but maybe its something else.

I've had my Lowa boots for some time, even sent them to Germany to be resoled not long ago.  Yet a few trips ago, my ankles were so sore the morning after that I could barely walk across the parking lot, and had to shuck the boots and switch to running shoes. 

No problems with my Lowas before or since.  I don't know what caused the soreness; it was a fluke sort of thing.  So maybe your situation is similar, and it might be too soon to give up on your boots.

I'm right there with you on trying to stretch your outdoor gear dollars.  Each person must ultimately use his own judgment.  I tend to err on the side of being too tight-fisted, delaying to invest, and then when I finally get some better gear, wishing I'd done so earlier and had it to enjoy on prior trips.
"Ah, sure, I'm a gnawed old bone now, but say, don't you guys think the spirit's gone!"

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Offline steelfrog

  • Mountain Lion
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Re: First test hike done - lessons learned
« Reply #19 on: October 09, 2018, 10:07:47 AM »
Even in higher elevation places, I don't carry a heavy sleeping bag; 20-30 degrees max; then I also carry a light silk liner that adds 10+ degrees, and I carry down booties.  Then, just layer as appropriate for the conditions.

Pack without food/water is never over 12 pounds.  I can't imagine hiking very far with a 40 pound pack.

 


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