This article proposes a more realistic 13 Essentials that will better keep the modern hiker safe. This is because the Classic 10 Essentials (first proposed in the 1930's) need an update for the 21st Century given the realities of a modern day hiker. First, a major conceptual trap of the traditional 10 Essentials is that they are all gear. I would [...]
Keep it simple, nutritious and save weight: I take inexpensive trail foods which are both tasty and nutritious. Specifically, foods that give you calories, protein, good fats, vitamins and other micro nutrients. This keeps you healthy and cruising along the trail with a spring in your step. Just as important are foods (and meals) that can be quickly prepared. My [...]
Down quilts are far and away the best sleep value for most backpacking trips. They are half the cost and substantially lighter than sleeping bags. For example, a +20°F down quilt like the one above weighs just over a pound and can cost as little as $150, far less than $460 for a +20°F sleeping [...]
The best backpacking camera is the camera you can quickly pull out and shoot. Many superb photos have been taken on iPhones. Being in a beautiful area and taking a photo in the right place at the right time matters far more than the camera. That being said, if you are in the right place at the [...]
Any hiker can use these Efficient Backpacking Tips to get more time to do what they love best outdoors. Whether it's covering more miles, extra time to enjoy the views, take photographs, fish, get some extra swimming in a lake or even (gasp!) a mid-afternoon nap.
A 9 pound pack is all you need to be safe and warm. So, if you want to lower your pack weight but retain all the convenience and comfort of “traditional” backpacking, look no further than this Lightweight Backpacking Gear Checklist. This Lightweight Backpacking Gear Checklist is suitable for most backpackers on most 3-season trips in the lower 48 and [...]
Take the train to the AT—low carbon, low stress. No car, no complicated shuttles. Just great hiking! This AT section hike has it all—an ideal blend of natural beauty, history, small towns, great local parks, and meeting interesting people. It's a perfect example of what makes hiking on the AT a unique and special experience—why people come from [...]
Most people know about Aron Ralston of “127 hours,” who cut his arm off to save his life. A major take-away from this was that he should have left a Trip Plan with a friend. Something as simple as a short note saying where he was going and what to do if he wasn't back on time would [...]
It’s a myth that ultralight backpacking makes you cold, wet and hungry. It doesn’t. In fact, I’ll wager that with my 5 pounds of ultralight gear I’m more comfortable, sleep better, and eat better than many campers carrying 20 to 30 pounds of conventional/heavier backpacking gear. Here are 3 Reasons why You Won’t Freeze or Starve UltraLight .
Ready for something stunningly beautiful and completely different but still safe and easy—a change in pace from your regular backpacking? Consider non-technical canyon hiking or backpacking in Utah. Gems like Paria Canyon, Buckskin Gulch, the Zion Narrows, or Grand Gulch are just few of the big name canyons for starters. The list of equally superb but lesser [...]