Hot answers tagged

35

In the corridor zone (where you are planning) you are only allowed to camp at designated campgrounds, which are secured on a reservation basis. If they are full, of the options you list, 2. Pray hard a permit is available when I show up is your best bet. The park leaves a percentage of permits unreserved for the main corridor (which includes the Bright ...


21

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 ...


21

I would call it a reasonable risk to camp in the desert without a tent (but with a tarp available if it was to rain!). I've "cowboy" camped 40 or 50 nights in the desert and never had any company try to join me in my sleeping bag :) That being said, I would heartily recommend shaking out your clothes and shoes before putting them on in the morning. In the ...


20

Although black clothing absorbs radiation from the sun more than white clothing, this is somewhat offset by the fact that it also emits it more efficiently. Good absorbers are also good emitters. If you're standing in dark shade and the objects in your environment are cooler than the temperature of your clothing, then black clothing will theoretically cause ...


19

As an update, I arrived at the canyon on May 13th. They had precisely one open slot and thus I was able to hike down to Bright Angel one day, and back up the next. A rim-to-river in a day is doable, but hard. For a first timer, it is definitely worth overnighting and going back up. Especially during May, hiking between about 11 - 3 is really uncomfortable. ...


18

Despite the convention, "cotton kills," in the desert those same properties (slow drying, water retention) are useful for keeping you cool by slowing down the near instant evaporation experienced at such high heat and low humidity. Your goal is to make that moisture work as long for you as possible. Since "water is 24.5 times more conductive than air," (...


18

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) are ...


17

I think you already answered your own question. Most dedicated GPS devices are more rugged, have better battery life, and don't require a data connection to work well. A phone has a lot of power overhead and is fragile. There are a few possible advantages to a phone. If you're already going to be carrying one, it reduces the total weight required. It's ...


16

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 ...


16

Most GPS receivers in phones do not work nearly as well as stand-alone GPS devices. Usually, one wouldn't notice this because phones use assisted GPS where they get the orbital data and/or almanac of the GPS satellites as well as the exact time from the GSM network. Also, they have an approximate position of the device. Without that data, phones are very ...


14

You'd be better of strength training your muscles to carry the extra weight of the water you need to carry. How much water an individual needs to stay hydrated is not a standard measure. Different individuals need more or less water to keep their bodies properly hydrated. I don't think it's necessarily wise to try and train your body to do with less of ...


12

There are two types of water-based concerns while doing strenuous activity in the desert: dehydration and hyponatremia. Dehydration occurs when your body is not getting enough water, and is the most common. Symptoms include irritability, headache, lack of energy, bright yellow/orange and infrequent urine. You lose water while you sweat, but in hot climates ...


12

Let's go through the different aspects of phone versus dedicated GPS device point by point (however, quite surely without being complete). Basically you have to decide which points apply in your situation and how you weigh them. GPS reception and accuracy When the first smartphones with GPS units hit the market, there was the saying that their GPS ...


11

I have always been advised to be in bright/light colours during the trekking expeds in regions which are known for bad sun. Everybody knows that Black clothing absorbs more heat(radiation). The lighter you wear, the lesser heat you attract(radiation). Now there is a point rightly said above that the darker colours will emit it faster as well, but the ...


11

Large tents are generally not an issue in campgrounds, although finding a large enough flat piece of ground may be. The more likely problem you'll face is maximum stay restrictions. Be sure that you check the requirements before making your decision, because having to move your camp every couple of weeks will dramatically change the setup you want. I ...


9

There are several concerns Rodents. Unlike the eastern US, rodents in the West are much more likely to carry Hanta virus and Bubonic plague. These are not common, but unlike the Eastern US, they are also not unheard of. Scorpions. Scorpions in the east are a minor annoyance. Some of the Western ones kill. Wild Horses. Again, unheard of in the east, ...


9

Hold up two pieces of cloth in front of the sun, one black and one white, and see for yourself which passes more light. Dark cloth can be very thin and still block light effectively. Re-emission of energy from darker colors may be a little faster but I think other factors (see below) are much more significant. And don't kid yourself into thinking people ...


9

As you specifically mentioned Southern Nevada Mojave Desert, if you come across a snake and considering the worst case its a venomous snake, then its very likely to be a Rattlesnake or a Side Winder or an Adder. The best way to avoid trouble with venomous reptiles is to be aware of your surroundings and observe some rules for your own safety. Most bites ...


8

Your blood and body need sodium, potassium and various other solutes in order to function (without the correct potassium levels, your heart will start to fail etc) In a hot country, where you may sweat a lot, and top up your liquids by drinking water, you lose these solutes quite rapidly. The quantities you require are generally a lot higher than you might ...


8

If you're not concerned about bears, I would (ironically) suggest using an Ursack. The Ursack is a kevlar bag that is "bear resistant" but not legally approved for use in many areas which require bear canisters. They weight much less than bear cans, but are very resistant to punctures, so a coyote shouldn't be able to break into one. You may have concerns ...


8

I use Timble GPS Hunt Pro on my Samsung Galaxy S5 phone. You can download topo, BLM boundaries, private property and other types of maps that work just fine without a cell signal. The maps I use are incredibly detailed. If you do have cell coverage, you can add weather overlays. Map prices are reasonable, and you can buy a subscription that lets you ...


7

Long sleeve, breathable, wicking fabric. Failing that, long sleeve, ultralight and blousy (loose to allow lots of airflow).


7

The other answers have great information. I would add some specifics that I have learned from living and backpacking all over Arizona and the white mountains for most of my life. Don't have everyone pee on the same rock/place at night. It will dry out and the salt can attract deer. If they get brought in to camp for the salt, they might smell something else ...


7

I would at least look into multiple smaller tents instead of a single large tent to handle all. Other than the cat thing (I really don't know how to respond to that), I'd probably have one tent for sleeping, and another for the "office". A third thing that isn't really a full tent but more just a canopy for cooking, eating, and other things that can be ...


7

For your situation I strongly advice against relying on your phone. It's a great backup but to much of a risk to use as a main device. Three reasons to get a dedicated gps: Batteries: A gps mostly works on standard AA batteries which can be bought anywhere and rechargeable ones are easily charged on solar energy. (look up goal-zero for instance). Rugged: ...


7

This sounds to me like a bad idea because you don't want to go into the hike already a little dehydrated. My recommendation would be to go into the hike very well hydrated, and to drink a lot of fluids during the hike, and don't forget about electrolytes.


6

You could talk to the guys at Panther Primitives. They make high-quality canvas wall tents for the historical reenactment community, and they spend a sizeable amount of time camping in them. However, I really think your answer is a yurt (or ger). They are round, so that helps with high winds. They are big enough to walk around in. They have accordian-...


6

I have served in an Army that tried that, “water discipline” was used to try and make soldiers get used to using less water. It failed miserably, people have died or got seriously hurt and there was no visible benefit and the habit was abounded


5

To add to what others have mentioned, reptiles do indeed go into hibernation, but not in the thought of "traditional" hibernation, such as that of a bear or other mammals. Reptiles usually do burrow down, but they can certainly be awoken. Here in the southeast, if the temperatures rise just a bit, we have plenty of snakes and lizards around sunning ...


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