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Old 07-17-2006, 04:29 PM   #1
cweston
 
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Feb 2006
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My two boys are really getting into backpacking, which thrills me. But some of my gear is old to very old: I think I'm retiring my tent and my possibly my backpack between now and next season, which I think might begin in March on the Ouachita trail in Arkansas.

Anyone have particular brand loyalties or anti-loyalties they want to share? I bought a nicely-priced sleeping bag from Alps Mountaineering this spring...I might be inclined to purchase other gear from them. A lot of the companies (Kelty, Sierra Designs, Marmot, etc) are owned by the same parent companies, so it's hard to tell their products apart sometimes, and I'm not sure how much real price competitoin there is.
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Old 07-18-2006, 10:37 PM   #2
olllllo
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I recommend REI.com.
Become a member.
Prices are sometimes higher but they have an amazing return policy and the sales people know what they are doing. Advice is unbiased.
Closest store to you would be STL.
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Old 07-18-2006, 11:34 PM   #3
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Most of my gear I got new in the Army... ...I've been out over 26 years and still use it. It still looks like it's new.
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Old 07-18-2006, 11:40 PM   #4
olllllo
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also. this rules.

http://www.jetboil.com/
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Old 07-18-2006, 11:42 PM   #5
Brewpastor
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I worked for REI way back when and still shop there. I have never had any complaints.
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:21 AM   #6
Baron von BeeGee
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I like REI and campmor. Back in the day we used to have to use paper catalogs with drawings of stuff to mailorder things!

OTOH, I bought a dana designs backpack from an independent camping store and it's really held up well over the years. I've had two Sierra Designs tents and both leaked from day one (don't ask me why I ever bought the second).

 
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:30 AM   #7
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Why did you but the other one?
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:47 AM   #8
Baron von BeeGee
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I'm easily seduced.

 
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:56 AM   #9
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rei.com = the best IMO.
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Old 07-19-2006, 04:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baron von BeeGee
I like REI and campmor. Back in the day we used to have to use paper catalogs with drawings of stuff to mailorder things!

OTOH, I bought a dana designs backpack from an independent camping store and it's really held up well over the years. I've had two Sierra Designs tents and both leaked from day one (don't ask me why I ever bought the second).
hmmm... I've had great success with both of my Sierra Designs tents. I've been through some pretty gnarly rainstorms in both of them. My two man did leak once on a night that my buddy and me will always remember as the "worst storm that we've ever slept through in a tent". It was in Palo Duro canyon in Texas and it was one of those storms that even if you had of been in your house you'd have been a little worried. It was raining sideways!

Did you use seam sealer? Pitch it right? Just get unlucky? Maybe I just got lucky!

Anyway, as for getting new gear, I'd like to echo what HB Bill said. Yeah, there are a lot neat new backpacking items out there, but you should consider holding onto any old quality gear you have.

Oh yeah, Sierra trading post is a great place to go for good deals on close out equipment.
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