Gear Reviews


Ti Tri Caldera

We used the Caldera for cooking both breakfast and dinner at Wilson Prom, for breakfast it was porridge followed by coffee, whilst in the evening it was Cous Cous and coffee. For each meal we heated about a litre of water, which required approximately 35 mls of alcohol using the caldera with an MSR 0.85 litre pot.

However, we also used the Gram Cracker and Esbit Tablets (14 gm) which required 1.5 tablets per meal. When we are able to access the smaller tablets we intend to try these instead.

The total weight of the system (consisting of Ti Caldera, Gram Cracker, alcohol burner and MSR pot) was 180 gm.

Our observation is that it is efficient and user friendly system as well Birgit is impressed by the design, in future we will take a closer a look at the wood burning option, fires are not allowed in Wilsons Promontory NP even in winter

Pacer Poles

I have used the poles for well over 12 months now having previously used Carbon Fibre (CF) poles. Whilst these poles are heavier than CF poles I have always been impressed with their comfort in use in particular the handles which provide a more natural walking position. For walking I find these poles allow me to walk more upright as well providing an easy follow through with the pole.

At first glance it may appear that these poles would be difficult to use as tent poles but this is not the case and we have used them as poles for a Black Diamond Betalight as well as for a variety of tarps.

Final comment whilst there are lighter poles around I prefer to use Pacer Poles.

Montane Terra Pants

I have long been interested in these pants but as it has been difficult to find a pair to try for size I have had to wait until I could visit a “real shop” which happened in Melbourne. Putting these trousers on I was immediately impressed by the comfort level and even more surprised to find that they are sized on the large side so persons considering them may need to go down a size. Things I liked about these trousers were the pockets could be accessed even when hipbelt of pack is closed, the side thigh vents allow for ventilation as well as freedom of movement when climbing, the stretch fabric also aids movement. The fabric of the pants is not designed for winter conditions however, winter at Wilson Prom with temperatures ranging between 5 and 15 degrees C were ideal for these pants. The Montane Terras will now form part of my regular hiking kit for 3 season use.

Silkbody Long Sleeve Crew Neck shirt.

Silkbody clothing is a recent newcomer to the hiking market, these NZ made clothes consist of 72% Silk, 15% cotton and 13% wool. I used this shirt in preference to my normal icebreaker merino wool body layer. I was extremely impressed with the comfort level of the shirt, the non clamminess of the fabric even when damp with perspiration and the lack of odour. The shirt worked perfectly on its own or when combined with the Paramo Valez Smock. This shirt will now form part of the my 3 season hiking kit and I will trial it during winter as part of my 4 season kit.

Fortunately in Melbourne we have found a number of suppliers with a much greater range of silkbody clothing than appears to be currently available in Europe.

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