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FR - SD Cyclone Jacket - Ray

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  • rayestrella1
    Hello Curt, Here is my FR for the Cyclone. The HTML may be found here; http://tinyurl.com/6xevo2 The text is below. Thanks, Ray FIELD REPORT Field Conditions
    Message 1 of 5 , Jan 2, 2009
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      Hello Curt,

      Here is my FR for the Cyclone. The HTML may be found here;

      http://tinyurl.com/6xevo2

      The text is below.

      Thanks,

      Ray


      FIELD REPORT
      Field Conditions

      The Cyclone has been along on the following trips.

      Dave and I went up to the peak of San Gorgonio via the Dollar lake
      trail as Dave has never been that way. It had rained the day before
      and they were calling for below-freezing temps so we figured we may
      see snow or ice. It was 35 F (1.7 C) when we started at an altitude of
      6880 ft (2097 m). At the summit it was 31 F (-0.6 C) and the wind
      chill was registering at 17 F (-8 C). We went 23.2 miles (37 km).

      Jenn and I went to the Ortega Candy Store trailhead and did the Bear
      Canyon/Bear Ridge loop in the San Mateo Wilderness. 6.8 miles (11 km)
      in temps to about 80 F (27 C) on up and down trails that were either
      sandy or rocky. We had 1100 ft (335 m) of elevation gain and loss.

      Dave and I went 27 miles (43 km) on the PCT from Green Valley to
      Vasquez Rocks This hike saw 5000 ft (1524 m) of gain as we went over
      three passes in temperatures started at 43 F and climbed to 70 F (6 to
      21 C). The terrain was dirt, scree or rock.

      Dave and I spent two days in the Tehachapi Mountains just south of
      Sequoia National Forest. The temps were between 35 and 66 F (2 to 19
      C). We went 42 miles (68 km). We had to carry all our water so my pack
      weight was 35 lb (15.9 kg) starting out.

      Jenn and I celebrated New Years Eve by spending the night in Round
      Valley in Mount San Jacinto State Park. We snow shoed 6 miles (10 km)
      and stayed at an elevation of 9100 ft (2775 m) on 5 ft (1.5 m) of snow
      pack. The temps ran from 40 to 22 F (4 to -6 C). Thankfully there was
      no wind to speak of.

      The most enjoyable use was as a rain coat in Hawaii on the big island.
      Jenn and I spent six days hiking to snorkeling or scenic spots that
      are hard to get to without a boat. The hikes were anything from 0.5 to
      3 miles (1 to 5 km) each way. Temps were between 76 and 82 F (24 to 28
      C) and terrain was dirt, (lots of) lava, and sand. We also walked 2 to
      3 miles (3 to 5 km) into town for dinner each day. We saw rain just
      about every afternoon or early evening.

      But it has seen much more use in Minnesota where I have used it as a
      rain coat in rain, freezing rain, winter mix and snow. With lots and
      lots of wind!

      Observations

      As is often the case when testing rain gear in southern California I
      can go a long time without actually needing a rain coat. We tried
      going to Mount San Gorgonio the day after a storm hoping (yes we are
      strange) to see a little weather. Alas while it was very cold the
      precipitation was past by the time we got there.

      On that trip I needed to break it out at10500 ft (3200 m) elevation as
      the temp dropped to 32 F (0 C). While I am warm blooded enough to hike
      at that temperature without a jackets the strong winds I encountered
      there made for a 22 F (-6 C) wind chill that went right through the
      mid-weight base layer I was wearing.

      The Cyclone worked great. As soon as I started climbing again I
      started overheating from the exertion. A quick yank on the pit zips
      solved that problem.





      Once at the summit (seen in the picture above) it was even colder and
      windier. I zipped everything up and pulled the hood on to conserve
      warmth.

      In Hawaii I got to use the coat on most afternoons. I needed to keep
      all the zippers open though as it is quite warm even though it is
      raining. As I saw last year the weather there will say, "No way!" to
      the idea of "breathable" fabrics. It was the same with the Drizone
      Green 2.5L. If I have to do much walking in the rain there I end up
      just about as wet inside as out side. One funny thing that happened
      while we were there was a very heavy rain fall that hit at 2:00 AM one
      night. The water was coming down so hard that it looked like a fire
      hose where it came down the valley of our roof. Jenn (who is testing a
      rain coat also) wanted to get up and go out in it to see how the coats
      (and pants in my case) held up to that rate of rain fall. I said that
      there is a limit to my desire to test thoroughly. Sorry Sierra
      Designs, maybe next time…

      The place that the Cyclone has got a workout though has been in
      Minnesota (MN) where it was subject to all kinds of weather including
      the worst blizzard I have seen since moving to the Fargo/Moorhead
      area. It was -12 F (-24 C) with a wind chill of -39 F (-39 C). I did
      not have any zippers open for this one. I wore the Cyclone over a
      Sitka Gear Core Zip-T mid-weight base layer (see report) and a Marmot
      Down Sweater (see review). This made a remarkably warm combination,
      much warmer than the North Face parka I normally wear when I am in MN.

      I wore it in a snow storm at Ottertail Lake MN this way too. It has
      performed admirably in all instances.

      Later I wore it the same way in California substituting the Marmot
      Down Sweater for a Mountain Hardwear Phantom Jacket (see review). It
      worked quite well as a snow shell backpacking. The only problem I
      would see for using it for any full-on winter trip would be the fact
      that I can't get a liter water bottle in the inside pocket, something
      that is often necessary to do.

      I have carried the Cyclone, along with the matching pants and a pack-
      cover, in a sil-nylon stuff sack when overnight backpacking. On day
      hikes I just shove it into my pack for most trips or in the front
      shove-it pocket when I think I will need it quickly. To date there are
      no signs of wear.

      As we have gotten some excellent snow in our California mountains I
      know I will be using the Cyclone for much more snow use over the next
      two months. Please come back then to see how the Cyclone has fared. My
      thanks to Sierra Designs and BackpackGearTest.org for letting me put
      the Cyclone to the test. I leave with a picture of it in Mt San
      Jacinto State Park in the snow.
    • kwpapke
      ... EDIT: There are 4 occurrences in BGT test reports of snow shoed as two words, and 50+ as one word snowshoed . dictionary.com seems to think its one
      Message 2 of 5 , Jan 4, 2009
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        --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, "rayestrella1"
        <rayestrella@...> wrote:
        > Valley in Mount San Jacinto State Park. We snow shoed 6 miles (10 km)

        EDIT: There are 4 occurrences in BGT test reports of "snow shoed" as
        two words, and 50+ as one word "snowshoed". dictionary.com seems to
        think its one word. Both of them make my eyeballs hurt, but lets go
        with one word.

        > But it has seen much more use in Minnesota where I have used it as a
        > rain coat in rain, freezing rain, winter mix and snow. With lots and
        > lots of wind!

        Comment: Yeah, we've had some weather here...

        > On that trip I needed to break it out at10500 ft (3200 m) elevation as

        Need a space between "at" and "10500"

        > It was -12 F (-24 C) with a wind chill of -39 F (-39 C). I did
        > not have any zippers open for this one.

        Sarcasm: wimp ;-) Not often you get to bypass the F->C conversion
        like that!

        > Later I wore it the same way in California substituting the Marmot
        Down Sweater for a Mountain Hardwear Phantom Jacket (see review).

        EDIT: You were wearing the Marmot sweater just before, so didn't you
        actually substitute the Phantom for the Marmot and not vice versa?

        > It worked quite well as a snow shell backpacking

        EDIT: "while" or "during" or "for" backpacking?

        > that I can't get a liter water bottle in the inside pocket, something
        > that is often necessary to do.

        Edit: Did you try it with different shaped bottles? I.E. is the
        pocket just too small or is the shape/proportions of the pocket not
        accommodating?

        A good "read" as always, Ray. Nice that you were able to use the
        jacket in such polar opposite conditions, Hawaii and Winter in MN!

        --Kurt
      • Thomas Vickers
        Html here: http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/OBITRS-LTR-TV/ Long Term Report January 6, 2009 Locations: Jones State Forest Other locations in
        Message 3 of 5 , Jan 4, 2009
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          Html here:
          http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/OBITRS-LTR-TV/

          Long Term Report
          January 6, 2009
          Locations:
          Jones State Forest
          Other locations in Southeast Texas

          Conditions:
          Temperatures from 32 - 70 F (0 - 21 C). 
          The terrain has been hard packed dirt roads/trails, grass, leaves, sand,
          concrete, and asphalt

          Activities:
          ·Trail running  (10 days): 30 miles (48 km)
          ·Street running (8 days): 24 miles (39 km)
          ·Backpacking (4 days): 16 miles (26 km)
          Putting on the miles:
          The first thing I want to throw out is how much happier I am with the
          Ignitions since I put my own insoles in them. I went far too long with the
          stock insoles and probably would have enjoyed them a lot more if I made the
          change sooner. I still suffer from the amount of running that I have been
          doing, but at least the problem of sore arches is gone. I do not consider
          this a design flaw in the shoes, but a design flaw in my flat feet.

          One thing that the after market insoles have done for these shoes is to make
          them much more comfortable for regular hiking and when needed, daily wear.
          The original feeling that the shoes some how slanted downwards from the toe
          box toward the heel is gone after I put the after market insoles in. This
          has made them much more comfortable for hiking and backpacking.

          I have gone on four separate trips carrying about 20 lb ( kg) on my back
          while wearing the Ignitions. This was about four miles ( km) total per trip
          and I really like the shoes on my local terrain. It is mainly flat here with
          no rocks or other huge terrain surprises and for the first time in a long
          time I did not feel like my footwear was overkill for the situation. The
          Ignitions were perfect for going off trail in the piney woods and I did not
          feel like I was lugging around my footwear on my feet. I am still a boot
          person, but for local hiking I can honestly say that the Ignitions are going
          to continue to be my hiking footwear. I see no need to carry around the
          extra boot weight when the conditions do not call for that type of footwear.


          Running myself silly:
          I had hoped to get in a lot more miles in this last phase of the test, but
          weather and sickness prevented me from getting out and running like I should
          have. I did however, manager to put a decent amount of miles on these shoes
          either on the street or when the state forest reopened, back on the trail.

          I really do love how the Ignitions work on all types of surfaces/terrain
          when I am running. The design of the Ignition puts the most surface area in
          the toe area which translates to better traction and handling because that
          this the part of the shoe that has the most contact with the ground when I
          run.This means that they do not allow my feet to roll from side to side
          which is a problem that I encounter when I wear 'normal' running shoes.
          Till I manage to wear these shoes out, they are going to be my main running
          shoe, on and off the trail.
          Wear and tear:
          I have worn the Ignitions in a wide variety of temperatures and on several
          different terrains. The one thing that I have not really put this shoe
          through any serious wet and dry cycles due to my weather, but that was
          beyond my control. They have been wet on a couple of occasions (which meant
          my feet got wet), but they have never been soaked completely.

          The shoes have really held up well despite the amount of wear I have put on
          them. The soles do not appear to have any wear on them and the body of the
          shoes look as if they are new. The toe of the shoe is covered in a black
          material (leather?) and despite having been worn in sand, dirt, and gravel,
          the toe area is still pretty shiny. These shoes seem to shed dirt and dust
          easily when dry. Getting them wet and running them through loose soil might
          be another story, but I have no idea about that.

          The back of the shoe (which I normally break down quickly) is just as stiff
          as the day the Ignitions came out of the box. The bootie construction has
          held out well and despite the addition of after market insoles (which seem
          to fill the shoe a bit), the bootie has not become loose or worn. It still
          fits tightly and holds the shoe in place even when the laces loosen or come
          undone.

          My one complaint comes from the top lacing loop in the shoe. This is not a
          wear issue, but is something that has plagued me from the first time I have
          put on these shoes.

          If I pull up (towards my knee) to tighten the laces, the lace pops out of
          this loop. At first I thought I had damaged the shoes, but after several
          rethreading of the laces and attempts to retighten them, I realized that it
          was simple design flaw in the lacing loop. The loops are open on the back
          and this is where the laces pop out of. I am not sure why the plastic loops
          are not solid, but it seems like this would fix the most and only annoying
          thing about these shoes. I did finally discover that in order to keep the
          laces from popping out, I had to pull the laces toward my toes to keep them
          in the loop. This was not a huge problem, but after 40 years of pulling
          laces upwards to tighten them, it was rather annoying to have to learn a new
          lacing method.

          Final thoughts:
          I like the Oboz Ignition Trail Running Shoes. They fit well and despite
          being designed as a running shoe first and foremost, they are still
          comfortable enough to wear while backpacking or dayhiking. The integral
          bootie design worked excellently and held the shoe in place no matter what
          kind of a pace I kept and when the laces came untied. The fit of the bootie
          remained snug enough during the testing that I never had an issue with
          debris entering the shoe at any time.

          The large surface area of the toebox made for a very stable and comfortable
          shoe as well. They handled great on all sorts of terrain, including loose
          sand and gravel which typically make for interesting and dangerous running
          conditions.

          My last compliment on top of the fit and comfort of these shoes has to do
          with the durability. I have worn them a lot and put them through their
          paces. Despite my hard use, these shoes have held up wonderfully during the
          test period.

          Being a boot person I am finding it difficult to believe that I would be
          able to embrace a shoe like this for every day hiking as well as trail
          running. For my local conditions I feel that these shoes are great for what
          ever I am doing outdoors not matter what the conditions are. They were
          comfortable in cold and warm conditions and I never felt like I was missing
          anything that I would have gained by wearing higher cut shoes or boots.
          This concludes my test of the Oboz Ignition Trail Running Shoes.
        • Thomas Vickers
          Html here: http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/CBHG-FR-TV/ Field Report January 6, 2008 Locations: Jones State Forest Other locations in
          Message 4 of 5 , Jan 4, 2009
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            Html here:
            http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/CBHG-FR-TV/

            Field Report
            January 6, 2008
            Locations:
            Jones State Forest
            Other locations in Southeast Texas

            Conditions:
            Temperatures from 32 - 45 F (0 - 7 C) 
            Precipitation: Dry, light rain, drizzle, freezing rain, snow
            Wind: 0 - 19 mph (0 - 31 kph) sustained with higher gusts

            Activities:
            ·Trail running  (10 days)
            ·Backpacking (5 days)
            ·Dayhikes (4 days)
            My weather:
            Winter is not always a harsh season here in Texas, but I feel that the
            Cyclone Buff has been a magnet for what I consider extreme winter weather
            this year. It has been windy, cold, and even snowed here during this phase
            of the test period and this was far worse than I had even considered. At
            this point I am thankful that I had the Cyclone Buff to wear.

            One definite plus to this piece of gear is its ability to keep the wind off
            of my head. I am not used to wind here, but this winter has been windier
            than any in my memory. The GORE WINDSTOPPER fabric on the Buff stops wind
            dead in its tracks. While my face was smarting at times from the wind
            hitting it, my giant forehead (five head to me) and the rest of my noggin
            was comfortable under the Cyclone no matter how hard the wind was blowing.

            I have also seen more strange types of precipitation this winter than ever
            before. I have worn the Cyclone in everything from light rain to snow (Yes,
            SNOW) and freezing rain during this part of the test. I have yet to have
            the fabric soak through and once again the GORE WINDSTOPPER fabric tended to
            bear the brunt of this weather with little or no effects upon myself.

            In short, the Cyclone Buff has taken everything my winter has had to offer
            and helped me shrug it off without a complaint. This is one piece of gear
            that I am certainly glad that I am testing. Without it my winter would have
            been a much different with one hat or another on my head.

            Running:
            I spent a lot of time outside this winter trail running. That meant early
            mornings and some afternoons hitting the trail to run about three miles (5
            km) not matter what the weather was. One of my biggest gripes about running
            in cold weather is that my ears and forehead get cold. The colder they get,
            the more miserable I get and this usually means that I cut my runs short.
            The good news is that the Cyclone kept me going not matter how cold or windy
            it was outside.

            For running and other demanding activities, I pulled the GORE WINDSTOPPER
            end of the Cyclone over my forehead, ears, and neck (fleece panel facing
            toward the rear), gave the Cyclone a twist, then folded the polyester end of
            the Cyclone back down over the lower end. This created a rather thick and
            warm 'cap' that made being outside in cold weather much more comfortable. At
            times this was a bit of over kill as far as warmth was concerned, but even
            when it was 35 F ( C) outside, I was still able to work up a good sweat
            underneath the Cyclone. For it to be that cold outside, it was very nice to
            be able to have some sweat under the Buff after a run. What really made me
            happy besides the warmth was the fact that there was enough fabric to cover
            my forehead from just above my eyebrows to the back of my neck, just at or
            below the collar line.

            Backpacking and moving slow:
            I spent a quite a bit of time either dayhiking, backpacking or just plain
            standing around camp during this phase of the test. Wearing the Cyclone as
            a cap/beanie (above) for long periods of time, even when inactive caused my
            head to get hot and itchy. This is not a unique Cyclone problem, but one
            that I suffer through when I wear headgear of any type. My solution for
            when I did not need so much heat or protection was to wear the Cyclone in a
            manner that my three year daughter describes as "daddy's Santa hat."

            The "Santa hat" method of wearing the Cyclone consisted of two variations on
            the picture above. The first is just like it looks.A knot was tied in the
            polyester end of the Cyclone to close off the end of the Buff. I then
            pulled the GORE WINDSTOPPER end of the Cyclone down over my ears and
            forehead, then flipped it up to form a cuff of sorts behind my ears. This
            was extremely comfortable and allowed me to cover my ears if they got too
            cold and once again it was a great way to keep my neck warm. The Cyclone
            had enough fabric to make the hat and cover my neck down to my collar line
            of my jacket, which was great.

            If I got too warm while backpacking like this, I would simply untie the knot
            in the end and let the end open up to provide ventilation. While it did not
            end my itchy head issues, it did feel nice to have some circulation over my
            head when needed. Usually I wore the Cyclone this way when I was hiking or
            in camp and my head was warm. As I cooled off, I would then tie the knot in
            the end to keep things warmer till bedtime.

            Best of all, I consider this to be a very fashionable way to wear the
            Cyclone and I was seen around town on more than one occasion wearing my
            "Santa hat" when ever it was cold .

            Sleeping in the Buff:
            As the temperatures dipped this winter, I was faced with an issue. My new
            winter hiking jacket has no hood and that is a serious part of my sleeping
            system. I do not normally carry a cap to sleep in because of the hood on my
            old jacket, but as luck would have it, I had the Cyclone to try this winter.
            So new jacket and the Cyclone were put to the sleep test on five different
            nights. On none of these nights did the temperatures get above 37 F (3 C).

            For me, sleeping in the cold means that I have to cover my neck, ears, and
            most of my face. If I cover to much of my face I get pretty annoyed and have
            trouble sleeping as my breath blows back into my face. My solution with the
            Cyclone was to wear it as a balaclava as I slept.

            This is where the length of the Cyclone is absolutely wonderful. I can
            cover as little or as much of my face as I needed without having to worry
            that I was going to run out of fabric or expose my neck trying to cover my
            face. I usually started off with it as pictured above as if the
            temperatures dipped too much during the night I would simply pull the
            polyester end further over my face.

            At one point I decided that if the polyester end was warm enough, then the
            GORE WINDSTOPPER end would be even better to wear over the top of my head
            and face. That was a bit of a mistake since the GORE WINDSTOPPER end is not
            as elastic as the polyester end. I nearly choked myself with this little
            experiment and I quickly went back to the way the hangcard the Cyclone came
            with recommend. I stuffed the GORE WINDSTOPPER end under the collar of my
            jacket (where it pooled around my neck) and pulled the polyester end up over
            my head.

            I enjoyed some very warm nights during some very cold weather thanks to the
            Cyclone Buff. It kept me warm and comfortabe without making my
            claustrophobic while sleeping.

            Final thoughts:
            I am grateful that I have had the Cyclone Buff during the rather extreme
            winter (for Texas at least) that I have been dealing with. It has held up to
            a good deal of wear and tear and there are no signs of it stretching out or
            tearing. The construction is still solid after a lot of adventures and
            trials in this item and that is a good sign.

            I have sweated a lot in the Cyclone and so far despite not being washed it
            has not developed any odors. After the first two months of use the POLYGENE
            TECHNOLOGY of the Cyclone is obviously doing something to prevent me from
            stinking it up. This is something else that I am very happy about. Being
            able to keep warm while trail running in cold conditions and not having to
            worry about putting a horrible stink into my head gear is a definite plus in
            my book.

            Probably my favorite attribute of the Cyclone Buff so far is the GORE
            WINDSTOPPER panel. The winter has been very windy here and thanks to the
            Cyclone, my head has felt almost none of it. Not only does the Cyclone keep
            my head warm, but it really takes the bite out of a cold driving wind.

            I am really looking forward to the rest of this test. If the winter weather
            holds up and stays as it has been, then the Cyclone is looking at another
            rough test period.

            Things I like:
            1. Variety of ways to wear it.
            2. Keeps my head warm.
            3. Keeps the wind off my head.

            Things I do not like:
            1. GORE WINDSTOPPER end is not as elastic as the polyester end.

            Please check back in March for my Long Term Report on the Cyclone Buff
            Headgear.
          • rayestrella1
            Thanks for the edits Kurt, This has been the worst winter I have seen in the 5 years in Moorhead. More snow sticking around that is for sure. I bet they have
            Message 5 of 5 , Jan 5, 2009
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              Thanks for the edits Kurt,

              This has been the worst winter I have seen in the 5 years in Moorhead.
              More snow sticking around that is for sure. I bet they have flooding
              this spring. Well more testing for rain gear, right?

              See you in a couple months,

              Ray
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