Hot answers tagged

32

For the purposes of defense, the only situation that comes to mind would be hiking through an area known for criminal activity ( think marijuana farm ). And even then, is a small handgun really going to help you ward off criminals with assault rifles ( it would probably just get you killed faster )? If you're thinking of situation involving large predators, ...


24

The short answer is, "it depends". Packs sold to women may have only superficial changes compared to the men's version (i.e. the color is different), but there are usually a few common differences: Shorter torso length (distance from shoulder to hip, often shorter in women). Narrower shoulder straps (men tend to have broader shoulders). Shape of shoulder ...


23

If you need to ask, the answer is almost certainly never. There are places (Northern Quebec, Labrador, Ontario and Manitoba near Hudson's Bay) where due to polar bear activity you should be accompanied by a guide/guard who will have a serious rifle and dedicate significant time to watching for bears while you do your scientific research or marvel at the ...


22

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 ...


22

Hooray! Welcome to the wonderful world of backpacking! This post is LONG, so I've made a summary list to get you started, and what follows below is a probably way too comprehensive explanation of the items. Sorry for the tl;dr! Summary: Backpack (with detachable day pack or separate, if needed) Tent (or hammock, bivy, etc.) Stakes and guylines Tarp/tent ...


17

No, there is nothing on the AT that justifies carrying a firearm. The extra weight and space is much more of a detriment than the extremely unlikely and frankly inconceivable case where a firearm would be a help. Since the AT crosses many jurisdictions, there may also be legal issues that could vary every few miles. The whole concept just doesn't make ...


16

I think there are several factors to consider when traveling alone. Pros You can set your own pace. For me this is one of the main reasons to hike alone. When with other people they often want to go faster than you and you end up breaking yourself trying to keep up or are slower/less confident and you have to slow down/not do those 'interesting' scrambles ...


14

If you run out half-way, perhaps you should bring twice as much? That being said... One option for day hikes is to hydrate well before hitting the trail. Also, have readily available water for your return. e.g. leave a water bottle in your car. An other option is refilling from natural water sources during the trip would allow you to consume an adequate ...


12

National parks tend to be absolutely open to anyone, their goal being to allow public enjoyment without compromising the area for future generations. From the park's own website: A permit is not required for front-country camping, hiking, moorage, etc. in most parks. Campsite reservations are accepted at many front-country parks. To be absolutely ...


11

You can prevent this by getting some talcum powder (baby powder) and putting it where you usually get the rash. Depending on how much you're sweating, apply it every few hours. Also wear tight and long underwear so you minimize the friction, it's certainly the cheapest solution. Give it a try, I had some "horror" hikes because of that, it just messes up ...


11

Pressing on your knees will relieve some of the stress on your muscles, giving you additional endurance on a climb, but it puts unnatural stress on the joint. Without going too deep into the specifics of the anatomy, you have four muscles in your "quad" that attach to your patella, which is attached to your tibia (shin) via the patellar tendon. It is ...


11

Of course, there are many long-distance hiking trails without any available maps. As far as I'm aware, none of the European long-distance trails have dedicated end-to-end maps, unless you count Openstreetmap or a collection of several hundred topographic maps. In some places they're well-mapped, e.g. when passing through Switzerland, Germany, or France, ...


11

Yes, there are special places where you are allowed to sleep outside if you are climbing there. And by "outside" I mean without a tent, because these locations are (more or less) weatherproof by having roofs of rock. They usually have a a lot of sand on the ground which makes them quite comfortable. The local term of such a place is "boofe". They are a bit ...


10

You may be fighting an uphill battle, and may have a fungal infection. That was the case for me, which made it very hard to keep from getting rashes when backpacking/camping, or really, going anywhere without being able to shower daily. I went to the doctor and had them prescribe me an anti-fungal medicine, which was Tolnaftate, the active ingredient in ...


10

Blisters are caused by friction. Your skin is not very slippery. Applying moleskin and duct-tape over a "hot-spot" adds a protective layer between your skin and shoe. Thus as your shoe slides, it rubs against the tape or mole-skin instead of your skin. Pointers: Use enough tape/mole-skin to cover an area larger than the hot-spot. If the hotspot is on the ...


10

This answer address efficiency i.e. to climb quickly, without getting too tired. It is something in between an answer and a comment. One advantage of walking consistently is thermal balance. That's how some old people in my area hike for several hours in the snow, wearing only shoes and short pants. And by thermal balance I mean avoiding the vicious cycle ...


10

Cooking as a large group is bad for a variety of reasons: More work to coordinate roles, responsibilities. Limited cooking resources (stoves, pots, etc.) means waiting, frustration, idleness, or carrying more than one of everything. More likely to waste fuel. Waste of energy/misuse of downtime e.g. Instead of cooking every 3rd day/meal you're cooking every ...


9

In my experience, you need to calibrate each guidebook or website to your own experience. As a case study, I can speak from experience with two guidebooks describing hikes and treks in the same region: På Fjälltur: Abisko Kebnekaise, describes lots of trails in the area around Nikkaluokta and Abisko. They grade trails at a scale of 1–10. I've found ...


9

My experience of mountain huts huts is mainly from UK and Europe. Standards in other parts of the world may vary. Mountain huts come in a wide range of different varieties. At the basic end you have unmanned huts or bothies. These can range from very basic with just a roof and wooden bunks to put your sleeping kit on to reasonably nice with beds, stove, ...


9

Here is a pretty useful article on the correct way to use poles. There are several aims in using a pole. In my opinion, the primary one is to reduce strain on the knees and ankles. Additionally they provide extra stability on rough ground and can make going uphill easier. The disadvantage is they result in extra weight and may increase total energy ...


9

If you are being attacked by a large predator a "small handgun" will accomplish nothing. If you hit something sensitive you will probably make it angrier - it won't make any difference to you if it dies from it's injuries the day after tomorrow, but at least it had a good final meal. Smith & Wesson used to make a short-barrel .50 revolver aimed at the ...


9

There's always a difference between required and excessive. A lot of these multi tools have specific purposes. Do I require a screwdriver on a trek? Mostly no. Will I use a knife, a pair of scissors or even a pair of tweezers? Mostly Yes. So do I recommend carrying a multi tool to a trek? Yes. But having said that, there are multitude of these tools out ...


8

I've been to Mongolia many years ago (2001), so I'm not sure that my answer can help you much. I was there for almost two month, did some treks without a guide and also horse-riding and motor-cycles journey with a local guide. Mongolia is a huge country, mostly a high plateau with moderate hills/mountains. When I was there and I guess that it didn't changed ...


8

Maybe not a real way to get water inside your body, but what helps with me is chew on chewing gum. It distracts from the feeling I'm thirsty or drinking too much water without really needing it. Also chewing gum is very light to take with you. Of course the gum is not a substitute for water which is needed anyway.


8

Sounds like a myth to me. The only thing that could possibly come into play is the pressure inside your head. But in order to hold the pressure inside your head constant, you would have to plug your ears with something air-tight, not open your mouth, et cetera. I can’t see how a beanie hat or something like that could prevent the outside and inside pressures ...


8

I would say there is no point in walking briskly. With a heavy backpack, it's a no-no for me. I have observed and have struggled with the same problem when I started off towards some serious trekking with genuinely elevated/steep climbs with a heavy haversack on my back. The sack that I usually carry weighs about 18 kg. People who are advising you to walk ...


8

Consider whether you really need to have dry shoes before going thru all the trouble. In the winter, wet footwear can be a serious problem. However, when it's warm out there is really no danger from wet shoes. The only issue may be that you simply don't like the feel of it. In situations where its warm enough and there is no real danger from wet shoes, ...


8

To be honest, the most important thing a Rescue Team needs to have is plenty of manpower (and womanpower!) with training and experience (speaking as a member of a UK Cave Rescue Team).


8

Below is the bare minimum list of gear I would require anyone on my team to carry during and rescue operation. It does not include any of the numerous pieces of rope equipment that members of the rope team would cary in addition to the basic equipment ( only specific team members that have completed extensive training are qualified to be involved in any of ...


8

My personal opinion is you may be being a little bit optimistic on your speed. I would probably aim for 20-30km per day (~15 miles) if you have not done such a long trip before and are reasonably fit. Although there are several factors to consider: Hiking with a 40lb pack is significantly different and more tiring than hiking with just a day pack, ...



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