11,952 reputation
22888
bio website berry120.blogspot.com
location United Kingdom
age 25
visits member for 2 years, 11 months
seen yesterday

I'm an avid programmer, enjoy creating things, enjoy a good puzzle and especially enjoy foxing people with a Java puzzle now and again!

Outside of my coding life, I have a number of other interests, including outdoors activities such as hiking / geocaching / letterboxing. I'm also fond of music - I enjoy listening to it as well as playing the piano and violin.


Jul
9
comment Flashlight or headlamp for night hiking?
Headlamps are great if you're on your own, but if you're hiking with others then remember that you can easily (temporarily) blind them if you look at them with it on!
Jun
6
comment Rules for Carrying flammable subtances in UK
My experience lines up with Kate's - it's just unnecessary. You should be able to keep the fire sheltered while it's building up even if it is raining, then when it's established the rain shouldn't douse it beyond usefulness.
Apr
30
comment Why is a “Czech bed roll” called this? History, uses?
They do look interesting! Never heard of them myself either.
Mar
15
comment What kind of features should I look for on a good trekking backpack?
@BenCrowell Yup, UK based here so the weather is definitely a huge influence on the gear I choose to get! It's less the fabric wearing on cheaper packs that I've seen, more some of the straps failing (what appears to be) suddenly. I'm sure many are fine, I've just erred on the side of caution since, especially for longer hikes with little contact with the outside world.
Mar
14
comment What kind of features should I look for on a good trekking backpack?
@BenCrowell That is interesting, definitely shows personal preference. I used to wrap everything up in waterproof bags inside the rucksack, but then after getting a good, waterproof bag I've never had to do this (and never looked back.) I still think durability is something that I'd prioritise on a week long trek though - I wouldn't mind for a couple of days, but I'd want to be confident that for this length of time the rucksack wouldn't suddenly produce a large hole (or break a strap, or similar.)
Jan
24
comment Is it safe to drink out of rusty thermos?
Sure - though in an emergency a lot of normal rules would go out the window! I was more aiming at for general use.
Jan
24
comment Safe looking for caches in hollows
@Blackbear Good point, I've added that on now as well - I've been fortunate to avoid any such encounters yet, but have certainly been weary of such things when searching.
Sep
16
comment How can I boost morale on long backpacking trips?
Geocaching or letterboxing often works wonders if there's some on your route (and there will be a lot of the time) - turns a (I quote!) "boring walk" into a "walk with a purpose" for many I know.
Jul
9
comment How to cheaply introduce someone to backpacking
@ŁukaszLech Sure, by "good footwear" in this context I more meant something that was just suitable for walking - but I agree I could have been clearer! Having said that, often where I am in the UK there's lots of sales where I've picked up good, waterproof walking boots for £50-ish or less, and they've lasted well.
Jun
30
comment For fording cold rivers, is there any special clothing (as opposed to makeshift bags or tightly connected raintrousers) to stay dry and warm?
@gerrit They answer the main question as best I can - "What is suitable clothing for fording rivers." I don't know the answer to that particular sub-question, but if that was the main question you might want to edit the title as such!
May
22
comment What are the dangers of swimming in natural waters?
@DominykasMostauskis Very hard to predict - the only sure fire way is to look up information beforehand. As for dealing with being caught in one, completely different question!
May
2
comment What is the safest way to purify water?
@BenCrowell You may be better debating that point in this thread (outdoors.stackexchange.com/questions/1117/…) - I'm not an expert on this matter, I just choose to follow those who know better than me, and many have taught me to boil for a minute or two. I know of no microbes that can survive that temperature, then again I know of no microbes at all off the top of my head! You may well be right and it may well be overkill, and perhaps if I was really short on fuel I'd think otherwise.
Apr
30
comment What is the safest way to purify water?
@BenCrowell Sure, but almost everyone who has an opinion on the matter will throw some form of "evidence" to back themselves up. I'd call your source into question on a number of points, for instance is raw milk often swarming with the same type of microbes that can be in backcountry water, or is it a more restricted subset that can't survive over 72C? Official guidelines also disagree with your assessment (water.epa.gov/drink/emerprep/emergencydisinfection.cfm#method), they recommend boiling for one minute. Of course, some microbes can even survive boiling indefinitely...
Apr
30
comment What is the safest way to purify water?
@BenCrowell A hotly debated point - I've seen people argue for it both ways. Personally I prefer to boil for a bit longer because I've never had any trouble doing that, and don't really see the need to cut down with most of the hiking I do. I agree it may be safe to boil for less time though.
Apr
12
comment What can I do with a retired rope and harness?
@theJollySin Good point there, not being a climber that's not something I really considered - but yes, making sure you can't grab the old rope is of paramount importance!
Mar
22
comment How should we split up a 3 person tent?
@LBell It's cosy, but as long as you understand the limitations and you don't expect loads of room, I've found it more than do-able for short trips!
Mar
20
comment What kind of mementos, if any, am I allowed to collect from State and National parks in small quantities?
More than that, I imagine it also differs per national park in the same country, at least to some degree.
Mar
19
comment Does whiskey help keep you warm in winter?
Not entirely correct - it is somewhat physiological (see Richard's answer.) You're right overall though in that it's definitely not a good thing!
Mar
18
comment Winter Camping: How to warm up your boots in the morning?
@zoul Fair play, I'm just talking from my experience here - I clearly heat up quickly!
Mar
17
comment Keeping smoke level in a wigwam low
Where's the smoke coming from?