Klymit Intertia Ozone First Impression

Gear hording is something I feel is inevitable once you start getting into any hobby. This has been the case for me with cycling primarily, but as of late I’ve been re-assessing my camping and bike-packing gear as well.

I used to bike camp with heavy tents, a heavy cook pot that could be used on top of a fire, a heavy inflatable mattress, and a sleeping bag that barely fit inside my panniers. It was fun at the time because I was 23 and my body could recover from putting in lots of miles fully loaded over a weekend.

I’m 34 now and while I’m still very active, it’s more difficult to have the enthusiasm to lug 20-30 lbs of gear, food, and water on my bike. With age has come experience on nice, lightweight bikes and more disposable income to invest in lighter gear.

The other reason for my foray into ultralight gear comes two fold. The first is that I’m limited by the size of my bike. I ride a small or 51cm usually across the board on most bikes, so space is an issue. I don’t have the luxury of being able to have a large inner triangle bag or even a large seat bag because I often fun into tire clearance issues.

I have to pack intelligently and make use of every cubic inch I can get, while making sure I have all the amenities to stay safe and comfortable on a trip.

The second is that I’d like to get into section and thru hiking. A bucket list goal for me is to hike the JMT (John Muir Trail or as indigenous folx call Nuumu Poyo) which is 500 miles of grand, challenging beauty off of the Pacific Crest Trail.

My gear would serve double duty and carrying gear on a bike is a much different experience than carrying it on your back and own two legs.

This is where the Klymit Inertia Ozone comes in. I’ve been a fan of Klymit since purchasing their insulated Static V pad a few years back. It was much more comfortable than the previous pads I had used. The shape and design of the baffles provides a good night’s sleep and you can sleep in just about any position and be comfortable.

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The OG Klymit Pad

The downside of this pad is it’s bulky and HEAVY. It works well for my car camping excursions or even as a temporary bed when crashing at a friend’s house, but it’s not something I want to lug around several miles on my bike or back.

I actually have ditched sleeping pads pretty much all together as a hammock camper, but I had heard that the Ozone was a pretty decent alternative to carrying an under-quilt.

What makes the Ozone unique compared to other sleeping pads is the strategically removed material on the pad. The holes provide a way for bags to loft and fill the void for a warm and comfortable sleep. The mat also features an integrated, inflatable pillow!

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Top down look at the Inertia Ozone.

I’ve always been a fan of the Thermarest camp pillows with their shredded memory foam. Super soft and cozy, but they do not stay in place well when you’re tent or ground camping.

Klymit’s website claims a 12.2 oz weight for the Ozone. I weighed mine with stuff suck and the included repair kit and it came out to an even 14oz. I haven’t taken the time to weigh it on it’s own as I’m not going to go full weight weenie about it. A sub 1lb. pad is pretty damn good.

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The Inertia Ozone also caught my attention because of the price. Thermarest’s widely loved ultralite pads are pricey, even if you can find them on sale. I’m sure for as much use as they get on a long distance trip, the cost is actually not all that bad. I just knew that I wanted to stay within a certain price point and Klymit fit the bill.

Full disclosure, I actually found out that Klymit sells refurbished products through eBay at a fraction of the cost of what they sell for on their website. Now I’ll say that for something like electronics or a high dollar purchase, I’d almost never go the refurbished route because the warranties on them are pretty bad.

I’m sure people have had perfectly good experiences with products like this, but I just can’t afford to not be able to buy something for several hundred or even thousands of dollars and know the company may not back it because it’s a refurb.

Since this was a $40-45 purchase, I was willing to take that risk. Klymit is very transparent with their refurbished product process. It’s items they often get on return either from retailers or individuals who purchased from them directly. They could be absolutely new in packaging still, but they test every product that comes back and if there is an issue, they will fully repair it, test it again, and if it passes it goes on their eBay site.

Normally I’d try to purchase either from a local retailer or from the company directly via various channels, but with COVID19 and the fact that I wasn’t able to find a local retailer that had it readily for purchase on their websites, I went the eBay route.

The stuff sack of the pad actually has a stamp on it stating it is a refurbished item. Which goes to show they at least took the time to take a look at the product. A little peace of mind goes a long way.

When I received the pad I first disinfected the mouth pieces with some Lysol and a dose of iso-alcohol. Can’t be to careful! I blew up the body of the pad, which only took maybe 5 full breathes. I then inflated the pillow, which also only took a few full breathes.

I discovered it’s actually better to leave the pillow slightly under inflated as it cradles your head a little better and is more comfortable.

The body of the Ozone has an ergonomic shape to it. You can see in the photos how it has almost a wave in the body. I found this to be quite comfortable. One of my primary complaints about sleeping pads is that when on my back, I get some lower back and hip pain as I have a anterior pelvic tilt. Usually side or stomach sleeping is more comfortable for me because of this, but I actually didn’t feel that usual twinge of pain while on this pad. I actually slept on the pad in one of my tents for two nights and had successfully fell asleep on my back and stayed there for several hours before changing positions. 49916152538_49274bac96_o
I used the pad in two different ways. The first was laying my sleeping bag (a Marmot Trestle Elite 30 degree women’s bag) on top of the pad. The second night I put the pad inside the bag and slept that way.

Both options worked, but I did feel cramped having the pad inside the bag. I admittedly don’t like sleeping in mummy bags. I’m a warm sleeper and like to sleep in several different positions depending on how my body is feeling. I only really like mummy bags for when the temps drop and I need to warm up quickly in the middle of the night.

Because of this, I’ve decided to invest in a quilt from a big name outdoors brand, but I’ll save that for another post!

The length and width of the pad felt good for me. I’m 5′ 5″ and usually weight anywhere from 175-185. My body has always hovered between those two weights pretty consistently over the past few years. I’ve been down to 169, but had to really work on tracking everything going into my body and working out 4-5 times a week to maintain that. Which was pretty exhausting on top of my already pretty taxing job.

For me the pad feels comfortable. I don’t know how it would be for someone larger or taller, but have seen reviews from folks in the 6ft range saying they enjoy it as well.

In addition to sleeping on the pad in two different sleeping bag configurations, I also slept on the pad one night with the pillow just as is and the next night actually doubled the pillow over to add more loft to it and position my head up a little more. I actually ended up even sticking my puffy jacket under my head and then using a long sleeve camp shirt under the pillow as well to add more loft. I snore if I sleep on my back and my head is too low, so I have to prop my head up a little more to help avoid that. It worked well and I was comfortable. 49916966127_e4fc574418_o49916666701_f1c27b1992_o
I tried to simulate how I would sleep if in a tent or had to set my hammock up in a ground configuration. I have not yet tried the pad in an actual hammock. I plan on doing that soon to see if it will work for me. I have used my old Static V before, but it usually slides around too much, so I’m usually a just sleep with a bag, a pillow, and the hammock kind of person.

To test the level of deflation I left the pad out for an additional two days after the two nights I slept on it. The pad still was holding air, but I did need to puff another large breath in the body of the pad to get it firmed back up, but that’s to be expected when you are breathing warm air into something that is getting exposed to cooler air temps at night and also left unattended for a couple of days.

So far I’m happy with my purchase and am excited to field test it beyond my living room. I think Klymit does a good job with designing their products and offering something unique to what other brands are doing on the market.

They seem to have great customer service based off the interactions I’ve seen on YouTube and Instagram. They also shipped my pad to me almost instantly after I made my purchase through eBay.

Once I’m able to give the pad a try in a hammock setting and get some more nights of sleeping on it, I’d love to do a video and another update!

**Disclaimer**
I was not in any way approached by Klymit to write this review of their product, nor was I paid to write about their products. Any links in this post are for consumer research purposes, I’m not getting any affiliate kickbacks for linking out to eBay or Klymit’s own website.

I paid for this product with my own money and was not given any product for free to review.

If you like this overview, please check out the rest of the blog on the site. I have other reviews and overviews for camping and cycling products.

I also have some videos on YouTube.com/spokehaven for your viewing pleasure. Content has been a little slower to produce at the moment as I’m working for an essential business (a bike shop) and we’ve been getting absolutely crushed by the demand for tune ups, repairs, and new bike purchases. An awesome problem to have, but we’re all pretty exhausted at the end of our work days.

I’m trying to utilize my couple of days off to just have a little mental health breather, but miss putting out content. I’ll work on finding a happy medium.

As always you can see what I’m up to in real-time on Instagram @spokehaven

Thanks for reading as always and I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy!

-Cassandra

Bike Packing Blue Mound Vlog!

I did a short vlog on my bike packing trip to Blue Mound. While long form blogs are fun and all, some folks want to just watch the story unfold. Please like, comment, or subscribe on YouTube!

That helps me be able to create more content and help promote more women-trans-femme folks for getting out and riding!

Gas One 3400P Stove First Impressions

Getting outdoors is always at the top of my list whenever possible. I’ve been slowly working with my partner to actively try to plan more trips to go hiking, car camping, and even try planning some longer excursions to tick some National Parks off of our list.

We both have a pretty good gear set up for bike packing or even backpacking, but have lacked a bit in the car camping division. While I’m sure my tiny, Esbit stove could work for making some very basic food, it’s just not practical to do some actual cooking and would use a ton of fuel cubes. I also want to be able to use cookware larger than a small ultralight cook pot while on longer excursions.

I decided to start researching our options when it came to camp stoves. There’s no shortage of options from a myriad of brands. Coleman, Primus, Camp Chef, and Eureka all come to mind as brands I’ve seen represented at various camping supply stores.

While searching for the “one” I just didn’t see anything that truly caught my fancy. Many of the stoves were bulky or heavy. Some of them felt really cheap, with poorly designed plastic knobs. Almost all of them used a single fuel source.

After turning to YouTube, I found a stove that intrigued me. It was the Gas One 3400P. It’s a single burner stove that can used either butane or propane. The stove itself is made in South Korea, not china. It ticked a lot of boxes for me. The price was also pretty great. You can find this stove retailing for $32-50 dollars.

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The only catch was I could only find it online. I try, when I can, to support stores in my local area. Even if it means I pay a little more money for things, I like knowing the money is staying in my community.

Unfortunately I couldn’t find anything quite like the stove locally so I took a gamble and ordered one. So far I’m happy with the purchase!

The case is the one very disappointing part of the package. It’s the most brittle, sad plastic case I’ve ever seen. I’d be willing to pay an extra $5-10 if they included a higher quality case. After researching this issue I see that Gas One makes a stove called the 4000P which has a 12k btu rating and much nicer case.  It’s also about $30 more than the 3400P. I’m not sure if the extra btu’s or case really make it worth that much of a better option. I think the 3400P is a great option for the price.

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I was lucky enough to find both sources of fuel for the stove at my local REI store, although I’m sure I could source it elsewhere for a little less. I know there is a way to use a larger propane tank with an adapter, but I don’t want to lug one of those around at this point in time. There’s also an option to pick up a refillable 1lb propane tank.

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We had planned to do a car camping trips a couple of weekends ago. Unfortunately we were hit with several thunderstorms, so we decided to stay close to home. One of the days it managed to clear up during the afternoon, so I stealthily took the stove to our balcony to do a little test with each of the two fuel sources.

I say stealthily due to our condo board having some stick in the mud rules about what types of grills and such can be used. Our building allows for electric or natural gas grills, but no propane. We have steel and concrete balconies, so not sure why they are so strict about it, but I’ve never been one to follow rules!

First I grabbed the butane canister and locked it down into the stove. It’s incredibly easy as you just remove the cap off the butane and there’s a keyed top on the can to ensure you lock in facing the right direction. The stove also has a lock and unlock lever on the front of it.

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I timed how long it would take 2 cups of water to boil for each type of fuel. They were both pretty close with around 4:26 to reach a rapid boil. It took them each about 3 minutes to get to the point where the small bubbles were forming at the bottom of the pot. This is with my Ti Evernew pot and the lid on.

I was happy with the results, especially knowing that I was up about 3 flights and on a cold, windy balcony. If at ground level with a bit more protection around the flame, I’m sure it would have sped up the times. Gas One actually offers their own branded windshield to be used with their single burner stoves. I may fashion something on my own to see how it works, but at $10-15 it’s not a lot of money to spend on something to make the conditions better for cooking.

The biggest difference I saw between the two fuel sources is that the flame seemed more consistent with the propane vs. the butane. I did feel like the butane burned hotter, if that makes sense? I’m working on cutting together a short video to post on the Spoke Haven YouTube showing off the times and functionality of the stove. It’s nothing too high tech or lengthy with talking. Just a short and sweet overview of the stove to see it in action.

As I stated at the beginning of the write up, I like the stove. The small footprint, the dual fuel capability, and the ease of use makes it a great option for someone who wants a minimalist set up for travel or camping.

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I plan on doing a full review as I get more time with the stove and get to travel a bit with it. In the meantime, I’d say if you are looking to pick one of these up you can buy directly from Gas One or Amazon. I would encourage you to see if you can source it from a local retailer, but if not…that’s understandable.

If you’d like to check out an even more in depth review on this and other stoves like it, our friends at CampingCooks.com did an overview on their site here.

If you want more reviews like this or want to see what I’m up to in real-time, please follow me on IG @spokehaven for bikey/campy goodness or @twowheelfitness for fitness, health, and nutrition related content. Thanks for stopping by and see you you outdoors!

Spoke Haven’s Top 10 Summer Excursions by Bike

Summer in the Madison area is a lot of fun. But it’s even more fun when bikes are involved! In no particular order, here’s a list of 11 things to do this summer on two wheels!

1. Cruise on the Military Ridge Trail to the Grumpy Troll for pizza and brew.

2. Valet your bike (for FREE) at Concerts on the Square and enjoy some vino with friends.

3. Visit one of the many city parks and have a bicycle picnic. We recommend Hoyt, James Madison or Yahara Place parks. If you’re not in the mood to pack your own picnic, stop by Fromagination or Underground Butcher to pick out some yummy to-go items.

4. Complete the tour de B-cycle!

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5.Complete an S24O (sub 24 hour trip)! We’ve ridden to Token Creek and Governor Dodge for camping. Haul your items on a back rack or attach a bike trailer.

6. Roll over to one of Madison’s several disc golf courses. Capital Springs is the newest and accessible by the Cap City Trail near Fish Farm Park.

7. Ahoy matey! Make your way over to Wingra Boat Rentals for stand up paddle boarding, kayaking, or canoeing.

8. Explore the Badger State Trail (also lovingly known by the locals as the H8er). Stop in Paoli for ice cream or find Dot’s Tavern for some cold brews.

9. Imbibe some of Wisconsin’s best local beers by doing a brewery bike tour. Karben 4, Ale Asylum, One Barrel Brewing Company, Malt House, Great Dane, and Capital Brewery are our favorites.

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10. Get away from it all at Pheasant Branch Conservancy. This hiking and biking route is popular on the weekends. We recommend going on a weeknight and getting up close to birds, deer, and other wildlife.

BONUS: Head to the famed Picnic Point or Memorial Union Terrace to catch a spectacular lake front sunset. You won’t regret it!

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