Valandre La Fayette Sleeping Bag Application:
Please accept my application to test the Valandre La Fayette sleeping
bag. I have read the BackpackGearTest Survival guide, Version 1202,
have mailed my Tester Agreement to Shane, and agree to abide by all
the requirements of this test.
Name: Rob Patterson
Height: 5 feet 9 inches (1.75 m)
Pants Size: 30 waist, 30 inseam.
Weight: 150 pounds (68 kg)
Email address: robpatterson5<at> gmail <dot>com
Address: Kingston, Canada.
Date: September 30, 2005
I'm an avid backpacker usually with a minimum of 30-40 bag nights a
year, and have hiked through most of Canada. Because of a number of
factors I tend to be use heavy to mid-weight gear but am looking at
moving towards lightweight backpacking. Thus far, I've always used
tents, and heavyweight backpacks.
I also am an avid white-water paddler, long distance canoeist, and in
the winter ski downhill,
cross-country (skate and classic), climb (rock and ice) and with luck
this winter will learn to snowshoe.
I'm an active member of my university's: Climbing, White Water and
Outdoors Clubs, which run
trips and seminars every weekend.
And more recently I spent this past summer taking inner city at-risk
youth canoe tripping for 8-10 days in Northern Ontario; somehow I
managed to rack up 54 days in the backcountry <grin>.
Right now I'm headed back to school and back to my White Water, Outdoors, and
Climbing clubs. And during the next six months I plan to be doing as much
backpacking, biking, white-water paddling, cross-country
and downhill skiing, snowshoeing, and climbing
as being a full time student will allow.
Weather wise it's looking like a fairly substantial and very cold
winter, with temperatures should range between 20 C to -25 C (68 F to
-13 F), I'm expecting an average temperature through the heart of
winter to be around –15 to –20 C (5F to –3F). And I should experience
everything from dry windy conditions,
to a wet and rainy fall, and into a very cold windy and snowy winter.
Terrain wise Southern Ontario and Eastern Quebec is densely forested
and moderately hilly, although we somewhat regularly get down to the
Adirondacks, Gunks and Kentucky.
Personally I see the Valandre La Fayette sleeping bag as positioned in
the market, and aimed specifically at lightweight climbers,
backpackers and paddlers, who are willing to sacrifice features, like
a full zip, for an extremely lightweight 3-4-season sleeping bag. What
I'm also hoping is that the La Fayette will prove warm and versatile
enough to allow me to use it all year round.
With that in mind I plan to look at how comfortable the La Fayette is
to sleep in. Focusing in on,
-Subjective stuff like how the bag feels to sleep in, 'does it move
with me', 'does it feel "snugly"', how I like the drawstring closes,
stuff like that.
-As well as looking at in what ways I can open up the bag and get
some venting going in warmer months.
-How comfortable it is to sit up in the bag and cook dinner or read.
-How easy it is to get into and out of the bag?
-And how comfortable is it to wear clothing into the bag?
I would also want to look at the actual performance of the bag, using
a digital recording thermometer to record night time highs and lows
and reporting on how well the Pertex fabrics work with the bag. Hoping
-What is a realistic temperature range to use this bag in and in what
ways can I push the temperature rating either way?
-How well does the Pertex P669RS outer shell and P666 inner protect
against snow, spilt water, and snags.
Valandre makes some pretty amazing claims in their marketing
materials, but going on everything that I've read about the company
(from some top alpinists) it seems that they get these amazing results
through very well though out designs and excellent workmanship. The La
Fayette is one of their flagship sleeping bags, and I can only
attribute these amazing claims to their "Marie Antoinette styled
collar," waist draw cord, and their baffling system; what I'm hoping
is that by the end of the test period I'll be able to tell my readers
why these bags work.
Thank you for your consideration of my application, I feel that I
would make an excellent tester of the Valandre La Fayette sleeping
bag, as I am uniquely situated to give it considerable use throughout
the test period, while hiking, climbing, paddling, and biking thought
the year. I'm hoping that the bag will see 60-90 days of use.
Thank you for the chance to apply. My owner reviews are:
-Patagonia R2 Jacket
-Arc'Teryx Hybrid Jacket
My previous tests are:
-HSSC Fluid Hydration Pack
- Redledge Thunderlight Escape Jacket
-Black Diamond Carbon Fibre Flintlock Poles
-Granite Gear Aptitude Gloves
-Outdoor Research Motion Fleece Balaclava
-Ibex Roaster Boxers
-Ibex Scull Cap
And I am currently testing:
-Vargo Ti Stove - (test re-started, and LTR Oct 4th).