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LTR - OR Celestial Gaiters - Chuck Carnes

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  • Chuck Carnes
    Thank you in advance for any edits. Here is the html version. http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/LTR-ORGaiters-CC/ Outdoor Research Celestial
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 1 6:58 AM
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      Thank you in advance for any edits. Here is the html
      version.

      http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/LTR-ORGaiters-CC/

      Outdoor Research
      Celestial Gaiters
      Long Term Report
      OR Celestial Gaiters



      Biographical Information

      Name: Chuck Carnes
      Age: 35
      Gender: Male
      Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
      Weight: 175 lb (79 kg)

      E-mail address: ctcarnes1(at)yahoo(dot)com

      City, State, Country: Greenville, S.C. United States

      Report Date: July 1, 2005

      Backpacking Background

      I love the outdoors – I’ve spent time camping in
      the outdoors since I was born, and have been actively
      hiking and backpacking for the past ten years. I
      consider myself a lightweight hiker, usually carrying
      20 – 30 pounds (11-13 kg) for hikes up to a week in
      length. I hike at an easy pace, averaging 2 mph (3
      kph). I am a one-man tent camper for now until a
      lighter two-man tent comes along and will give me more
      room. I like to carry a single trekking pole when I
      hike to help relieve stress to my legs and knees. I
      like to get out on the trail as often as I can.

      Product Information

      Manufacturer: Outdoor Research
      Model: Celestial Gaiters
      Year of Manufacture: 2004
      URL:
      http://www.outdoorresearch.com
      Size: Large
      Color: Blue / Black
      Listed Weight: 6.1 oz (171 g) (web site:
      size Large, per pair)
      Weight as Delivered: 6.2 oz (176 g)
      MSRP: $39.00

      Product Features

      * Gore-Tex® PacLite® upper section

      * Coated 8 oz. packcloth lower section

      * Velcro® front closure

      * Boot lace hook and snap at bottom

      * Strap and cam buckle top closure

      * Elastic bottom edge

      * Nylon instep lace provided



      Long Term Report and Field Information

      The OR Celestial Gaiters have been a great
      piece of gear through out this testing period. As
      discribed in my Field Report these gaiters work great
      in the snow. They did the job they were designed to
      do. In the past couple of months I have been able to
      expose the gaiters to some hot, steamy weather and a
      few thunder showers. Yet another type of condition
      that Outdoor Research took in consideration when
      designing the Celestial Gaiters. In the late sping and
      summer, I like to wear my gaiters to protect my lower
      legs from the dry, scratchy limbs from bushes that
      impede on the trail. I also wear them when the trail
      has low ground cover that is wet from rain or dew and
      tends to soak my socks and boots with the first sweep
      of the leg. I sometimes think one leaf can hold a
      gallon of water, or so it seems. I want to note that
      during these trips that I wore the gaiters, I was
      wearing shorts and not long pants.

      The trips I took since my Field Report
      were one and two nights to a local park that my son
      and I and sometimes a friend and I like to visit. It's
      close enough to go quit often and it gets me out with
      nature. The temperatures on these trips while wearing
      the gaiters ranged from 78 F to 95 F (25 C to 35 C)
      with usually about 70 to 85 percent humidity. I
      experienced afternoon thunder showers and sometimes
      just a steady rain. Most of the time it was just
      really hot. I hiked 2 to 8 miles (3 to 12 km) on these
      trips. It mainly depended on who I was with.

      Here are some questions about the specific
      features of the OR Celestial Gaiters that I was able
      to answer from my Initial Report up to this point.
      Answers that are in red are from my Field Report and
      weather and temperature conditions are noted there.
      Answers in blue are for my Long Term Report and
      weather and temperature conditions are noted above.

      Gore-Tex Pac Lite upper section:

      * I sometimes wear my gaiters during the summer,
      will these be to hot to wear? NA. No, I found the
      gaiters to be very comfortable in very hot weather.
      * How well do they breathe? From a visual
      perspective, the gaiters don't seem to breathe as well
      as I would have expected after seeing a good bit of
      condensation on the inside. However, my lower legs
      never felt hot or sweaty while wearing the gaiters. In
      the warmer weather conditions, the gaiters breathed
      well. My lower legs never felt over heated
      * Will sweat build up under the gaiters and tend
      to soak my socks? I found that the condensation did
      build up under the gaiters but it did not wet my
      pants, socks or boots. During my trips in warmer
      weather the gaiters also showed condensation on the
      inside. But here again, my socks stayed dry and my
      lower legs never felt over heated.
      * Do they clean easily? Yes, all I had to do was
      wipe them off with a towel. I have not washed them in
      a machine but I have dipped them in water, hand washed
      with a mild soap and hung them to dry.
      * Are there seams at the back and if so, are they
      sealed? Not vertical but there is a seam that runs
      horizontal all the way around the gaiter where the
      upper and lower section meet, this can be seen in the
      picture at the beginning of the report. This seam is
      factory sealed and I did not experience any leakage in
      that area on this trip. There has been no change since
      the Field Report.

      Coated 8 oz. packcloth lower section:

      * Does it keep briers and sticks from penetrating
      in this area? I did encounter a few sticks and brush
      when I went off of the trail a bit and the gaiters
      protected my leg in this area. As mentioned above, the
      gaiters have protected my lower legs from protruding
      objects onto the trail. They have also kept my legs
      dry from the wet leaves.
      * How well does this area keep water out? The only
      weather element that the gaiters have been exposed to
      in the field is snow and the lower section did its job
      keeping snow and slush from getting into my boots.
      They also do there job at keeping water out. I have
      walked through shallow creeks and although the outside
      was wet, the inside was dry.
      * Does this material clean easily? Yes, as
      mentioned above, all I had to do was wipe the inside
      with a towel. The outside was cleaned by scrubbing a
      little snow on the dirt spots, wiping off with a towel
      and hang dry. I simply dipped them in water, hand
      washed with a mild soap and hung them to dry.
      * Are the seams sealed between the two materials
      (upper and lower)? Yes, they seem to be factory
      sealed.

      Velcro front closure:

      * Does the Velcro seal good enough to keep water
      from penetrating? I have not hiked in the rain or
      crossed a creek with the gaiters on at this point but
      it does do its job keeping out snow and slush. I have
      walked through shallow creeks and experienced rain
      with the gaiters on and there has been no signs of
      leakage through the velcro area.
      * Will the constant opening and closing of the
      Velcro make this area weak for protection? At this
      point the Velcro is still in good condition and shows
      no sign of wear. The velcro is still mending together
      as it was the first day I received them and still no
      signs of wear or weakness in the velcro.
      * How long will it take for the Velcro to wear
      out? NA. The velcro is still in great condition.
      * Once the gaiters are around the leg, is it hard
      to get the Velcro to align just right to get a good
      seal? Not in my experience. I was able to straighten
      my leg and feet and get a good straight line seal.
      * How often do I have to clean the Velcro to
      maintain the performance that it is intended? At this
      point the Velcro has maintained its performance but I
      will continue to monitor this for future reference.
      With a few cleanings by hand the gaiters are still
      perfoming as intended.

      Boot lace hook and snap at bottom:

      * With the hook on the lace, will it wear the lace
      out and cause it to break? At this point the laces on
      my boots do not show any signs of wear from the boot
      lace hook. The edges on the lace hook are smooth and
      has not worn out any of the laces on my boots or
      shoes.
      * Will the hook reach the bottom lace on my boot
      or shoe without too much tension on the lace? This has
      a lot to do with how tight the user wants the elastic
      cuff to hold to the boot. I personally have the instep
      lace fairly tight which in turn pulls the elastic cuff
      tight against my boot and therefore puts a lot of
      tension on the bottom lace. This ensures me that it
      will be difficult for water to seep up through the
      bottom cuff. The boot lace helps keep the gaiter down
      over the laces to prevent water from entering in this
      area but I have found that the bottom two laces are
      exposed and this will give water an opportunity to
      find its way through the laces, through the tongue and
      into my boot. I don't know how this could be fixed to
      completely cover the laces. I will do some adjusting
      before the Long Term Report to see if I can remedy
      this potential problem. I have yet to figure out a way
      to completly cove the laces with the gaiters. As long
      as the hook is connected to the gaiters, it doesn't
      seem to be a way to cover the last lace; unless the
      hook is under the fabric instead of being exposed.

      Strap and cam buckle top closure:

      * Will this pull tight enough to my leg to keep
      water from flowing down my leg and into my boot? I am
      able to tighten the strap tight enough to prevent snow
      from entering. I will monitor this area when I come
      across rain or a creek crossing. I have now
      experienced rain. During this period of rain showers,
      rain ran down my legs and continued over the gaiters.
      The cam buckle was tight enough to keep the rain out
      but not so tight to cut off any blood circulation. As
      far as creek crossings, I never kicked up enough water
      for it to enter from the top of the gaiters.
      * How well does the cam buckle hold the strap?
      Very tightly. I squatted down on several occasions
      which put tension on the strap and buckle and the
      buckle held tight and did not slip loose. The cam
      buckle still holds the strap tight and does not slip.
      * Will it work itself loose as I walk? No, not in
      my experience. At this point, the buckle still holds
      tight as I walk.
      * Can I open and close the cam buckle with gloves
      on? It was not very easy to open it with out gloves,
      especially with one hand. When I tried it with gloves
      on I could not open it.
      * Can the cam buckle be replaced if it breaks or
      stops functioning? NA. The cam buckle is still
      functioning as intended and after talking with a
      seamstress, she says that it can be replaced if
      needed.

      Elastic bottom edge:

      * Does the elastic fit tight enough to keep water
      from entering from underneath the gaiter? At this
      point I have not experienced water but it does keep
      out the snow. While walking through shallow creeks the
      elastic did prevent water from entering from
      underneath.
      * Can I cross a shallow river or creek and have
      confidence that the gaiters will keep my upper boot
      and socks dry? I will simulate this in a tub or bucket
      of water at home before trying it in the field. NA.
      Yes, as mentioned above, I crossed shallow creeks with
      confidence knowing that my upper boots and socks will
      stay dry.
      * What is the durability of the elastic? So far it
      has kept its elasticity. The tension of the elastic is
      still tight and continues to keep tight against my
      boots or shoes. The edges at the elastic are frayed
      slightly but is typical with this much wear.
      * Will it start weakening at the grommet area? So
      far it has not. No, the threads and gromets are still
      in good shape and shows little wear.
      * Does the bottom edge cover the top of my trail
      running shoes? Yes, but barely. I think water could
      potentially get in at this area but I will monitor
      this when I am faced with this situation. While
      wearing these over my trail shoes and walking through
      shallow creeks, I did not experience any water
      entering into my shoe. The gaiters covered the tops
      just enough.

      Nylon instep lace provided:

      * How long will it take for this lace to break or
      become frayed? So far the lace has not broke and as
      far as fraying, after I cut the excess off I burned
      the ends to keep this from happening. So far the lace
      has not frayed at the ends or anywhere else. The lace
      is still tied and staying strong. There is still no
      signs of wear on the lace.
      * Is it protected enough in the instep area of my
      boot to keep from constantly stepping on the lace and
      weakening it? Yes, on my boots the lace sits right in
      front of the edge between the heel and the arch. On my
      trail running shoes, the lace comes in contact with
      the ground more than my boots, but the lace is still
      in good shape.

      Summary

      I have been very happy with OR Celestial
      Gaiters. To me they have done the job that they were
      designed to do. They protected my legs from sticks,
      snow, rain and occasional kicked up water. They kept
      my legs warm when they needed warmth and they kept my
      legs cool in the blistering heat. I have enjoyed this
      great piece of gear and I hope that my reports will be
      found informative and thorough.

      Likes:

      * my legs didn't get wet when I needed them dry
      * the durability of the fabric
      * the ease of cleaning

      <>Dislikes:

      * the lace hook area is vulnerable to water
      seaping into the boot or shoe; depending on the type
      of boot or shoe

      <>

      Thank you again Outdoor Research and BGT for giving me
      the opportunity to test the OR Celestial Gaiters.

      Chuck Carnes



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