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  1. #1
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    What do you do when the UQ is wet

    Let's do a poll without a poll, for my further edumacation:

    Where do you hang most of the time (in terms of climate/weather)?
    Has your UQ ever gotten wet - was it soaked, splashed, damp, or dunked?
    What did you do next? Go home, wait for the rain to stop and dry it out, build a fire, get out the spare UQ from your pack, steal a dry one from the hanger next door, whip out the emergency blanket, use it anyway?
    If 'twas a down UQ, did you immediately run out and get synthetic, or did you figure out a way to prevent the wet next time under the same conditions?
    If 'twas synthetic, was it everything we seem to expect synthetic to be - the answer to keeping warm with wet gear?

    Real world experience trumps 1,000 flame war threads about down v. synthetic.

    If you bought synthetic - was it a price issue or a fear of getting it wet? I'm seeing that down and synthetic versions of half or 3/4 underquilts are priced about the same. I know that down will compress better. Wondering if there are reasons I have not yet discovered for choosing synthetic over down.
    Last edited by lori; 04-20-2009 at 09:12.

  2. #2
    Senior Member animalcontrol's Avatar
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    1. Midwest...weather, everything from below 0* and dry to 90* with 70% humidity.
    2. UQ wet? no, I just converted to UQs. TQ/sleeping bag...yes. Down TQ wet...not dripping but approx 50% compressed. Ripstop wet to touch
    3. Next? Got under the UQ (still afternoon) and covered myself and the wet UQ with a every piece of gear I had available...down jacket, clothes, pack. I used my body heat (I was trying to make as much heat as possible - hi was 20*/low 5*) to dry it out before night fell Was better but not even close to dry when I went to bed. Slept covered in everything I had...really was as warm as I was the night before with everything dry...not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Not something I would want to duplicate though!
    4. I eliminated the potential for it to happen again by replacing my pack with a waterproof one. If I hadn't done that, I would have treated the TQ with a DWR coating and used a drybag.

    I prefer down...I have some Climashield TQ/UQs that I made. I chose synthetic for 2 reasons...1. Much cheaper than down to purchase the materials and 2. Much easier to make using by limited DIY skills.
    I also have a down UQ (never wet), a down TQ, and 2 down sleeping bags. When it gets COLD (lower than 20*) it's ALL down for me
    "Every day is a new day to a better future"
    "Of all the things that matter, that really and truly matter, working more efficiently and getting more done is not among them." ~ Mike Dooley
    "What if I told you that you couldn't have anymore of anything... No more friends, no more money, no more anything, until you first got happy with what you have?"~ Mike Dooley
    "The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing." ~ Socrates

  3. #3
    good thread.

    i've never gotten the uq wet, but i've been living in the arid west since i've been a uq user. i did get the shell of my marmot bag/tq pretty wet from really bad side blown rain and snow once.

    it got the down wet enough to clump some (or at least form empty spots) and i could feel cold coming through those spots. i made it through the night and actually slept some, but it was bad enough to where we bailed the next day because of it. my only fallback was that i had a buddy alone in a 2 man tent where i knew i could go as a last resort. that's probably what enabled me to fall asleep. definately the coldest night i've ever spent in a hammock.

    looking back, it could have been easily prevented by having a tarp with more side protection.

  4. #4
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by warbonnetguy View Post
    good thread.

    i've never gotten the uq wet, but i've been living in the arid west since i've been a uq user. i did get the shell of my marmot bag/tq pretty wet from really bad side blown rain and snow once.

    it got the down wet enough to clump some (or at least form empty spots) and i could feel cold coming through those spots. i made it through the night and actually slept some, but it was bad enough to where we bailed the next day because of it. my only fallback was that i had a buddy alone in a 2 man tent where i knew i could go as a last resort. that's probably what enabled me to fall asleep. definately the coldest night i've ever spent in a hammock.

    looking back, it could have been easily prevented by having a tarp with more side protection.
    That is really the key, isn't it? Can you bail out in a reasonable amount of time if every thing goes wrong? Even a bigger tarp can suffer equipment failure, and it has happened.
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  5. #5
    Senior Member animalcontrol's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillyBob58 View Post
    That is really the key, isn't it? Can you bail out in a reasonable amount of time if every thing goes wrong? Even a bigger tarp can suffer equipment failure, and it has happened.
    Your absolutely right...it has happened...to people in every imaginable situation (hangers, climbers, tenters, etc)
    No one can plan for every situation...nature is crafty that way! The best we can do is have contengincy plans for the "most common" ones.
    Where most of us could get into trouble is when we start hedging our bets on potential issues. For example, not carrying enough "xtra" clothes if your primary set gets wet in the the winter..."that extra set weights too much and I never used them anyway"
    And honestly IMO, we as hangers are on the cutting edge of that argument. We give up some of the known technology (whether we think it is better or not) in search of comfort. Welcome to stretching the envelope.
    Again, you can't have every angle covered. But you can have a plan backed up with another plan that you hope covers MOST of the angles.
    I have been hypothermic...I have had an injury were I couldn't walk for days (and then 3 miles took all day). We learn and adapt.
    None of the above rant has a thing to do with "down Vs synthetic"
    "Every day is a new day to a better future"
    "Of all the things that matter, that really and truly matter, working more efficiently and getting more done is not among them." ~ Mike Dooley
    "What if I told you that you couldn't have anymore of anything... No more friends, no more money, no more anything, until you first got happy with what you have?"~ Mike Dooley
    "The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing." ~ Socrates

  6. #6
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
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    I just posted on the other thread. My only wet UQs (PeaPod and MWUQ) were in the back yard. And I did not have to pack up the next morning. In both cases a stake pulled out in heavy wind driven rain/water saturated ground and A LOT of water got on them before I could correct the problem. But the DWR saved the day(night actually), and for all practical purposes, the down stayed mostly dry. So, no real experience to report. If you want to talk wet bags, then I have experience.

    I do have a friend who, at the end of 2 dif week long trips, was starting to worry about the loft on both his down TQ and his summer weight PeaPod. Fortunately, by that time, it was time to finish the last days hike out. I think if it was another week, he would have been looking for some sunshine to dry out.
    Last edited by BillyBob58; 04-20-2009 at 10:45.
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  7. #7
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    I think, from what is being said, that a weathershield becomes important - regardless of what the quilt is made of, that layer of waterproof material might just save the night. If the weather gets wicked it wouldn't be a guarantee, but would increase the odds of keeping your insulation dry.

  8. #8
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
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    I just remembered: Cannibal, didn't you get your WB Syn UQ wet a couple of times on the AT?Also, Preachaman and every one with him got all gear soaked in an Ozark extreme storm.

    So, guys, how did that work out?
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  9. #9
    Senior Member pizza's Avatar
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    I'm banking on my DD weather poncho to keep my uq and hammock bottom dry.

  10. #10
    Senior Member DougTheElder's Avatar
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    Recent posts about large tarps in high winds have had me thinking about how I should be prepared, and what I would actually do, in the event of an absolute tarp failure in blowing, drenching rain. In this situation, the immediate concern is not whether my quilts are down or synthetic, DWR, or not, etc., but what is the appropriate first reaction. My plan, for now, is to protect the insulation as quickly as possile. To that end, I have purchased an over-sized 3-mil trash bag that I will keep immediately accessible. If my tarp blows away, my first reaction will (hopefully) be to stuff my quilts and other insulating clothing that may be loose in the hammock into that bag. Actually, I think the hammock and all its contents will go into the bag. Then I'll worry about getting myself dry. I'd rather be left standing naked in a freezing rain holding a sack of quilts than to be naked under a wad of saturated quilts. (Try to get past the visualization.) What is your first response plan?

    To stay on topic: I have only down quilts and have only been wet as a result of condensation, but I plan to get synthetic alternatives to use when high humidity, fog, rain, etc., coupled with poor drying conditions are expected. Summer humidity in the South is often such that it doesn't matter if it's raining or not.
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