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Messages - walks.in2.trees

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I live in upstate NY, and have been 3-season hammock camping for three years to -10*F temps.  My setup was multilayered:
45* bag
0* bag
Fleece liner
Reflectix used as a sleeping pad
Fleece pullover
Knit wool sweater
Hiking Pants
Heavy base layer

Obviously, I mix and match the above to make myself comfortable
For me, the 45* bag is only good to 50* which is when I switch to the 0* bag... Which for me was only good down to 25* or so, which is when I layer the reflectix, then the 45*, then the fleece liner, then clothes.  I don't think my bags were rated properly though...I could see the given ratings as "survivability" ratings but not "comfort" ratings
This year I'll be trying 4-season, but with a new setup that hopefully will keep me warm to -45*F if need be, without the layered bags, though it's been almost century since it's been that cold in this area.

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Gear Talk / Packs and pack weight for long tours
« on: September 19, 2015, 01:49:16 pm »
Curious about what others average pack weights are, both with and without the bike weight included.

Obviously it's understood that this will change by season and vary as supplies are consumed, so let's say 3-season, full packs. If you feel the need to break it into general categories (food,clothes, tools, camping), that's cool too

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Gear Talk / Re: Touring without fenders - big mistake?
« on: September 19, 2015, 01:37:02 pm »
Jand my pump ended up getting filled with water and some grit.
- Tim
I have fenders but water still gets into my Topeak Road Morph pump on the down tube. I've thought of putting something over the top of the pump to prevent this. There are latex devices sold in drug stores and supermarkets that would do the job but...
Haha condoms would work, sort of,  but a silnylon drybag would work better ;)

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Gear Talk / Re: Recommended Temperature Rating for Sleeping Bag on TransAm
« on: September 19, 2015, 01:14:14 pm »
I find it odd that, for of a bunch of weight considerate touring cyclists,  None of you mention hammocks at all sleep on the ground?  Never again for this cyclist. My days of waking up all stiff are over. 

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Gear Talk / Re: Packing a DSLR?
« on: September 19, 2015, 01:02:13 pm »
Also, many people scoff at what has become known as a "Selfie Stick" but originally it was designed so you can get unique perspectives: photos from above an obstacle, or under water without getting wet yourself,  for instance.

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Gear Talk / Re: Packing a DSLR?
« on: September 19, 2015, 12:54:57 pm »
I'd  recommend a GoPro. Takes great video and still pics, Small, light weight, rugged, submersible, wide-angle lens, mounts for just about any situation. Designed for outdoor use.  Can mount it on quadcopter. I know of  many pro photogs that use them. No interchangable lenses,  but I'd think the wide angle mode would be more useful shooting scenery on a bike trip anyway.

BTW, I also know of a pro photog  that now ONLY uses an iphone. It started out as an experiment to see how far he could push it, but the results he gets are so good he just keeps doing it. Oh,  he uses a DSLR for other stuff, like time lapse, but like the other poster said the smart phone is something  he already  has on hand.

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Gear Talk / Re: List of tools
« on: September 19, 2015, 11:53:47 am »
Oh...and whats your tool kits pack-weight? I'm guessing you split it between the pair of you?

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Gear Talk / Re: List of tools
« on: September 19, 2015, 11:40:07 am »
I  wear a waterproof fanny pack that has the most common emergency tools in it: patch kit, spare tube, tire levers, multitool for bikes, digital luggage scale. Added to the belt of it are a pair of Husky brand tool belt pouches (that have a Velcro belt loop, rather than sewn, so I can remove it from the belt without taking the belt off):  my wallet, smartphone, keys, semi-needle-nose-pliars-multi-tool ... anything I want to always keep with me.  If the bike or packs gets stolen while I'm away from it, at least I'll still have something. If it starts raining, there's room in the fanny pack for the things I keep in the pouch. Originally I came up with this setup for work, but it works great on the bike!   None of the weight is on my back.

Likewise, I improvised a pack system.  Standard panniers just don't have the capacity (the ones I've found), and they're pretty heavy. Instead I use Jensen mesh backpacks that I found at Sports Authority. I reasoned that the ultralight silnylon drybags I use were already weatherproof and combined is a much lighter weight alternative. The only issues I had were how to hang them on my rack,  and possibly the zipper( I think that was my fault for over-stuffing  the pack.) If there's enough interest I'll post a separate thread about it later.

Carried in the rack trunk are: misc. spare parts, the rest of my tools,  some wire to use as "helping-hands" if I need to work on my chain, Chain lube, needle and thread, first aid, bungees.

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General Discussion / Re: What's an 'average' day?
« on: September 19, 2015, 09:26:11 am »
I would definitely start conditioning now for riding with your pack weight if you aren't already. That should give you a better idea

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General Discussion / Re: Hello newb here looking for advice
« on: May 01, 2015, 08:40:41 pm »
Have to agree about less miles  for a goal. My commute to my office is similar to yours but due to the nature of my job, there are times when I've had to go 60 or 80 miles in a day and  there's a huge difference when you're only used to 50 As a one-off I felt tired but good, but I know I couldn't do it 2 in a row,  not the first week anyway. So I'd plan the trip maximum length for what you're used to,  and a minimum length for your goal then revise the plan as you get conditioned along the way.  Mostly because for planning purposes  you don't want to get caught short for time, food, or money.  The other thing to keep in mind is that your pacing  will be much slower over a full day as opposed to stopping for 8 hours then doing  the other half of your commute home. In condition, I average about 10 mph over 4 hours,  whereas I'll average 14 over one hour and 13  for  two hours ... I'm sure you see the trend whatever you yourself average...

Routes / Re: Tips for a Rollerblader going coast-to-coast
« on: May 01, 2015, 07:59:16 pm »
Plus, as noted in some other threads,  another consideration is that there are likely to be some long stretches between towns in places. Not sure what the average loaded pace of roller-bladers is over a full day, but look at for friendly faces to see along the route

Routes / Re: Tips for a Rollerblader going coast-to-coast
« on: May 01, 2015, 06:46:56 pm »
I definitely recommend at least a two-week trial trip to somewhere nearby with backup to learn what works and what doesn't. The paniers on the legs for instance sound like they'll take about three minutes for you to figure out they won't work cross-country

Routes / Re: Tips for a Rollerblader going coast-to-coast
« on: May 01, 2015, 06:36:39 pm »
In general all of the official bike routes in my area are technically paved, and sometimes share a paved road though as one person mentioned,  some are pretty old and heaving and crumbling, and roads shared by vehicles are always iffy condition wise. Any place where snow falls will be this way.  And this is just in upstate ny, I haven't been cross country yet, I'd say it's a safe bet that it's the same everywhere in the north though,  especially in rural areas. 

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