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34

I would say the answer is somewhat subjective, and in order to make a fair assessment you will need to invest some time. Carrying a 30-pound pack up and down hills with a week's worth of food and gear produces different stresses on your feet and joints than a water bottle and rain jacket. The fit may seem less perfect if the material between your toes starts ...


32

Hiking blisters are from friction. When things shift, your sock is more likely to stay with your boot than your foot as the two fabrics (or leather and fabric) will catch each other. This leaves the sock moving against your foot, which causes friction. When you wear two socks, specifically a smooth liner and a wool hiking sock, the outer sock moves ...


28

Dehydration is key. Water weighs a LOT. Breakfast -- Any variation on oatmeal. You can make your own or buy prepackaged meals. Lunch -- Peanut butter on hard tack. (did i mention water?) Dinner -- Any dehydrated meal will do. I've used both Mountain House and Backpackers pantry. Snacks -- I prefer Clif bars and Justin Nut Butter for a good ...


23

I actually had a site bookmarked for this very reason that provided some good, sound advice. I've always heard that a cougar (mountain lion) generally doesn't let you see it unless its considering attacking. 100 yards away or more that is unattentive to you Avoid rapid movements, running, loud, excited talk. Stay in groups; keep children with adults. ...


22

Your legs aren't as sensitive to temperture extremes. Right now it's winter here and I'm walking around outside with a regular shirt, a wool sweater, and a wind breaker on my torso. Inside I take off the windbreaker an sweater. However, inside or outside, I'm wearing the same single-layer pants and it's not a problem. My legs don't feel hot inside or ...


21

Hammocks are cold. The weight of your body compresses the clothes or sleeping bag, and air circulates underneath you, as opposed to a tent where you usually have a pad and the ground for insulation. It seems like it would be tough to stay dry in the rain in a hammock. It's nice to have a tent to get into in the rain in between hiking/playing and sleeping if ...


20

Okay - I found that both my Langmuir (Mountaincraft and Leadership) and my Mountaineers (Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills) have pretty good advice about lightning. I would advise anyone planning on heading out into the hills to read both of these excellent books - Langmuir is the book for British Mountain Leader Training, and the Mountaineers covers ...


18

Someone who has overweight isn't normally able to carry more, so weight isn't as important. The height would be more adequate... Muscle strength isn't much important when you go on long hikes... Strength doesn't translate directly to endurance, often it's the opposite - people with smaller muscles are more endure and are actually able to carry more on ...


17

I led extended backpacking trips in Grand Canyon country for several years, and we required everyone carry at MINIMUM a gallon (almost 4 litre) per person per day -- which adds up. (Though rarely did we plan trips that did not have dependable water sources within a day's walk, meaning we would start and end the day with bellies full of water.) Different ...


17

The answer is very dependent on the prevailing weather conditions where you are active, and what your budget is Synthetic Advantages: Lower overall price. Maintains thermal properties when wet. Does not reduce loft in high-humidity/ sweaty sleeping conditions. Easier to clean. Disadvantages: The loft does not last as long as down (3-5yrs vs 8-10yrs) ...


17

You could use Naismith's rule which goes as follows: Allow 1 hour for every 3 miles (5 km) forward, plus 1 hour for every 2000 feet (600 metres) of ascent. A lot of hikers in the UK use this as a guide of course bear in mind terrain and altitude! and of course this is not appropriate at higher altitudes. Some sites recommend corrections to the above: ...


16

Blisters usually form when your socks get sweaty and things start to rub around. When I first bought my pair of boots, the man in the store told me to wear them around the house for an hour every night for a week or two before my trip. This gives you a chance to break in the leather slowly over time, while keeping your feet blister-free. Obviously, this ...


16

I found the best answer is tight underwear made from a slippery fabric with legs that extend just far enough down to cover where things rub in the crotch area. I currently have a pair of Underarmor brand that work very well. They are made of a stretchy but slick synthetic fabric. The garment stays in place on the skin. That means the skin doesn't get ...


15

Shin splints (tibial stress syndrome) can be cause by tendons, muscles, or stress fractures. It's an "overuse" injury, with multiple causes, so there's not a single treatment. Some things that might help: Step softly. If you pound your feet when you hike, it can aggravate shin splints. Ease up on running a week or two before hiking. Running causes shin ...


15

Sound like a human, so TALK Wear a bright orange vest, and other bright (not white) clothing Try not to hike deer routes in the peak times (6am to 9am and 6pm to 9pm) Similar to the one above, stay on trail. Generally large game are the seasons of highest concern (deer mostly) Your local DNR (Department of Natural Resources) website (example) will have ...


14

Rice. If you have fresh (or purified) water, an amazingly small amount of rice would suffice for 14 days. I've trekked the Cordillera Real for 12 days, and rice was the only reasonable option in terms of weight. A small set of spices - especially salt and pepper - dramatically improve its taste. If you don't want to eat the same food for 14 days, take ...


14

While this is by far not a universal truth, in general, women tend to have more slender feet than men. Then again - some women have wide, plate-like feet, and some men have thin feet. Also, I've noticed that women's hill shoes tend to be 'prettier' (I'm not sure why - I doubt that this is actually a consideration for most hillwalking women - but that's just ...


14

It would say it varies to a high degree since the source of the meat and the cut of the meat will be the primary factors in determining how many bacteria (and which type) will be on the surface of the meat. I wouldn't want to trust hamburger or mass market ground meat for even a few hours not refrigerated - so any meats that are mechanically tenderized or ...


14

There are a lot of unspecified variables involved here... type of socks, fit of the shoe/boot, type of shoe, conditions you are hiking in, etc. But in general, double-socking may offer the following which may help prevent blisters: reduced friction - assuming one sock is a thin slick liner sock which tends to stick to your foot while the outer sock ...


14

There's a reason desert cultures almost all wear coverings from head to toe. Three main things to consider: Protection from the sun's harmful rays. Air flow for convection cooling Moisture retention (you heard that right) for evaporative cooling. Despite the convention, "cotton kills," in the desert those same properties (slow drying, water retention) ...


14

There are 3 ways I've found of finding a leak in an air mattress: Soapy Water - It may not be likely, but perhaps you have some camp soap or something similar that you can use to make a soapy mixture that will bubble near the leak. Submerged - I know you said not near a large body of water, but even if you have just a small stream you may be able to dam up ...


14

The risk is that the blisters will get worse and worse, and continue to interfere with your hiking experience. They can get larger, more painful, and eventually tear open and risk getting infected. This process can happen fairly quickly - from the first time you notice pain in your feet, blisters can develop in < 15 minutes. I haven't personally tried ...


13

To be honest I was dubious about getting something that I thought was gimmicky, but my son’s Scout troop was selling custom Buffs to raise group funds so I ended up buying one. A Buff is just a tube of lightweight, stretchy material. I’ve found them useful in three particular situations: They are thin, so can be worn like a hat under a bicycle helmet for ...


13

I think the Audubon Field Guides smartphone apps are fantastic. At least, they are a great improvement over the printed guides -- more species, more photos, lengthier descriptions, and smaller than the book. The apps help make identification relatively easy because you can search for trees in your region and leaf shape, for example, and get a smaller set of ...


13

Roland Muser wrote a book, Long-Distance Hiking: Lessons from the Appalachian Trail, based on surveys of 136 long-distance hikers, each of whom spent 3-6 months on the trail. Some relevant quotes (p. 133): Two or three hikers had run-ins with local inhabitants, and some reported uncomfortable hitch-hiking incidents. More seriously, two hikers were ...


12

Hiking in the desert? As much as you can carry! I tend to prefer packing more water than less, and especially in a desert area where if something goes wrong, your access to resupply is very limited. You can lose up to two quarts (almost 2 litre) of water per hour hiking in the desert in middle of the day, but you can only absorb around one quart (almost one ...


12

One of the things I've heard that wildland firefighters like to do (they often wear large, all leather boots, like these: Danner Flashpoint II) is put on the boots, stand in the bathtub with water and let the water soak through the boots with your feet on, and then wear them around the house for a few hours. It seems to work - as it softens the boots and ...


12

Keep your dog on a leash. According the the scouts, dogs are a bad idea in bear country. Leave your dog at home. A dog often infuriates a bear and may come running back to you with the bear in pursuit! New Hampshire department of wildlife agrees that, while small, the primary risk is that your dog agitates a bear then runs to you for protection ...


12

In dry climates you can take advantage of evaporative cooling - especially on a bike. In hot and humid places you are stuck with insulation and pre-cooled water and/or ice. Have you experimented to see if a cloth wrapper around your bottles is enough to cool things when damp? Of course, you're not going to get highly chilled water, but it can be ...


12

The most important thing is to know what is being hunted so you can know how the hunters should be approaching their prey. It's best to talk to several hunters to find out from them where they will be concentrating, but it's hard to control for any random person with their own ideas about how they will be approaching their hunting. The vast majority of ...



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