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77136APPLICATION - MontBell Plasma 1000 down jacket - Richard Lyon

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  • richardglyon@att.net
    Nov 8, 2013
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      Nancy, please consider my application for the MontBell Plasma 1000 Down Jacket. I have read and agree to the BackpackGearTest.org Survival Guide and bylaws v.0609 and have a tester agreement on file. This Test will not conflict with my other Tests.

      Richard Lyon, Male, 67, Bozeman, Montana USA
      6'4" [1.91 m], 200 lb [91 kg]
      Montana DOT angler AT gmail DOT com

      I've been backpacking regularly in the Rockies since 1986. I do at least one weeklong trip every summer, and often take three-day trips. I'm usually camping in alpine terrain, at altitudes 5000 to 10000 ft (1500-3000 m). I prefer base camp backpacking, a long hike in with day trips from camp. Outdoor winter activities often include skiing or snowshoeing.

      Tests in progress: Two – Tilley Camo Hat [LTR due December 5]; Goddess Garden Organic Natural Sunscreen [IR awaiting edit]. Strictly speaking the Gerber Bear Grylls Intense Torch is still in progress but I've submitted my LTR and am awaiting edits.
      Other pending applications: None [and I don't plan to apply for the MB Versalite]
      Test page: http://teststatus.backpackgeartest.org/T1436.htm

      I have completed many tests and submitted many Owner Reviews, maybe half a dozen on down jackets, vests, and sweaters. I've submitted four Owner Reviews plus a lengthy addendum to an earlier OR in the past twelve months.
      My Reports are listed at
      I serve as an OR Editor, Call Manager, Monitor, and Director.

      Home remodeling has severely crimped my backpacking this summer, but the work is almost done and I'm ready to catch up to my annual quota. I have a two-night trip in Yellowstone National Park scheduled and I plan to take several weekend ski tours in the nearby Gallatin, Bridger, and Absaroka Mountains. Perhaps also hut-to-hut tour in the Tetons (Wyoming) in late February or early March. Since I moved to Montana nearly every day has some outdoor activity, and in the winter that includes downhill or cross-country skiing at least four mornings a week. I'll give this jacket a workout. Temperatures are likely to range from -20 to 50 F (-29 to 10 C) and it's usually dry here in winter. I tend to wear a down jacket or sweater as a midlayer when colder conditions are likely, or as an outer layer when ski touring or in warmer (25-50 F/-5 to 10 C) conditions.

      I'm quite interested in MontBell's latest raising of the bar (by lowering the weight) of down garments. In particular I'd like to see if 1000 fill power down really gives better performance, and if MontBell has cured the fabric and zipper issues that plagued the Plasma 1000's predecessor and stated model, the EX Light. I converted from fleece to down for midlayers and lighter outer layers several years ago, and I want to see at first hand if this latest state-of-the-art version is more than just marketing one-upsmanship.