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    Essential Gear for Backcountry Adventures This Spring

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    Expert outdoor advice

    With spring here and the snow resorts winding down their operations you may think that the 2017 alpine season is coming to an end. Not so! The Australian Backcountry has only just gotten started. Discover the snow beyond the ski lifts and experience a richer, more rewarding alpine experience.

    Here we have compiled a list of the essential gear required for backcountry adventures be it snow shoeing, cross country skiing, ice climbing or alpine touring.

    IMPORTANT
    Alpine environments are prone to rapid & extreme changes in weather conditions, having the right equipment is critical for the safety of you and your group.

    Use this list to check that you possess all the gear required for adventures into an alpine environment. For any gear that you are unsure of contact Mont Adventure Equipment, experts in alpine clothing & equipment.

    ESSENTIAL CLOTHING

    • Thermal Long Pants, Polartec/synthetic, NOT COTTON. Men's // Women's
    • Thermal Top, Polartec/synthetic, NOT COTTON. Men's // Women's
    • 1 or 2 Mid layer fleece for active use, Polartec 100 weight or Power Stretch Pro fleece, NOT
    • COTTON. Men's // Women's
    • Hooded shell jacket: Waterproof, windproof, breathable. Men's // Women's
    • Shell pants: Waterproof, windproof, breathable. Men's // Women's
    • Insulated jacket: down or synthetic. Men's // Women's
    • Warm Socks 2 pairs, NOT COTTON // Men's // Women's
    • Beanie
    • Ski gloves
    • Spare socks, NOT COTTON
    • Spare gloves

    ESSENTIAL GEAR

    OPTIONAL GEAR

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  • Expert outdoor advice

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    What do the temperature ratings & EN13537 on sleeping bags mean?

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    Expert outdoor advice

    Many sleeping bags are rated using the EN13537 rating which is a European Standard designed to standardise temperature ratings across sleeping bags regardless of manufacturer.

    Generally 3 temperatures are provided, Women's Comfort, Men's Limit & Extreme.

    • The Women's Comfort is the temperature at which a "Standard Woman" can sleep comfortably in a relaxed position.
    • The Men's Comfort Limit is the temperature at which a "Standard Man" can sleep for 8 hours in a curled position.
    • And Extreme is the minimum temperature at which a "Standard Woman" can remain for 6 hours without risk of death, but the risk of frostbite is still possible. At this temperature you will be cold, you will be uncomfortable, you will probably not sleep, and there is the risk of serious injury. We suggest you avoid buying a sleeping bag based on this temperature.

    Zodiac 700 Sleeping Bag En13537 label

    • A Standard Woman is assumed to be 25 years old, 160cm tall and with a weight of 60kg.
    • A Standard Man is assumed to be 25 years old, 173cm tall and with a weight of 73kg.
    • These ratings are given assuming the subject is using an insulated sleeping mat, is in a tent and is wearing one layer of long thermal underwear.

    What if the sleeping bag doesn't have an EN13537 rating?

    Several Mont sleeping bags do not carry an EN13537 rating, rather they have a Mont Temperature Rating. A Mont Temperature Rating is based on over 35 years of experience in the design, manufacture and use of sleeping bags in the wild.

    On a Mont Temperature Rated sleeping bag two temperatures are given, a warmer temperature and a colder temperature. These two temperatures can be considered in a similar way to the Women's Comfort and Men's Limit temperatures specified on EN13537 rating.

    For example, the Mont Spindrift Sleeping Bag has a temperature rating of -9ºC to -15ºC. This rating suggests a Woman or someone who sleeps very cold will be comfortable at -9ºC or just below, and a Man or someone who sleeps warm will be comfortable at -15ºC.

    The Spindrift sleeping bag temperature rating is -9ºC to -15ºC

    We always suggest buying a sleeping bag with a temperature rating that will go below what you expect to face. It is much easier to cool down than it is to warm up.

    Other factors that will determine your comfort in a sleeping bag are metabolism, age, thermals, socks, headwear, health, fatigue, what you have eaten and what type of sleeping mat used.

    Other blog posts about Sleeping Bags.
    Why do sleeping bags have left & right zips & which do I choose?
    What size sleeping bag do I need?
    How to look after your down sleeping bag

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  • Expert outdoor advice

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    TAGS

    sleeping bag zips, RHZ, LHZ, sleeping bags

    Why do sleeping bags have left & right zips & which do I choose?

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    Expert outdoor advice

    Many Mont sleeping bags are available with zips on either the left side or the right side. First and foremost this is to allow people of both left or right hand dominance to be comfortable in their sleeping bag.

    For Right Handed People
    Generally a right handed person is most comfortable in a Left Hand Zip sleeping bag (LHZ), reaching over their left shoulder with their right hand to operate the zip.

    For Left Handed People
    A left hand person is generally most comfortable in a Right Hand Zip sleeping bag (RHZ), reaching over their right shoulder with their left hand to operate the zip.

    This is not a rule and there will be personal preferences.

    Also, many Mont Sleeping Bags with opposite zips can be zipped together, quickly and easily creating a sleeping bag for two.

    Even Standard and Extra Large Mont Sleeping Bags will zip perfectly to each other because of a uniform length and gauge of side zips.

    A Mont Women’s size sleeping bag will zip to another Women’s size sleeping bag and also to any Standard or Extra Large size with only a small section of unattached zip on the larger bag.

    If you intend on zipping Mont Sleeping Bags of different generation together, we suggest checking prior to purchase that they zip together correctly as zip production can vary slightly over time. Mont uses only YKK brand zips on all Mont products, the most reliable zips available.

    Sleeping Bags with zips on both sides joined together creating a sleeping bag for two.
    A Mont Ossa Women's Sleeping Bag zipped together with a standard length Mont Brindabella Sleeping Bag.

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  • Expert outdoor advice

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    Allie Pepper, Australian Mountaineer & Mont Ambassador Presents Her Story

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    Expert outdoor advice

    Allie Pepper is one of Australia’s leading female mountaineers with ascents of three 8000m peaks; Everest, Manaslu and an ascent of Cho Oyu without bottled oxygen.

    Allie climbs and guides on high altitude peaks in the Andes and Himalaya, has been supported by Mont on many adventures and we are excited to have her in-store for a presentation evening this September.

    Through the evening Allie will share her mountaineering story: from humble beginnings in the New Zealand alps to the 8000m mountains of the Himalaya. She will take you through amazing photos of expeditions she has completed and provide details on upcoming tours she is leading to Aconcagua in Argentina and Mera Peak in Nepal. And you will have plenty of opportunity during intermission to ask her about any of her climbs and the gear essential to her survival.

    Customers that attend will go in a draw to win lucky door prizes drawn on the night!

    Allie Pepper, Mountaineer and Mont Ambassador
    Left photo courtesy of Simon Carter, Insight Photography

    When: Thursday 24th of September from 5.30pm
    Where: The Mont Shop at 18 Pirie Street Fyshwick ACT 2609
    Cost: FREE! Plus lucky door prizes on the Night!

    Contact the Mont shop for more info
    shop@mont.com.au
    02 6162 1661

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