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Topic - Gear for Peruvian Andes

G1000 - on 12 Feb 2013
I'm new here. I usually just hike in the UK and I have an exciting trip coming up and want to make the most of it. I'm going late May/early June to the Peruvian Andes. It's the start of winter but i'm not too sure of the temeratures up in the high mountains.

At the very least i'll be hiking around 4000-4500m mark and i'm hoping to get fit enough to tackle a beginner climbers mountain which will be around 5700m.

I've got base layers and a very effective ME smock which is windproof and microfleece inside. It works well on it's own in warmer weather or part of layering. I've got a NF Nupse down jacket. I have lots of fleece but they need replacing if I decide to use fleece but tbh I am not everly keen on them. I'm probably going to replace my waterproof shell at some point but the one I have is ok and will fit helmet underneith hood.

I'm ideally looking for an extra layer for the more gentle active parts. I am also going to need something for basecamp and on the summit/during periods of inactivity.

I feel my nuptse would be good for basecamp and summit but it's not the lightest to carry, plus it needs attention as it was compressed in storage for 1 year!! I have a Rab infinity down (with hood) and also a Rab microlight down (no hood) on hold in shop. Also for mid layer I have a Rab Generator stretch jacket and Rab Vapor Rise (non stretch) Jacket on hold. These actually seem quite thick tho. Hmmm All these are massivly reduced in sale half price and I prefer Rab (and M.E) due to the fit, they have long arms.

So it's basically down vs the synthetic tops. And whether a hood is good for the thick down jacket and would get in way if worn for some of the climbing. I wondered if the microlight down would serve as my basecamp jacket in addition to on the mountain but it's only thin. I also wondered about a vest top but havnt seen any in a good price range.

I'm really struggling to decide what to do. I've not been in those sorts of mountain ranges and I won't really want to buy clothes that only serve that purpose. Granted I am going to northern Finland in the snow very soon so down is good for that dry environment (i'll take my Nuptse) but mosty I walk in UK. I'd not normally think of wearing down in the UK (although it's likely to be worn under my shell.)I wonder if the down might not be good for very active stuff as if you sweat then it gets damp and no good. I don't want to struggle in the Andes tho, it's not going to be easy and if i'm not dressed in the best way then i'm more likely to have issues with continuing my activities.

Sorry long mesage but any help appreaciated. These tops listed are really likely my only option as they fit better than other makes and they are the only ones in the sale. Any other ideas considered tho but these half price deals will be difficult to avoid!

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