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Summit Sleeping Systems, Bags and Pads for your Next SOTA trip

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KG5AHJ, Aug 10, 2021.

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  1. KG5AHJ

    KG5AHJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I am continuing my SOTA gear research with Adam K6ARK to break down what to look for in Sleeping Bags for backpacking. We go how, the sleeping bag types, ground pads types. Also what to look for when shopping for your next cold weather Summits On The Air trip.

    AA5BK, W5ESE, JF1IRQ and 2 others like this.
  2. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Best advice is if your not up on wilderness survival stay out of the wilderness till you are. Youtube will not help you.
    N7KO, K6SDW, KN4XJ and 13 others like this.
  3. KM4KGN

    KM4KGN XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'll stick with my 3 piece military sleep system. It offers options for all seasons, including extreme cold, and the bivy eliminates the need for a tent in most situations.
    K0ATV, W5KJW, KD4FBD and 5 others like this.
  4. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    M1WML, N1RBD and K0UO like this.
  5. KM4KGN

    KM4KGN XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have been a survival instructor since the mid-90s...and I start every class with the same statement " Forget everything you have ever seen on YouTube and the discovery channel, because it will probably just get you dead."
    I have been a survival instructor since the mid-90s...and I start every class with the same statement " Forget everything you have ever seen on YouTube and the discovery channel, because it will probably just get you dead."
    W5KJW, WN1MB, M1WML and 3 others like this.
  6. G7DAZ

    G7DAZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yaaaawn...that's 26 minutes and 23 seconds i'm never gonna get back...i feel so tired now; where is my sleeping bag :rolleyes:

    P.S. ...don't forget to SMASH that subscribe and like button now y'all.
    KJ7OES, WN1MB, N0TZU and 3 others like this.
  7. KG5AHJ

    KG5AHJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I love the outdoors, been to most national parks in the west. I just haven't spelt outside in freezing weather
    M1WML likes this.
  8. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    A buddy who is a forest ranger told me those personal emergency locators are as much of a curse as an aide because so many buy them and think they are good to go in the wilderness. I would think Youtube has a lot to do with it too.
    K0ATV, M1WML and N0TZU like this.
  9. KG5AHJ

    KG5AHJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    M1WML likes this.
  10. K0VWA

    K0VWA Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    @KG5AHJ I used to live in Euless!!! 1800 Fuller Wiser. Small world.

    Don't usually watch radio-related videos but watched this one since it said SOTA and some people like to do SOTA stuff in Colorado - my QTH is in DM79la at nearly 8,500' ASL. Born and raised at 106' ASL in Louisiana. How I ended up here would make a movie but I'm not selling the rights - hihi

    Saw near the end that you gents will be covering other SOTA-related gear later. Work started bugging me around the 20 min mark so please accept my apologies in advance if you covered this already or plan to cover it in later videos.

    Just want to throw out that for operating SOTA above 6,000' ASL or so, whatever gear you pack and whatever rig you have are arguably less important than self-awareness (know when to pull the plug), weather awareness (know when to pull the plug) and general safe mountaineering/back country practices. That might sound like common sense but that's not always so common these days. If you operate in bear country the two most important bits of gear are bear spray and bear-safe food storage gear and practices. You camp wherever your gear and capabilities allow and then hike up from there.

    Want to put this on its own line for emphasis. There's not much air up here. Current barometric pressure here is 22.39 inHg/755.73 mBar. You breathe early and often up here. Physical capability and knowing the limit is very important to not overdoing it.

    When we moved here from D/FW it took weeks to get adjusted. Even after living here ten years, there's a noticable difference between 6000' (swimming in air), 8K' (normal), 10K' (ok, i'm awake), 12K' (sheesh! really?) and 14k' (whatwazithinkin?). We've had friends visit from the lowlands and no kidding lips turn purple after 10 minutes on the summit of Pikes Peak. It's tough to breathe up there. Do it early and often.

    I got to work summit for the Pikes Peak hill climb a few times. Last time on the summit was when Carlin Dunne didn't make it and I was the operator who had to call it in. That was enough for me. Got to drive the AdAmAn hikers down a few times on New Years. Posted vids on youtube/hiracing but not linking them. No kidding folks - be safe up there. For the hill climbs I was on summit around 3am. Slept a few hours - not easy waking up to breathe extra. Way back in my misspent youth I did a miniscule amount of amateur auto racing (read - made too much money and didn't have kids). Hours behind the wheel in 100+ heat was no big deal but breathing at altitude is a thing. Guess I'm going on too much (you guess?) but really, the physical and mental parts most often outweigh the gear parts of being at altitude.

    Just please don't anyone croak up here trying to activate a summit. Didn't mean to soapbox but there's so much more than what gear to get before doing a safe SOTA activation. Check out the work of gents like WG0AT, K0NR and the like. I think they had a big Colorado SOTA gig last weekend.

    Apologies again if you gents are covering safety in a later episode.

    Good luck, peace and 73.
    K0ATV, N6ENO, AJ6KZ and 5 others like this.
  11. K0UO

    K0UO Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    So I could have just watched a Youtube survival know it all and not went to Jungle Training survival class, BATSUB? Which was British Army Training Support Unit Belize. That Special Forces Base has the most testing jungle exercises in the world, with access to 5,000 square miles of primary jungle, but little Youtube shows. HI

    I use the 3 piece military sleep system too.

    K0UO/ V31KW
    KM4KGN, N0TZU, M1WML and 1 other person like this.
  12. N1IPU

    N1IPU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Good stuff, This push to sell gear has hit about everything. In aviation the youtube crowd is pushing oxygen saturation meters you can get from amazon. It's far better to understand the symptoms of Hypoxia then rely on a 20dollar gadget but you cannot make money from that. An overreliance in GPS is another. I am sure if it ever goes down ATC will have their hands full along with the Coast Guard saving boaters who have never seen a sextant let alone used one. Never mind Granny driving off a cliff.
    Of course we are talking common sense and there is little of that left these days.
    K9GLS, HB9EPC, M1WML and 2 others like this.
  13. K0UO

    K0UO Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I totally agree/ learn about it.
    For Hypoxia, I when I was an Instructor Pilot/ I always taught all my student to look at their thumbnails, when they started turning blue, they had better start immediately thinking about what they had learned!
    HB9EPC, M1WML, N1RBD and 1 other person like this.
  14. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    M1WML likes this.
  15. KA1YBS

    KA1YBS XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Printed version:

    Step 1: plan your trip, using a map and weather forecast. Know in advance where water is for overnight spots. Understand sunrise and sunset times as well as temperature drops (5 deg F per 1,000ft is a general rule). Tell loved ones your plans ahead of time.

    Step 2: be in proper physical condition for the trip you planned, if in doubt, do some day hikes first. Gauge how many miles per day or altitude feet per hour you are capable of. Then add a buffer for 30lbs on your back. If you are doing altitude above 8,000ft, take it slow and or do an overnight at that elevation, if your summit is much higher to acclimate.

    Step 3. Bring the right gear. Single person tent 3lbs or so can be had at most sporting goods stores. 2-person tent means you share the load! Sleeping bags are minimum temperature rated. A 45 degree (F) bag can be very lightweight and fine for summer. Add a polar fleece liner to go down another 10 deg. F. If you need lower,, a real bag is needed and will be heavier. Always add an insulated (foam or air) mat, itll keep you warm when the ground gets cold. Rain jacket with hood, winter hat and gloves (you might be surprised and then happy you have them) Bring easy to cook meals and re-sealable bags to pack your trash out. TP is a good idea. HF rig, logbook and antenna of course. Lights, compass, map and a sturdy pack. A "Jetboil" camp stove is nearly foolproof. Sturdy eating utensils,, camp knife, cig lighter, Hey, Bring some moonshine in a flask if you like. Tie your pack up high in a tree overnight in bear country.

    Step 4. Learn from each trip and always savor them. Be careful, be safe and leave only footprints.
    HB9EPC and M1WML like this.

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