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#36874 - 05/29/14 12:14 PM Re: Ultralight Manifesto [Re: Steve C]
dbd Offline

Registered: 11/09/09
Posts: 216
Loc: San Diego
Originally Posted By: Steve C
If the bottle is empty, a bear won't bother it. In fact, take the lid off so the bear can really see (smell) it. Bear is not going to waste any time crunching plastic that is empty.

Steve, your personal history with bears doesn't seem to have improved your care in giving safety advice. Whether you like to consider it or not, some of the readers may visit the Whitney Zone themselves and most who do will travel through Whitney Portal. For those who do, your advice is endangering there.

A portal bear may not eat an empty plastic bottle, but she may peel open your car door to find out if the bottle she sees is empty. (You are right of course, as far as the bottle is concerned, this won't "bother it".) Rangers also take exception to any kind of food or water container visible in vehicles and they don't bother to smell first either.

At the portal, packs "look like food" so bears have stolen and will steal packs and rip them open before taking time to smell them. The bears don't seem to eat the cameras, GPS units or binoculars and you might find them in daylight the next morning.

I had a guy at the portal one night ask me if I had seen his pack. He had set the pack at his feet and leaned in to his car door to pick up something across the seat. When he stood back, his pack was gone. He was able to borrow enough gear from people in the parking lot to make his day hike and his wife found the camera/GPS/binoculars in the morning so he did not have to carry them. Maybe the bear wasn't hungry but just laying the ultralight manifesto on the dude.

Dale B. Dalrymple

#36877 - 05/29/14 12:47 PM Re: Ultralight Manifesto [Re: dbd]
Hobbes Offline

Registered: 03/28/14
Posts: 147
Loc: The OC
I now realize I should have said, "former, with labels/glue scrubbed off and thoroughly washed, Gatorade bottles". Actually, they didn't even originally contain Gatorade - that's just shorthand for the generic 20oz bottles that Gatorade and some other flavored-water manufacturers use.

The reason these canteens are so popular is because they are strong, light, have a tight lid, disposable and/or easily replaced for pennies, and have a ridge near the top so that they can be fastened by bungee cord.

As for gear nomenclature, here's an excerpt from a popular PCT hiker's trail journal

"I take my gatorade bottles down to the spigot ..."

Part of her gear list:

Titanium spoon .6
Knife (tiny swiss army classic w/scissors and single blade) 1
Platypus 2-liter bottles x 2 2
Gatorade bottles x 2 2.5
Stuff sack for food 1

I can assure you she is not purchasing Gatorade at her various stops. Sorry for any confusion. Perhaps my error is the continuing capitalization of the brand name, as opposed to affixing a general reference. The parent company better get cracking on take-down notices in order to help prevent those bottles from taking on a generic label like kleenex. (Interestingly, both lower case gatorade & kleenex show as spelling errors).

As for bears recognizing containers/packages that have provided rewards in the past, such as coolers, packs, canteens(?), etc, I haven't noticed that hanging backpacks is that popular, at least in the Sierra.

As myself, I use my pack* for a pillow (with my shoes wrapped inside), and keep both water bottles full & right next to me so that I can have a drink in the middle of the night. YMMV

* Edit: I now realize I have to be precisely clear so to avoid any possible confusion. Yes, my food and all items with any possible scent are stored in the bear container and placed 50+ yards away. My pack is empty except for some extra clothes. Hope that helps.

Edited by Hobbes (05/29/14 01:11 PM)

#36890 - 05/29/14 06:50 PM Re: Ultralight Manifesto [Re: Hobbes]
dbd Offline

Registered: 11/09/09
Posts: 216
Loc: San Diego
Originally Posted By: Hobbes
I now realize I should have said, "former, with labels/glue scrubbed off and thoroughly washed, Gatorade bottles". Actually, they didn't even originally contain Gatorade -

The problem isn't with brands of containers or clean or empty. The problem is with sloppy statements that are dangerously inapplicable at some entry/exit points that many people pass thru on their way to the high country. The behaviors that may be safe around wild bears cannot be expected to be safe around human-habituated bears.

People who give you advice that only applies to wild bears without that warning are doing you a disservice. Even with proper warning it is still your responsibility to know what kind of bear area you are traveling through at any time and that can change over time depending on the behavior of other people who have been there before you.

Dale B. Dalrymple

#36899 - 05/30/14 07:42 AM Re: Ultralight Manifesto and maintenace [Re: wagga]
SierraNevada Offline

Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1148
Loc: NorCal
Originally Posted By: wagga
You guys with your Cuben fiber are still in the heavy canvas days - Graphene is 100 times stronger than steel, and a square metre weighs about 1/1000 of a single Diamox tablet. And it's invisible. So there.

Been watching graphene closely. The "invisible" one atom layer can maybe hold a few pounds. It would be great for the Emperor's new clothing. Here's a search link with a lot of interesting articles on one site.

Graphene Search on

The breakthroughs are not just the material, but the nanotech manufacturing processes that are being developed to make it - being able to work at the atomic scale. This is going to trigger an amazing technology revolution.

But cuben fiber still rules backpacking gear for now, if you can afford it.

Edit: I forgot to mention there's a plant in Poland about to manufacture Graphene commercially.

Edited by SierraNevada (05/30/14 07:43 AM)

#52576 - 02/01/18 08:04 AM Re: Ultralight Manifesto and maintenace [Re: SierraNevada]
Steve C Offline

Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7992
Loc: Fresno, CA
I just came across this worthwhile thread...

Here we are nearly 4 years later. Where are those graphene products?

#52581 - 02/04/18 01:43 PM Re: Ultralight Manifesto and maintenace [Re: Steve C]
EdHaynes Offline

Registered: 09/12/16
Posts: 27
Loc: California
Graphene bicycles, fishing rods, tennis rackets and much are are offered for sale. When it comes to hiking and camping, hiking boots may be here very soon:

#55750 - 07/17/19 01:00 PM Re: Ultralight Manifesto and maintenace [Re: wagga]
jbinsb Offline

Registered: 06/27/19
Posts: 5
Loc: CA
Right. Too bad not commercially available yet!!!!

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