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Team Brat

Alpine shell pant question......

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I just picked up the North face Apex softshell and having a little trouble deciding on a shell pant now. Has anyone tried the North face Becketts pant, or would have a recomendation on a solid shell pant??? Will be using them for cascade climbing. Any input would be greatly appreciated.. Thanks!!

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Go with Schoeller pants or the equivalent. I like REI ACME pants, but everybody makes something like it.

 

As for hardshell pants, I have a 5 oz pair of windpants that I usually leave at home and Patagucchi's lightest goretex pants for when I have to work out in the yard in the pouring rain, which is never.

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IMO you don't need anything like the becketts if you are climbing during the summer in the cascades. In fair summer weather you would be too hot to wear it climbing with a softshell underneath except maybe on a cold day on Rainier. They would stay in your pack way too often and are too heavy for that.

 

I know all the gear lists that guiding companies put out say that heavy duty hard shell bottoms are necessary, but it's just not true. For objectives under 10,000 feet or so during the summer, I wear nylon hiking pants and throw my marmot precips (light and relatively cheap) in the pack if the forecast gives me pause. For higher elevations I might wear my softshells rather than the thin nylon pants. Long undies take the place of boxer briefs when needed for the cold.

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I think I've worn my hardshells like twice in the past 5 years and that was for skiing in the rain. Wear synthetic undies and a softshell and if you're moving you'll dry em out and keep warm. I hardly ever take hardshells anymore even in the pack although I do use some fleece lined, nylon shelled overpants in the winter sometimes.

 

I'd go with the lightest/cheapest shell you can find with full zips if you're just going to carry it. The Mountaineers would disagree.

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Thank you guys for the advice. My first climb will be a guided climb of Hood in late May, but I plan to knock out as many cascade climbs as possible this summer, maybe I could meet up with a few of ya and make a weekend or 2 out of it :)

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If you're doing a guided climb (or a course) you may need the hardshells because you may be

1) hiking in the rain because you can't reschedule because of "bad" weather

2) practicing self arrest (ie sliding around on wet slush)

3) standing around a lot because that's part of the agenda or just because you're a large group

 

On personal trips you have the option of never falling in the snow, deciding to do something else if it's pouring down rain, etc.

 

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