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JH60

Cleaning volcanic dust off gear (esp. Gore Tex)

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Did a late season climb of Mt. Shasta last weekend, including a dry, windy and dusty night at Helen Lake. As I was packing up my campsite on the way out monday I noticed that my gear had an unusually heavy amount of volcanic rock dust. I don't normally fret too much about post climb gear cleanup, and don't like to wash technical gear unnecessarily to avoid damage to special coatings. But it occured to me that fine volcanic dust is used commercially as an abrasive and can't be good if allowed to remain in the expensive "Todd Tex" walls of my tent (Bibler iTent) or boots I used (LS Trangos) or other Gore Tex stuff. Do other take special care to clean gear when it's exposed to a heavy layer of fine volcanic rock dust, and if so do you do anything beyond just washing it with water and/or shaking off the dust?

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It is not going to dissolve in water and it more likely to just infiltrate deeper and grind away in water. I would just dust it off and put it away.

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it seems like just hosing off the set up tent would be a good idea. The boots are usually so filthy already that washing it is pointless.

 

Seems like the pores in goretex are smaller than ash size so having ash get into the pores should be unlikely. But clogging up the pores is a possibility. I doubt any actual harm to the material has or will happen.

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Thanks guys. In theory I'm most concerned about the boots because the Trangos have a kevlar outer layer that I'm sure lets dust through, especially if carried by wash water, where it could then just rub against the membrane layer in the gore tex liner. In practice, the Trangos are three years old and have enough wear that they are just a few trips away from the dumpster. The Bibler tent is only a couple of years old, however, and at that price it better last more than another couple seasons (though I'm not counting on getting the 20+ yrs I got out of my old TNF VE25). :)

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