Meet Rick-Pittsburgh, February's most helpful reviewer

Congratulations to community member Rick-Pittsburgh, author of February's most helpful gear review. The Trailspace community voted Rick's review of his Outdoor Research Prismatic Cap February's most useful review. He wins a Trailspace goodie pack for his efforts.*

Rick also tied for second place with his review of his Osprey Stratos 26 pack, along with Pillowthread's review of the SmartWool Midweight Funnel Zip and TheRambler's review of the Open Country Mors Bush Pot 1.8L.

Write your own helpful gear reviews with Trailspace's redesigned and enhanced "write a review" form, and you might be next month's most helpful reviewer.

Meet Rick-Pittsburgh


Rick backpacking on Pennsylvania's Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail.

When and how did you get interested in going outside?

The outdoors were an important part of my life growing up. Hiking, fishing, hunting, though I'm not much of a hunter anymore. I was also in the BSA (Boy Scouts of America).

Around the age of 4 I was drug away from my toys (kicking and screaming) and began my journeys into the great outdoors. I credit the whole hiking thing to my uncle. He spent a lot of time on trail (Appalachian Trail, etc.) in his tent and would let me tag along to various destinations from time to time. Even if it was an expedition into the inhospitable conditions of our backyard. :)

People don't often think of Pittsburgh as an outdoor mecca. Where are your favorite places to get out around the "Iron City?"

We have a plethora of state parks that are a short drive from the city. I spend the most part of my trail time solo on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail (LHHT), which runs 70 miles along the Laurel Ridge from Ohiopyle State Park north to Seward. I have completed this trail too many times for me to count and have a bunch of trip reports for anyone interested (most recently, A late February stroll in the white stuff on the LHHT).

I also like to spend time at Ohiopyle State Park. This area is beautiful. One can also kayak/raft the Youghiogheny River (class 3 and 4 rapids), bike the many miles of trail, fish, swim (the natural water slides rock), or just browse the shops in the small community (my wife likes the wineries.) There are also quite a few outfitters up there that can provide equipment, guided tours, etc. to get you where you want to be.


The OR cap that earned Rick the glory

Why were you motivated to review this piece of gear?

I have a goal set for myself to review every item of gear that I use. This could take some time though. I have quite a bit of gear. Just wait until my 5,000 word review on these awesome boot laces that I acquired!

I just like to hammer on things for awhile before I actually put fingers to keyboard, if ya know what I mean. Anything can look great on a box or in a store ad. It's real world use that makes or breaks a product.

What are some of your other favorite pieces of equipment?

Reviewed gear that I am really fond of: Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1 tent, Leki Aergon XL anti-shock poles (w/photo adapter), Osprey Stratos 26 daypack, and Victorinox Swiss Army Soldier knife.

Gear I have yet to review that I am fond of so far: Hilleberg Soulo (this thing is a bomb shelter), Scarpa M3s (just a great pair of no-nonsense boots), Osprey Argon 85 (my go-to pack for multi-day trips), Dahlgren backpacker socks (alpaca and wool). I could go on and on. I suppose I have quite a few reviews to write!

Rick on the LHHT
Rick on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail in February.

What is one of your favorite outdoors destinations?

Without a doubt the LHHT, due to the amount of time I spend on trail. I have a goal to get in 1,000 miles a year on-trail, not just on the LHHT alone though. No matter how much time I spend up there I always find myself seeing something new that I didn't notice on previous trips. The experience is always rewarding and has never been a disappointment.

Anything else you'd like to share with the Trailspace community?

My main objective when I write a review is to do the best I possibly can in regards to putting the product into the reader's hands without actually doing so. If my reviews help one person, then I accomplished my goal. Helping others is my sole purpose for writing them.

I would also like to add that if anyone out there has any type of question in regards to any of the gear that I have reviewed that I may not have covered in the review itself, please, by all means feel free to contact me via private message. I will be more than happy to answer any questions I possibly can based on my experiences.

I would like to end with a John Muir quote:

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”  


Great job, Rick!

*Besides Trailspace glory, Rick gets a goodie pack with an Ibex Zepher Skull Cap with Trailspace logo, a Trailspace Trail Runner Cap, a Trailspace pint glass (for après-backcountry use), stickers, an array of energy bars from Clif and ProBar to power him down the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail, and a Stanley thermos.

Help recognize the best reviews on Trailspace by clicking that "Yes" button after "Was this review helpful?" whenever you read a truly helpful review. You'll not only recognize good reviewers, you'll help highlight the best reviews of a product.

Wondering how you can be as lucky as Rick? Write a great gear review of your own with Trailspace's redesigned and enhanced "write a review" form. Next month someone else will be recognized by the community, and it could be you and your review.


Filed under: Reviewer of the Month

Comments

Alicia
TRAILSPACE STAFF
715 reviewer rep
3,166 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 11:37 a.m. (EST)

Congratulations, Rick! Thanks for sharing your reviews with the entire Trailspace community. We appreciate it!

I'm sure I'm not the only one eagerly awaiting that 5,000-word shoelace review...

gonzan
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
658 reviewer rep
2,149 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 11:44 a.m. (EST)

Props, my friend :) Glad you got recognition, you've done a lot of great reviews! 

Patman
REVIEW CORPS
857 reviewer rep
1,325 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 12:16 p.m. (EST)

Well deserved Rick!

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 12:23 p.m. (EST)

Thanks everyone. I really have fun writing these. I am glad others have found them helpful...

Seth Levy (Seth)
TRAILSPACE STAFF
488 reviewer rep
1,087 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 12:54 p.m. (EST)

Rick, you've motivated me to review my OR Odd Job hat! Wonderful review!

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 1:41 p.m. (EST)

Thanks Seth. ;)

iClimb
121 reviewer rep
605 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 2:57 p.m. (EST)

way to go man, good work!

skibum12
9 reviewer rep
119 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 4:22 p.m. (EST)

Rick's insight to gear and the outdoors I have to say is very good.  Nice job Rick and congrats.

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 4:30 p.m. (EST)

iClimb & skibum12, thanks.

Ya know I gotta give a bit of thanks to everyone in the land of TS that I have had interaction with over the few years that I have been "lurking" around here.

I have taken quite a bit from all of you, learned quite a bit, and am always learning more. 

You all rock. Glad I can give a lil back. 

giftogab
REVIEW CORPS
592 reviewer rep
1,518 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 6:02 p.m. (EST)

Just have them forward your goodie box to my address in Vegas. I have it on good authority the contents of that box are better served here. And Congrats!

trouthunter
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
998 reviewer rep
3,556 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 6:47 p.m. (EST)

Most excellent Rick!

I read your gear report soon after you posted it and I knew it would be hard to beat.

Now....about those shoe laces, I do hope you also plan a visit to the factory where they are made and shoot some video for us. Haha.

Mike G.

Jake W
TOP 25 REVIEWER REVIEW CORPS
1,363 reviewer rep
631 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 6:56 p.m. (EST)

Well deserved. I know, speaking from personal experience, that Rick has helped me out on more than one occasion.

Always fantastic reviews- great photos, pertinent info and gives a fair rating, both positive and negative points. Motivated me to put a little more effort into my Unna review after seeing the BA Copper spur review. I know the 'goodies' aren't for that specific review but I've spent a considerable amount of timing looking over various other Ricky P reviews. On second thought, thats why I havn't been more productive working on some chores around the house!

Oldman Mike
299 reviewer rep
141 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 6:57 p.m. (EST)

You the man Rick, you gave great information and I did like the OR hat review, you set the mark for all of us.

Mike H.

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
1,407 reviewer rep
442 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 7:11 p.m. (EST)

Very nice Rick :) When do you review the Addidas Run DMC (Dedicated Mountain Climbing) Jumpsuit? Optional walkman with helmet mounts for earphones would be a real plus...

 

smithcreek
0 reviewer rep
78 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 7:57 p.m. (EST)

Congrats Rick!!!

just send me the beanie if ya get one, you northern folks shouldn't wear anything without ear flaps anyway.

 

earl

azrhino
38 reviewer rep
395 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 9:09 p.m. (EST)

Way to go Rick! Well deserved for sure.

You've set the bar rather high for thew rest of us.

giftogab
REVIEW CORPS
592 reviewer rep
1,518 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 9:34 p.m. (EST)

Thanks to Rick I got the boots I am wearing to Nepal. He was a huge help there.Good going......now, about the....G-O-O-D-I-E-S

bheiser1
REVIEW CORPS
1,347 reviewer rep
1,320 forum posts
March 6, 2012 at 10:09 p.m. (EST)

It looks like I'm a little late to the party here, but congrats Rick.  You really do write comprehensive reviews.  As someone who painstakingly researches each product to death before buying, I can tell you detailed reviews like yours are very helpful.

This topic is a good reminder to myself as well to catch up on those reviews I've been meaning to write, since after all, they are a core part of this site :).

p.s. I'll probably pass on the 5,000-word shoelace review, as captivating as I'm sure it will be :)

rob5073
REVIEW CORPS
827 reviewer rep
590 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 1:26 a.m. (EST)

Most excellent!

Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 8:43 a.m. (EST)

Now ... "the rest of the story" ....

"There are TWO sides to every story", by-the-way.

Probably, like me, Rick knows too much about hiking, camping, backpacking gear.  AND, he does his "homework".   Very, very unlikely that he might acquire gear that he may suspect to not be up to his "lofty standards" (like my own standards).

Also; Rick knows the VALUE of fine, high-end gear, and understands the wisdom of investment for long-term usage, in today's "designed obsolescence / throw-away-and-replace" mind-set of marketing.

Can Rick objectively test gear that is essentially "bottom-feeder JUNK"?    Sure.   Would he buy it ?   Not likely.

Therefore; I suspect Rick's testing and evaluations will mostly be for "the good stuff".   "Four or Five Star"- rating material.

In perusing at random, various gear-reviews here at this website ... by ALL reviewers  (not Rick) ... almost ALL seem to be 4 or 5 "Stars".    What gives with that?   The "credibility factor" becomes suspect.

                                  *

                        pax vobiscum

                             ~ r2 ~

                      a dubious brother

                                 *

Dave MacLeay (Dave)
TRAILSPACE STAFF
234 reviewer rep
951 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 9:12 a.m. (EST)

The average rating across all reviews on Trailspace is 4.02. From what I've read, this is actually slightly lower than on many review sites; I believe the web-wide average is somewhere around 4.2 or 4.3.

Why is that? For starters, the quality of products on the market today is generally quite good. Second, good reviews tend to be self-reinforcing: people buy more products that get good reviews, hence those products are more likely to garner additional positive reviews. Finally, people generally prefer to tell others about the things that they really like and think that others will like too.

Just because Rick (or any reviewer) is discerning enough to buy mostly high-quality gear doesn't make his opinion suspect. In my experience, those who have that level of discernment are more picky and are able to more objectively identify small flaws in otherwise solid products.

If you've read any of Rick's reviews, you know that he is intimately familiar with the details of each piece of gear. Whether you agree with his overall assessment, his reviews leave little doubt about how he arrived at his conclusion.

Which is not to say that Rick, or any reviewer, should have the final word on a piece of gear. Trailspace is a community effort, and it really takes all of us. If you think a product that you've used is too highly-rated by other users, there's a simple solution: write your own review, sharing your experience and opinions of the gear you use. Do a great job and maybe you'll be next month's most helpful reviewer.

Alicia
TRAILSPACE STAFF
715 reviewer rep
3,166 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 9:16 a.m. (EST)

I agree wholeheartedly with what Dave said above.

Good job, Rick, and thanks to you and every one of our members who write fair, helpful reviews for the benefit of the Trailspace community.

Dave MacLeay (Dave)
TRAILSPACE STAFF
234 reviewer rep
951 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 9:27 a.m. (EST)

I should also note, in case there's any confusion, that "most helpful reviewer" honor is based entirely on community feedback -- "was this helpful?" votes -- received by the review.

The star rating does not factor into the "most helpful" determination in any way; a well-written 1-star review has just as much chance of winning as a well-written 5-star review.

Alicia
TRAILSPACE STAFF
715 reviewer rep
3,166 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 10:03 a.m. (EST)

Yes, through community feedback the "most helpful reviewer" honors the quality of the review itself and its author, not the product being reviewed or its rating.

giftogab
REVIEW CORPS
592 reviewer rep
1,518 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 10:12 a.m. (EST)

As a consumer who has occasionally purchased something and regretted it, I HAVE given low ratings. One was a solar charging device I got on Steap and Cheap that was cheap and did NOT perform AT ALL. Good to be able to warn people about that. Additionally, the boots I wear and love have had some issues that Rick and Others, due to their efforts at finding the best gear, were able to point out to me. As a result, even though I still wear the boots, I have back ups in case the particular malady they experienced occurs on my long trip. Gear reviews and feedback about gear at this site have gone a super long way to make my upcoming trip of a lifetime a better trip. And, dare I say, without the gear advice as well as other advice I have received here, the trip would have stood a bigger chance of me not being ready.  So, while I thank Rick and congratulate him for a really well written review, I thank you all for your willingness. A review that is detailed can hardly be suspect. When objective facts such as "a lug fell off the boot" or "I soaked the boot for X time and it failed to keep the water out" are present, one can hardly call that  suspect unless they are calling the facts misappropriations of the truth. I went to read some reviews from you R2, for the other side of the story...alas there was nary a one.........

~Sunkist Ninja Defender of all that is good and right in the world! BON APATITE!

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 2:02 p.m. (EST)

Wow, this got pretty big fast lol...

Seriously everyone, thanks a ton for all of the kind words. All the feedback that I am receiving makes me really want to get elbow deep into a new review.

Thanks so much. 

Trailspace is such an awesome community and site but I have to say...

All of you folks as well as the other members out there make Trailspace what it is as a whole and to me well...

Thats nothing short of great. Thanks again for the feedback. 

Plain and simply put. As far as "sites" go there is no other community I would rather be a part of. 

I couldn't be happier than I am for stumbling across TS back in 2009. 

Again, thank you all so much. 

Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
March 7, 2012 at 2:05 p.m. (EST)

 I am enjoying the comments, and the controversy.

I shall post later, for a follow-up ... as I relish a good debate.

Please note that I am not "attacking the messenger" (otherwise known as "Rick-Pittsburgh").

I am endeavoring to draw attention to the efficacy of the gear-review policy and procedure at the website ... and to draw attention to outdoor-related publications with gear-reviews.

Also; I shall explain why I have chosen NOT to review gear here, or any other website or publication; even though I feel eminently qualified to do so.

Ideally, this would / should be under an entirely new post-topic.

I don't want to take anything away from Rick-Pittsburgh's efforts and due diligence.  

 Not my raison d'etre.

                                        *

                             pax vobiscum

                                    ~ r2 ~

                                        *


Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 8, 2012 at 4:21 p.m. (EST)

Robert Rowe said:

Now ... "the rest of the story" ....

"There are TWO sides to every story", by-the-way.

Probably, like me, Rick knows too much about hiking, camping, backpacking gear.

I don't think it is theoretically possible to know "too much" about gear or backpacking. The more you know about the item you are using the easier it is to remedy/avoid any problems you may run into with said gear.

AND, he does his "homework".

I do a tremendous amount of research when I have my eye on a product. I don't know anyone who wouldn't want the best they can get for their dollar spent. That's just spending your money wisely. 

Very, very unlikely that he might acquire gear that he may suspect to not be up to his "lofty standards" (like my own standards).

I actually have acquired a few items over the years that; well lets just say they weren't up to snuff.

Also; Rick knows the VALUE of fine, high-end gear, and understands the wisdom of investment for long-term usage, in today's "designed obsolescence / throw-away-and-replace" mind-set of marketing.

I am one of those individuals that if I can get a pair of boots for instance that can handle quite a few resoles and they fit I will buy them. I don't need the latest and greatest new fangled waterproof/breathable technology that is on the market. I just want something that can handle what I will put it though. I also don't mind the maintenance aspect of owning gear. 

Can Rick objectively test gear that is essentially "bottom-feeder JUNK"?    Sure.   Would he buy it ?   Not likely.

This would be solely dependent upon what I am using it for. I have had lower end gear before and for what I subjected it too it did just fine. I think some just need to understand what a products intended purpose is and stick with that. 

When people push boundaries it opens up the door for potential failure. Now my thing is this. How many failures that have happened out there are actually the products fault? I mean it surely wasn't due to user error right? 

"I understand ya bought a UL tent, took it to camp 4 on Everest, and the material shredded. It was definitely a lack of quality in the construction of the tent. Must be made in China...."

"Wait, wait... There are quite a few tents at the various camps on Everest that are made in China... There goes that theory."

I have alot of gear. Yes, I do own alot of higher end gear but at the same time I also own quite a few items that many would consider "bottom feeder junk" and it works just fine for its intended purpose.  You also have to look at the fact that not everyone has the $$$ to drop on a $600+ tent. 

I always like to say get the best you can afford and also shop around.

I have saved $1000s on the gear that I own just for the simple fact that I shopped around, waited for seasons to change(summer is a great time to buy winter gear.)

Therefore; I suspect Rick's testing and evaluations will mostly be for "the good stuff".   "Four or Five Star"- rating material.

I will review anything. Better yet, what differentiates between "the good stuff and the bad stuff?" Price, where it's made, etc. 

I have had a few high end items bomb on me while on trail over the years. So their goes the cost=quality theory. Then again I have had Chinese made tents that took a pounding and came out unscathed. I personally do not think all Chinese products are garbage. I do have to say that I will not buy boots made in China. 

That's just a personal preference of mine based from a few past experiences that put me in an awkward spot. 

In perusing at random, various gear-reviews here at this website ... by ALL reviewers  (not Rick) ... almost ALL seem to be 4 or 5 "Stars".    What gives with that?   The "credibility factor" becomes suspect.

Hmmmm, suspect. Why? All but one item that I have reviewed came out of pocket. So, explain this to me so I understand this theory.

Why would I(or others) purchase a product, it fails catastrophically on me, then I turn around and fire out a review saying it was a 5 star product and recommend anyone and everyone to buy 2 or more. 

That doesn't make any sense whatsoever. Plus it makes me look like a real tool when a few folks here purchase the product based on my glowing review and they all bomb on them as well. 

As stated above; if you disagree with a review of a certain item(s) please by all means feel free to write a review. I am sure with the vast amount of experience/gear you possess you would definitely help someone out. Pics are useful tools as well. 

I find that they sometimes explain details better than words do. 

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
1,407 reviewer rep
442 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 4:42 p.m. (EST)

Great Job Rick. The standards for review quality have been set high in this community. Unlike R2, I like to assess every piece of gear I have, in the hopes of learning as I go and hopefully providing some learning for others.

I have a lot of work to do. Items for review in cue to be completed by the  end of Summer:

Omega Pacific Mountain Axe Piolet 75cm

Jansport Salish 34 liter backpack

Komperdell Mountaineer 30 cm snowshoes

Marmot Altitude Gloves

Mummut Mirage Climbing Harness

Black Diamond Sabertooth Clip Crampons

Asolo Titan GV Mountaineering Boots

Helinox Featherlite Lever Button trekking poles

Victorinox Champion Plus Knife

Alps Mountaineering Aztec 2 tent (2 person, 3 season)

Alps Mountaineering Slick Rock 0 deg long sleeping bag, Primaloft

Primus ETA solo integrated cooking system

Brunton Vapor AF multifuel stove

Kelty Camp Hauler 3

Kelty Veil House Screen/Shade structure

Teva Omnium multi-sport sandles

Lowe Alpine Sierra Lite softshell pants (son's)

Lowe Alpine Sierra softshell pants (wife's)

Kombi 7795 backcountry GTX Primaloft gloves

Lowe Alpine Torre Vest (son's)

Thermarest Wrap It camp pillow/sleeping pad stuff sack

Klymit X-Frame UL sleeping pad

Terramar Woolskins long underwear bottoms

6 different NikWax products

Kenyon Polartec lightweight base layer bottoms (wife's)

CamelBak Trinity 30 liter Hydration Pack - 100 fl.oz reservoir. (wife's)

Columbia Sportswear Off Way Jacket (son's)

Lorpen Cold-Weather System Stalker Hunting Socks - Merino Wool

Wenger Eiger Hiking Boots  - (son's)

Columbia Sportswear The Echo Park Jacket (wife's)

Carlisle Compression Dry Bag, eVent (20 and 30L)

Columbia Sportswear Cats and Dogs Rain Suit - 2-Piece (son's)

GSI Outdoors Ultralight Cutting Board

Lorpen Merino Wool-Argyle Snowboard Socks - Over-the-Calf

Columbia Sportswear Cyclocross II Pants

Stanley Outdoor Coffee and Tea Infuser

Marmot Precip pants

Teva Dalea T.I.D.E. Shoes - Waterproof (daughter's)

Lorpen PrimaLoft® Ski Socks

SmartWool Hiking Socks - Merino Wool, Crew, Medium Cushion

Terramar Underwear Boxer Briefs - Four-Way Stretch

New Balance Mens 1520 Trail Runner (son's)

Columbia Titanium waterproof duffel

Eagle Creek Continental Voyager Pack - 80L                       

Eagle Creek Continental Voyager Pack - 45L  

 

my typing fingers will be tired...

 

 

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 4:52 p.m. (EST)

Xterro- That's not that big of a list... You can get all of those done in a few hours. I have faith in ya. Go for it lol.

Just keep a fire extinguisher handy so you can put your finger tips out when they burst into flames... :)

f_klock
110 reviewer rep
762 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 6:29 p.m. (EST)

XterroBrando said:

Items for review in cue to be completed by the  end of Summer:...

 Then you best git ta typin'!

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
1,407 reviewer rep
442 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 7:02 p.m. (EST)

f_klock said -

"Then you best git ta typin'!"

 

I give myself until the end of the Summer because some items have not yet been put through the proverbial "ringer" if you will.

add also Teva B1 Brittania trail shoes, Timberland Merino Hiker Socks, Gerber Gator Jr Machete, and a whole slew of Buck knives, and a GCI tripod backpacking stool, and I may hit 200 reviews this year. At that point I'd have to retire...or I may be banned and sent to rehab by TS for ECRD - excessive copulsive reviewing disorder...

 

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 7:06 p.m. (EST)

XterroBrando said:

ECRD - excessive copulsive reviewing disorder...

 That's funny.

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
1,407 reviewer rep
442 forum posts
March 9, 2012 at 11:55 p.m. (EST)

typo! oh dang! meant excessive compulsive reviewing disorder...lol

 

Robert Rowe
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 5:34 a.m. (EST)

XterroBrando said:

. Unlike R2, I like to assess every piece of gear I have

 But , I DO,  Brandon.

You know ... at some point, one may realize he/she has just about EVERYTHING NECESSARY to pursue these outdoor activities.

I reached that point quite some time ago.  While I still acquire various and asundry items related to hiking, backpacking and camping ... it is generally to replace something that has worn out, or the newer item is vastly superior in some way.   At which time, I "retire" the older item, or give it away.

Timex watches used to use (may, still) an expression for their advertisements:

Takes a licking ... and, keeps on ticking ....

I am probably more critical regarding gear than most here, believe-it-or-not.

Especially, VALUE.

I have a few clothing items from Arc'teryx.   Very fine quality, no doubt.   Value, in comparison to similar others,  dollars-and-cents wise?    Gimme a break.   

Another example:

I have 4 1/2  (looong story on the 1/2)  vehicles.   How many do I need?  ONE.   My "main-squeeze" / "daily driver" is 30 years old,  has nearly 300,00 miles on the odometer.  No air-conditioning ... No power-steering ... No radio.   It is a diesel, and provides terrrrrrific VALUE.  Probably the reason I can afford the others.

                                   *

                        pax vobiscum

                               ~ r2 ~


Alicia
TRAILSPACE STAFF
715 reviewer rep
3,166 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 9:11 a.m. (EST)

XterroBrando said:

excessive compulsive reviewing disorder...lol

 

Have no fear. We would never ban you for such a "disorder." Rather, we're your enablers.

Thanks for all the useful reviews you have written already. Your contributions to the Trailspace community are very much appreciated (see...more enabling in action).

trouthunter
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
998 reviewer rep
3,556 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 9:15 a.m. (EST)

Robert,

I think you may have missed XterroBrando's overall point.

XterroBrando said:

"Great Job Rick. The standards for review quality have been set high in this community. Unlike R2, I like to assess every piece of gear I have, in the hopes of learning as I go and hopefully providing some learning for others."

If I am not badly mistaken he was referring to writing gear reviews as indicated by his statement "...hopefully providing some learning for others."

If I am wrong XterroBrando is free to correct my assessment of his statement.

Mike G.

giftogab
REVIEW CORPS
592 reviewer rep
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March 10, 2012 at 9:57 a.m. (EST)

In the world in which I live, nothing means anything without supporting evidence. Someone can come in to court all they want and make bald assertions, but there must be evidence to corroborate these assertions or the bleating of these witnesses are not allowed. Rick (and pretty much all the other reviewers) take pictures of the gear in use, gear being tested, hikes undergone etc. That lends credibility to the statements they write about the gear or area they are describing. Without that, how could anything uttered or claimed be given value? You can claim you have this, or have been there, but with no evidence to suggest any of that has actually happened, it is discarded as fiction. So, R2, while you have been here a year, posted over 1100 times with a wide array of pontifications, all you have to support it is a picture of a guy doing yoga and a guy holding a cat. This despite posts describing cameras you are carrying on your alleged trips. Sorry. Just the way I see it. I find it odd and somewhat passive aggressive,  in that hide behind the internet kinda way, that you would challenge the validity of well written, well supported gear reviews, (all the while touting all the cool stuff you either have or can afford to have because you have not spent the money to have it) given that as a back drop.

Merda taurorum animas conturbit

gonzan
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
658 reviewer rep
2,149 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 2:09 p.m. (EST)

Very well stated, Trout and Gift. 

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
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March 10, 2012 at 7:14 p.m. (EST)

Sorry R2, by "assess" I did mean review - thank you Trout for the clarification on my behalf.

R2, given your many posts on TS forums, I would love nothing more than to read your reviews as well. Please share some, or one, for that matter. I feel like yours would be candid, well crafted, and entertaining as a read.

GiftoGab,

Your post rekindled some dormant fibers of my being from my days of working for my father, an attorney of 30 years...Evidence!

I don't post enough pictures/videos of my experiences with my gear, and that is something I must improve upon in my reviews. I just videotaped my boil test of 16oz of water in my new Primus ETA Solo. It will need heavy editing before I post it (and the stove needs more time in the field before I can post a credible review), but I am continuously impressed by the quality of efforts put into review and posts by our regular contributors. It is both humbling and inspiring, pushing me to progress in my contributions.

And Alicia, yes your are enablers, and that's just fine :)

I'm not looking for a pill to cure ECRD either. Just more time to test my gear more often! Now if only my kids wanted to do competitive backpacking, mountain biking, and mountaineering instead of competitive dance. lol.

 

bheiser1
REVIEW CORPS
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1,320 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 7:24 p.m. (EST)

So, Rick, how are ya feeling now about having gotten this award?  LOL :)

MoZee
60 reviewer rep
115 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 9:03 p.m. (EST)

Congratulations on some well deserved recognition Rick.

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 10, 2012 at 9:06 p.m. (EST)

@bheiser1- I'm happy about it. It kinda opened my eyes in a way to just how many people actually read them and find my feedback helpful. Like I said, now I just want to write them even more. 

@MoZee- Thanks. I appreciate that. 

pillowthread
REVIEW CORPS
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1,076 forum posts
March 11, 2012 at 5:07 a.m. (EDT)

{flame suit on} Superfluous Latin FTW! For a second, I thought I was reading Hegel there...

We should start a new thread, entitled "The efficacy of the things R2 says..." so that this one can get back on-topic...starting with Rick response to XterroBrando's request for an Adidas Run DMC Jumpsuit review...

giftogab
REVIEW CORPS
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March 11, 2012 at 11:26 a.m. (EDT)

Pllow......NO SUCH THING AS SUPERFLUOUS LATIN! And to get back to Rick I just say this:

semper ad meliora!

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 11, 2012 at 3:06 p.m. (EDT)

pillowthread said:

starting with Rick response to XterroBrando's request for an Adidas Run DMC Jumpsuit review...

 Xterro be illin just because I be hikin with a panther... ;)

XterroBrando
REVIEW CORPS
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442 forum posts
March 11, 2012 at 4:30 p.m. (EDT)

"Hike this Way!..."

Nice.

unk
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126 forum posts
March 24, 2012 at 4:49 p.m. (EDT)

congratulations,well deserved!your review of mtn. pass helped me tremendously,i was wondering if you are the same rick"pittsburgh"mann founder of hike-usa?

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
March 28, 2012 at 1:17 p.m. (EDT)

Hey unk, nah thats definitely not me. Then again maybe there are 2 of me? I'm gonna have to take a look at the hike usa site. That is a new one to me.

cool feet
13 reviewer rep
7 forum posts
April 20, 2012 at 2:50 p.m. (EDT)

You have written great reviews.  It means more to consumers looking for products that are reviewed by actual users that do not get compensated to try a product.

Cheers!

Rick-Pittsburgh
1,631 reviewer rep
3,962 forum posts
April 20, 2012 at 2:53 p.m. (EDT)

Thanks cool feet, I really appreciate that. 

I have alot more gear to cover but I want to make sure I hammer on it enough before I actually fire a review out. 

Keep an eye on the boards. I will most certainly be writing more.

Happy hiking. 

Callahan
255 reviewer rep
1,469 forum posts
April 21, 2012 at 12:17 p.m. (EDT)

what photo next Rick ?

Rick-Pittsburgh
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April 21, 2012 at 12:25 p.m. (EDT)

Hey Callahan, ya mean review?

I just fired out 2.

One for The Ultimate Gear Guide by Andrew Shurka:

http://www.trailspace.com/gear/national-geographic/the-ultimate-hikers-gear-guide/#review24867

And I did this one on OR's Salamander Gaiters:

http://www.trailspace.com/gear/outdoor-research/salamander-gaiters/#review24889

Definitely more on the way.

denis daly
87 reviewer rep
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April 21, 2012 at 1:13 p.m. (EDT)

I read The Ultimate Gear Guide one. I also saw Andrew Shurka posted about your review on his Facebook page..Very cool..

Rick-Pittsburgh
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April 21, 2012 at 1:17 p.m. (EDT)

I saw that as well. Gotta say the book (as far as I am concerned) is a must read.

Regardless of your skill level you will definitely take something from it. 

bheiser1
REVIEW CORPS
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April 21, 2012 at 1:43 p.m. (EDT)

I've noticed there's been a lot of hype about that book.  Frankly the title put me off a bit - after all, it's my belief that no one person is the "ultimate" authority on anything.  The power of knowledge comes from sharing out collective knowledge.  Well, maybe except for The OGBO :D.

But I decided to give it a shot - based in part on Rick's review.  I bought the Kindle version so I can read it on a iPad, iPhone, Mac, or PC.  "We don't need no steenkin' paper books" :) (one of my goals is to never buy a paper book again unless it's something I absolutely must have and it's not yet available electronically).

So I have my reading assignment for this weekend :)...

giftogab
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April 21, 2012 at 4:07 p.m. (EDT)

Maybe he meant ULTIMATE in the sense that it is COMPREHENSIVE?

bheiser1
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April 21, 2012 at 5:08 p.m. (EDT)

giftogab said:

Maybe he meant ULTIMATE in the sense that it is COMPREHENSIVE?

Yeah, I was probably taking it too literally.  I've gone thru the first section, and just got into Section 2, and have to say - I really like it ... very down to earth, and clearly based on tons of experience on long hikes.

I really don't care for his "30 miles per day" and "must go at least 15 hours per day" approach, but that's OK :).

Rick-Pittsburgh
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April 21, 2012 at 5:32 p.m. (EDT)

Part 1 is short. Part 2 should take ya a lil longer to get thru. ;)

denis daly
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April 21, 2012 at 5:40 p.m. (EDT)

bheiser1 said:

giftogab said:

Maybe he meant ULTIMATE in the sense that it is COMPREHENSIVE?

Yeah, I was probably taking it too literally.  I've gone thru the first section, and just got into Section 2, and have to say - I really like it ... very down to earth, and clearly based on tons of experience on long hikes.

I really don't care for his "30 miles per day" and "must go at least 15 hours per day" approach, but that's OK :).

 Now seems two positive endorsemebts of the book. Time to make a run to the book store this week.

Callahan
255 reviewer rep
1,469 forum posts
April 24, 2012 at 11:31 a.m. (EDT)

No, I meant photo, as you keep changing it. But the next review will be good too.

Rick-Pittsburgh
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April 24, 2012 at 11:42 a.m. (EDT)

Lol. I think I am going to stick with the one I have up. It represents a few of my favorite things: 

  • Snow
  • Solo
  • Night hiking
  • solitude

I am going to try and do a new pic to cover the major holidays like I did for the Easter one.

Eater-Sunday-2012-026.jpg

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