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Newb! Help with gear please.

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Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby Rooster2612 » Thu Dec 06, 2012 6:13 am

Hey guys, I am practically brand new to mountain climbing. I am planning on taking a basic class or two with my wife in May 2013. I was hoping you guys can help me find some inexpensive gear. I can't afford to buy the guides picks for both myself and my wife, can you guys send me some links to some cheaper sites? I'd prefer right now, since money is an issue, to purchase minimum quality for the classes.

So just some info if anyone can offer any links or amazon searches. I live in Washington State, but pretty much plan on hiking Mount Rainier (my local mountain). Maybe camping at Camp Muir (I believe 10k ft). I would eventually like to start buying better gear piece by piece, but again, for now I just want the cheapest that meets the minimum requirements so we can take the class. Some expensive things like boots we will just rent. Here is a link to the required gear. http://www.rmiguides.com/mt-rainier/mou ... #equipment I pretty much only need some help with the upper and lower body.

When I was 12 or younger my mother and her bf took me to Mount Rainier to hike a little bit. We ended up deciding to go to camp Muir (10k ft). We did not have the proper gear, I think I was in jeans and some rubber snow boots and a jacket. I made it to 9k+ ft before I was too tired, mainly from getting a sunburn. I was the only child up that high, my mother was the only one smoking up there, and her bf was the only black guy. I am sure we looked pretty odd since everyone else was well geared. :-P That is my only experience.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby Rooster2612 » Thu Dec 06, 2012 6:24 am

Just a thought, should I just rent everything, and then buy less/different stuff to hike with my wife or on my own?
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby sneakyracer » Thu Dec 06, 2012 1:33 pm

Once you find what you want, look for it here: http://www.geartrade.com

For mount rainier. In good climbing weather and in peak season you don't need much gear. The first thing on the list should be common sense and good judgement, training and knowledge.

Regarding gear you need non cotton base layers both top and bottom. For the lower body you need some soft-shell hiking pants and some gaiters + a good pair of mountaineering socks and boots with a good pair of crampons that work well with the boot. For the upper body you need a light fleece and a wind/water shell with hood + a nice puffy jacket/parka with hood for stops. You can rent the mandatory ice axe and also the rope and harness and misc. climbing gear.

For overnight add a sleeping pad and bag, some basic cooking gear and a decent 60-70L backpack

Its best to go with a guide if not proficient in glacial travel and rescue.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby bkva » Thu Dec 06, 2012 4:48 pm

I was in a similar situation when I got into mountaineering. I decided to purchase the gear (clothing) that I could use in everyday life, off the mountain...things like base layers, insulation, and shells. This way my investment wasn't totally wasted if I decided not to pursue mountaineering. I rented boots and technical gear.

I've climbed with RMI, and while you don't need the exact brand of gear they recommend, you do need to have everything on their list. The good thing about them is that you can show up in your underwear, and they can rent you everything you'll need on the spot.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby Ben Beckerich » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:07 am

Rent as much as you can. You don't want to commit to buying pretty much anything unnecessary at this point, for several reasons... not least of all; you may or may not ever climb anything ever again. It's not for everyone, and plenty of people decide one hellfest was enough, or one too many.
where am i going... and why am i in this handbasket?
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby KeithN » Mon Dec 10, 2012 2:22 pm

Check out Campmor. Cheap, adequate. Like REI back in its pre-boutique days as a purchasing co-op.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby DanTheMan » Tue Dec 11, 2012 7:17 pm

For hardware and easy to fit stuff like jackets/packs/pants, buy second hand stuff off of the Mountain Project forums.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby ElectricEric » Sun Dec 16, 2012 5:49 am

I'd check out craigslist for the Tacoma and Seattle area as well as these 2 sites:
Cascadeclimbers.com is a local forum for us Cascadians and has a active user base including a gear sale subforum.

Mountainproject.com seems to have more traffic for the gear sale then summitpost so its worth checking out as well.

Whittakermountaineering.com has an outlet section that has some good prices, they usually have some decent sales and every fall they sell of ALOT of gear.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby pvnisher » Sun Dec 16, 2012 7:36 am

Buy:
Wool Socks
Thin gloves (can be cheap fleece from gas station)
Mid-weight gloves (ski gloves)
long underwear, top and bottom. Doesn't have to be name brand, thin weight synthetic cheaper than wool
Fleece jacket, off-brand from wherever you find it or already own
Zip-off pants (you don't need softshell, I climbed Rainier my first time in zip-offs, you can spray with some DWR and they'll work better)
Hat
Backpack (if you're an outdoors person and want to hike/backpack/climb). Most any 65L that fits will do. Find a used one if you can
Shell jacket - doesn't have to be Gore-Tex or name brand, but when its really wet a good shell is nice
Gaiters - can be cheap ones as long as they fit over big boots
Water bottles - can be off brand or even Gatorade bottles


Rent:
boots
crampons, axe
helmet
harness
big puffy jacket
heavy gloves
shell pants

Basically, anything that you already have or are likely to use in the future is a good bet to buy. Anything specialized you should rent. Don't think of it as "wasted money" by renting, think of it as trying out something to see if you like it, and plus you might find out you love/hate a particular feature or fit.
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby Ben Beckerich » Sun Dec 16, 2012 9:12 pm

So much better to "waste" $5 or $15 on a rental than drop $600 on a pair of boots that you'll only get $350 for on the used market once you realize it doesn't fit or work for your needs. Boots mentioned as example, but this applies to basically every piece of gear you'll need.. so many options, so many that don't work for your specifics.

Ask me how I know.

I currently have 5 pairs of boots in my gear closet... average retail around $500. Know how many I've worn more than once? ONE
where am i going... and why am i in this handbasket?
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby WyomingSummits » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:52 pm

Ben B. wrote:So much better to "waste" $5 or $15 on a rental than drop $600 on a pair of boots that you'll only get $350 for on the used market once you realize it doesn't fit or work for your needs. Boots mentioned as example, but this applies to basically every piece of gear you'll need.. so many options, so many that don't work for your specifics.

Ask me how I know.

I currently have 5 pairs of boots in my gear closet... average retail around $500. Know how many I've worn more than once? ONE

----------------------------------
Lol.....I'm that way with shell layers. I'm 6-3 and 210lbs with short arms.....I've gone through a bunch and finally found one that performs regardless of my body position/conditions. :)
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Re: Newb! Help with gear please.

Postby bird » Mon Dec 31, 2012 6:13 pm

eBay can be great. Buy used gear at half or less.
REI MIstral pants might be worth buying if you are going to do a lot. They are cheap and will be good for a lot of things, and you'll avoid looking like a total noob. ;-)
Buy a Patagonia R1 Hoody. Great for anytime it's cold out, climbing, skiing hiking, shoveling snow, etc.
First Ascent has great stuff and good sales too.
I bought a bunch of new stuff 10 years ago and don't use any of it anymore. It all got swapped out for something better suited for my needs. So take it slow, and buy used or rent till you have a better idea.
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