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  • Expeditions & Adventures

    Posted by Will

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    tasmanua, bushwalking

    Western Arthur, Tasmania

    Posted by Will 0 Comment

    Expeditions & Adventures

    “After a substantial hiatus from the trails of Tassie I was starting to dream of the divine hiking down there. Plus, nothing softens the memory of those lung busting climbs and infamous Button Grass swamps like sitting on the mainland watching your trusty Mont Backcountry pack (now 18 years old) gather dust in the shed. In order to scratch the itch, a trio of us planned to have a crack at the glorious Western Arthur traverse in South West Tasmania.

    Gail ascending

     

    "...swollen creeks, visibility down to about 10m and epic wind whipping up whitecaps out on the lake"

     

    Moondance 1 Tent

    Armed with a Moondance 1 Tent, Helium 600 Sleeping Bag, Backcountry Pack, an Austral Jacket and a strong disregard for personal hygiene for the next week or so, I set off with my walking buddies from Lake Pedder into 2 days of sunshine and 360 degree views. It was pure bliss looking down on some of the country’s wildest places, with the only thing to be heard being my whimpering as I lugged myself up Moraine A onto the range. The following day, we scored occasional misty glimpses of Mt Hayes overhead, the plains far below and brooding views descending into the famous Lake Oberon. After that was a different story, with swollen creeks, visibility down to about 10m and epic wind whipping up whitecaps out on the lake. Despite being stuck in the tent for nearly 2 days waiting for the weather to clear, I was stoked to find that the new Moondance 1 was both roomy and stable. Extra points for the ridge pole pushing drip lines out to give a lovely wide vestibule which can be comfortably cooked in during foul conditions.

    Gail in mudbath

    With the weather continuing to deteriorate and worse forecast, it was time to bail out the way we came instead of risking it on the extremely exposed central section of the range. We scored some quality horizontal rain, a free whole body mud bath and some profoundly undignified faceplants on our way out – definitely a classy exit. Although we didn’t get the bluebird traverse we were planning for, the weather is the boss in the South West and my hiking itch was satisfied. For a few weeks anyway…”

    Mont staff member Gail

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  • Product spotlight

    Posted by Will

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    TAGS

    Lycan, La Sportiva, etienne Blumstein-Jones, trail running

    Review: La Sportiva Lycan Trail Running Shoe

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    Product spotlight

    By Mont Sponsored Trail Runner and Australian Mountain Running Team member Etienne Blumstein-Jones.

    First Impressions:
    Very light to pick up and very light during wear. During my first run in them I noticed how responsive they felt, especially while running faster. There isn’t a lot of tread but they still very grippy while running down technical trails and running uphill on rocks like on Mt Tennent. What I really like with these shoes is that they don’t feel bulky like regular trail shoes, the best way to describe them would be road shoes with some tread and a bit of protection over the toes. 

    La Sportiva Lycan Women's

    After One Month:
    After a month and a half of using these shoes. The tread hasn’t changed at all and the shoe doesn’t feel sloppy in the cushioning. They still feel the same as the first run! They feel great running technical descents and going up long climbs. I’ve done long runs, training sessions and easy runs in these shoes and they’ve been great in every one of those different runs.

    La Sportiva Lycan Trail Running Shoe sole

    

I recommend these shoes for any sort of trail and mountain races you could think of from the short distance trail race to the ultra. These shoes would also work well as a door-to-trail shoe where some road or bike path is required; they feel just as good on those surfaces.

    Shop Women's Lycan
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  • Product spotlight

    Posted by Will

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    Review: La Sportiva Akasha Trail Running Shoe

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    Product spotlight

    By Mont Sponsored Trail Runner and Australian Mountain Running Team member Etienne Blumstein-Jones

    First Impressions:
    They looked really good. They were comfortable straight out of the box and were light.

    After first use:
    I used them on a 30km mountainous run straight out of the box and they felt comfortable (I didn’t have any issues with hot spots on my feet the whole run). They worked perfectly even while running in snow. They were responsive and felt light while running which are two things I really look for. They drained well; drying quite quickly when swapping from the snow to rock. They had great grip (which is something that I have come to expect from La Sportiva shoes) when running on rocks and even when swapping from snow to rock.

    new-akasha

    After further runs:
    They are still just as comfortable. I have only done long runs in the Akashas and a total of 73.5 kms but there is no wear on the tread at all. They also have the right level of cushioning which is great for when the fatigue really kicks in. I tried them on parts of the Hounslow Ultra course (Skyrunning race in Blackheath) and I am now certain they will be my shoes of choice for this race.

    These shoes are made for ultras, though they are great for any distance where you want that extra bit of cushioning. Technical terrain is especially where they come alive and I would use these for any distance over 20 kms.

    Shop Women's Akasha
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  • Product spotlight

    Posted by Will

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    Review: La Sportiva Helios 2.0 Trail Running Shoe

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    Product spotlight

    By Mont Sponsored Trail Runner and Australian Mountain Running Team member Etienne Blumstein-Jones

    First Impressions:
    This is a very light and good-looking shoe. They fitted my foot well and were very comfortable. The new lacing system is really good, but it would be good to have somewhere to hide the string when the shoes are tight. Something similar to the Salomon system would be a good improvement.

    After the first use:
    I found they were an improvement on the first edition of the Helios because of the narrower design to the shoe. They drained well. They had good grip, except for wet rocks where I had to be a bit careful.

    La-Sportiva-Helios-2-blue-flame-wordpress

    After further use:
    They are still just as comfortable as the first time. I’ve only done around 50 kms in them but they has been no visible wear so far. If they are anything like the first edition of the Helios then I expect them to last a long time. I’ve so far kept these shoes for shorter runs under 25 kms and even done some road with them to get out to trails and they’ve been great for that too. I wouldn’t do a lot of road in them, so as to not wear them out too much, but its good to have a pair of trail shoes that is just as good on the road as this is generally a limiting factor when running out to the trails.
    I have also done fast and flat trails races in these shoes and they were great, just the right level of cushioning, responsiveness and lightness I want in a shoe for that sort of race.

    I would recommend this shoe for anything up to marathon distance, as long it’s not technical and too wet and in that case it would be better to use the Helios SR due to the extra grip. But these shoes shine in fast trail races whether there’s a lot of climbing or its mostly flat.

    Shop Men's Helios 2.0
    Shop Women's Helios 2.0

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