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Re: [pct-l] Snow, Sierras and 1977

> Sierra before Kennedy Mdws got a store and the trail was finished).  Carl,
> did Kelty ever use any of the information gained by your experiences with
> gear in advertising or just for internal product improvement?

I don't think it was ever used in promotional material, and because the
company was sold shortly thereafter, the wonderful flexible frames we were
testing never made it into a retail product. (They also dropped their line
of boots and redesigned the GoreTex parkas. That was a shame, because we
loved the design of the parkas; the only problem--and it was a big one--was
that they were made of first generation--i.e., nonwaterproof when

I had lunch with Dick and Nena Kelty a year or two ago, and he borrowed the
packs he gave us in '77. (We still use 'em every year.) Apparently someone
at Kelty Pack was interested in studying them--whether out of historical
curiosity or for a potential retail product I don't know. They wanted to
keep them and offered us any Kelty product we'd like in trade. While I
really wanted to try a White Cloud, I wasn't willing to give up the
fantastic flexible external frame pack that had served us so well for over
20 years. Norm and Bill kept theirs also.

The other reason for our lunch was that Nena Kelty (Dick's wife) was writing
a book and she wanted to get some pictures and information from me.
Originally intended as a history of Dick Kelty and Kelty Pack, the scope was
broadened to be a general guide to backpacking. The book came out this
spring and, while it won't teach anything to PCT thru hikers, it's a
terrific book for novice and intermediate backpackers, with lots of ideas
about equipment, cooking, keeping the kids occupied and interested, etc.
It's called "Backpacking the Kelty Way," by Nena Kelty and Steve Boga (ISBN
0399525858). Here's a link to its entry at Amazon:
And it even has a handful of my '77 PCT pictures!

> However, this is an excellent tool that hasn't been available to anyone
> the snow survey information was posted to the web in the last few years.

Yeah, isn't that awesome?! I monitored the snow levels and air temperatures
at Casa Vieja (CSV) and Tunnel Guard Station (TUN) for several weeks before
our recent trip, and knew just what to expect. Very cool.

Carl Siechert
1977 Kelty Kid
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