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HomeHomeDiscussionsDiscussionsGeneralGeneralGiant Stuff Sac vs Western Mountaineering HotsacGiant Stuff Sac vs Western Mountaineering Hotsac
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1/25/2021 10:38 AM
 

Hello!  

First time poster with a question.   I have been working my way through the Longhouse videos.  They are great and I really appreciate the time and effort that has gone into making them.    I am in the process of tinkering with my backpacking set up.  I recently purchased a UTE and due to it being a little bit different size and shape from my last pack I am changing a few things.    I watched the Winter Day Trip Load out with Ken Galbraith and he had a Western Mountaineering Hotsac.   I have never seen one of these before and I am very interested.   The next video I watched was Level 3 Gear Selection with Evan.  In it he used a giant stuff sack at the bottom. That could also be used as a whole back liner or in an emergency a Bivy.    So my question is can the Hotsac be dual purposed as stuff sack as well?   Not having seen one to these in person before makes me want to ask the question.   

Thanks

Brian

 
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1/28/2021 5:40 PM
 

The Hotsac is a vapor-barrier liner, which is really only useful with nightime temps below 10F, some would say minus 10F.  The main purpose of a VBL is to keep your perspiration from migrating into the sleeping bag insulation and, in sub freezing conditions, freezing inside the bag.

When Polarguard sponsored the Steeger Antarctic Expedition years ago, they said their polarguard bags slowly filled with ice but still kept them warm.  They stacked their bags on top of the sleds and tightened the cover down on them.  They couldn't easily be compressed any longer as they were that iced up. A down bag would have been useless.

Andrew Skurka used a VBL in his bag and even used vapor-barrier clothing when he circumnavigated Alaska (mostly in the winter) many years ago.  That is probably about the best info available on the use of vapor barriers.

I don't see the Hotsac as being a good pack liner, though, on a winter trip, you could as it would be dual-use and would save the two ounces that a trash compactor bag (my favorite pack liner) weighs.

 
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