A few months ago, I saw Richard Saunders posting on Taipei Hikers about an upcoming hiking trip to Yushan, Taiwan’s highest mountain at 3952m. Since I knew that it took time to get the permits and even then, it wasn’t a sure thing, I jumped on the chance to climb this peak. At the time, I was quite fit. As the months passed, and the climb came closer, I actually had no idea what to expect. I had some issues with my previous employer, and had started a new job in September, so I honestly didn’t have much time to get back into the gym and running. Before I knew it, the climbing trip was upon me. I took the time off work, and bought some supplies.
I left my hostel at about 5:30PM in order to catch the last bus to the airport. For some reason, all buses stop at 6AM, making it quite difficult to get around Saigon. At the bus station, near the market, it took me about 15 minutes to figure out that there weren’t any more buses. So reluctantly, I took a motorcycle taxi to the airport. I negotiated a fair price in my opinion of 50,000 Dongs, which was 10x the price of a bus ride.
When you are backpacking and trying to minimize the weight of your pack, it makes sense to try and cut down on superfluous items. Take the Mammut T-Trail Headlamp with Ambient Light Dry Bag, which functions as a lightweight headlamp and a lamp. When you combine it to the ambient light dry bag, it becomes a lantern.
Read more @ GeekAlerts
There is something pretty neat about the new Osprey Raptor hydration packs: they use hydraulic pressure to bring water through the tube. No more sucking. It just flows. There is also a hiking/running line called Mantra. The Raptor is available in 4 sizes, (6, 10, 14 and 18), and uses a customized integrated Nalgene hydration bladder that has a solid back, which locks into the pack easily, even when it’s full. There is a system that puts pressure on the bottle, which in turn spouts the water. That is a great idea. They also have a bungee helmet button system to hold your helmet. They will range form $80 to $120.
That looks like a smoking pack and would be excellent as a day pack on rides. My hydration bladder broke last year. I have been meaning to get another. Instead, I’ll just get a Raptor pack. Seems like a win-win situation. This has teh benefit or being able to work on road rides and MTB rides. Once I get a training road bike, I’ll mount my stubby tires again and go MTBing. Now, all I have to see if a few odds and ends, like a notebook and a laptop, can fit into the pack as well. I’ve been using a Osprey Atmos 25 and 35 since 2007 as my main packs. They are slim and streamlined. I usually wear them on my scooter or on my bike. Though they Atmos is great, it’s not a bike specific pack and I’ve been meaning to find something.
The Atmos 25 is pretty gruddy and needs to be washed. The Atmos 35 has been used less since I almost always take the 25 out. They aren’t great for books, as they are streamlined. I get the idea that this is true for the Raptor as well. However, I’ve got a 13″ notebook, so it might not be that much of an issue.
The new Arc’Teryx hydration bags, which will only be available in the spring of 2010, look pretty darn ordinary compared to this Osprey.