Gear Review: Gossamer Gear Pilgrim

So we all know I’m not the biggest “gear review” kind of person but this one I gotta give a blogpost of its own. Why? Cause this pack feels a tiny tiny bit like “my baby” and… I love it!

Tenerife67

As always: I have no obligation what so ever to write this review, I’m no longer a Gossamer Gear trail ambassador, and I can do and write whatever I want. So why does this pack feels a bit like my baby? Cause I had the honor of naming it “Pilgrim” and now that I’ve used it, I’m even more sure that the name suits it perfectly! (Anyone who doesn’t like the name… Don’t let me know, don’t comment; just swallow it down, jep that’s right… Cause yes indeed, you don’t tell a mom you don’t like the babies name!)

So… the Pilgrim… here’s what I think of it:

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PCT ’15 Gear Review

I know you thought it’d never come but yessss fiiiinally here it is: My gear review of the gear I used for 1000 miles / 2 months (Mexican Border – Yosemite NP) along the Pacific Crest Trail! As always don’t expect any technical details (you can look those up on the companies’ product pages), just my two humble cents about my gear.

I got a lot of my gear sponsored by some great small (and some bigger) companies, for which I am super grateful! Just so you know: I have no obligation what so ever to write positively about these products. I’ll write as honest the way I always do and drop as many F*bombs as I normally do. Yep!!!

Here we go:

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Gear review Haute Route

I’ve been postponing and postponing and postponing this gear review. First because I just didn’t have time to write. Second because o well I’m not the one to write those superlong detailed gear descriptions and reviews. So as always: Don’t expext too much details and technical information, I rather just give my opinion and thoughts. Maybe it’s useful to some, maybe it’s not :cP Anyway I still learned some things while hiking in the high Alps that I wanna share.
I pretty much took the same stuff I took on the JMT in 2013 and on my hike across Tenerife last spring.

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JMT 2013 – complete gear review

Aaaaah!!! Is this it? My last post about the JMT before I start preparing the Te Araroa Trail, the PCT and some smaller hikes across Europe? Jee… not sure… It’s so DAMN hard to let go… O I know there is so much to look forward to and I consider myself being one of the luckiest persons on earth… I guess I’ll always find myself inbetween trail melancholy and trail excitement… except if I’m on a trail… then I am trail happiness haha :c)

Anyway, considering the title it ain’t hard to guess what this post is about: IT’S ABOUT GEAR. Again! DAMN RIGHT! (Guess I’m a gear junkie after all… whoops) In one of my last posts I wrote about my favorites and my ..eh yeah… not-favorites. This time it’s all about the details. Now don’t expect me to be all technical and rational (na-a that’s just not me ;c)… I’m gonna do this the womad-way ;c)
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My top 3 gear items on the JMT

Am I a gear junkie? Yes… No… Maybe…
Fact is: I love nice lightweight gear. Fact is too: The lightest gear is the gear you don’t bring. The JMT was my introduction to lightweight backpacking. I think I did fairly well, though there certainly is a lot of room for improvement. My backpack weighed about 26 lb (13kg) at it’s heaviest (leaving MTR with 9 days worth of food)… That didn’t feel toooo comfortable, so for my PCT thruhike I’m definitely gonna make some changes.

Here is my top 3:

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Gear list video

Wuhuuu… So the 19th of August is getting nearer and I am getting more and more excited. I still have some preps to do, yet my gear list is almost complete. Due to the fire restrictions I’m still doubting ’bout whether I should take my alcohol-stove or rather go with a gas canister stove. One of the moderators of the JMTyahoo group offered me to borrow his daughters jet boil (thank you John!!!) so I might go with that.

I just made a little gear list video that I wanna share with you… (Don’t mind my English, it should get better again once I hit the trail and have some english conversations ;c)
I made the video with the camera I’m gonna take along. It’s a Canon Powershot G15.

Dirty Girl Power!!!

Juhuuuuuuu! My original Dirty Girl Gaiters arrived yesterday… Bring in those colours!!! I opted for a pink-blue colour-combi with some fancy parrots… Now don’t they match my shoes perfectly? (ánd my personality? haha)

Check out http://www.dirtygirlgaiters.com if you wanna run like a dirty girl!
Dirty Girl Gaiters for Trail / Ultramarathon Runners…Keep the debris out of your shoes with these simple and lightweight trail running gaiters. Made by an ultra runner, the soft, comfortable & breathable four-way stretch spandex unisex gaiter hooks under the front shoe lace and secures to the back of the shoe with a self-adhesive velcro strip. Something fun to look at too while you hang your sorry head and shuffle your tired feet. With over 40 DG Gaiter designs you can choose a style to match your clothing, backpack or personality…”

Finally… Shoeeeeeees!

Finally I found a pair of trailrunners that fit my wide feet. I ordered the Brooks Cascadia 7 (though there is an 8-version out already… the 7 was about 40euros cheaper ;c) at Globetrotter.de. All other brands somehow are too narrow and just didn’t feel comfy. But as soon as I got my feet into the Cascadia, I felt like:Yes, finally! Don’t know why I didn’t order some Brooks earlier. After all my marathon shoes were from Brooks too. It was a friend who remembered me of the fact that Brooks shoes are wider than others…

I’ve been giving it long thoughts whether I should give trailrunners a go or not. I’ve always been the type of hiker walking with her heavy Meindl leatherboots on. Actually just due to not knowing that one can hike the mountains in trailrunners. I must admit I’m still slightly sceptical but I’m gonna give it a try. I mainly worry about spraining my ankle. By the end of the day my concentration tends to lessen and I tend to twist my ankles. Though I’m not sure whether high top boots are the correct solution to that problem or not. A better way to deal with it might ratherbe to stop walking as soon as I notice my decreasing concentration and break camp… Or have a rest and a snack….

Well actually last weekend for the first time in my life I hiked with trekking poles and I totally liked it. I think these might offer me some stability too and help prevent twisting my ankle…

Anyway… I’m totally curious about my trailrunners experiment. I want to make sure they’re well worn before I hit the trail in Yosemite NP… O o it’s gonna be an adventure!!!