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Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

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Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Oceansnz » Thu Mar 22, 2012 1:54 pm

Hi, thanks for looking, I'm needing advice about getting a pair of pants that are versatile and more "serious".

Situation(s):
I plan to join an expedition on some 6000m+ mountains in the Andes next Jan/Feb. Would like to feel confident if weather also takes a turn for the worst. Temperatures could get quite cold, but also could be warm in the sun with the heat reflecting off the snow. Also, I will climb 2000M-3000m ranges over 6 days with the odd day of rain here in Japan.

I have no experience at altitudes higher than 3000m and I usually climb in Spring, Summer, Autumn. I currently only have some very light Marmot water resistant pants, not good in very cold temperatures or rain.


This is my thinking so far:

•Get Gore-Tex pro shell pants and go for a Layering system.(I'm not keen on insulated pants).
•Will need to wear crampons at some point.
•Side vents preferred.
•Wind proof/water proof (Gore-tex/eVent) seems a logical need.
•Really prefer pants that are lighter than 600 grams.

I like the Mammut Sturdy Pants but they weight 960 grams.

Any pants to recommend or pointers in the right direction?

any comments/suggestions/experienced p.o.v's appreciated!
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Baarb » Thu Mar 22, 2012 2:52 pm

Do you know which mountains you'll be on in Bolivia and more specifically what you''ll be doing there? I'm not clued into the latest gear myself but imagine that mentioning some more details would help enthusiasts point you in the right direction. Cheers.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby drpw » Thu Mar 22, 2012 2:56 pm

get bibs.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Oceansnz » Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:13 pm

ah I see.

Either Mt Aconcagua 6963m, OR Mt Cerro Solo 6,190m (in late summer).
Scree terrain to start with, then glacier trekking followed by snow slopes.

Akaishi Mountain Range (Japan). 3000m-3300m (in Winter).
Full range of weather and terrain.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Kai » Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:38 pm

Arcteryx Alpha 1/2 bibs are good pants.

Pros:
Relatively light (500 grams), without a bunch of useless features.
Come in different inseam lengths if you are taller or shorter than average
Well constructed

Cons:
Expensive
No built in gaiter
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Fletch » Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:01 pm

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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Dane1 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:21 pm

I have Arcteryx gtx bibs and never use them these dayss. And generally all I do is climb in winter or winter conditions.

http://nwalpine.com/apparel

That said I would take a pair of lwt gtx bibs for the summit day on Aconcagua if you use a typical soft shell.

I am currently using a pairr of NWAlpinist bibs made of the Neoshell soft shell which would be good there (summit day almost anywhere at 6Km) as well I think. Very impressed with the fabric, water proof, breathable, stretchy and very tough.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Kai » Thu Mar 22, 2012 7:13 pm

Dane1 wrote:I have Arcteryx gtx bibs and never use them these dayss. And generally all I do is climb in winter or winter conditions.

http://nwalpine.com/apparel

That said I would take a pair of lwt gtx bibs for the summit day on Aconcagua if you use a typical soft shell.

I am currently using a pairr of NWAlpinist bibs made of the Neoshell soft shell which would be good there (summit day almost anywhere at 6Km) as well I think. Very impressed with the fabric, water proof, breathable, stretchy and very tough.



I'm curious: What do you wear/bring when you're facing both cold and possible rain? (Say June in the Cascades, where it's possibly wet/raining on the approach hike or descent, but likely cold on the route?)

I agree that softshell is great for cold and/or dry conditions. Not so good in rain, however. Do you take both the softshell and a hardshell?

I used to wear softshell and bring a light hardshell (Marmot precip) for rain. Lately, for climbing snow/ice, I've just been going with a lightweight breathable (eVent or G-Tex) hard shell over capilene instead of a softshell to save weight and bulk. (High abrasion rock routes, I still use softshell because my hard shells don't stand up well to abrasion.)


What's your typical solution to non-winter climbing conditions?
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby luzak00 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 9:27 pm

I would take a strong look at the new MH (Quasar) pants.

If you want absolutely windproof, Arc'Teryx.

Otherwise, you might want to look at options from eVent or NeoShell.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby rsf1961 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:33 pm

i'd suggest any of the various makes of pants made with schoeller dry-skin, the (almost) perfect softshell material. dry-skin is both highly water and wind resistant while still maintaining great breathability. if they do get wet, they dry really fast. layer under/over to suit the predicted weather conditions.

i've heard really good things about the nw alpine pants, but they appear to be a bit too fitted for my taste.

i've pretty-much stopped carrying traditional hardshell pants. i do carry windpants in epic to pair with my softshell pants. in all but the worst extended downpours they offer all the water resistance i need, are windproof and are much more comfortable to wear than hardshell pants.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Dane1 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:35 pm

Kai wrote:I'm curious: What do you wear/bring when you're facing both cold and possible rain? (Say June in the Cascades, where it's possibly wet/raining on the approach hike or descent, but likely cold on the route?


Cascades and Rockies in the summer I hike (to climbs) with either nylon running shorts or my base layer. No rain gear on the bottom but the ability to get out of my wet clothing when i stop. Soft shell pants other wise. Arcteryx Gamma LT pants to be specific full length or 3/4 length knickers versions of the same pant. Which do get wet but dry easily as well. I also make a point of not doing a lot in the rain.

Rain in the mtns here during the summer means rock fall and lightening. If it is raining here I find a dry desitnation or another activity.

I trail run in the rain with shorts or tights (depends on the amount of nettles and Devils club involved) and a lwt shell or if it is warm enough shorts and a tech shirt. I never hike in the rain intentionally. But i also make a point to never "hike" unless it is required by the actual climbing goal in mind.

Climbing, I dress as lightly as possible for the forcast conditions. Or often as not I dress for the conditions I want to see. If I don't get those conditions it can turn out to be a rather unpleasant learning experience.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Dane1 » Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:37 pm

i've heard really good things about the nw alpine pants, but they appear to be a bit too fitted for my taste.


Use crampons much? I find most soft shells included the NW Alpine and Arcteryx products not fitted enough for my taste and crampon use.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby radson » Thu Mar 22, 2012 11:17 pm

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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby rsf1961 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 1:38 am

Dane1 wrote:Use crampons much? I find most soft shells included the NW Alpine and Arcteryx products not fitted enough for my taste and crampon use.


i've never really had too much of a problem catching a spike on my pant's leg. i like the leg cut a little fuller, but by no means baggy. just not the low rise *jeans* fit you see on a lot of pants now. snap closures at the cuff, an under the foot loop and a patch of ballistic nylon or other reinforcing material goes a long way to keep a fuller cut pant leg from being a hazard and adding protection. there are always gaiters.

did nwalpine make the bibs up special for you? they don't list anything made with neoshell, just a 4-way stretch softshell material for the pants and salopettes. i'd imagine they'd say they were using neoshell if they were.
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Re: Need help buying serous mountaineering pants

Postby Dane1 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:53 am

Yes, the Neoshell version is a prototype I sourced the fabric for. Only marmot and mammut making production garments using this specific Neoshell fabric currently.

If they can get enough of the newest Neoshell material I suspect it will be offered as an optional model.
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