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Geared Up

Rob Panos // 7.9.14

"...sporting some of the best gear on the market."

Rob Panos, Group Manager

guide Josh with under layers in front of him as he explains the teams gear to them

If you’ve spent a night in the backcountry, you know that the right gear can mean the difference between comfort and disaster. An afternoon thunderstorm or morning frost can become an emergency situation without proper planning. When our team of soldiers tackles Mt. Whitney this September they will be sporting some of the best gear on the market. Thanks to sponsors like Mountain Hardwear and tasc Performance they will be prepared for any condition.

Preparing for a week in the mountains starts with the right foundation. The base layer, the layer closest to your skin, is one of the most important items of clothing for any trip. It needs to keep you dry by pulling moisture away from the skin but also have insulating properties. That’s why we teamed up with tasc Performance to outfit our participants from head to toe. tasc’s Bamboo Performance Technology is a unique fabric that is breathable, moisture-wicking, and UPF-rated 50+. And yes, it’s made of bamboo! Our soldiers will also be thankful for the fabric’s anti-odor properties as they climb into their tents after a long day on the trail. Each member of Mission: Mount Whitney is sporting tasc pants, shirts, shorts, socks, underwear, and performance hats.

Trip tec of images; first shows a team member wearing a TASC hat and sporting a big beard. Second is a photo of a team mate wearing a blue undercoat with backback on. Third is a female team member wearing a blue outer coat, climbing.

“Their Bamboo and Merino combination Base Layer is the most comfortable next to skin garment I have ever worn.  It stays completely dry after putting in work on long days in adverse conditions, and the anti-odor capabilities are so great that you can head straight out to meet friends from the mountains and not worry about smelling like Sasquatch,” Josh Jespersen, Expedition Guide for Mission: Mt. Whitney.

With a good foundation, the next step is to build out with versatile layers. Our soldiers are prepared for sub-freezing temperatures, which they experienced in Colorado last month, to highs in the 90s on Mt. Whitney. We turned to Mountain Hardwear, a leader in outdoor apparel for more than 20 years, to meet our needs. On a frigid morning our team will pull on Mountain Hardwear’s Plasmic Pant, a waterproof cold-weather pant with outstanding mobility. For their core they will start with an insulation layer, in our case the Ghost Whisperer jacket. The next layer is the Mountain Tech Fleece jacket, followed by the Plasmic Hardshell jacket to protect against the elements. The beauty of layers is that the team can strip down as things heat up. All those layers are thrown into the Shaka 70 liter pack, also from Mountain Hardwear.

First image is a photo of three team members arms around eachother in matching green and grey outfits. Second image is of a male participant packing his backpack on the peak.

Expedition Leader and mountaineer great Jeff Evans speaks on his Mountain Hardwear gear: “[Mountain Hardwear] is a go-to brand for any trip into the backcountry. A good down jacket like the Ghost Whisperer is the first thing I throw in my pack, and the Warlow Hybrid pants were perfect for our spring climbing on St. Mary’s Glacier.”

Evans is excited to test of the rest of the Mission: Mt. Whitney gear and take it to the top of Mt. Whitney.  “We know our team is well prepared for the trail; thanks to our generous partners for allowing the team to be able to focus on the goal ahead and grow with each stride.”