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Posts Tagged ‘deuter backpack’

Hiking the PCT – Sugar Bowl to Squaw Valley

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011
PCT on Donner Summit

PCT on Donner Summit

WHO: Dave and Pam – Tahoe Mountain Sports’ owners

WHAT: Fall hike on the Sierra Crest

WHERE:  Pacific Crest Trail from Donner Summit to Squaw Valley

WHEN: 3rd week of October, 2011

GEAR: Pam had on her Lole Circuit Walk Shorts, Mountain Hardwear Butter Hoodie and Smith Rosewood sunglasses and Dave used the Deuter Speed Lite 30, Salomon Synapse Shoes, which will be out next year, and a Smartwool Merino T-Shirt.

There is no better time of year to go hiking then the Fall, at least in my opinion. The air is cooler, the sky is clearer and there are less people around so it is way more peaceful. On a rare day off together (sans child), Pam and I found ourself looking to do one of the longer hikes in the Tahoe region and we chose the PCT from Donner to Squaw due to its length, exposure and incredible views. We were also looking forward to encountering a little snow, but alas, there was not very much of it.

Snow on the PCT in October

Rounding the back side of Sugar Bowl

The hike is around 18 miles and we did it as a car shuttle, leaving 1 car in the Squaw parking lot and leaving the 2nd car at the top of Old Highway 40, near Sugar Bowl Ski Academy. We encountered a little bit of snow on and off throughout the hike, but the only decent drifts were on the back side of Sugar Bowl, just as we gained the main ridge of the Sierra Crest. You can see some snow in this pic on the right.

Otherwise, it was very smooth going with a few encounters with some other parties but for the most part, pretty quiet and peaceful. This hike can take anywhere from 5-8 hours depending on your pace and we finished in just under 7 hours and we made two 30 minute stops along the way to enjoy the scenery. The trail parralels the ridge for the most part until after Tinker’s Knob where it drops down on the west side of the Crest only to climb back up to the Granite Chief ridge on the outskirts of Squaw.

PCT Trail Marker

PCT Trail Marker on the back side of Granite Chief

You actually descend quite a bit here, even beginnning to think that you might never gain the ridge again, but alas, you then hit this creek and this sign and realize you are about to climb back up for one final climb to the ridge and then down the Shirley Canyon trail. The autumn colors were in full effect in all the drainages and below the ridges. Especially beautiful were the aspens and the willows on the way down the trail and back into Squaw Valley. As your knees and feet start to feel tired, the beauty of the Sierra Nevada in its full Fall splendor reminds you why you live here and recreate here.

As for the gear, we could not have asked for better setups. We were both wearing our Smartwool base layers and they proved invaluable for the constantly changing temperatures along the way and my Deuter Speed Lite backpack was the perfect size for carrying all the necessary essentials for an extended day hike. Until next time, enjoy your outdoor adventures wherever they take you!

Autumn on the Shirley Canyon Trail

Autumn on the Shirley Canyon Trail





The Tahoe Mountain Sports Adventure of the Week blog series takes a walk (or hike, surf, climb or PCT hike) in someone else’s shoes, from pro athletes to local Tahoe adventurers. Let us know if you’ve got an adventure to share.

Deuter Backpack Review: Deuter ACT Zero 50+15

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Deuter Backpacks has the best pack going for 2011, the Deuter ACT Zero 50+15. It’s the one backpack that can do it all from ultralight overnighters to big load–hauling multiweek trips.

But don’t take our word for it, Outside Magazine, who awarded the Deuter Backpack the 2011 Gear of the Year Award, said; “It’s the best kind of mutant. Part minimalist fast-packer, part monster hauler, the ACT Zero seemed like the perfect tool no matter what the mission.”

The Outside editors went on in their ACT Zero 50+15 Deuter backpack review to say “At this price, the pack’s a steal.”

Check out our overview of the Deuter Zero series pack features here:

We like the fact that you can haul up to 65 liters (3,950 cubic inches) or 50 pounds in a 3 pound 5 ounce (1.48 kilogram) backpack — the hauling realm of 5+ pound packs in the recent past.

And if you don’t want or need to bring that much, you can strip the floating top lid off, turning the Deuter ACT pack into a streamlined roll-top ultralight pack.

Of course you get great storage and organization with water bottle pockets, a stash pocket on the back, the top lid and hipbelt pockets, but you can also attach an ice ax or trekking poles to designated loops, and stash your reservoir in the built-in hydration system holder.

Fit is a snap, with men’s and women’s specific geometry, and the VariQuick shoulder harness dials in a custom fit for a variety of torso lengths.

Once you’ve got the fit dialed in, it stays comfortable mile after mile no matter how challenging the terrain you face, thanks to the VariFlex hip belt that follows your movement organically.

The ACT system pumps cool air up your back in a channel to keep you cool on a warm summer hike, and all the harness padding is extremely breathable — developed for use in Mercedes and BMW air filters — so you stay more comfortable.

So if you’re looking for the perfect backpack for a fast-and-light overnight, a multiweek wilderness trek, oversees travel or any other adventure you can conjure up, the Deuter ACT Zero 50+15 and the Deuter ACT Zero 45+15 SL Women’s backpacks are tough to beat.

Gear Review: Nemo, Neo and Platypus

Friday, July 16th, 2010

When my initial plans for a recent weekend were thrown out the window, I immediately began calling friends to see who was available for an overnighter in Tahoe National Forest. After getting a couple on the trip roster, I began asking Dave (TMS owner) for demo gear. “Toys, I need all the toys you’ve got!” I ended up taking four pieces of gear (Nemo Losi tent, Therm-a-Rest Neo Air sleeping pad, Platypus Cleanstream Gravity Water Filter and Deuter ACT Lite 65+10 backpack) out to one of my favorite lakes, Downey Lake near Emigrant Gap, to get the lowdown on how they worked, take some photos and have some fun. All tasks accomplished:

NEMO LOSI: The staff at Nemo Equipment must have been thinking of me when they came up with the Losi. This tent has won acclaim from Backpacker, Outside and Men’s Journal. As soon as you unroll the storage sack, you are going to think, “oh, I like this already.” I know I did. Finally someone did something innovative about the traditional tent storage sacks; Nemo decided to create a roll-up sack — not unlike a roll-up climbing gear bag — with pockets for the poles, stakes, tent and fly. Unroll it and it keeps the parts out of the mud and sand…


Still Skiing Powder……

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

May 11th has come and what better way to celebrate than with yet another day of light, epic powder skiing? Woke up to about a foot of fresh snow and Alpine Meadows ski resort was the choice of the day. Since the resort is closed and I have been skiing Squaw all year, we thought it was a great choice. The crew started hiking and with a groomed track to follow, it made easy and fast going. The group had all sorts of gear from Tahoe Mountain Sports including the Deuter Freerider 30 backpack, some Black Diamond skis, poles and bindings and my Mammut Viento Jacket. Once at the top, we headed over to the Palisades and skied a lap there and then donned our skins again to get up to High Yellow and skied that all the way to the glorious bottom. Who knows how much longer this pow series is going to last, but here at Tahoe Mountain Sports, we love skiing, so we are ok with it…….though some flip flop weather is not too much to ask for;) Happy turns!

Tahoe Backcountry Report – 4/6/2010

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

Before it starts to warm up here for good, I wanted to get some more powder skiing in and today looked like the last day for a little while. So, Jim and I headed up to Rose Knob in the Mt. Rose Backcountry area for a quick tour this morning.

The snow was still excellent with about 2 feet of fresh powder on most aspects.Jim skiing the powder

The wind has affected some higher, non sheltered areas and the sun was starting to warm the south and east facing aspects and I suspect that after today, even the North facing aspects are going to see some type of sun.
Jim skiing the powder But, it was still cold and powdery the whole time we were out.

Here is the gear talk section to let you know what kind of gear we were using and wearing.

Jim on the way up with his gear

Jim on the way up with his gear

Jim is now on his brand new pair of Black Diamond Telemark Boots, BD Zealots and Axl bindings while I am on the same setup but with the Black Diamond 01 Tele bindings. He was also sporting his brand new Mammut Ultimate Hooded Jacket with his Patagonia Sun Bucket Hat. I had my Deuter Backpack on my back with all my normal avy gear, including my Pieps DSP. All in all, we had a great morning out with the powder smiles to prove it!

Deuter ACT Trail 24 Backpack Review

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

We are very excited to announce that Tahoe Mountain Sports is 1 of only 2 retailers in the entire country to be carrying the brand new Deuter ACT Trail 24 Backpack and it is in stock and ready for shipping. For those of you that don’t know, Tahoe Mountain Sports carries the entire line of Deuter backpacks and Deuter bike products including what we think is the best hydration reservoir out there, the Deuter Streamer. More on Deuter later, this is a blog post about a brand new, super cool day hiking backpack!

Deuter continues its success in the backpack and daypack world with the release of the all new ACT Trail 24. The new ACT Trail 24 is the little brother to Deuter‘s award winning ACT Trail 32. It brings all the popular features of the ACT Trail 32 and the woman’s specific ACT Trail 28 SL into a more compact 24 liter size, making it a perfect summer day pack for a wide variety of activities.  The Trail Series backpacks are small top-loading traditional daypacks with modern features and top-notch quality.  They have the more traditional AirContact back system compared to the mesh back systems of the Futura series and the all new ultralight Spectro series. The Air Contact back system still ventilates quite well, doesn’t cut into the capacity of the pack and is a bit lighter.

Deuter ACT Trail 24

Deuter ACT Trail 24 - Front View

The backpack includes a large mesh stuff it pocket on the front for a light extra layer or anything that you need easily accessible. One of the best features of the Trail 24 is the  large two way zipper on the front of the pack that provides easy access to the entire contents of your backpack and especially the bottom or anything small and hard to find. This “clamshell” opening as it is referred to allows you to put the back down on its back and get a full view into and full reach into the entire main compartment of the backpack. It also has a mesh pocket on one side and a small zippered side pocket on the other, perfect for your map and compass. Ice axe and trekking pole loops secure gear to the outside, and a hip belt pocket keeps a small camera or other essentials close at hand.

ACT Trail 24 - Two Way Bottom Zipper

ACT Trail 24 - Two Way Bottom Zipper

All of these great features are packed into a compact 2lb 12oz package with typical Deuter durability and quality. The AirContact back system with Delrin™ Frame Rod keeps loads up to 20lbs stable and comfortable. The built in removable rain cover may not see much use here in Tahoe, but is an invaluable feature in wetter climates. Don’t forget, the rain cover by itself would cost you $20 and it is included with this backpack. The pack is hydration reservoir compatible, but the reservoir itself is not included. We highly recommend a Deuter Streamer 3 Liter Reservoir to go with your ACT Trail 24. We always recommend the 3 liter version because if you ever want that much liquid, you have that option, but you don’t always have to fill it up to capacity.

ACT Trail 24 with Rain Cover

ACT Trail 24 with Rain Cover

Overall, this is a great little pack that carries everything you need for a summer day hike or a day at the beach. The 24 liter capacity is perfect for me.  I find 30+ liter day packs a little too big for most summer uses and often a small hydration pack is not big enough. The ACT Trail 24 fills this niche beautifully.  I took the pack out on a 3 hour afternoon hike and it carried everything I needed nicely, including extra food and water for the dog.  I could see this pack being my “Go To” backpack for most summer activities including hikes, bike commuting, and days at the beach. All in all a great little pack and Tahoe Mountain Sports is proud to be a partner with Deuter USA in releasing this backpack to our U.S. customers.

ACT Trail 24 Side Pocket

ACT Trail 24 Side Pocket

UPDATE: Want to read more Deuter ACT Trail reviews? Check out the Deuter ACT Trail 24 review on or and TMS customer reviews on the Deuter ACT Trail 24.

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