Forum
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...

The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Info on gear, conditioning, and preparation for hiking/climbing. Gear Classifieds
User avatar
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:24 pm
Location: San Antonio, TX

The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby Tim A » Thu May 09, 2013 9:22 pm

Since graduating from college in December and holding my first respectable full-time teaching position, I've been gradually buying all the gear necessary to backpack and trail-head camp in CO this June and July. On my previous three trips to CO for hiking and climbing, I've been limited to peaks in the Front and Tenmiles ranges because of my need to stay either in hotels or with friends, and this too has limited the length of time I can afford to stay and play in the mountains. No longer.

All of my "big" purchases have been made, watching carefully for sales on different outfitter sites. Used the 20% REI coupon to pick up a BA Fly Creek UL2. Found a Marmot Helium Membrain bag on Amazon for 20% off. Used the backcountry.com 20% coupon on a Jetboil. Picked up an Exped Synmat 7 for 25% on another sale I've since forgotten. Bear vault and bear spray are shipping now, and the host of either items is already prepped and ready for use. I come to the final three items I need, and here is where I need advice and figured I'd loop them into a single thread as they're all "smaller" items in the grand scheme of things.

1.For extended back-country living, I don't want to soil my Marmot bag prematurely and so am looking for a bag liner. Silk seems to be in for comfort but I've read conflicting reports that it tears easily. Is polyester a better choice? And is SeaToSummit really the master of bag-liners?

2. My BA tent is ultra-light but the tent floor makes me ultra nervous and I'm looking for a footprint to protect it. I've read that the overpriced BA footprint which "matches" the Fly Creek is made of the same material as the rain-fly, ie, not the most durable thing. While I am a weight-conscious hiker in some regards, I want to protect my tent and would be willing to carry a few extra ounces if I can sleep better at night knowing I'm not going to tear a hole through my tent floor. Any recs on this? I've read of people improvising a variety of materials to use as footprints and I'm curious what this community thinks of that?

3. For water-sterilization, I can boil water with the Sol or use my SteriPen I got for $25 thanks to a helpful PSA from this site when STP had their "giveaway." I still feel like I could use a third method for water filtration in the (likely) event the Pen fails to operate during an extended trip and I want to save my fuel for cooking. I've looked through dozens of filtering products and of the items which caught my attention, the Sawyer 3-way inline water filter seems the most promising, as I can just fill up my bladder and plug the Sawyer into it and drink. Thoughts from those who have used this product, or perhaps a better system? Pumping water isn't my favorite thing to do, especially since I'll already be spending a few minutes each evening pumping up the Exped, but if those pumping products are the most fail-safe and I'm only treating it as backup, it could be worth lugging around for the security.

As always, feedback is greatly appreciated. In the span of 15 months I've gone from being a boring Texan who'd never stepped above 8000ft to having claimed multiple 13er and 14er winter and early spring summits, and none of it would have been possible without the great information I've always received from the users of this forum. Thanks in advance.

Posts: 270
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:05 pm

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby DaveLanders » Thu May 09, 2013 9:31 pm

I'll comment on the tent footprint. I just buy a medium weight dropcloth from the paint section of Home Depot, and use a pair of scissors to
cut something just a little smaller than the floor of my tent. (The light weight dropcloths are more like Saran Wrap - too flimsy; and the heavy weight
ones are overkill.) You don't want your footprint to stick out from the sides of the tent; it will catch water when it rains that will be between the
footprint and your tent floor, and will eventually soak through the floor.

Online
User avatar
Posts: 226
Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2008 11:06 am
Location: Superior, CO

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby BenfromtheEast » Fri May 10, 2013 7:40 am

Tim A wrote:I don't want to soil my Marmot bag prematurely...

Sorry, that just sounds funny in all sorts of ways. 8)

1. Yes, I believe STS is the most popular maker of sleeping bag liners. But one might not be necessary in your case. Is your bag down or synthetic? Synthetic is a little easier to wash. And you might end up buying a special detergent anyway...and you might end up washing it after every trip anyway since you'll be out for a while...consider going without the liner.

2. Mr. Landers's recommendation sounds like just what you need. A standard tarp might work, too (fold the corners), but a pack of plastic usually gets you two or three footprints and they last a decent amount of time on their own.

3. From what you've described, it sounds like iodine tablets are exactly what you're looking for. They're pretty inexpensive, weigh nearly nothing, and are standard for "emergency" water treatment.

User avatar
Posts: 5040
Joined: Wed May 04, 2005 11:46 am
Location: Craig

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby Scott P » Fri May 10, 2013 8:02 am

While I am a weight-conscious hiker in some regards, I want to protect my tent and would be willing to carry a few extra ounces if I can sleep better at night knowing I'm not going to tear a hole through my tent floor. Any recs on this?


A cheap disposable table cloth should do the trick and weighs almost nothing.
I'm slow and fat. Unfortunately, those are my good qualities.

User avatar
Posts: 1875
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 12:57 pm
Location: Here, Now

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby Dex » Fri May 10, 2013 8:18 am

I think Sawyer is the way to go. I have it. I don't like the idea of putting impure water in my bladder - you then have to clean it - and did you really get all the nasties cleaned out - that's just me.
Montani Semper Liberi
"Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous." Barry Ritholtz

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby MonGoose » Fri May 10, 2013 9:23 am

Sounds like you are well on your way.

1) I have a polyester liner for my bag and I absolutely love it. It's very nice to be able to wash the liner after a long trip and not have to wash your bag.

2) Using the manufacturers footprint is usually easiest but there is nothing wrong with making your own footprint by cutting a tarp or other material to match your tent. It really depends on your budget and how much time you have.

3) The SteriPen is a light and easy way to purify water but if your pen stops working, you can always boil water as your backup. If you wanted a 3rd option, I personally like Aqua Mira water treatment link here. They taste much better than iodine tablets, although REI does not carry them.

User avatar
Posts: 148
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:22 am
Location: Louisville, CO

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby spiderman » Fri May 10, 2013 9:54 am

I always bring a bottle of iodine tablets from Walmart and a few drink mix packs. The citric acid in the drink mix chemically reduces the unreacted iodine or chlorine, and the flavor masks the nasty taste.

A $100 roll of Tyvek is a perfect DIY supply for making ultralight/breathable/waterproof footprints, bivy sacks, packs, stuff sacks, etc. There are lots of how-to videos on the internet. You will get bonus points from other ultralight hikers about your lack of style. One roll will last a lifetime and saves you thousands of $$$.

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby Steve Climber » Fri May 10, 2013 10:05 am

spiderman wrote:I always bring a bottle of iodine tablets from Walmart and a few drink mix packs. The citric acid in the drink mix chemically reduces the unreacted iodine or chlorine, and the flavor masks the nasty taste.


+1

The iodine tablets I bought came with a bottle of citrus tablets also. They don't work that well to mask taste, so I carry something like a crystal light or gatorade powder packet to mask for quick shots of water (like if I over consumed on way in/up and need something on way out/down. If I'm going to be out for a while, I tend to try and camp near water and boil a few bottles at a time. One of these days, I will choke up and buy a pump/filtration system, but so far I have had no issues with my current practices.

p.s. another nice bit about the iodine tablets is I've dissolved and used to clean wounds also.
Dave B wrote:And/or line thy helmet with tin foil and realize this is a freaking mountaineering website.


Steve Climber wrote:So that's your backpack, huh?

Online
User avatar
Posts: 1413
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:27 pm
Location: Denver/Golden

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby SurfNTurf » Fri May 10, 2013 10:07 am

Tim A wrote:1. And is SeaToSummit really the master of bag-liners?


Yes. You can also frequently find ALPS Mountaineering liners on Steep and Cheap. I wouldn't worry too much about it, though. Liners are useful when you want to add a bit of warmth to a bag, but they're certainly not necessary, especially if your main concern is cleanliness. I have a synthetic Marmot bag I've used for four years, and it was a hand-me-down, so it's seen some love. No issues with soiling; they're are easy to clean and keep clean with a bit of care.

2. My BA tent is ultra-light but the tent floor makes me ultra nervous and I'm looking for a footprint to protect it. I've read that the overpriced BA footprint which "matches" the Fly Creek is made of the same material as the rain-fly, ie, not the most durable thing. While I am a weight-conscious hiker in some regards, I want to protect my tent and would be willing to carry a few extra ounces if I can sleep better at night knowing I'm not going to tear a hole through my tent floor. Any recs on this? I've read of people improvising a variety of materials to use as footprints and I'm curious what this community thinks of that?


The footprint specifically designed for the tent would work best, but many people just use a tarp. If you go that route, make sure to fold the edges to match or even be smaller than the tent's floor. If the tarp is too big it can collect water, which pools beneath the tent.

3. For water-sterilization, I can boil water with the Sol or use my SteriPen I got for $25 thanks to a helpful PSA from this site when STP had their "giveaway." I still feel like I could use a third method for water filtration in the (likely) event the Pen fails to operate during an extended trip and I want to save my fuel for cooking. I've looked through dozens of filtering products and of the items which caught my attention, the Sawyer 3-way inline water filter seems the most promising, as I can just fill up my bladder and plug the Sawyer into it and drink. Thoughts from those who have used this product, or perhaps a better system? Pumping water isn't my favorite thing to do, especially since I'll already be spending a few minutes each evening pumping up the Exped, but if those pumping products are the most fail-safe and I'm only treating it as backup, it could be worth lugging around for the security.


If you're just looking for an emergency backup -- iodine tablets. I've used a Steripen for 2-3 years and it has yet to let me down. Just in case the battery dies, I carry a small bottle of tablets. Cheap, light, small and effective.
Many Miles to Go (Blog)

“There are two kinds of climbers: those who climb because their heart sings when they’re in the mountains, and all the rest.” - Alex Lowe

"There have been joys too great to describe in words, and there have been griefs upon which I cannot dare to dwell; and with those in mind I say, 'Climb if you will, but remember that courage and strength are nought without prudence, and that a momentary negligence may destroy the happiness of a lifetime. Do nothing in haste, look well to each step, and from the beginning think what may be the end.'" - Edward Whymper

User avatar
Posts: 390
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:22 pm
Location: highlands ranch, co

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby SchralpTheGnar » Fri May 10, 2013 11:40 am

I sleep almost exclusively in trash bags when backpacking in Colorado, cheap, lightweight and waterproof! Glad Heavy Duty Lawn & Leaf 42 gallon performs the best I've found.

Posts: 86
Joined: Thu May 24, 2007 11:42 am
Location: Colorado Springs, CO

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby Peakjumper » Fri May 10, 2013 11:44 am

+1 to Surf he's got it!!

If you really think you need a bag liner go with silk you wont regret it. Or you could just keep your base layers on when you sleep they will keep you warmer and also help protect your bags interior. My buddy that literally live in his tent the last two summer uses a silk one because he is doing hard labor with Utah Cons. Corp and gets really dirty... that is the only person I know that actually uses a liner... Keep yourself as clean as possible and more than just your bag will thank you.

I would go with the footprint it may not be the cheapest but it is what it is made for... Plastic is not breathable

Iodine is my backup to my steri...

On a side not I personally would have not gotten the bear canister... You probably wont need that very much but nice to have one if you venture to areas with bear problems. Just remember to fill up all the dead space in there with your small items when you are carrying it to make it worth while.

User avatar
Posts: 403
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2010 1:20 pm
Location: Land of Fruits and Nuts

Re: The Final Three Items for Colorado Backpacking..

Postby painless4u2 » Fri May 10, 2013 12:57 pm

Peakjumper said:
just keep your base layers on when you sleep they will keep you warmer and also help protect your bags interior


Exactly what I've done for years, unless in a warm climate. Most 14er camping isn't usually very warm at night, and the extra layer (thin Duofold thermals) work great to add warmth to the bag and keep it clean.

Also agree with the iodine + neutralizer pills for backup with the Steripen. I've used this combo for a while and it's very small, light, and it works.
In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps. Proverbs 16:9

Bad decisions often make good stories.

Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: hwest and 12 guests