FIELD REPORT:RITR All Weather Travel Journal
- Here is another one, one time! Happy editing.....
Field Report - RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal
Name: Jim Sabiston
Height: 6' 3" (1.91 m)
Weight: 207 lbs. (94 kg)
Email address: JimSabis(at)aol(dot)com
City: Bay Shore (Long Island)
State: New York
Date: September 27th, 2003
I've been camping for several decades. I joined the Adirondack Mountain Club
three years ago, the Appalachian Mountain Club a year later and am active in
both. I have also expanded my backpacking to include more winter trips,
mountaineering and back country cross country skiing, and participated in the AMC's
Winter Mountaineering training program with Chauvin International Climbing
Guides. More recently, I have actively studied ways to backpack lighter and more
efficiently. During the summer months, my style tends toward very light, but
not quite ultralight. I use a hammock or tarp for warm weather, and a small four
season tent for winter trips. Most of my other gear is very changeable, as I
am constantly experimenting with gear and techniques.
Manufacturer: J. L. Darling Corp.
Year of Manufacture: 2003
Listed weight: N/A
Weight as delivered: 8.0 oz. (227 gm)
MSRP: $15.95 US
Quite a few years ago, I once kept a journal. I had all but forgotten it.
Having been reminded in applying for this test, I dug it out of the dark recesses
of my junk drawer. This old stenographer's note pad was my 'travel journal'
over 30 years ago. Inside is the reason why people should try their hand at
keeping a journal of their own. It was a truly fascinating experience to read the
entries that I had made over thirty years ago, just beginning my journey into
life's adventure. Reading the notes written in my own hand was somehow a far
more intimate experience than glancing through a stack of photographs could
ever be. A photograph is limited to being an illustration of a scene. A journal,
on the other hand, brings the reader right into the mind of the writer. There
was a much more palpable sense of time and experience when I thumbed through
the entries, actually able to sense and re-live the moment.
The old stenographer's notepad is barely more than a loose stack of pages
now, held together by little more than a whisper and a prayer. This is where the
RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal comes in. Conveniently sized and
made with the apparent quality of a proper hard cover book, the Travel Journal
has made a good, durable traveling companion and appears as though it should
last for many years.
The RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal has handily survived a Summer's
worth of family trips and several backpacks. These trips included several
days of camping at Raquette Lake in the Adirondacks :
Journal Entry: Raquette Lake, Adirondacks NY, 8/19/03 - "A gorgeous morning.
Up before the sun and paddled south to some to some interesting coves. Found
some good fishing. Very foggy. Sun burned off fog for spectacular views. Katie
called on the new radio for breakfast. Paddled back to the beach thru
sun-baked fog. Noticed the sun glinting thru the hull, refracted by the small bow
wave. Very neat…."
and, most recently, a two day backpack and climb in the Catskills:
Journal Entry: Blackhead Mountain, Catskills NY, 9/21/03 - " Up early,
breakfast and packed. On the trail by 7:30. The climb above the lean-to starts easy,
going thru a very pretty stretch of woods. The trail soon steepened (is that
a word ?) and became increasingly rocky. Climbed up to the sun and we met
about 8:00 am. Well up the ridge is an overlook which looks east over the Hudson.
The horizon was many, many miles away. Hazy, but still good visibility.
Summitted at about 9:oo am…."
The journal has spent the majority of this time tucked into the inner top
pocket of a Deuter Futura 32 Daypack. This is a very handy and well protected
storage spot, ideal for the journal. I pull it out when something of note occurs,
but more often it stays put until sometime in the evening. This is when I
take a few quiet moments to consider the events of the day jot down a few notes.
My take on the RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal is that it is
constructed to be impervious to the indignities thrust upon it during the less than
ideal conditions experienced while traveling. It has held up exceedingly well
so far. This is no doubt largely due to the well made hard cover. A soft cover
pad would have reduced to a twisted wreck by now, as the pack has been
stuffed into the back of my Jeep along with the rest of the family gear, crammed
into the cargo hatch of my sea kayak, where it did not really want to go, and
generally banged around rocks, trees, tents and lean-tos. The RITR All Weather
Adventure Travel Journal shows no signs of wear at all!
As the RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal spends a great deal of the
time in the outdoors, I decided to test what might be considered unusual
characteristics of the journal. For instance: In a pinch, I might want to use a page
to start a fire. If so, could I tear a page out? If so, how would it burn? I
should mention that the RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal is far too
nice a book to go tearing out pages willy-nilly. It would require a real
emergency before I surrendered any pages. But, for the sake of a thorough test, one
would have to come out. I carefully removed a page and had at it.
The obviously heavy paper tears easily enough, resisting only so much as I
would expect from a heavy weight paper. Putting a match to a small bit, the
paper burned, but somewhat reluctantly. It might serve as a fire starter in a
pinch, but it would not be my first choice.
My writing instrument of choice to date has been my Fisher Space Pen. I have
found that the oil based ink of the Space Pen is a very happy match with the
treated paper of the journal. Pencil also works very well. Liquid ink pens,
such as the popular roller ball type do not seem to work as well. The ink of
these pens seems to bead up and sit on the surface of the paper.
Unfortunately (?), in spite of a record setting wet Summer, it refused to
rain whenever I had the journal along. I am starting to suspect that it may also
be an anti-rain talisman! Accordingly, much of my other testing had to be done
in my laboratory (aka: the kitchen).
Sprinkling water across a page I proceeded to test if the wet paper could
still be written upon. The pencil was the least affected, writing through the
water as if it wasn't even there. The Space Pen was a close second, with the ink
coming out just a bit lighter than when dry. The roller ball was severely
affected, barely writing at all.
I then scribbled a few lines on a bit of the cut out page, using each of the
three writing instruments and soaked a bit of it overnight. The results were
somewhat unexpected in that the Space Pen ink was the most effected, with the
ink bleeding out into the paper. Legibility was still pretty good, though. The
pencil lines were, once again, unaffected. The big surprise was the roller
ball ink, which was also entirely unaffected. I had thought that the latter would
be the first to dissolve.
All three could be rubbed off if I tried hard enough, but this was largely
because the surface of the paper was actually rubbing off, not so much the ink
or pencil. As the Space Pen's ink had bled into the paper, rather than just
lying on the surface, it was the least affected by this. The paper itself had
softened considerably, becoming much easier to tear. It appeared to recover fully
once it dried out.
And, finally, the journal floats! And not just barely either. The cover
floated fully above the water's surface and the yellow cover should make the
journal easier to spot if it should happen to go overboard.
The RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal is becoming an inseparable
traveling companion. Its combination of convenient size and durable construction
will serve to ensure it always has a home in my backpack or duffle. The weather
resistant features add a great deal of security, knowing that this journal
should survive to the end of the journey and beyond, regardless of what I or the
weather throw at it.
With the arrival of the Fall season, my focus will be on how the journal
continues to hold up to even more backpacking. The typically rainy Fall season
should provide a properly wet environment for more observations. The test period
will carry into the Winter snows I hope!) for some good cold weather
- Hi Jim thanks for the getting your field report in early. Here are
my edits, suggestions and nit picks.
In Backpacking Background:
I have also expanded my backpacking to include more winter trips,
mountaineering and back country cross country skiing, and
participated in the AMC's
I use a hammock or tarp for warm weather, and a small four season
tent for winter trips.
in Field Testing:
These trips included several days of camping at Raquette Lake in the
### could be a yahooism but there is a space between Adirondacks and
Up before the sun and paddled south to some to some interesting coves.
### one too many "to some"
and, most recently, a two day backpack and climb in the Catskills:
### the first "and" should be capitalized I believe
Journal Entry: Blackhead Mountain, Catskills NY, 9/21/03 - " Up
breakfast and packed.
### again, could be a yahoo thing but there is an extra space between
the " and Up early
The trail soon steepened (is that a word ?)
### it's not a word that my spell checker found! Hahaha J There is
an extra space between word and ?
Climbed up to the sun and we met about 8:00 am.
### do you mean the sun or something like the sum (short for summit)?
Summitted at about 9:oo am."
### need 00 instead of oo after 9
This is when I take a few quiet moments to consider the events of the
day jot down a few notes.
### I think you left out the "and" between day and jot
I have found that the oil based ink of the Space Pen is a very happy
match with the treated paper of the journal.
And, finally, the journal floats! And not just barely either.
### Although I like this sentence for its peppiness, it's not
grammatically correct. Consider rewording the double negative
of "not just barely"
The weather resistant features add a great deal of security, knowing
that this journal should survive to the end of the journey and
beyond, regardless of what I or the weather throw at it.
### the weather or I
--- In BackpackGearTest@yahoogroups.com, JimSabis@a... wrote:
> Here is another one, one time! Happy editing.....
> Jim S.
> Field Report - RITR All Weather Adventure Travel Journal