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Thread: HELP - Opinions for Gear

  1. #1

    Question HELP - Opinions for Gear

    Dad and I are heading up to Prince George, British Columbia for a Grizzly/Moose combo guided hunt for the end of October - beginning November 2010.

    As for gear I could really use some help on what would be the best route to go with. Im unsure of temperatures at that time of year but I would assume it would be between below freezing and in the single digits (celcius). I tend to sweat/heat up ALOT so I have to watch what gear I get. What I'm looking for are the following and would like some opinions on other gear:

    Base Layer
    -considering going with Under Armour cold gear 2.0 top. I have HH tops and bottoms and they work well for posting but may be to hot for walking as they are the warmest of their line.

    Mid Layer
    -considering going with some Berber or Fleece sweaters/vests. Not sure what make or where to get. Maybe Cabelas brands???

    Outter layer
    -I just bought Columbia Wool Jacket and Bibs. They seem really heavy and bulky and probably wont be able to do much walking in them. I do want something quiet and I really like wool, fleece or berber. Need something silent for stalking. Waterproof isn't a main concern as I will purchase a packable rain suit.

    Rain Suit
    -Looking for a packable rain suit and I read a review on here and was thinking of going with the Cabelas MT050 or somethingl ike that IF it's packable.

    Basically what I think (may not be right) is wearing a base layer good for hiking, fleece/berber midlayer sweater/pullover with a windstopper (windshear) and I think a good vest overtop would be good for extra warmth (wool/fleece/berber) but with no winshear as I dont think I would need to layers of windshear. Am I on the right track? I'm so nervous about going on this trip and having the wrong gear...could really spoil the trip especially with it's costing $$$$$.

    I know this is a lot to ask but I am doing my homework by searches and reading posts but any more help would be much appreciated! Thank you!

    Paul

  2. #2
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    Default $?

    What's your budget on this? A bunch of people could make recommendations but some of it might be unrealistic money wise.

    EDIT: Also, it looks like your average high will be about 34* F while your avg low will be about 22* F according to the weather history data if that helps any.
    Last edited by ak_hunter7616; 08-23-2009 at 15:11. Reason: Added info

  3. #3

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    I want quality wear but I dont want to be spending $500 on just a fleece shirt. So lets say Mid - High end range in price and quality. Thanks

  4. #4

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    Hi Paul .... Definitely go with the Under Armour 2.0 as I find it great when hiking. My body heats of alot quickly and this piece works great! I use it with a wool thin button up shirt and then a hoodie then my Jacket. Once I get walking I usally take off the hoodie, leave the shirt unbutton at the top and the Jacket vents open and I'm good for my Moose hunts in northern Ontario. Once I start posting I put all my gear back on and button up and I'm all toasty!

    I'm also looking for Fleece/Berber gear for my Grizzly hunt. Just not sure if the Cabela's gear is good enough. Keep in touch would like to hear what you go with.

    Paolo

  5. #5

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    Do yourself a HUGE favor. The most important piece of gear you may need is your rainwear. If you don't have something that is guaranteed to work all your layering will be worthless. My partner and I spent ten days on the Koyokuk last fall, both of us are gear geeks so we had what we each thought was the best. He had MT050 from head to toe I had Impertech by Helly Hansen. MT050 will keep you dry until it gets soaked through and you can't dry it (we had 3 days of straight rain). I had the non breathing Impertech which was a third of the price as MT050, I think the jacket was $60 on sale. I was kept perfectly dry, he started experiencing problems when rain began soaking up through his sleeves. If you must have the MT050 spend the extra $60 as insurance and also take the Impertech you will not be sorry. I'm going back for a moose hunt in 2010 and Impertech will definitely be in my pack. Good Luck!

  6. #6
    Member BrettAKSCI's Avatar
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    Base Layer
    -considering going with Under Armour cold gear 2.0 top. I have HH tops and bottoms and they work well for posting but may be to hot for walking as they are the warmest of their line.

    I would look at finding merino wool base layers if you don't have a sensitivity to wool. This includes briefs as well. Wool is anti microbial and on a longer hunt adds up to a lot less stink than synthetics!!! On any hunt let alone a bear hunt scent is important. The two companies I reccomend are -33 and Polarmax. Especially -33.

    Mid Layer
    -considering going with some Berber or Fleece sweaters/vests. Not sure what make or where to get. Maybe Cabelas brands???

    Sporthill makes some excellent synthetic base layers!! The sporthill summit is a great top.

    Outter layer
    -I just bought Columbia Wool Jacket and Bibs. They seem really heavy and bulky and probably wont be able to do much walking in them. I do want something quiet and I really like wool, fleece or berber. Need something silent for stalking. Waterproof isn't a main concern as I will purchase a packable rain suit.

    Your pants are really a mid/outer layer. For these I would suggest top end synthetics. One lighter pant for nicer weather/harder activity and a heavier pant for colder weather/less activity. Lighter Westcomb or Sitka Ascent. Heavier Mammut Champ or Sporthill 3sp. The wool may be hard to dry out without a fire and then you smell like smoke!!! They make top end synthetics that stay warm like wool when wet, but dry many times faster.

    Then some outer layer insulated top and bottom. Hike/stalk in everything else, but throw these on when you stop to glass or at camp. You want it as light weight, compactable, and warm as possible!!! Barney's in Anchorage where I work from time to time makes an excellent top and bottom. The Brooks Range Coat and Pant. Also the Mountain Hardware Compressor, Sitka Kelvin, or some of the Montbells.


    Rain Suit
    -Looking for a packable rain suit and I read a review on here and was thinking of going with the Cabelas MT050 or somethingl ike that IF it's packable.

    When I lived in the lower 48 I USE to shop at Cabelas and Bass Pro for hunting clothing. USE TO!!! Most of their stuff is CRAP!!! I would be careful and get good reccomendations before buying anything from there. That said it's hard to beat Helly Hansen when it's bombing. but you'll swet to death if you're moving. Otte makes a rain pant and coat that are pretty bomb proof, but breath better than Helly Hansen. The Otte gear is better in my oppinion than the Sitka stuff and cheaper. The price is till steap. Otte uses Tetratex instead of Gortex. Good quality rain gear should and will be the most expensive hunting clothing you will buy.

    Basically what I think (may not be right) is wearing a base layer good for hiking if it's cold and you need it, fleece/berber midlayer sweater/pullover with a windstopper (windshear) and I think a good vest overtop would be good for extra warmth (wool/fleece/berber) you're better off just picking a good base and mid layer to hike in and trust a quality outer insulated top and bottom to keep you warm when you stop but with no winshear as I dont think I would need to layers of windshear. you can always take a really light weight wind breaker to use as a wind stopper and mid layer "lubricant" Am I on the right track? I'm so nervous about going on this trip and having the wrong gear...could really spoil the trip especially with it's costing $$$$$ 110% correct!!!!.

    Not to worry you, but just some ideas.

    Brett

  7. #7

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    REI was one of the stores that someone mentioned to me, are there other online stores someone can recommend?

    As for the base layer...my HH base layer is considered synthetic and yes I agree with the stink after sweating in it....this is why I have a few sets. However, I will be looking into the Merino wool base layers like you mentioned.

    As for using Wool, Fleece, Berber, etc.. should I stay away from these and use synthetics? My concern is the synthetics won't breather nearly as well as the Wool and Fleece and this is a big issue for me as I sweat a lot and need clothing that is very breatheable.

    This is great info and REALLY appreciate the opinions. I just wish I had some good stores to actually go in and try on clothing rather than buying online. Can be such a pain!

    Paul

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    Member BrettAKSCI's Avatar
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    No synthetics don't breath as well as wool. They breath a LOT BETTER!!!!! That's why they dry soooooo much faster. If you look down the list in this forum you will see a discussion about Barney's getting their website up. I would highly reccomend checking out their website to see what's on there. It recently came back on after a LOOOOONG hyatus. I don't know if it's fully functional yet. You can always look at the gear I mentioned on the manufacturer websites and buy it over the phone from Barney's.

    Brett

    PS. Barney's Sports Chalet Anchorage, Alaska.

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    For a base layer I recomend a polyester shirt like under armor or REI make, I am not a big fan of the compression fit ones though. Fot the bottom I suggest some light weight TNF thermals, I own some of these and they are the best fitting, most comfortable thermals I have ever worn. I wear them Xcountrt skiing and they are usually dry by the time I get home. If you want an extra layer for an extremely small space/weight consider silk tops.

    For a mid layer Top the flece vest is a good idea, but I also recomend the Marmot DriClime Windshirt. It is light and warm, and it can be used anywhere from a base layer to a top layer on dry days. For mid/top bottom layer, I am still working on that one. For warm weather I like the synthetic zip off pants, but for the cooler weather I think I will try Columbia Powers Vertical II pants. I own a couple of pairs and like them so far.

    The rain suit, I am still working on. I sweat a lot when hiking, so I like breathable stuff, except when going through thick brush it leaks. But If I wear the Impertech, I end up soaked in sweat instead of rain. The good news is you might be more likely to get snow than rain.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

  10. #10

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    I was at some store (Mountain ???..can't remember) and they had Marmot, Under Armour and Columbia Rain Gear ... anyone have some experience with these brands? I looked at the HH Impertechs or at least I think they were the Impertechs (Green, kind of rubber feeling???) My only issue with it was the jacket is sooo long, I'm short (5'6") and I can only imagine walking through bush with it on. Looks to be made really well though!!! I have no choice but to go with another brand.

    As for the base layer ... I think I'm going to bring both with me (synthetic and wool), my HH heavy base layer, Under Armour 2.0, and I'm going to buy either SmartWools medium base layer which a store close to me has or I will order -33 and hope the fit is good.

    I'm still debating whether or not I should bother with pants that have a windstopper on them. I find the windstopper material makes me sweat. If I wear thermal longjons and insulated pants, that should be plenty...it's not like im going to be posting in -20C weather for hours. At worst I can always put on my rainpants if it gets windy???

    Still debating whether or not to go with Fleece/Berber pants and mid/outlayer. Tough to find quiet clothing that fits really well and it seems like wool clothing is made so big! No consideration for us little guys

    Paul

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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zr2paul View Post
    Still debating whether or not to go with Fleece/Berber pants and mid/outlayer. Tough to find quiet clothing that fits really well and it seems like wool clothing is made so big! No consideration for us little guys

    Paul
    Funny I always thought it was made too small for us big guys. I'm 6'5 and 280.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

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    I didn't think that much about getting dressed on my wedding day, let alone to go hunting.

    I'd take a lightweight set of capilene long underwear, a polar fleece pull-over shirt, some powerstretch fleece pants, some Smartwool socks, a wind-stopper fleece coat, and some paclite Goretex rain clothes. In the morning if the temps were cool enough I'd wear the capilene. If warm out I'd skip it. If I was going to climb I'd skip it no matter what since I'd be overheating in 12 steps or less anyway. The fleece shirt is warm but lets the breeze through to cool you off and dry your perspiration. Or you can just wear the capilene shirt if the temps are warmer. Add the windstopper as needed. When you stop...put the rain gear on before the chill sets in. Even if you're wet you'll stay warm as long as you keep the breeze off you. The only time I'd need more clothes than that is if I figured to be sitting around a lot. In that case I'd wear the capilene. Add gaiters and that's my universal fall hunting clothes list. You can add designer gear if you fancy it, but it isn't necessary.

    Note: I wear zero cotton in the field. Even my briefs are synthetic. NO COTTON!

    I expect to complete all my hunts without a single item of camo, too. And a bright red day pack.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pid View Post
    Note: I wear zero cotton in the field. Even my briefs are synthetic. NO COTTON!

    I expect to complete all my hunts without a single item of camo, too. And a bright red day pack.
    I wear the ex-officio boxers. I am not a fan of the boxer jock thing but to each his own. The ex officio nickers dry faster than anything I have found including UA. If you need to test for yourself soak and hang a set side by side! The ex-officio will dry much faster in a cool environment. The underarmour NEEDs your body heat to effectively dry and even then still significantly slower thatn the ex-o. Downside is the ex-o is not as durable and will start to pill after a while. I have many days on mine though and I get several years of recreational use out of a set. I probably use them more than most too as I carry them on my deployment cycle for use while traveling. I go 10-25 days at a time living out of a 25lb back pack traveling around Iraq so limiting underwear and socks to gear that is hand washable and can be worn the next day is imperative!

    My wife shot her moose last year in a BRIGHT red snomobiling jacket, standing in front of our ideling super crew f150. We didn't have one iota of camo on either of us and the radio was playing in the back ground....

  14. #14

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    Paul ... have you had a look at the Sitka gear? www.sitkagear.com ... Have a look at their 90% Pants and Jacket as I think this is what I might purchase along with the Celcius Vest for added warmth under the jacket (if it fits). I know there a lot of reveiws on this stuff so I'm going to check out some posts. Just thought you might be interested...have a look!

    Paolo

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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    zr2paul, you will notice that of all the items I posted there was no camo. Mr. Pid & maybe Lujon also think it is not necessary. The animals in Alaska are not white tail deer that see hundreds or thousands of hunters in their life. If you use the wind, and know when not to move you will be fine without it. If you ever wach old videos of Fred Bear he hunted in a red flanel shirt and a felt hat. And he hunted with a bow. The camo will add about 50% or more to the price of the cloths you buy, with marginal improvement in performance.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

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    I was looking at buying Black as I would be using this gear for more than just hunting. I'm not concerned about camo AT ALL as it's more of a marketing thing (in my opinion). Here in Ontario I'm hunting in Hunter Orange head to toe...I can be seen miles away!!!

    I just like what I read about Sitka Gear and thought it would be a good recommendation for Paul. I also liked Marmot Softshell Outerwear.
    Paolo

  17. #17

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    Paul you can try www.monodsports.com in case there is something you need... they are in Alberta so it will help with the shipping/duty costs.

    Paolo

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    For all that I say about not caring for camo the one thing I do shy away from is Black. I doubt it makes a difference but still the last thing I want to look like is a black bear! My gear tends to be grey or natural tones, I don't skip past grey and tan to get to bright red or electric blue but I will wear subdued blue or even burgundy or the aformentioned red flannel gear if the price is right besides alpine AK in the fall is FULL of different shades of red!! For the most part I prefer more discreet solid colors. It is amazing how much money you can save by not jumping on the camo/sent blocker band wagon! My new back pack is blue and grey and those are the colors I chose. Nothing that presents a stark contrast but especially w/ a pack I want to be able to find it again after I set it down!
    The only thing worse than a camo pack is a camo skinning knife, Bino's or range finder, and these are all items you have to pay MORE to get in the latest super fad real tree mossy invisible rock stump pattern! My skinner is Blaze orange! By the time the animal sees that it is WAY too late... On second thought even those arent THAT bad. If you lose one of them you will probably survive, lose your pack w/ your shelter and sleeping bag on the mountains in Sept/Oct and it may well be the last mistake you ever make!

    Regarding this hunt it is definately time to chat w/ the guide. If you are going to be calling in moose from stand points w/ minimal walking then the Wool gear will be great! Very warm for standing and quiet for the stalk.

    For the Griz I am assuming spot and stalk so I would go with a lighter fast drying pant preferably w/ a 4 way stretch. I can't believe I am saying this since I hate them but a cold Oct-Nov hunt especially at altitude may be just the time to break out the Sporthill 3sp pants. They started life as x-country ski gear and would likely do well in your situation. A soft shell pant w/ thigh vents may do you well too it really just depends on the temp and your own personal preference. For me I always go w/ light pants and will add a merino wool layer underneath to adjust for cooler temps.
    For packable rain gear I go w/ Marmot Precip. Not camo and not super quiet but noise is less of a factor in the rain and they are truly water proof in all but the worst downpours. I have heard good reports on the Cabelas brand too but I have also heard more than one person on this board andothers complain of completely shredding them on a hunt where alder busting was common.

  19. #19

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    Good Point with the black gear but I always wear an orange vest BUT I'm sure there will be times that I will be shedding cloths and that may include the vest, thanks for bringing that up! I think for rain gear I'm going with either the green or orange Marmot Precip jacket/pants and I MIGHT purchase the HH Jacket only in case of severe storms. An extra rain jacket shouldnt be too much of a bother in the back pack. Speaking of day packs, I think I might go with the Marmot Alpha 25 in the Orange/Grey or Light Green/Grey. Looks to be well built back pack and with 1550cu inch (25L) should be more than enough for my gear for the day. For pants I prefer a mid weight pant this way its good for temps around zero and if gets colder I can put on some longjohns.

    Speaking of camo ... how about long jons and socks in camo Why anyone on earth would spend the extra money on camo for those . And for gear such as bino's, knives, etc... camo is the worst! Like you mentioned, you ever drop them good luck finding them!

    As for my hunt...it's not in Alaska, it's in the mountains of central BC somewhere. Forget the area. Temperature won't be exactly like Alaska but I would assume it's somewhere close. I will be speaking with my guide to get further information.

    Paul which guide are you going with? Send me a PM!

    Paolo

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I am not much of a fan of Marmot packs. I have a Gregory and it is a good pack but bigger than it sounds like you need. I think the Arc'tyrex and Osprey packs are quite a bit tougher and may serve you better.
    Despite my anti camo phylosophy I will admit that if you are not hauling 10 days worth of camp the eberlestock ( I have the x1) and badlands packs are hard to beat. My buddy has the Badlands 2800 bat wing setup and he has hauled out all kinds of stuff w/ it including hie griz rug last year! Both eberlestock and badlands are pretty heavy for their size compared to the osprey or other mountaineering oriented packs.

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