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I was once the rather unhappy participant in a study on ankle injury treatment at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary. I came in with a serious injury and was told that with conventional treatment I would have been immobilised for weeks. What they did was plunge my ankle in ice for as long as it was bearable, and once the swelling had reduced, they manipulated ...


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Yes - it's true. The source is a 1984 study by the U.S. Army Research Institute, which found that it takes up to 6.4 times as much energy to move at a given pace when weight is carried in the footwear as against the torso. When I was a kid we all walked in monsters like this, at almost 4 lbs a pair (and that's before they get wet!): This is the ...


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I try to make my wife as comfortable as possible so she will continue to go with me on these backpack trips. Our last weekend backpack trip was in the Big South Fork in Tennessee in January. The low temperatures were 22 degrees. We had a total of 39 pounds. My pack weighed 22 pounds 56% and Alice's pack weighed 17 pounds 44%. She stated at 17 pounds it felt ...


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A bear bag is a bag (in my case a stuff sack) that is "bear proof" (aka the bear can't get to it). On the AT you will only run into black bears, and they are little tree climbers. Technically speaking this should be 10 ft off the ground and 4 ft from the trunk of a tree. I've definitely gotten lazy and not followed these directions - but thats the ...


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The factor of 5 maybe an exaggeration, but the physics is certainly worth examining. Consider what is happening as you walk. Backpack Take easy ground to begin with - your pack moves at a fairly constant speed and velocity - essentially the only energy needed from you is holding the weight in the air. On rough ground, experienced backpackers will keep ...


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There are two types of bear bags. The first is similar to a bear canister but made out of strong cloth (often kevlar) and wire mesh with a metal insert to prevent crushing. The brand I am most familiar with is URSack, although there are probably others of equal quality. These bear bags are slightly lighter than bear canisters (and easier to pack), and pass ...


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Traditionally a bear bag was simply something to hold your food out of reach of bears. This usually meant finding a way to suspend it from a high branch, and in this instance it's usually sufficient for the bag to be waterproof. (With this in mind, some people like to hang the bags "upside down" to prevent rain getting in through the top. Be sure to tie ...


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This topic is very near & dear to me, as I've made a "Life-Science" out of getting along in the "Out-Of-Doors" without having to carry along a ton of "victuals & viands;" tuck, or tucker; or good old "Food!" Every culture has a different name for trail-grub (and some eat real "grubs" on the trail---the First Australians!) and it's gone through a huge ...


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I think that Klara pretty much nailed it. I've been stoveless for a bit now, and I haven't found any hidden gems that people aren't aware of. What I do find is that on longer treks where the food becomes monotonous it pays to buy the best artisan products available, as they are usually a lot tastier than the mass produced stuff. On longer trips a lot ...


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Here is the list of stuff I would consider taking on longer hikes: trail mix chocolate muesli bars more expensive energy bars are great for really demanding stuff, where energy to weight ratio really counts (e.g. multi pitch climbing). They are also more filling than muesli bars. beef jerky dried sausage vacuum-packed hard cheese peanut butter or nutella ...


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One option, if you still want hot food with no real possibility for starting a fire, would be MREs (Meals Ready to Eat). These include a Flameless Ration Heater that rely on a contained chemical reaction to warm food. They are a bit on the bulky side though. Personally, for my lunches while backpacking I like Ready to Eat Tuna Salad Pouches along with some ...


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If you don't want to wrap it around an existing object you're carrying, you could also make a mini-roll by wrapping tape around a small plastic tube, such as the shell of an old ballpoint pen - this can be cut down to the right length for the tape, or simply wrap two strips next to each other to take twice as much tape (or the same amount in a smaller ...


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There are such things as compact, or mini rolls of duct tape, I've got a couple that came with my small, one or two person survival first aid kits: You could make a small roll yourself, just fold the end of a regular roll of tape over itself by a couple inches, then start rolling it up as you take it off the big roll.


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I used to use a pencil, as apparently many others do. The eraser deteriorates and the graphite in time too. I would be reluctant to use a trekking pole as I suspect UV would deteriorate the tape. I hit this site for a better idea than the pencil and while not finding one here, I just hit on the idea of using a plastic card (like a free and non-identifiable ...


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Woman here. No, I do not believe it's safe for women to hike alone. While most men in the western world would never harm a woman, women are magnets for the minority who would, and there are enough opportunistic predators out there that women find themselves being assaulted at the most random times while trying to perform the most mundane tasks. I don't ...



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