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RE: [pct-l] down or synthetic bags?

Most gear selection issues are solved by understanding how the backpacker
would use the gear he/she carries to meet situations on the trail. In the
case of down versus synthetic bags the two (2) situations that I can think
of are (1) A rainstorm combined with wind. (2)Night temperatures near zero

I am able to use a down bag because I pack a vary warm, waterproof tent that
provides a good amount of wind and groundwater protection. Further, my
sleeping pad is full length and is 2" thick. Snow or cold ground won't
bother me. Even in a driving rain, if a little water gets in my tent the bag
is safe. In my pack the bag is sealed in a waterproof sack. The bag simply
never gets wet.

The tent [3#] is heavier than a tarp [1.5#] and the thermarest [1.5#} is
heavier than a zrest [.75#] but the bag [2#] is lighter than even a good
synthetic bag [3.5#]. As a "heavyweight" backpacker my tent/bag/mat weight
is 6.5# while a "lightweight" backpacker would carry 5.75# for bag/tarp/mat.

An "ultralite" backpacker would probably go with a 2# bag, planning to use
other clothing to keep warm on cold nights and planning to do some fancy
rigging to the tarp in the event of a real rainstorm. His/her weight would
be 4.25# for tarp/bag/mat.

On the other hand, I could take my Wanderlust Nomad Tent [1.5#] instead of
my Stephenson Tent [3#]. Then my "heavyweight" bag/tent/mat weight is 5#.
However, I personally, would feel a little exposed in the Wanderlust Tent
with only a lightweight bag and would probably want to take my down jacket

My solution? For Section A this year I will pack the Nomad [1.5#], Zrest
[.75#] and a zero degree down bag [3.25#] and leave the down jacket home.
That's 5.5 pounds in Glen's .75# pack. 
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