Trail Runners

For most conditions provided you are carrying less than approximately 40 lb, I would strongly recommend trying trail running shoes because they can be quite comfortable and will be lighter than the more traditional hiking shoes or boots. I have heard people express concerns about … “Trail Runners”

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Socks

Appropriate socks help keep your feet at a comfortable temperature and play a large part in preventing blisters.  Blisters come from the combination of friction and moisture. You want socks which wick moisture away from you feet and minimize the amount of friction between the … “Socks”

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Hiking Boots (and Shoes)

Historically people wore heavy weight boots for backpacking, trekking, etc.  Your feet need to be protected, and what could do a better job that a  heavy boot which will help prevent sprained ankles and give excellent support?  Actually, most boots don’t give good “ankle support”.  … “Hiking Boots (and Shoes)”

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Feet in Snow and Cold

In colder weather, people often struggle with their feet getting cold.  There are a number of reasons for this Feet are the furthest point from your core which is generating heat. Feet are subjected to conductive cooling through the soles of your shoes/boots. Feet sweat … “Feet in Snow and Cold”

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Goto Backpacking Gear

Thought it would be interesting to see how my primary items have changed over time:  I am ignoring items that were used briefly or for testing purpose. For a while I was regularly purchasing new gear and trying it our. When I found something that … “Goto Backpacking Gear”

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Backpacking on the Cheap

Every year I help organize several backpacking trips for the communities I participate in. Typically we will have several first time backpackers. I often get the question “What should I buy?” Everyone expects the first thing I will suggest is a good pair of boots … “Backpacking on the Cheap”

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Food for Backpacking

There is a saying that an army runs on it’s stomach. The same could be said for most backpackers and outdoor adventurers. For most, food is not only fuel for the journey, but also a source of enjoyment, comfort, and motivation. There is a wide … “Food for Backpacking”

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Cookware for Backpacking

If you want to cook food, you need something that holds the water and/or food as you heat it up. They best cookware will vary depending on the size of a group and the type of cooking. My Choice When I am traveling solo I … “Cookware for Backpacking”

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Stoves for Backpacking

A portable stove enables you to cook nearly anywhere. Most stoves burn clean which makes cleanup easy. While a stove will add weight to your pack, the combination of a stove and foods which you cook are often lighter than ready to eat foods. Cooked food typically provide … “Stoves for Backpacking”

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Food Storage for Backpacking

In most parts of the country correctly hanging food in a bear bags can be effective though it takes a bit of skill. Unfortunately bags won’t protect your food in the more highly trafficed parts of the Sierras were the bears see backpackers and think “Great, I … “Food Storage for Backpacking”

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Hammocks

I have tried using hammocks several times and never enjoyed the experience. Furthermore, I am near or above tree line which makes hammocks useless.  I would suggest you check out people who love hammocks such as Sgt Rock’s Hammocks 101. In warm weather nothing will … “Hammocks”

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Shelter Fabrics

Shelters are made from a variety of materials which have a variety of strengths and weaknesses.  One of the important properties of a shelter is being able to keep you dry. Many fabrics, even those that aren’t “waterproof” can keep you drive in moderate conditions. … “Shelter Fabrics”

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Winter Shelters

Actually, this should really be called shelters for extreme conditions with snow since there are many places where “winter” could be handled with a traditional “three season” tent.  When I think “winter shelters” I am thinking something that can survive 50+mph winds, and a foot … “Winter Shelters”

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Tents

Tents are structures made from fabric that provide an enclosed space which protects the occupants from environment conditions. Historically tents were made from canvas, but now are typically made from nylon or polyester with some some of waterproof treatment. Most tents are double walled, though … “Tents”

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Bivy

Bivy’s are minimalist shelters which have a footprint no larger than the person they are protecting. They have the advantage of being very quick to set up and have a very low wind profile. Full Protection / Waterproof In most cases I would not use … “Bivy”

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Stakes

Most shelters need something to keep them from blowing away. Most people carry metal or plastic stakes, though it is often possible to improvise using local material. A decent video of the big/little rock anchor is what I often do above treeline. Ultralight backpackers often … “Stakes”

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Backpacking

The following posts can provide a good overview for someone who is thinking and trying backpacking for the first time. Getting Starting Gear You Will Need Food on the Trail Getting a Good Night Sleep Survival skills Winter Activities… and special issues with cold and … “Backpacking”

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