Questions relating to any physical gear for engaging in those activities discussed in The Great Outdoors. Examples include packs, knives, bikes, kayaks, and climbing harnesses.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (2)

8
votes
1answer
119 views

How to fold rope for storage?

What is a good and easy way to fold a (50-100') rope for storage so that it resembles a caterpillar and has no loose ends getting undone? Close to the way it comes folded in a store like this at the ...
8
votes
1answer
120 views

Relative abraision resistance of Dyneema slings vs an average dynamic climbing rope

I recently read this answer about rope thickness, and it mentions a tragic incident where a rope was severed during a lead fall due to the rope being dragged across rock edge whilst under tension. ...
8
votes
1answer
252 views

Climbing Webbing with Taped Ends (where & why)

I was reading through the AAJ, and I came across a report from April this year when somebody died due to an anchor failure. The webbing was joined with some masking tape at the ends, instead of ...
8
votes
2answers
589 views

End-of-season maintenance / storage tips for ski boots?

After several trips with poor fitting hire ski boots, and having had no end of trouble finding suitable fitting hire boots at the current resort, I went and bought a fitting pair. The boots have been ...
8
votes
2answers
69 views

Pros and cons of different types of snorkeling fins

I need to buy a new pair of fins. There are many choices, so I would like some technical guidance. I am savvy in the water, but not as strong as I was, so I would like fins that give me the most ...
8
votes
1answer
110 views

Planned winter bivi

There is emergency equipment to survive nights, like emergency blankets and bivouac packs. As opposed to this, if you plan to stay overnight on winter trips (e.g. in the Alps) you don't just want to ...
8
votes
1answer
99 views

What is a splice in spools of tubular webbing?

While trying to answer Why static rope rather than webbing for toprope anchors? I immediately thought about splices in long pieces of webbing. For example, REI says that spools of Blue Water webbing ...
8
votes
1answer
190 views

How to get started with packrafts?

I love hiking and I'm starting to love longer cycling trips too. I've done combined cycling/hiking trips (cycling to the trailhead of a hike). Last summer I met someone who carried an inflatable raft ...
8
votes
1answer
271 views

How to use an avalanche shovel as a snow anchor for a belay?

Avalanche shovels come equipped with holes in the blades for use as rescue sleds and making anchors. I've got plenty of my own ideas, but I'm looking for any documentation provided by manufacturers ...
8
votes
1answer
851 views

How to care for a smelly (as in wet dog smell) down sleeping bag?

My down sleeping bag smelled like a wet dog after a damp night out. By reading this forum thread. I realized that it probably didn't dry enough after the trip. So I let it out at the air, and the ...
8
votes
1answer
144 views

What is the minimum gap needed for a windscreen on a cat can stove?

I've constructed a cat can jet stove as described here. He has a windscreen design, but it seems to be overkill (and doesn't work for my pot). I've tried a couple of my own now, but they are all ...
8
votes
1answer
403 views

Pack to carry two 30 L barrels

Background: I am a talking canoe tripping and portaging here. I have come into possession of two standard 30 litre food barrels, but no method of carrying them. I have heard of people carrying two of ...
7
votes
3answers
889 views

How do I light a spirit (ethanol) stove when it's cold?

I am very happy with my storm-proof spirit stove. When others are struggling to find a place outside the wind, I can cook wherever I like — provided I can lighten my ethanol fuel. Trangia stove in ...
7
votes
3answers
692 views

Makeshift Stretchers

I recently read in a local organization report log that a group of inexperienced and stranded hikers gambled up a route and had to take a risky way down the hill. In the process, a guy got badly ...
7
votes
3answers
374 views

Shoe sizes for bouldering

When I first started (indoor) bouldering, I wasn't quite sure if I was ready to commit to it, so I went and bought a pair of shoes in the sale that were relatively cheap (or at least cheaper than ...
7
votes
2answers
425 views

what are the differences between high-end sleeping pads and cut to fit foam mats

I'm pretty tall and I find that to purchase a brand-name sleeping pad means shelling out serious $$$. To solve this I have always just purchased a roll of foam padding that I could cut to make sure it ...
7
votes
4answers
228 views

What respirator should I get for urbex?

Sometimes while hiking/trekking/whatever I practice urbex (in random buildings, factories, farms, tunnels, the usual), and I'm aware of the risks to my health caused by toxic gas, asbestos, lead and ...
7
votes
2answers
910 views

Camping with a tarp, what are risks about animals?

I have never camped using a tarp (and just a sleeping bag under), and I am wondering about it. I am thinking about camping in Canada, and the animals around there are apparently mostly bears and other ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Do reusable “hand coolers” exist?

I often carry around a couple of reusable hand warmers when hiking or just around the outdoors when it's cold. They don't take up much space, they're easy to reuse (just boil) and they provide a fair ...
7
votes
3answers
617 views

Ski set that does both downhill and backcountry?

So I know very little about skiing and have only skied about 3-4 times. I would like to ski more this winter. I want to purchase a ski set, but I don't know which one to get. Here is what I wanna ...
7
votes
2answers
310 views

Buoyancy aids ratings

I recently brought a buoyancy aid to use when kayaking. One thing I noticed when purchasing it though was the 50N rating. All buoyancy aids I looked at seemed to have a 50N rating and I vaguely ...
7
votes
3answers
5k views

Dome tents vs popup tents, are there any inherent pros or cons besides price and ease?

I was lucky enough to be given an almost new double skin popup tent. Where I'm camping right now it's got windy a couple of times and rainy a couple of times. A friend of mine who is camping in his ...
7
votes
3answers
113 views

Backcountry Skiing Bindings compatible with soft boots

I love downhill and cross country skiing and am getting into back country skiing. Cross country boots are great for comfort because they're soft. Downhill boots are great for turning in part because ...
7
votes
2answers
207 views

Retractable reel for twine - does it exist?

I occasionally use a very long stretch of twine to transport light gear (<1lb) between my partner and I when we're camping out ~30m from each other. Unreeling and reeling this twine is extremely ...
7
votes
3answers
445 views

Are self-inflatable sleeping pads more slippery than other mats?

I was camping recently and someone was complaining that they were finding it hard to sleep, as their new self inflating mat was much more slippery than their old foam one. Is this a real effect, and ...
7
votes
2answers
537 views

What are the dangers of descending/rappeling very quickly?

Sometimes when descending with a GriGri, I get the urge to pull hard and zip down the line. Safe reasoning returns and I continue descending with a safe, steady pace. However, I would like to know ...
7
votes
3answers
213 views

Gloves for knuckle protection that can get wet but not necessarily waterproof

I am looking to replace my NRS creeking gloves that I use for kayaking "bony" rivers and creeks where rock contact is a real possibility. The problem that I have with them is that the seams are not ...
7
votes
1answer
944 views

What is a “fast pack” setup for a tent?

Reading around forums and in products, I see descriptions and weights for a "fast pack" setup for tents. What does this mean and what is it used for?
7
votes
2answers
249 views

What materials from nature can I use to make a hunting bow in the wilderness?

What materials can be used to make a hunting bow in the wilderness? Not just for the main structure but also the materials that would be suitable for the string. All of the materials should be from ...
7
votes
2answers
121 views

What will the water temperature be at Sharm el-Sheikh at a depth of 30m in October?

You can easily find the temperatures at the surface of the sea. However, to choose the correct diving suit, I would like to know the temperatures that can be expected at a depth of about 30 meters ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I practice Climbing without the actual wall and/or equipment?

I had never been a gifted kind of a climber being more fascinated by Backpacking than Rock Climbing. Its been almost 2 years that I did some genuine climbing. And, I am planning to resume it very ...
7
votes
2answers
113 views

How do I reduce bow string travel on a bow drill?

I have created a bow-drill for the purpose of starting fires. The wooden shaft's diameter is about the diameter of a typical male thumb, and is approximately 11 inches in length. The bow string is ...
7
votes
1answer
147 views

What are the Pros and Cons of a Full-coverage Rainfly?

I've been researching tents to replace some low-quality dome tents that each have had a partial rainfly. Every tent I've owned that has had a partial rainfly has performed horribly in the rain (I ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

What does “expedition-weight” mean with regard to clothing?

I'm going on a trip to Alaska in September, including a guided camping/trekking trip in Denali. In the packing list I received from the company, they recommend having an "expedition-weight" top and ...
7
votes
3answers
185 views

Facility to test cold weather gear in London UK

I'm debating what equipment to buy to prepare for a cold weather in mountain terrain and felt it might be useful to test what different temperatures feel like while wearing chosen equipment. My ...
7
votes
1answer
180 views

What levels of 'waterproofness' and 'breathability' should I be looking for in a ski jacket?

When looking at items like jackets and ski trousers and other clothing, I see stats on the garments similar to the following: Waterproofness - 10000mm Breathability - 15000g/m Lining - 100% Polyester ...
7
votes
1answer
357 views

How to decide which tarp size to take?

I am thinking about getting some tarp as a 1-person shelter for hiking this summer. There is a large choice of tarps on the market. The difference between them are often the size and the material it ...
7
votes
1answer
4k views

How durable is cuben fiber in real, practical use?

For years I've seen high-tech cuben fiber gear and drooled over how incredibly lightweight it is, and longed to buy or make some of my own equipment with it. (Then upon seeing the price tag, well, my ...
7
votes
2answers
416 views

Is there a functional safety difference in types of helmets

From a pure safety standpoint is there a functional difference between a climbing helmet, cycling helmet, etc? Is a cycling helmet actually the safest solution for a cyclist, or would the greater ...
7
votes
1answer
173 views

What is the difference between accessory cord and prusik cord?

Aside from Prusik cord being a different weave, what's the big difference? When would I choose one type of cord over the other? Is there anything I shouldn't I use the different types of cord for? ...
7
votes
1answer
730 views

Do folding cross country skis exist?

Do folding (or telescoping) cross-country skis exist and if so are they useable? Update: Or are there small cross-country skis that are short enough for easy transport, yet still capable of providing ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

What gear for sleeping in wild camping in western Scotland in May?

I intend to go camping in Scotland (mainly the Isle of Mull, that is Western, central Scotland) next week, i.e. last week of May. I have read quite a lot about the weather and know I should prepare ...
7
votes
3answers
247 views

How to avoid cracking your windshield while strapping down a kayak

I have an 18 ft. fiberglass sea-kayak, which I mount to the roof-rack of my junky old station wagon with Yakima "Sweetroll" saddles - ratchet straps around the saddles and bow and stern to the ...
7
votes
1answer
139 views

What crampon front-point setup options are specific for various types of ice climbing?

Is it a matter of personal preference, or are there advantages to using different front-point setups on your crampons specific to what you are climbing? For example, I'm still just getting into ice ...
7
votes
3answers
290 views

Online website to track A.T. section hikes and overall progress?

It's always been a dream to thru-hike the A.T. but life is looking like I will not be able to tackle that until retirement. The doesn't mean that I cannot do sections of it as a day/weekend/week here ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

How resistant to water is Tyvek in practice

Tyvek is labeled as "water resistant" and not "water proof", but I'd really love to know how much is the fabric resistant to water in practice. Some people built tarps or even tents out of it, but I ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

Carry compound bow on back

I'm new to hunting. Last time I went, I found myself needing to go up or down relatively steep slopes with a little bit of snow. For that kind of terrain it's nice to have both hands free to catch ...
7
votes
1answer
465 views

Lacing materials for huaraches

I have been walking/running/hiking in my huaraches for about half a year now and have worn through 3 pairs of laces. I have been using accessory cord used in climbing as lacing material, since it has ...
7
votes
1answer
104 views

removing tent pole cord from pole tip

We have lots of tent pole segments and I'd like to repair one of our poles but the cord is stuck on the inside of the tip. I had to just cut the cord just so I can work with the tip alone. Any tips ...
7
votes
1answer
183 views

Are there any cheap 1:25K electronic maps for the UK or Europe? [closed]

I have looked at offerings from MemoryMap and Anquet, but once you scale beyond a small area they become prohibitively expensive.