High Peak

11:52 a.m. on December 25, 2010 (EST)
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Dunderdan (a friend of mine who just joined here and hasn't posted yet, and the one pictured in the Mt Chocorua climb with me) and I just recently went halves on a couple of High Peak Mt Rainier -20*F Waterproof, Windproof sleeping bags. Found a deal online through a trusted High Peak retailer and only paid $100 each.

 

I'll write a review once I receive it, should be on Tuesday. My plan is next weekend to sleep outside in just the bag. Temps where I will be should drop to the teens or single digits if I'm lucky.

 

I think High Peak is a great brand, and is slowly gaining recognition. For now, being rather unknown, the prices are dirt cheap. I decided on the Mt Rainier bag purchase after reading a few reviews from various outdoors/climbing magazines and websites, which have all said fantastic things about it.

12:01 p.m. on December 25, 2010 (EST)
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I've got one of their light weight bags rated at 52*. And I love it. It goes to 40* easly. But read the tag closely! Mine is rated at 20* But that is the max low temp. And as the tag said HIGH RISK OF DEATH!!

4:39 p.m. on December 25, 2010 (EST)
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rated for 52?? That's a strange temp rating to have for a bag...I haven't received them in the mail yet, but will definitely check the tags to be sure they sent the right one. I ordered -20* F.

11:42 p.m. on December 25, 2010 (EST)
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Are there multiple weights of the Mt. Rainier bag? I've found different websites rating a "High Peak Mt. Rainier" bag at +20F, 0F, and -20F.

10:37 a.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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I'm not sure what you mean by different weights. There are different temperature ratings, yes. You are correct that there are Rainier bags rated for +20, 0, and -20. With any sleeping bag the weight of the bag gets heavier as the temp rating goes down, because more insulation is involved to be used at colder temps, thus weighing more.

11:03 a.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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I climb would be great once you get the bag tell us what you think, Always like to get first hand knowledge of equipt that is worthwhile at a good price.. Like to get My brother one if it works out. His bags to heavy. Great for certain aspects but then..... Too much,

3:12 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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This is the company's homepage-

http://www.highpeakusa.org/Home_Page.html

High Peak is the brand of a small import company called Neus USA Inc. They have a bunch of bags, including a couple of down bags. For what they are, they are extremely cheap and of course, all made in China. They have different bags with different weights, but the same temp rating. They seem to weigh about as much or more than other cheap synthetic bags.

One of their bags has the EN 13537 test logo on its specs page, which is somewhat surprising, but I assume it is sold in Europe where I'm pretty sure they have to be tested to be sold. You need to understand how those ratings are done to understand the numbers given by manufacturers. The lowest rating, which is what you will see in ads is far below the temp at which you will be comfortable in the bag.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EN_13537

3:52 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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@iclimb: yes, I was referring to differing amounts of insulation. I just wanted to make sure I understood everything correctly, and that there wasn't just one bag being offered, listed at multiple sites under different weights and ratings, as many manufacturers are wont to do. However, thinking more about it, the situation is especially compounded when there actually are multiple weights and ratings being attached to a group of sleeping bags which share the same name; this marketing tactic might actually allow for more disinformation...

3:55 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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...also, I really hope this turns into a fanboy war about High Peak products.

5:15 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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@ Tom D - of course any bag's temp rating is well below your comfort level. A lot of it is also dependent on other factors such as whether or not the person has recently eaten something that when digested will cause body temp to rise, whether the person has been active before getting in the bag or goes to bed after sitting around camp for 3 hours, and whether or not the person sleeps warm or cold to begin with.

 

Recommendations are typically to get a bag that is rated 10 below what you expect to encounter. Temps anywhere rarely drop below -15*F without a wind chill, and since this bag is windproof, if there IS a great deal of wind, it shouldn't suck the heat out of it.

 

Then you also factor in the clothes you may be wearing at the time you get in the bag: multiple layers of insulation, a down jacket, etc. 

 

Then you factor whether or not you are in a tent, which also blocks wind, and if using a couple of candle lanterns is a few degrees warmer than outside.

 

Then you factor in a bag liner for extra warmth, and an emergency blanket if needed for even MORE warmth.

 

Point is I want to test it on it's own first, but for $100 bucks it's worth a shot to see how warm it is, and there's plenty of backup I can use to increase that warmth even more.

 

yes it's a cheap bag, monetarily wise, but I think the construction and insulation is quality. I will test that out soon and let everyone know.

5:19 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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Mine is a High Peak Sirius I was told that it was a +20 bag that weighed 1Lb 8 oz. It is a synthetic bag. I knew of no synthetic bag that light that goes to +20. I was looking for a 40+ bag. The product guide that came with it reads as follows:

Comfort range    > +11 C

Transition range +11 C -+7 C

Risk range  +7 C - -6 C

-6 C = 21 f

So the bag is rated at comfortable at 52 F But I have been warm and cozy at 42. I'm very happy with the bag. I havent been in lower temps with it yet.

5:21 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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@ pillowthread

 

haha it may just turn into a fanboy war. I own a couple of High Peak products and I'm becoming more and more convinced that it's good stuff.

 

I hate anything that is pretentious - therefore if I find a brand that is an "off brand" that does just as good of a job as the snobby brand names that everyone swears by, I will engage in an all out war to defend it.

 

Just like Eddie Bauer's First Ascent line. It's only been available to the public for a little over a year now, but the real big boy guides have tested it for a couple of years ON EVEREST. The key thing is: they don't sell you different stuff then what the guides used on Everest - they sell you the EXACT SAME THING that was worn and tested on the mother of all mountains...and then they sell it to you for really good prices. 

 

I'm a member of Eddie Bauer's rewards club, and they gave me a 50% off coupon to use on anything I wanted in the store. I gave it to my buddy Dunderdan, and he got a windproof down jacket that is incredible quality for pretty damn cheap.

 

These are the types of brand wars I love - mostly because I think people get really ticked off when the brand they are loyal to, that they paid hundreds of dollars for, is knocked aside by an up and coming company that sells stuff for dirt cheap in comparison.

 

Great example - the North Face is now a product line for fashion, not for outfitting the hiker/climber, but their prices are still uncontrollably high.

5:25 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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thanks mikemorrow - good example.

 

I own a North Face synthetic sleeping bag good to +20 and I have been pretty chilly in it right at the 15-20* mark.

 

With any brand, the rating is the breaking point most of the time. The only bags I know of that are true to their rating 100% are Western Mountaineering and Thor, which costs close to $1000.

5:32 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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No war here. LOL If I think a product is a great buy I say so. I dont care who makes it! And my High Peak bag is great. That is it fits my needs. :)

6:57 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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I climb thanks for the links. Looks pretty good. I do agree name branding and sometimes I maybe guilty of it to. There are good affordable deals out there for everyone. Yes name branding is its own science now. And all manufacturing is done in china . No difference if its an american owned company, IE Black Diamond. Design maybe here but its all over there. I do agree also with the fact manufactures such as North face started out well now its about stock returns. To many comppanies forget or forgo their initial  reason for getting in the business.Hence we get over priced clothing, outer wear. ect ect.  please do the test interested in what you think and come up with.

8:57 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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@denis daly: Yes, you are correct regarding where the majority of manufacturing is done today, but let's not forget that when the Chinese factory changes the label on the tent from Black Diamond to High Peak, you can bet they're also swapping in lower-cost thread, cheaper waterprooofings, and flimsier hardware (i.e. zippers). They're also bringing in the less-experienced sewers.

The Chinese are trying quite hard to be better capitalists than we are, and, after having learned all our tricks of the trade (snake oil, anyone?), they are succeeding.

9:26 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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@leadbelly: that never happened here before? your telling me a company let's say Dell. Hasn't done just that who built a company on brand name and performance within the last 20ys. Just to lose that to make more bottom dollar and use shotty chips?    How about Underarmer who started from nothing now there in every sports venue there is in underlayers. Lets add that design has basically came to a stand still all but materials..cottage industry is prime example... Golite- what have they achieved in the market. They went back to what was done in the 60's design wise just used lighter materials. Single wall tents havent become more prevelent again in the last 5-6 yrs?  

9:59 p.m. on December 26, 2010 (EST)
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Pillowthread -

 

I'm not convinced they use cheaper materials. I think the things they make are high quality, and they are quite well known and widely used in Europe already...it's probably just tough to break into the US market with so many dominating companies already in place - which is why they offer lower prices. Once the market trusts their product and sees that it is good quality, I bet prices will rise.

 

Otherwise, people will try their product, use it, and find out that it is crappy quality, and the word will spread, failing the business.

 

Maybe if the company were selling products at Walmart to the average car camper, they could get away with the cheap quality product, but they are pitching products to serious hikers/climbers/athletes. They want the product to improve their reputation, which will improve their company.

7:19 a.m. on December 27, 2010 (EST)
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If you do a search "China camping tents" you can find many tents that look like the high dollar ones. You can even have them put your logo on them. Of coarse you have to buy 500-1000 of the same design tent. Northpole will do the same, maybe cheaper.

1:23 a.m. on December 28, 2010 (EST)
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I have the 2010 version of High Peak's Alpine Pack. Its a 20 degree F bag but I took on a test run in my back yard in a tent with long johns on and no liner and I was reasonably comfortable down to 17 degrees. I wasn't warm but I certainly wasn't cold. I wouldn't try to take it down that cold in the field but with a liner and such if the temperature did unexpectedly drop to between 10 or 20 degrees  you would probably survive. As an added benefit it really packs up small and only ran me 40 bucks off Amazon.

 

9:56 p.m. on January 4, 2011 (EST)
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Just a quick update on the bag - haven't yet had the opportunity to test it in very cold temps, but last weekend did test it a little.

 

It was very warm out, but I went outside in about 30 degree weather, in just a cotton tshirt and cotton shorts, and laid the bag directly on a snow bank about 8 inches deep with no sleeping pad.

 

I was sweating to say the least, and could barely notice the fact that I was laying directly in snow without a pad.

 

Hardly close to the -20 mark, but a positive start.

4:09 a.m. on January 5, 2011 (EST)
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If you do a search "China camping tents" you can find many tents that look like the high dollar ones. You can even have them put your logo on them. Of coarse you have to buy 500-1000 of the same design tent. Northpole will do the same, maybe cheaper.

 Northpole tents are notorious for poor quality. They are bad designs in many cases and the construction is mediocre. We used to get many complaints about them. The reason you don't see these posts anymore is that the site owners have banned questions about them-read the FAQ regarding "big box" products-and we usually delete these posts when people ignore the rules and post anyway. Owners used to complain under the misconception that Trailspace serviced these tents and would get angry when we told them to go back to where they bought whatever they had to get parts, missing instructions, etc.

There is nothing inherently wrong with offshore production (setting aside issues such as job losses, etc.) but quality must be carefully monitored. When you can walk into a dollar store and walk out with a pocket calculator for a buck, go figure out how much it cost to make-maybe 25 cents, including the battery. There isn't much margin for quality control at those prices.  Btw, I have one of those calculators and it works great. The same applies to tents, bags, or other gear.

10:03 a.m. on January 5, 2011 (EST)
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Tom, I know about the problems that Trailspace has had with ppl that bought Ozark Trail tents. :) But I will defend Northpole...just a little. They make a wide variety of tents (I own 2). The poles are very cheap. But the 2 tents that I have are stitched and taped just as well as my NF tent. I think the smaller 1-2 person tents are ok tents. I have never had any of their larger tents, but what I have read about them, they seem to be junk.

And in northpoles defence. All tents, no matter the name on the tent, have made by Northpole on them. They do not hide that fact. I think thats a good thing.

I'm not sure who makes TNF or other companys tents. Those facts are hidden.

Earlier this year I bought a Glacier's Edge Galaxy tent from Fred Meyers. After much digging I found out that Lhotus out of China made the tent. Could they be making tents for TNF, MH, or other companys that put 2-300 dollar price tags on the tent?

The truth is, we just dont know who is making what anymore. But we do know that the name on the product can raise its price by 2-300%.

K that all of my rant. :)

4:43 p.m. on January 5, 2011 (EST)
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I'm well on my way to also defending High Peak. I currently have 3 of their products, and I can't complain about what I've seen during use yet.

 

The biggest complaints I've seen about the Enduro tent which I own is that the poles are "sticky" when going into the sleeves, and that the grommits that go in the holes for the ends of the poles to stick in fall out occasionally. 

 

I guess if I trust my life to them, they must be good, I'm not sure what else needs to be given for proof.

 

and mike I completely agree with you. I could go off on a rant about capitalism and inflation of prices, but this isn't the time or place. I can't believe some people choose to ignore the fact that well known name brand companies have marked their products up to ungodly prices. Is the quality high? Sure. But do they need to charge THAT much? Without a doubt NO.

 

This is why everyone is so skeptical about new companies - when they need to break into the market, their prices are low because they want people to buy their product and test them out. Once the word spreads that the product is good, the prices go up.

 

It's pretty simple economics really, and it's the sole reason I choose to avoid snobby brand names whenever possible.

5:20 p.m. on January 5, 2011 (EST)
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Are we off our soap boxs yet? LOL

10:07 p.m. on January 5, 2011 (EST)
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Just a quick response on Northpole. I have a Columbia Cougar Flatts 2 tent. Yep ya guessed it. Northpole made the tent. So far, no major problems. I did have an issue with the" bay" window poles snapping when I 1st bought it. I did a lil research and found that it was due to a bad resin mixture. So I contacted Northpole(number was stitched to the tent) and explained my issue. They sent me out replacements which I received in 3 days. No questions asked. Mind you I purchased the tent used. They were aware of that and it was not a problem. Granted, we are all searching for that item that will keep on going even when we don't want too but customer service goes a long way as well. If a company will stand behind its product regardless of name I personally would be more than happy to give their products a shot. I have looked at High Peak products. I don't see too much to question but I will prolly buy a few of their products just so I can draw my own conclusions.

I know this may be somewhat" off-topic" but I figured I would just chime in. Happy new year everyone.

July 30, 2014
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