17
votes
3answers
683 views

What do you do if you see a cougar?

Hiking on the west coast of British Columbia, there are likely to be cougars around the trails. What do you do if you see one?
25
votes
8answers
2k views

What are the downsides to sleeping in a hammock on a multi-day hike?

I've read that hammocks are a very light way to travel through the wilderness. You just need the hammock, a cover, and a light sleeping bag, but there must be disadvantages compared to taking a tent ...
6
votes
2answers
249 views

What are the most important indicators of an high-risk avalanche zone?

If I'm heading out ski touring into an area I haven't been, what are the most important things to look for and think about to avoid high-risk areas for avalanches?
16
votes
3answers
197 views

Do I need any technical skills to climb Kilimanjaro?

Ive heard that climbing Kilimanjaro doesn't require any mountaineering skills and is really just a (very difficult) hike? Is that true? Is there any gear I would need besides traditional hiking ...
4
votes
2answers
228 views

How do I tie a stopper knot?

A stopper knot is often used to prevent rope from unexpectedly going throu some hole, such as a belay device. How would I tie a stopper knot?
11
votes
2answers
738 views

Why does my belay device have two holes?

I have a belay device that looks like: which I used when I am belaying someone who is top roping or leading. However, my rope only goes through one of those slots. What is the purpose of the other ...
4
votes
2answers
309 views

What should I do if my raft capsizes?

I'm planning a whitewater rafting trip, and I'm worried what I should do if the raft flips over. Is there a standard set of procedures I should go through to get back on the raft?
3
votes
1answer
797 views

What is the difference between Class III, Class IV, and Class V rapids?

I'm planning a whitewater rafting trip, and I keep reading that different rapids are different classes, and sometimes the same rapid is different classes at different times of the year? What do the ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

How can I prevent batteries from losing charge in cold weather?

Since batteries (for cameras, cell phones, etc) will lose charge in cold weather, what can I do to prevent loss of charge, or at least extend the battery life as long as possible?
14
votes
4answers
298 views

When sailing, how do I rescue a man overboard?

If someone falls overboard from a sailboat, it is firstly imperative not to lose sight of the person since finding a man in water, especially when there's waves, can be very difficult. What ...
25
votes
3answers
4k views

Is it possible to rappel with only a rope? (No harness, Prusik cord, or other gear)

There may be an emergency situation where I find myself needing to lower myself but with no or damaged equipment. Assuming I only have a rope, can I lower myself to safe ground?
10
votes
5answers
133 views

Resources for finding public hunting land

Are there any good resources out there for locating publicly available hunting land? UPDATE: I should have stated that I'm looking for land in the US. Also, I'm interested in any public land ...
5
votes
1answer
175 views

How do I tie a bowline knot?

Bowline knots are among the most commonly used knots across many different outdoor activities. It is used to create a fixed loop at the end of a line, while still being easy to tie and untie. How ...
3
votes
2answers
338 views

How do I tie a double fisherman's knot?

In climbing, a double fisherman's knot is used to tie together two separate pieces of rope. How would I tie such a knot?
8
votes
3answers
256 views

How do I Eskimo roll a kayak?

If I am whitewater or sea kayaking, it is possible that my kayak will get overturned leading to a live or death situation. I've heard that it is possible to roll the kayak so it is right side up ...
9
votes
2answers
98 views

Is it better to camp in a disturbed area, or pick a new spot and let the first rest?

When practicing Leave No Trace camping (which I am sure we all do), which camp spot should I choose, assuming there is not an obvious well-impacted "sacrifice site" nearby to concentrate my impact in: ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Will a tent provide some protection from bears?

When camping in a bear country, will a tent provide an additional protection from bears, as opposed to just sleeping outside or in a hammock? Provided I take the usual precautions of keeping any ...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

How to deal with wet feet?

Say for instance I'm walking on boggy ground, I find a small muddy hole or some other minor tragedy that leaves one or both of my feet soaking wet and caked in mud. What is the best way to deal with ...
6
votes
4answers
338 views

What are some good ways to waterproof a geocache / letterbox?

Has anyone got any good tips on how to (cheaply) waterproof a geocache or letterbox? Those pill pots used to work brilliantly - one inside the other - but now they seem to be rather hard to come by ...
18
votes
2answers
1k views

Best/safest wood to carve a spoon from?

Say I want to carve a spoon from wood that I find, are there any trees I shouldn't use due to their toxicity? Are any that are particularly easy to carve or hardy?
7
votes
3answers
422 views

Gas or liquid fuel lighter?

My backpack of course has a rechargeable gas lighter. I am considering buying a good Zippo, as I feel it more resistant, and it does not need to be kept with your hands to stay on. Would you suggest ...
9
votes
2answers
436 views

Where can I find if a fixed blade knives is legal to carry around in a given country?

I am always uneasy at the idea of carrying around a fixed blade. For this reason, my backpack knife is a multitool (A fantastic Leatherman Blast, which saved the day already many times). I would like ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

How to safely carry a fixed-blade knife?

I worry about carrying a fixed-blade knife on my hip, because if I fall or wrestle my kids or whatever, I worry I could get stabbed. I've had pointy blades push through a cheap sheath before. I stick ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

What type of mosquito repellent is most effective?

There are many different kinds of insect repellents and bug sprays on the market: sprays and lotions, chemical and natural, huge percentages of DEET and lower percentages, etc. What type of bug ...
6
votes
3answers
372 views

What type of pole can be used for trout while backpacking?

Several of the places we hike every year have trout. I'd like to have some fresh fish on a couple of those hikes but I'm pretty new to trout fishing and I don't want to carry the weight of full ...
10
votes
2answers
246 views

Staying dry in severe weather

I've been in pretty big storms before on campouts, but only two were big enough that the water would seep in through the sides of the tent. One of those times I used a tarp, rope, trees, and ...
3
votes
1answer
108 views

If I lose my compass, what is the easiest way to identify and follow a heading? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How can you navigate without a compass or GPS Obviously we all carry a compass and a map when we go trekking, but if I lose them but know I need to get back to my car ...
5
votes
1answer
467 views

What should I do if I'm stung by a scorpion?

What should I do if I'm stung by a scorpion? Is the venom harmful to humans?
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What should you do if you are bitten by a rattlesnake?

You should obviously avoid rattlesnakes if at all possible. But if you do get bitten by one, what should you do? What supplies can be brought ahead of time to allow for the best treatment, and what ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Which side of an emergency blanket should I use?

an emergency blanket has two sides, one orange and one silver. Which one should I keep on the inside?
8
votes
3answers
893 views

Folding versus fixed blade knives

Similar to Serrated vs flat-edge knives, I'm wondering what the strengths and weaknesses are of folding knives versus fixed blade knives? What are fixed blades good for? What are folding knives not ...
9
votes
4answers
308 views

What are some alternative ways of fishing - i.e. catching fish?

If I'm out in the wilderness and want to catch fish to survive, what are some ways I can do this without a conventional fishing pole/line?
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I catch fish with fish hooks but no bait?

As most survival kits come with fish hooks, I am wondering how do I catch fish without any bait?
6
votes
5answers
475 views

What is a good knife for survival in a forested environment?

What style/size of knife would be most useful in a survival scenario in the forest?
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Washing clothes on long hikes

I'm looking for a good solution for clothing (or clothes washing) on long hikes with the following considerations Southeastern United States, Appalachians We hike light 10+ day trips I don't want ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

How can I minimize the risk of tree wells when backcountry skiing?

When skiing in the backcountry (or even in the trees at resorts), what can be done to minimize the risk of getting trapped in a tree well?
7
votes
1answer
68 views

How can I rescue someone lost in an avalanche?

If someone from our group is caught in an avalanche, what can I do to rescue them?
8
votes
1answer
369 views

What causes an avalanche and can I predict one?

Avalanches are extremely dangerous when mountaineering, winter backpacking/camping, or backcountry skiing/snowboarding. What causes them and is there any way I can predict when an avalanche is about ...
4
votes
1answer
603 views

What is the best material to make an outdoor shelter roof out of?

Say you are caught out without a tent in mild temperature conditions, e.g. moorland/woods. What material would you look for to make a good shelter roof out of?
7
votes
1answer
498 views

How do I self arrest without an ice axe?

Self-arresting is used to stop a mountaineer who has fallen and is sliding down a slope. Ice axes are generally used for self-arrest, but what should a climber do to self arrest if he has lost his ...
10
votes
1answer
277 views

How do I tie a Prusik knot?

Prusik knots are useful in emergency situations as they can be used for both climbing up a rope (out of a canyon) or down a rope (rappelling) without the use of someone else as a belay. How would I ...
12
votes
2answers
827 views

What things should I look for when buying a compass?

Compasses seem to come in all shapes, sizes and (especially) prices! What sets a good compass apart from a bad one and what are some good characteristics to look for when making a purchase?
12
votes
1answer
443 views

Techniques for building a raft from wood

What are some good techniques to use (materials, knots, etc.) for building a raft by gathering wood in the local area? I'm talking about something to sail on still or slow moving bodies of water, not ...
10
votes
4answers
344 views

Is it worth buying a footprint?

I recently bought a new tent, is it worth the extra $40 to purchase a footprint for it as well? Or are there alternatives that can be found on the trail or even made at home?
10
votes
2answers
280 views

What is the best way to store my tent?

How can I store my tent when I'm not using it for months at a time, so it is still in good condition when I use it again?
31
votes
5answers
5k views

What is the best way to store my sleeping bag for long periods of time?

I've heard that storing a sleeping bag in its stuff sack for long periods of time will cause it to lose loft, and won't provide as much comfort or warmth when used again. If so, how should I store my ...
11
votes
2answers
752 views

What is the difference between single and double wall tents?

Tents are described being either single or double wall. What is the difference and when is one preferred over the other?
7
votes
1answer
198 views

Serrated vs flat-edge knives

Each has their purpose, I'm sure. So for what activities is each better? When would I use one over the other? What about half-serrated blades?
11
votes
2answers
556 views

How do I inspect a climbing rope?

It is imperative that climbing ropes are in excellent shape so they don't split while someone is climbing. How do I properly inspect the rope when I'm about to start a climb?
6
votes
2answers
43 views

How do I find known and documented trails for trail running in New England?

In my past experiences running on trails, the paths are demarcated for hikers and bikers and I learned about these running-appropriate paths through word of mouth and in person park information. After ...

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