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Old 04-27-2012, 06:13 PM   #1
adirondackcamper
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Sleeping bag/pack preference

I'm getting ready to buy my pack and sleeping bag for my upcoming trip to the Pharaoh Wilderness Area next weekend. I was wondering what kind of packs and sleeping bag everyone likes for this time of year for a four day trip? For the sleeping bag, do u prefer synthetic or down feather? I'm already set on a pack, I'm just getting a cheap 65L Coleman for now. What do you guys use for a pack?
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:38 PM   #2
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It would be hard to beat a down bag except for the weight difference between down and synthetic. Personally I use a Kelly redwing internal frame pack, you should look into something like this before you buy anything, Coleman pack probably aren't that bad but there are many others that may be more to your liking. Four days is quite a trip with ill-fitting equipment.
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Old 04-27-2012, 07:11 PM   #3
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In my ADK backpacking days I used a Lowe Contour IV. Not sure if its even made anymore.

I too love down. Lighter and more compressible than synthetics (though synthetics are catching up) bags now come somewhat water repellent. It used to be a awful thought to get your down bag wet. Now its less likely to happen unless you throw it in the lake delibarately and there are compression dry bags so that you can throw your bag in the water.

Fit is key. Go to a dealer that will take the time to fit you for your pack.. And don't forget to try the sleeping bag before buying. There are subtle shape variations. Some of them you may like and sometimes not.

Right now I am looking fondly at my -20 degree bag. The 15 degree bag I just packed looks too cold.. But it is cold and the wind is really howling.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:45 PM   #4
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I bought an army surplus sleeping bag on ebay for about $30 delivered and I am very happy with it. I have used it on nights with lows around 40 and been plenty warm enough. It is very light compared to a department store bag and packs very small. There seemed to be a lot of them on there.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:59 PM   #5
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Not a question that can be easily answered. Much depends on personal preferences as well as the type of hiking you will be doing. What's more important, cost or weight? what temps will you be subject to? Do you sleep hot or cold?
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Old 04-30-2012, 10:42 AM   #6
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Check out campmor.com. They usually have pretty good deals. You could probably get a Kelty or Jansport pack for not much more than the coleman you're talking about, and it will be a significantly better pack.
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:18 PM   #7
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I'm getting ready to buy my pack and sleeping bag for my upcoming trip to the Pharaoh Wilderness Area next weekend. I was wondering what kind of packs and sleeping bag everyone likes for this time of year ............................... What do you guys use for a pack?
Lots of folks here, including myself, are big fans of Osprey packs. A bit more spendy than others but if you are going to lug it around on your back all day (or for days), the extra comfort that comes with higher priced packs is usually worth it to most people. Its a pretty crappy experience to lug a badly fitting and uncomfortable backpack for 8 hours or more only to wind up with shoulder chafing and soreness and then have to get up and do it again the next day. Its the kind of thing that will put you off backpacking in a hurry. Load distribution and remembering not to bring the kitchen sink will also help increase comfort over several days out.

For sleeping bags, I personally have been using Mountain Hardware bags for several years now. I have had real good luck with them and they aren't priced out of the atmosphere. I might note though, that I have not tried any of thier synthetic bags, so I can't comment on the quality of those.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:45 AM   #8
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Pick up my sleeping bag today. I went with a synthetic 20 degree bag by field & stream. It's seems to very comfortable, I think I'll like it. I didn't get a pack tho. One of my buddies that isn't coming with us, is lending us a couple of his packs. Im not sure what he has, as I've never seen them. Also picked up some storm proof matches, a bear bag, and a poncho at REI today
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:58 AM   #9
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amazon has many deals on ospreys for cheap IMO... far superior than jansport, coleman or kelty, i picked up new aether 70 for $135, a $200 pack.... i bought one day pack from campmor, less name brand , it lasted 3-4 hikes before the alum supports actually fell out as i reached Marcys summit.... thats when i went to osprey, now i have 3
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:44 AM   #10
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Also picked up some storm proof matches, a bear bag, and a poncho .......
All good scores. Make sure you know how to properly sling up and tie a bear bag or it will be more like a bear pinata party.

Most important, be safe and have fun on your trip this weekend.
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Old 05-04-2012, 08:36 AM   #11
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All good scores. Make sure you know how to properly sling up and tie a bear bag or it will be more like a bear pinata party.

Most important, be safe and have fun on your trip this weekend.
is there really that much worry of bears and there want for our foods in that area??
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:57 AM   #12
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is there really that much worry of bears and there want for our foods in that area??
As I recall, Pharaoh Lake is the most visited backcountry destination in the Adirondacks outside of the High Peaks. With 5 lean-tos (the 6th one is being rebuilt this summer), and multiple designated campsites, it gets a lot of use. The western shore in particular is pretty heavily impacted, and I'm sure that some of the wild life has taken notice.

That being said, if you take appropriate precautions, you should be fine. I've camped at Pharaoh Lake twice and didn't have any problems either time.
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:07 PM   #13
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is there really that much worry of bears and there want for our foods in that area??
Plenty of bears around. Not to mention other critters who enjoy the oppertunity provided by an improperly hung food sack.

I've gotten used to the bear cannister. I almost always take it when I go camping now. Doesn't really matter where. I think it works just as well on mice as it does on bears.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:56 PM   #14
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amazon has many deals on ospreys for cheap IMO... far superior than jansport, coleman or kelty, i picked up new aether 70 for $135, a $200 pack.... i bought one day pack from campmor, less name brand , it lasted 3-4 hikes before the alum supports actually fell out as i reached Marcys summit.... thats when i went to osprey, now i have 3
I'm also on my 3rd Osprey.Latest being the exos. I also started out with the 65L coleman bag and the cheaper synthetic sleeping bag, you have to start somewhere, but it ended up pinching a nerve between my neck and shoulder from just one day of backpacking. I quickly came home and started researching. I don't really find this question a great one as it's all subjective. Someone is always going to say something different. Best thing you can do is do the research yourself and find what fits and works best for YOU not me or anyone else. That 65L coleman might fit you like a dream and last for 100 years for you, it just wasn't for me.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:03 AM   #15
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www.departmentofgoods.com has some good packs/bags for 50% off right now. Some nice brands there too. I'm snagging a new Gregory z65. Anyone had any experience with Gregory packs? I've used only Mountainsmith packs before, but I haven't been overly thrilled lately.
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:13 AM   #16
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www.departmentofgoods.com has some good packs/bags for 50% off right now. Some nice brands there too. I'm snagging a new Gregory z65. Anyone had any experience with Gregory packs? I've used only Mountainsmith packs before, but I haven't been overly thrilled lately.

I have an older Z55 and I will tell you this - it is a great bag if you pack and weight it properly. If your pack weight exceeds 35-40 pounds, this bag is not for you.

Keep in mind it is a light weight pack with a very light strap and frame structure. It is supportive but not if you are looking to haul more than the 35-40 Pound range. I have used mine for about 3 years and love it. It is constructed very well (fabric, stitching, etc.).
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Old 05-07-2012, 12:09 PM   #17
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just used my velocity ems 30 degrees this weekend, it was 30 on the thermometer and it stayed warm inside... tested and true rating...IMO
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