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.).

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6
votes
1answer
155 views

What overnight backpacking trails are clear of deep snow now (or likely to be in the next two weeks) in northwest Washington?

I am looking for an overnight backpacking trip to do in the next few weeks somewhere in western Washington. But I am worried about deep snow remaining on the trails. Based on last winter's snowpack, ...
27
votes
2answers
2k views

How to calculate backpacking food requirements for a dog

So I know how to calculate how many additional calories a day I need while backpacking. My question is how do I calculate how much food my dog will need while backpacking. I'm hoping for a general ...
15
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9answers
8k views

What's the best way to store/carry olive oil for hiking?

Bottles of olive oil often have special caps that help prevent drips/etc. when pouring the oil, but an entire bottle of olive oil is far to heavy to carry for a hike. What's the best method for ...
7
votes
1answer
8k views

Frequency of crime/assault on the Appalachian Trail

I don't think of myself as being a paranoid individual, but I am cautious about people I meet when hiking. For example, if I am eating lunch at a site less than a mile from an infrequently used trail ...
3
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0answers
88 views

Pulling vs. Carrying [duplicate]

I've done a lot of backpacking in my home state of Colorado. My pack and its contents is pretty light but not "ultralight", maybe 20 pounds including food. I'm considering something like these for ...
10
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5answers
2k views

Yosemite Fire Rings - What to Expect?

I'm planning a Yosemite trip for this summer. In reading up on the rules on fire restrictions, I saw this: When and where fire restrictions are not in effect, wood fires are allowed in existing ...
44
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7answers
7k views

What are some good tips and techniques for packing a backpack?

How do I pack a backpack to prevent injury to my back and keep it comfortable while hiking?
29
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15answers
18k views

How can I take duct tape with me backpacking?

I'm going on a backpacking trip later this summer and on the list of things to bring is 3 yards of duct tape. I don't want to bring an entire roll of duct tape because it would be heavy and cumbersome,...
5
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3answers
256 views

Planning where to stop and camp in advance

I'm planning what will realistically be my first backpacking trip. It'll be in Yosemite this summer. I've already been going through checklists of things we need, the trails we'll take, what we'll ...
10
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3answers
3k views

What is a good R value for a four-season sleeping pad?

I've been a Boy Scout for seven years now, and as I'm moving from high school to college I'd like to get into solo backpacking. I live in the lower peninsula of the state of Michigan. I don't foresee ...
2
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3answers
204 views

What type of pants would be durable and suitable for outdoors in all kind of climates?

I am about to start a long backpacking trip through South America, and I would like to take as little weight as possible. I have the rest of my stuff more or less sorted out, but I am a bit at a loss ...
13
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3answers
4k views

Solo-backpacking in mountain lion country

I've read that to take precautions in mountain lion country, people should hike and camp in groups. Does that mean solo-backpacking is not advisable in mountain lion country (Rocky Mountains in my ...
37
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10answers
178k views

How much should your backpack weigh?

For a multi-day backpacking trip, what is the ideal weight of a backpack? And what is that max weight that no sane human should go over?
6
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4answers
305 views

What is an efficient and effective way to test an emergency day-hike kit?

Questions like these two have made me wonder about my own answer in the first linked question. I have to admit, I haven't 'tested' the kits I put together. I have some wilderness survival training (...
16
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3answers
5k views

Is drinking water containing dirt harmful?

I noticed that if I collect water from a stream dense of small debris/thin mud, if I keep the water bottle close to the surface, while it takes a longer time to fill the bottle, the water is cleaner ...
4
votes
2answers
740 views

What is a reasonable budget to solo-hike the Continental Divide Trail?

I am considering a thru-hike next summer of the Continental Divide Trail. What is a reasonable budget for covering the time from starting to finishing the hike? This question has an answer for the ...
1
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0answers
82 views

How are backpacking quotas per trailhead in US national parks determined?

Trailheads at some national parks like Yosemite or some wilderness areas will have quotas, with a certain number of permits per trailhead available per day. Usually, the permits are split between ...
5
votes
1answer
510 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
286 views

What is an alternative sleep system if I don't want to use a down mummy bag for winter camping?

I would like to winter camp in a 4-season tent but am interested in alternatives to mummy sleeping bags. I want to avoid that shape. What alternative sleep systems do people use that are appropriate ...
3
votes
1answer
111 views

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

Where can I find an elevation profile of the Cohos trail?
7
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4answers
2k views

What are some challenges to starting a small business that runs backpacking trips?

I have more than a decade of experience in outdoor recreation, environmental education, and backpacking. I am now thinking about starting a small business offering backpacking guide service to people ...
5
votes
2answers
236 views

What is a good way to clean the inside of a water bottle straw while on a multi-day backpacking trip?

When coming back from a day of hiking and eating I often notice that the top of the straw of my water bottle is dirty on the inside. I've come across quite a few options to clean the inside of the ...
9
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2answers
2k views

How do I reseal a tent bottom with many pinprick holes

Our tent pan has a LOT of very tiny holes in it. We've never had to use a footprint, and our tent has always kept water out, but that is no longer the case. I don't want to carry a footprint due to ...
17
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9answers
11k views

How can you make a MSR WhisperLite stove simmer?

MSR WhisperLite backpacking stoves are ubiquitous, but they lack a key function: the ability to simmer easily. How can you set a WhisperLite to simmer without having to constantly watch the stove and ...
14
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3answers
3k views

Is there a difference between a hiking trail and a backpacking trail, including if it's the same piece of land?

I saw an article about the Long Trail, a 272-mile trail through the Green Mountain range in Vermont, USA. It's famous for being the oldest hiking trail in the United States, having been built between ...
14
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3answers
1k views

How are backcountry campground reservations enforced?

It seems that in the backcountry of Canadian parks, one may only camp on campgrounds, and reservations are required. For example, in Jasper National Park, one must camp on campgrounds to be reserved ...
4
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2answers
646 views

How is the maximum legal altitude for campfires determined?

In most national parks in the United States, campfires are prohibited above certain elevations (9,600 ft for Yosemite,10,000 ft for Ansel Adams with exceptions). This is a good thing because after a ...
5
votes
3answers
213 views

Is there a backpacker's guide to edible plants that is very light?

Several decades ago, we were three days from the trailhead with no food. Let's not get into why that happened, please. It is too embarrassing. We had to slog through snow for two days, but on the ...
11
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3answers
3k views

How to prevent sleeping bag from expanding in its bag

I have bought a down sleeping bag that comes with two bags: one for storage and one for packing. The packing bag is not as small as it could potentially be, and it is shaped like waterproof bags, ...
3
votes
1answer
225 views

Are there any credible estimates of how much of the US National Park System does not have cell phone reception? If so, what do they conclude?

We have found that almost any place that is interesting to hike, and especially backpack, does not have cell phone reception, or at best lousy cell phone reception. To which I say hallelujah! I do ...
13
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4answers
1k views

How should I pack for a week of backpacking in the rain?

So, next week I will be leaving on a hiking trip, which was supposed to be in the middle of summer whilst it's at its hottest, but instead it will be raining all week. Luckily there are public use '...
30
votes
5answers
7k views

What to do if you are above timberline and your descent is cut off by a large forest fire?

The situation: you are backpacking and are above timberline. Streams are ubiquitous, you are well equipped so exposure is not a problem, the entire party is uninjured and healthy. But a large, ...
27
votes
12answers
9k views

Reusing disposable water bottles vs. buying dedicated bottles

Can anyone share any experience re-using ordinary PETE disposable water bottles until failure, as a lightweight and low-cost alternative to dedicated water bottles/bladders? How long did they last ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Carrying a bridge camera while hiking with a backpack

I'm looking for recommendations on how I can carry my Canon bridge camera while hiking, so that it doesn't get in the way too much but is easy to get to when I want to take a photo (typically of an ...
10
votes
1answer
232 views

Finnish maps: bogs easy vs hard to traverse

Bogs on my Lemmenjoki and Hammastunturi map are marked as either easy or hard to traverse. What conditions should I expect from both terrain types in summer (mid August)? Does easy mean one can walk ...
14
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3answers
2k views

Using a thermometer for hypothermia diagnosis in backcountry?

Has anyone had good experience using an ordinary drugstore oral thermometer in the backcountry in winter weather, and getting trustworthy readings? I made the experiment (on a night that was around ...
7
votes
1answer
457 views

Why do almost all backpacking packs have top compartment (“brain compartment”) zippers facing backwards?

According to this answer to "what gear should go in the brain (top most compartment)", the brain compartment usually ends up becoming the knick-knack / catch-all pocket, for small items items that ...
5
votes
2answers
164 views

Would it make sense to backpack with an 8 lb tent at Philmont Scout Ranch?

I am going to Philmont Scout Ranch in the Rocky Mountains in New Mexico, USA, this August. I am planning on using the Eureka Timberline 4 tent, which weighs about 8 pounds. I am doing a 7 day trek and ...
21
votes
3answers
14k views

Should I be worried about bears when sleeping in a hammock?

I'm going on a multi day backpacking trip and I am planning on taking only a backpacking hammock instead of a tent. When I mentioned this to a friend of mine he jokingly referred to me as a bear taco....
21
votes
5answers
6k views

How many days does it take to reach hiking X miles per day?

On a thru-hike or section hike, people frequently hike 15-30 miles per day. New hikers are typically encouraged to start at around 8 miles per day, though, and work their way up, to give their bodies ...
19
votes
6answers
866 views

What are some proven methods of training for week long backpacking trips at high altitude?

I'm going to Colorado to visit a friend and we will be going on a week long trek across a couple of 14'ners. I'm looking for some ways to help prepare my body for trip.
7
votes
1answer
200 views

Are there any biodegrable freeze dried packages?

More and more I see discarded freeze dried packages abandoned in the woods. The ones I have seen are made out of plastic and are foil lined and so don't decompose the way that oatmeal packets would ...
7
votes
5answers
849 views

How to permanently label Nalgene bottles?

It's pretty common to use 1 oz Nalgene bottles to hold the spices in a spice kit for backpacking as they are waterproof and the right size. Image Source The problem comes when trying to label the ...
5
votes
1answer
219 views

Camelbak safe to use after cleaning for the first time in 4 years?

I'm going on a 2-day backpacking trip. I have a CamelBak that I haven't used in 4 years. I saw zero mold in it, it smelled fine. I flushed it a few times, including the lines and mouthpiece, with near ...
10
votes
1answer
587 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 ...
16
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5answers
3k views

Dog Breeds for Backpacking and Trail Running

Which dog breeds are best for backpacking? I know malamutes do well in the cold and on mountains, but what if I'm backpacking in the summer? Which dog breeds are good for daily trail runs? I would ...
8
votes
1answer
132 views

Can a backpacker's solar water heater produce warm water when the ambient temperature is in the 20s (F)?

We have long carried a backpacker's solar water heater on our trips. The bliss of warm -- nearly hot -- water in quantity for washing one's filthy self is worth the small extra weight -- especially ...
16
votes
1answer
2k views

Train yourself to need less water

I'm interested in doing multi-day hikes (i.e. backpacking) in the desert where water sources are not readily available, thus requiring one to carry in enough water for the duration of the trip. On ...
27
votes
9answers
11k views

What is the best way to cross streams while backpacking?

I'm curious of a good technique to cross a stream while backpacking that's above the boot's waterproof line but no higher than the knees. I typically face upstream and use my hiking poles for ...
13
votes
8answers
7k views

Is a smartphone or dedicated gps receiver better for navigation in the desert?

For most backcountry navigation I use a topo map and compass when necessary. Generally I'm following known trails and combined with some basic awareness of cardinal direction and land features I don't ...

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