All Questions

3
votes
0answers
209 views

Are there performance differences between lead and lead-free ammunition? [closed]

According to this article (full disclosure: I wrote it) lead-based ammunition is a well-known threat to Condors and other scavengers, and may have negative effects on humans who unknowingly ingest ...
5
votes
1answer
407 views

How do you punch out toes in ski-touring boots?

I've got a pair of custom moulded Scarpa Spirit 4 touring boots where the big toes are bit too tight (I've lost the nails after a day or two of touring more than once). What is the proper technique ...
11
votes
5answers
306 views

How to get started skiing?

I've never skied before, but I'd like to try it out. What sort of gear should I buy (as opposed to renting) before hand? What would be a good strategy to learn to ski?
6
votes
1answer
434 views

Does Fjällräven produce serious outdoors gear, or is it just trendy? [closed]

I noticed that there is a lot of (quite expensive) Fjällräven outdoors gear for sale here in Germany and am curious whether this is a brand worth looking into, or whether their products are more ...
22
votes
7answers
1k views

What clothing would be appropriate for hiking in -18°C with up to 30 km/hr wind?

I recently moved to Germany and am planning to do a hike in the Harz mountains. The weather is expected to be around -18°C. Most of the trail will be sheltered by forest, but the mountaintop is ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

What does IBO on a bow mean and how is it calculated?

When I look at bow manufacturers' websites, I see bows are rated with an IBO for their arrows speed. I was wondering what IBO stands for and how it is calculated.
13
votes
3answers
477 views

What are the vitamin considerations for extended backpacking

For short hikes you can generally ignore nutritional concerns, because you don't generally become malnourished in two days. However, for a long trip like the Appalachian Trail or other long hikes (at ...
8
votes
4answers
378 views

Are there any reliable and/or easy to use “rule of thumb” guides for windchill calculations?

Weather forecasters often give two tempertures, the actual air temperature and a 'feel like' temperture that takes into account wind speed. Is there a rule of thumb for calcualting the 'feels like ...
19
votes
4answers
936 views

What are some ways/devices that I can use to charge my batteries in the wilderness?

When backpacking, I might carry a MagLite flashlight or something similar that requires two AA batteries. I tend to favor rechargeable batteries for a variety of reasons. How can I recharge my ...
11
votes
2answers
630 views

Should a hiker be concerned about wolves in the back-country?

In this question, it was asked whether bear-spray was effective against other animals, such as wolves. I know the old adage that "there has never been record of a healthy wolf attacking an adult" is ...
19
votes
2answers
1k views

Handling feminine hygiene on multiple-month treks?

How can I handle multiple months of menstrual cycles on a long trek like the Appalachian Trail? I am asking about how to handle the mess. Here are my personal considerations: Using hormonal birth ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

First time camping, need advice

Me and my wife have never done camping before and always wanted to do it. This time we are planning to go for a small camping trip but have no idea how to prepare for it. We like to hike and are ...
8
votes
3answers
205 views

Are Personal Flotation Devices a good idea when rafting?

Are Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs/life vests/life jackets) good for rafting? It may seem like a silly question, but I have heard several times now that they increase your danger due to the risk of ...
12
votes
2answers
7k views

Can you eat pine needles in an emergency?

If you are in a survival situation in the woods and REALLY hungry, and you are unsure about which plants are edible, can you eat pine needles?
19
votes
6answers
573 views

How to cheaply introduce someone to backpacking

I meet a fair number people who would like to try backpacking. Unfortunately the initial cost seems to be pretty high. Even an overnight requires a lot of big ticket gear (tent, sleeping bag, etc). ...
17
votes
5answers
480 views

Barefoot Backpacking: Liquid Boots?

Yes, you read it right: Is there something that works like epoxy or natural tar that I can apply to the most delicate impact points of my feet (balls and heel) that will form a very durable bond, and ...
9
votes
2answers
306 views

How much fuel to carry for melting snow?

I'm using a multi fuel stove (MSR Dragonfly) for a 10 day ski tour, how much fuel should I allow to provide sufficient water for cooking and drinking. Meals will be mostly dehydrated just-add-water ...
24
votes
4answers
7k views

Do iodine water treatment tablets have negative effects?

I've heard that iodine water treatment tablets can have negative side effects. Is this true? If so, what are some healthier alternatives?
3
votes
2answers
65 views

Sky map for tropics

I like to use rotational sky maps to use in the field, but I have this only for latitude 50°N. I'd like to have a similar sky map for tropics: 10°N. Do you know where I can order one?
17
votes
2answers
2k views

Raw meat on hikes

When backpacking we often carry raw beef which we have salted and frozen, usually cut into strips that can be easily cooked through. I'm confident that this is good for 24 hours, and I know that meat ...
9
votes
2answers
297 views

How can I make/improvise a rope on a trip?

If I'm out in the wilderness and find myself in need of a rope I don't have with me (forgotten, not enough, another snapped), how can I make one? Are there any natural ropes I could use with minimal ...
29
votes
2answers
19k views

How to avoid exploding rocks

It seems that every tutorial I read and show I watch shows people using rocks for everything from a cooking surface to boiling water. However, I have had rocks crack in half on me, and I've always ...
8
votes
2answers
98 views

How can I calculate the time of sunrise?

From time to time I enjoy taking hikes in the mountains to see a beautiful sunrise and sunset. When doing this, I always guess when the sun will rise that day and then I plan my tour accordingly. But ...
12
votes
2answers
6k views

What are some natural glues found in nature?

I'm curious how one could get/make some glue when in the wilderness. How did the Native Americans do it?
34
votes
6answers
816 views

Backpacking or hiking in areas open to hunting

A lot of areas that are good for hiking or backpacking are also popular hunting grounds. I am an avid backpacker and hiker, but I do not know much about hunting. How do I find out what is the ...
19
votes
8answers
9k views

How to keep water cold in hot weather?

When doing outdoor sports like hiking or biking I'll always take a lot of cold water with me. I love to drink cold water and I feel more refreshed compared to drinking warm or not-so-cold water. But ...
26
votes
8answers
16k views

How to harden feet to avoid blisters on long hikes

I've enjoyed hiking my entire life but I have one huge problem. The skin on my feet is extremely soft and sensitive. I wear good wool socks with properly fitting boots and change socks during long ...
31
votes
10answers
3k views

How to carry water in freezing temperatures?

When backpacking in freezing weather, water in a canteen often turns to ice. I am looking for a canteen that Will not burst when the volume of water increases due to freezing Will make it possible, ...
14
votes
3answers
456 views

What kind of canteen material will have the least effect on the taste of water?

I want to buy a canteen, and I have choice between aluminum, stainless steel, enamel and various kinds of plastic. I had canteens before that made any liquid taste horrible after just few hours. I ...
32
votes
5answers
12k views

Should you pop a blister?

When I'm home running or on a day hike, I prefer to pierce the skin as soon as a blister forms and drain all fluid from a blister to reduce the pain and further irritation/inflammation. In this case, ...
19
votes
5answers
1k views

How bad do circumstances need to be before activating a PLB?

Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) can be carried during outdoor activities to use in case of an emergency. But are there any guidelines on what exactly constitutes an "emergency"? For example, what ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

What are some toilet paper alternatives you could use in the woods?

When in the great outdoors, nature is bound to come calling, so what are some good natural toilet paper substitutes when the real thing isn't available?
14
votes
2answers
399 views

Where are good places to look for water sources when I have run out on a multi-day hike?

Luckily this has never happened to me, but even the most prepared hiker can often get themselves into difficulties if they run out of water. My question here is in your experience in remote arid ...
12
votes
2answers
456 views

How to make a signal fire that can be seen miles away

If I were lost in the North American woods, how could I make a signal fire that would attract attention many miles away ?
7
votes
1answer
440 views

What should I look for when buying a Lensatic Compass

Lensatic Compasses seem to be priced from $5 to $100 USD. What features should I look for when buying one?
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the options for kayak self-rescue without a paddle float?

In a standard kayaking class, you're taught solo self-rescues using a paddle float and assisted rescues using another kayak. Then there are eskimo rolls. But I've also heard about other self-rescue ...
13
votes
2answers
9k views

How should you wash clothes after exposure to poison oak/ivy/sumac?

I have heard that the oils from poison oak, poison ivy, or poison sumac can remain on clothes even through a wash cycle. After hiking through an area with poison ivy (or poison oak/poison sumac), how ...
12
votes
1answer
208 views

What do I need to be aware of if I'm considering purchasing a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB)?

Obviously, I can't just buy it, push the button and expect a helicopter to show up. Are there monthly or registration fees? Do I need to get a permit or register with someone? How does it all work? ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Is bear spray effective against other animals?

Is bear spray (pepper spray specially formulated to be effective against bear attacks) effective against other animals, especially mountain lions or wolves? Or is there something in it specifically ...
20
votes
6answers
61k views

How do you determine how long a hike will take?

Is there a general rule of thumb for converting miles to hours when looking at a potential hike? For example, how long does it take an average person walking at an average speed to walk a mile on the ...
11
votes
1answer
517 views

What should you look for when buying hiking socks?

A quick search online shows there are dozens of different types of hiking socks, with different materials, thicknesses, and properties. In general, what should you look for when shopping for hiking ...
11
votes
6answers
224 views

Looking for a Topographical map resource?

Does anyone know of a good way to find topographical maps for either download or purchase?
8
votes
4answers
575 views

How could I treat scrapes outdoors without a first aid kit?

Say I'm hiking outdoors and I get a scrape. I've forgotten my first aid pack, or already used up the appropriate supplies. Is there anything in the wilderness I can use to sterilize and perhaps cover ...
7
votes
1answer
87 views

Do I need skins to drag a pulk on skis?

In a few weeks time I will be taking part in expedition skiing across Iceland. Our kit will be in pulks and we will be skiing with Nordic skis. Uphill I'm sure we'll need skins, but on the flatter ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

Good ways to avoid snakes when hiking?

I'v been told that walking with a heavy foot-fall will deter snakes. Is this really true?
17
votes
7answers
30k views

What are areas of the body which lose heat more quickly, and how can I reduce that loss?

What are the higher heat loss areas of the body and how can I reduce heat loss in those areas?
11
votes
3answers
5k views

Can I shoot a bear in self-defense?

Can I shoot a bear in self-defense? Will I face fines and jail time if I do?
15
votes
2answers
417 views

If I cross paths with a bear, what should I do?

If I'm out hiking, and I come around a corner and stumble upon a bear, what's the best course of action to take to minimize the chance the bear will act aggressively? Do different types of bear ...
-4
votes
1answer
217 views

Does “Cow Tipping” hurt the cow? [closed]

Does "cow tipping" actually hurt the cow?(other that psychologically)
3
votes
1answer
562 views

What is the most important survival tool I should have when in the wilderness? [closed]

When venturing out into the wilderness, what is the most important thing I should bring?

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