9
votes
3answers
161 views

How do you know if smaller brands of climbing equipment are safe?

There is a local shop that sells small brand name gear for pretty good prices. I am looking at their harnesses and quickdraws and would like to know: 1) Whether the equipment is safe - say compared ...
7
votes
1answer
56 views

Pack recommendations for running?

So I've been running to work as my form of commuting and I've been getting by with my Gregory Z45 internal-frame pack for carrying whatever I need for the day. What bothers me about this pack is that ...
16
votes
2answers
5k views

Climbing rope is rated to X UIAA falls. What is a UIAA fall?

When looking at buying climbing ropes, they are rated to a number of "UIAA falls". What does that mean?
6
votes
1answer
88 views

How can you make snares safe?

I've been watching a LOT of snare/trap setting videos. They spend an lot of time making the snares nigh invisible. None of these snares would seriously injure a person, but I would like to avoid ...
11
votes
1answer
110 views

How do you best treat a turned ankle in the back country?

Possibly the most common injury I see when hiking with groups is when someone turns or rolls their ankle. Assuming that access to a vehicle is not feasible, what is the best way to deal with the ...
16
votes
2answers
138 views

Cascades mountaineering school

I'm looking for a mountaineering school on Rainier or elsewhere in the Cascades that provides sufficient training to climb Elbrus. Glacier travel, crampon use, crevasse rescue, and self arrest are the ...
5
votes
1answer
289 views

When buying a wooden boat, fixer-upper or scrapyard?

If one wants to buy a wooden sail boat, even a rotten one as a fixer-upper, what are the hotspots to check to determine if the boat is suited to repair or suited for the scrapyard?
12
votes
2answers
250 views

Should I worry about moisture in my inflatable sleeping pad?

I use a Therm-a-Rest NeoAir sleeping pad. This is not self inflating, so I have to breathe in to the sleeping pad to inflate it. Are there any precautions for storing the bag to avoid gnarly ...
10
votes
4answers
366 views

What proven alternatives are there to DEET?

DEET is an effective mosquito deterrent, but there are many reasons it cannot be used. Per the CDC, cuts, eczema, and being a kid are all problems if you want to use DEET. What proven alternatives ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I treat a blister? How can I prevent getting them in the first place?

When hiking with a new pair of boots or if I haven't been hiking in a while, my feet might get blisters. How can I treat a blister and keep hiking? Are there things I can do to prevent getting ...
4
votes
1answer
61 views

Are there something like student mountain guides clubs in Western Europe?

Student mountain guides clubs are very active in Poland. They are organizing non-commercial mountain backpacking trips, where participants have to pay only their part of costs, such as when you travel ...
-4
votes
2answers
109 views

How many GeoCaches are registered in Germany by OpenCaching? [closed]

I was trying to find statistics for the number of caches in Germany, that are registered in portal opencaching.de, a free of change and open alternative to GeoCaching.com. But I've failed to find such ...
6
votes
3answers
306 views

Does Moss only grow on the North side of trees?

Well does it? Or does it only grow on one side? Or does it grow only on the side further from the equator? Is there any truth to this old adage?
7
votes
1answer
111 views

How can I locate the leak in a inflatable pad, while hiking

Kevin did a nice job of providing a quality answer here for how to find the leak if you are at home. However I usually realize I have a leak when it deflates under me in the middle of the night. If ...
4
votes
1answer
144 views

What are the options for stopping wetsuit booties becoming water logged?

Whenever I surf with wetsuit booties on, either the boots themselves become waterlogged or the leg of the wetsuit fills with water. I've seen people use tape. Is this an effective method? What tape ...
5
votes
1answer
99 views

Bleaching Dyneema/Spectra

My white full Dyneema backpack is old and dirty and stained. How do I clean it? Can I wash it in chlorine bleach or some other fabric bleaching chemical? If so, how? Even if the bleaching agent does ...
9
votes
2answers
218 views

How should I correctly use poles and other equipment to avoid back pain on long hikes?

3 of my lower vertebra have irreparable damage, so I have various workarounds to minimise pain and swelling at home and in the office, and even on short term hikes (ibuprofen FTW) but on a longer hike ...
12
votes
3answers
193 views

What are some proven methods of training for week long backpacking trips in high altitude?

I'm going to Colorado to visit a friend and we will be going on a week long trek across a couple of 14'ners. I'm looking for some ways to help prepare my body for trip.
8
votes
4answers
675 views

Is buying an expensive sleeping bag better?

I went camping a week ago and it was so cold. I woke up many times at night shaking because of the cold. I have a cheap and old Wal-Mart sleeping bag, and I am thinking about buying one of these $150 ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Can I heat a shelter with fire?

So I built my survival shelter and I decide a nice fire would really warm things up. Is there a way I can build a fire that would heat the shelter without too much smoke? I know I could make the ...
7
votes
1answer
93 views

Storing Fuel Canisters with Stove Pump Attached

The Question Can I store my white gas fuel canister with the stove pump attached? Follow-up Questions Is it safe to store white gas fuel canisters partially filled with white gas? Does this hold ...
2
votes
1answer
101 views

What's the best climbing website? [closed]

I've not found a "must read," general information (news, trends, photos, product reviews, etc.) rock climbing website. Climbing.com, for example, is riddled with missing images and dead links, which ...
5
votes
1answer
167 views

Spectra/Dyneema groundsheet punctures

I'm about to purchase a full 4.2oz/yd Spectra/Dyneema woven groundsheet (with no coatings) to use under an inflated raft with a 150lb person sleeping on top of it. Question: Is woven full ...
5
votes
2answers
454 views

How to estimate current speed and direction at sea?

In an episode in the tv series "I shouldn't be alive", crew members of a yacht racing team got caught in a violent storm and found themselves stranded in the Gulf of Mexico after their boat capsized. ...
5
votes
2answers
90 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 ...
12
votes
1answer
261 views

Will Iodine Tablets Ruin My CamelBak?

In the past, I have gone backpacking with some fairly expensive, heavy water purification tools. But the more I read about water safety in California's Sierras (here and here), the less I think these ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

How to properly lace hiking boots?

When I go on hiking trips, I wear proper boots. However, when I lace them tight, my ankles swell terribly after a few hours and start feeling funny (bending the joint feels like touching a balloon). ...
9
votes
3answers
455 views

Soft or hard drinking bottle?

When choosing a water bottle for hiking, a very distinct choice I can make (amongst all the other types of materials and hardiness, size and so on) is weighing up whether to purchase a "hard" plastic ...
10
votes
1answer
310 views

Is my tent pole a lightning rod?

I have used the Mega Mid tent almost exclusively for hundreds of nights out over the last many years. It's versatile, well ventilated, light... but has this pole sticking straight up the middle. Is ...
6
votes
1answer
377 views

How much waterproofing spray to apply to my softshell jacket

I have a Showers Pass Portland Rain Jacket. The manufacturer recommends using Nikwax TX Direct Spray On to maintain waterproofing properties. How much should I apply to the jacket? How do I know if ...
6
votes
2answers
220 views

Which types of wood will make food taste bad?

So other than toxic burning wood, which types of wood are safe to use for cooking fires but will just make my food taste bad? I live in the Southwest, and all types of woods that I have cooked over ...
3
votes
1answer
142 views

How much garlic in the mountain kitchen? [closed]

How much garlic should I use in the mountain kitchen during backpacking camps? I'm asking from the perspective of the person who wants to plan such a camp and the menu on it. Walking a lot with a ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it safe to use water purification tablets after their expiration date?

As I understand it, water purification tablets (Chlorine, in this case) are just chemical tablets sealed in foil. So what causes them to expire? Are they still safe to use after their expiration date? ...
-1
votes
2answers
161 views

Gloves, but not for keeping warm? [closed]

It's a bit of a long shot, but I am looking for one right hand glove that doesn't keep you warm. It must not be fingerless, it must be comfortable to wear for a long time and made of something thin, ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

Rain pants for tall people

I've been looking for a rain pants for myself. My attention was caught by Outdoor Research Paladin Pants. These have side zips which are really great. The problem is: it comes in regular fit only and ...
7
votes
2answers
196 views

How big a fall is a “major” fall?

I answered a question about rope safety with some advice about retiring the rope after a "major" fall. Another user asked me what would constitute a major fall - and I have to admit that I can only ...
5
votes
0answers
241 views

Campsites in Virginia which allow alcohol? [closed]

Shenandoah National Park allows alcohol, but it's a bit far from me for a one-night getaway with family. Do you know of a list of camp sites in Northern VA which allow alcohol?
6
votes
4answers
667 views

Is there an accepted way to self-belay yourself on top rope?

I have seen a handfull of methods and devices on the market: http://www.rockexotica.com/products/downloads/belay.html But its not clear to me that any of the these devices do a better job than a ...
9
votes
1answer
632 views

What should I do if caught in a sand storm?

If I find myself caught in a sand storm, what should I do? Should I sit it out, or try to keep moving somehow? Can this depend on the severity of the sand storm?
7
votes
2answers
210 views

Does a groover have to stink?

I have used several different products and none of them work that well. Bottom line, is there a product that will subdue the offending groover? So a groover is a river toilet. On multiple day river ...
14
votes
7answers
2k views

What can I do about those obnoxious biting flies?

In addition to Mosquitos, many of us northwoods campers have been made victim to the vast swarms of biting flies. Despite slathering myself with DEET, they don't seem deterred, and they especially ...
7
votes
3answers
349 views

Are used climbing shoes safe?

We have several used gear shops locally, which also sell climbing shoes. I'm looking to start climbing and I am considering buying used shoes to save cost. Is it ever safe to buy used shoes, and if ...
6
votes
1answer
793 views

What are “Aggressive” climbing Shoes?

This question was borrowed from a comment on this question. But what is meant by an "aggressive" climbing shoe? What is the difference in a non-aggressive shoe? And when would you use one over the ...
6
votes
2answers
162 views

Does anyone have an account of someone using a survival tin in a survival situation

I have read several books about survival and outdoor field craft skills. Many of these books suggest building a survival kit out of an Altoids tin or something similar. These kits include very basic ...
12
votes
2answers
398 views

How to estimate distance in sea

While kayaking or swimming out in the open waters, it is quite important to be able to judge distances accurately before attempting to get from one point to another, such as from island to island. ...
6
votes
4answers
882 views

What are the benefits of a baitcaster over a spinning reel for bass fishing?

I have been looking at new rods and several people have suggested a baitcaster. I currently have a spinning reel that I am comfortable with but I would like to try a new rod/reel type. What am I ...
8
votes
2answers
90 views

How do I make a fin selection for various surfing conditions

There are many surfing fin designs available for modern surf boards. What are the criteria for selecting: Tri-fin Bi-fin Mono-fin No fins And why would I want to have larger or smaller surfing ...
25
votes
9answers
5k views

What hand and finger exercises help with climbing?

It's been a while since I went rock climbing but I'd like to get back into it. What are some hand exercises that will help with climbing?
7
votes
1answer
73 views

When should you be alert for snakes?

Are there specific seasons or temperatures that increase the likelihood that a hiker would encounter a snake? I go backpacking solo in the mid-Atlantic (US) and carry a snakebite kit as an extra ...
11
votes
4answers
488 views

What to look for when purchasing a fixed blade knife

I'm planning on doing some back country canoe camping this summer. I would like to avoid bringing a hatchet if possible. I also find my folding knifes get full of gunk and I am a little bit afraid I ...

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