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Questions tagged [backpacking]

Questions related to backpacking equipment, routes, safety concerns, or issues related to traveling on foot while carrying all of one's equipment (such as accessibility of certain regions to foot travelers, weather affecting backpackers, etc.).

3
votes
1answer
231 views

How rapidly (or slowly) is work progressing on “consumer” exoskeletons for baby boomers to extend their hiking and backpacking years?

Several years ago, the Washington Post had an article titled This remarkable new exoskeleton slips on like a boot and makes your walking more efficient. Engineers at Carnegie Mellon University ...
13
votes
3answers
602 views

Should one store a tent loose for prolonged periods between uses to maximize its lifetime?

Explanation of why my question is not a duplicate of What is the best way to store my tent?. I am specifically asking about an aspect not addressed in the earlier question or any of its answers: ...
15
votes
3answers
550 views

If I have extra space in a backpack, am I better packing it short and fat or tall and thin?

Basically, I have one large backpack and if I end up going for a much shorter trip, say for 3 days instead of 2+ weeks, I am going to end up with empty space in the backpack. From a stability and ...
10
votes
1answer
427 views

Unofficial camping in Kettle Moraine State Forest

I'm going to be hiking the ice age trail in the Northern unit, between shelter 1 and 2. Do you think I would be fine to just pull off the trail and find a good spot to pitch a tent in an unofficial ...
54
votes
9answers
11k views

Are there any advantages while backpacking to hike during the night and sleep during the day?

This is something I have pondered on multiple occasions, when the light of the full moon and the altitude induced insomnia kept me awake long into the night. I realize that this would be an unusual ...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

How to determine the needed volume size when purchasing a backpack?

In addition to sizes for different sizes of people, backpacks also have a volume size, usually given in liters or cubic inches, as a measure of how much stuff the backpack can hold. How can I ...
16
votes
6answers
2k views

How can I backpack further without resupplying?

There are a couple of long hikes that I am thinking of doing, both are 70 to 80 miles (110 to 130 km) long one way. I would like to do a yo-yo (140 to 160 miles, 230 to 260 km) without a resupply. I ...
8
votes
2answers
500 views

What should go in the hiking/backpacking plan that you leave with someone else? [duplicate]

It is good practice on a hiking or backpacking trip to leave a written plan behind with someone. Then if you fail to return by your estimated date Search and Rescue will have an idea of where to look ...
6
votes
1answer
447 views

On average, how often do people thru hiking the Pacific Crest Trail resupply?

I have been wondering how often the thru-hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail resupply. I would assume that it depends on the part of the trail and the hiker, but is there an average distance or length ...
4
votes
1answer
4k views

How dangerous are wild horses?

In some parts of the western United States there are herds of wild horses. How dangerous could a herd be to a human on foot while hiking or backpacking? If they are dangerous how should a human ...
22
votes
8answers
3k views

How should I plan a backpacking trip with people who have never backpacked before?

I want to go backpacking with a couple friends, but I'm the only one of us with any experience, and I mostly day hike. I've only done a couple of backpacking trips. They've never backpacked, and only ...
8
votes
2answers
271 views

How do I choose the right tent?

I am looking for a good 1 person tent, and like some of these. I need a tent that will keep out the rain if needed, but also be open so I can see the sky at night on clear nights. I want enough room ...
12
votes
6answers
6k views

What are the pros and cons of air pads vs foam pads for backpacking?

Backpacking sleeping pads come in two basic types, foam and air, with some of the air pads being self-inflating. What are the pros and cons of each and how would one decide which type to get?
4
votes
1answer
222 views

What should go in an inflatable sleeping pad repair kit?

While backpacking with an inflatable or self-inflating sleeping pad one runs the risk of getting holes in it. This does happen fairly frequently, and while they do make kits, I would like to know ...
7
votes
2answers
195 views

What are good practices for resolving disagreements on a backpacking trip?

On a backpacking trip with multiple people, it is all but guaranteed that disagreements will arise. Pace, food, wake-up times, route and chores are some of the common sources of friction. Backpacking ...
29
votes
14answers
8k views

Are there any situations while backpacking that would require a watch?

One of my favorite things about backpacking is the absence of time constraints, you eat when hungry, sleep when tired and sort of track how much time is left until dark. Would there be any situations ...
11
votes
5answers
280 views

How do you create a sense of community on a backpacking trip?

Having a sense of community on a backpacking trip can mean the difference between enjoyment and misery. It can also be the difference between backpacking as a team instead of as random group of people....
8
votes
2answers
940 views

Multi-day hiking trip [California, early April]

I just learned that I am going to end up in San Francisco for 2 weeks in early April. I will be meeting a couple of relatives there who will travel from tropical places, so they won't have a lot of "...
7
votes
2answers
479 views

Under what wilderness conditions is becoming infested with lice a possibility and what precautions should one take to avoid it?

I may have reacted without thinking to the question about dealing with lice because I have never worried about getting lice on a wilderness trip. Upon reflection, I find I am genuinely interested in ...
9
votes
1answer
192 views

Hiking map for Hokkaido and/or other resources

I plan to go hiking in Hokkaido next spring. I'd like to hike two weeks and to keep away from the cities during this time. I'd like to visit Daisetsuzan Park and Shiretoko Park. I've read about ...
2
votes
1answer
113 views

What situations/locations would be ideal for using a solar stove while backpacking?

After answering this question, I am wondering when it would be useful to cook with a solar stove. It certainly wouldn't make sense in an area that is constantly overcast or when speed is of the ...
6
votes
1answer
125 views

Could you use Silnet to seal a drinking water bladder?

I'm considering a MYOG gravity filter project but I'm not sure where to find out if Sil Net™ can hold up under long term submersion and won't leak toxins into the water. Is it safe? Do you have a ...
13
votes
3answers
5k views

How to keep contact lenses from freezing during backpacking in cold temps?

My fiance and I are planning our first backpacking trip together. I am an experienced backpacker, so I can handle most questions he has and I already have most of the gear that we'll need. However, he ...
10
votes
5answers
361 views

Baking with backpacking stoves

What are strategies for successful baking on the trail where wood fires are not allowed? I am particularly interested in Pizza Cookies Pies Corn Bread
10
votes
1answer
405 views

How do you predict weather with an altimeter while mountaineering and or backpacking?

I do know that if your elevation rises while staying in the same position, the pressure is decreasing and that it is a sign of bad weather incoming and a decrease in elevation means that the pressure ...
15
votes
7answers
4k views

How do you deal with a picky eater on a backpacking trip?

Obviously, the solution to this problem is to pack food that everyone enjoys eating. However, according to Murphy, this doesn't always happen. Also, sometimes the best tasting food is ruled out by ...
8
votes
2answers
306 views

Choosing a sleeping pad for camping

I currently own the most basic closed cell sleeping pad that one could buy. I'd like to upgrade to a better self inflating pad. I've narrowed it down to about two options: REI AirRail 1.5 REI Trekker ...
6
votes
2answers
445 views

What does the three different volume specifications mean for the Gregory Whitney backpack?

REI's web page for the Gregory Whitney backpack lists its volume as 87 / 95 / 103 liter What do you think this exactly mean? Does the backpack have three different ways to use with these different ...
8
votes
1answer
301 views

What are the pro and cons of vacuum sealed vs mylar bags for DIY dehydrated foods?

For packaging dehydrated foods for backpacking, the two options that I can think of are mylar bags, and vacuum sealed bags. What are the pros and cons of each method?
13
votes
4answers
3k views

Is using ultralight gear possible without sacrificing safety, comfort, or skills?

I recently came back from a 17-day backcountry hike. At the start of the hike, my backpack was 28 kg. At the end of the hike it was around half of that or a little bit more. I'm fine hiking with 20 ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

When considering GPS battery life where are the best options?

I believe the 3 main options for portable GPS currently are: Dedicated GPS unit Smart Phone GPS Watch They all have somethings in common, and each have other considerations also. For this question,...
6
votes
3answers
547 views

Can a cooler (warm weather) sleeping bag be used when combined with a warmer (cold weather) under quilt for hammock camping?

My general question is as such: If I use a 30°F (-1°C) under quilt with my hammock, would I be fine using a 50°F (10°C; or higher) sleeping bag as a "top quit" during 30°F (-1°C) winter nights? My ...
5
votes
3answers
354 views

Designing a sustainable and portable high-energy diet

I need some help designing a diet for extended multi-day treks which is sustainable, provides high-energy but still remains somehow portable. For some reason my efforts so far were not very successful....
7
votes
5answers
999 views

How can I get comfortable sleeping on my side (backpacking)?

I am a side sleeper. I use a v2 Klymite pad but my hip still hurts during the night because there isn't enough vertical room. I'm considering: Sleeping curled up a bit (so the angle from my hip to ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

When making camp in the mountains, which direction should I face my tent?

Sometimes I hear that, when making camp in the mountains, a tent should be pitched so the door is facing a certain direction, usually downhill. I've repeatedly asked why I should do this, and the ...
21
votes
5answers
4k views

How can I tell which way is “down wind”

I'll be backpacking in areas where a bear canister is required by regulation. All of the tip's I've read say to store it XYZ number of feet "downwind from your camp", presumably so the scent of the ...
8
votes
4answers
917 views

Is it possible to use a flint and steel with wet tinder?

We carry a flint and steel instead of lighters to light our camp stoves when backpacking because the flint and steel always works and weighs very little. One of our routine camp activities is to try ...
3
votes
1answer
128 views

Alternatives for sealing Mylar food packs?

We are making our own dehydrated meals with mylar bags and oxygen absorbers. This is very cost effective, but less so if you need to spend lots of money for one of the specialty tools for sealing ...
11
votes
3answers
382 views

How would one assess the safety of a wooden bridge?

While backpacking in the Wind River Range in Wyoming, I had to cross this bridge. The piece of paper on the left support said, Due to recent high water events, this bridge may be damaged. Assess ...
3
votes
5answers
459 views

How to keep a llama from being eaten by a bear?

I am pretty sure that from a bear's point of view a llama counts as food, but as its not possible to put a llama into a bear can or suspend it from a tree branch, how would I keep it from being eaten ...
14
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I test my water filter?

How can you verify that a water filter still works? I've had one for several years and I suspect it may not be working. Is there a way to test and make sure that it still filters to the factory ...
4
votes
1answer
84 views

Remaining impacts from the very low snow pack of 2014-2015 in the Western Sierra and extra precautions we should take to minimize our impact

The snow pack of 2014 - 2015 in the Sierra was an unprecedented low of 5% of normal. Thankfully, the snow pack of 2015-2016 was close to normal. We will be in the western Sierra in two weeks, and I ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the best way to manage Scottish midges?

I have seen some posts that mention midges and midge spray. I am wild camping in Scotland in August. Should I be worried about them? Is there anything else a part from midge spray I can use to keep ...
7
votes
1answer
280 views

How to teach situational awareness for the outdoors?

By situational awareness I mean (but certainly don't limit it to): Looking behind to familiarize yourself with the return journey Looking ahead to see what the best route will be Knowing the ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

Where can I find an online elevation profile of the Cohos trail?

Where can I find an elevation profile of the Cohos trail?
9
votes
3answers
233 views

Quick release knot for attaching kit

I'm currently using a double fisherman's bend to tie my kit together but it's a bit fiddly to take apart. Is there a better knot for the task?
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Quality of duck vs goose down

While searching for a sleeping bag I was told that goose down is clearly superior to duck down in terms of quality. I guess that means e.g. the fill power (measured in cuin). What exactly are the ...
8
votes
2answers
122 views

Where can I recycle or refill small 16 oz propane cannisters?

Is it possible to recycle or refill small (disposable 😉) propane cannisters?
23
votes
14answers
8k views

Am I packing too much for a 2-3 day hike in the forests?

I have decided that I would like to hike. I have read a bit on hiking, and bought some gear and a backpack to get started. I want to start with backpacking through mostly flat forests, and later ...
9
votes
3answers
309 views

ultralight backpacking in snow and preparing for wet gear

So I was backpacking up in Sequoia national park this past weekend and there is still a lot of snow. I following some ultralight gear lists, which were good, but I ran into problems with gear getting ...