65

Comparing hydrocarbons with batteries As Olin Lathrop wrote, the big problem is energy density: hydrocarbon fuels simply offer a huge amount of energy per unit mass, compared to any current battery technology. To put some numbers on this, we can look at Wikipedia's page on energy density. Let's compare ethanol (probably the least energy-dense of the ...


44

The tent just makes your intent obvious: You planned to sleep there from the beginning. And this is what the authorities want to prevent: Camping in the wild. On the other hand many legislations allow for emergency and high altitude bivouacs, which are inevitable. So the gray area developed where people sleep without a tent in order to escape punishment, as ...


34

Sometimes, regardless of the pins, it's simply impossible to put pins into the ground no matter the technology. In such a situations, boulders may be your friend: Raising a tent between Baugevatnet and Sijdasjávrre, near Narvik, Norway, ~68.1°N, 1 October 2012. The ground was frozen solid and it was completely impossible to drive a peg into the ground. My ...


34

It is likely caused by iron in the pump or pipes. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health: Iron is mainly present in water in two forms: either the soluble ferrous iron or the insoluble ferric iron. Water containing ferrous iron is clear and colorless because the iron is completely dissolved. When exposed to air in the pressure tank or ...


33

As to why you're still cold with those specs: it happens to me as well, and I think the specs are for the 'average' person meaning not only average amount of body fat but also average temperature regulation (as in: certain people feel cold at x°C, while others might already feel cold at x + 2°C or so, you get the point). So it might be possible that you have ...


30

If one looks at the list on Wikipedia of fatal attacks, one will notice that fatal cougar attacks are pretty rare. At least 20 people in North America were killed by cougars between 1890 and 2011, including six in California. Children are particularly vulnerable. The majority of the child victims listed here were not accompanied by adults. So just ...


27

The question doesn't state what geographical area it's about, and it really isn't possible to give an answer that covers everything. In this answer, I'm only going to deal with pristine backcountry areas in North America, such as the Sierra. In order to interpret the scientific evidence properly, it's necessary to understand some scientific background about ...


25

Some things to remember when stealth camping: Never camp or enter property marked with Private or No Trespassing. Never camp behind a gate or fence - you could get locked in. Depending on the location, it could be a while before someone comes along to let you out. Camoflauge yourself. Cover your bike reflectors and other reflective surfaces. Cover your ...


25

There are no electric backcountry stoves because there aren't long enough extension cords. Seriously, where do you propose to get the energy from? Batteries of current technology don't have the same energy density by weight or volume as chemical fuel does. Battery technology is advancing rapidly, so some day this may no longer be the case, but today it is....


25

If you're consistently cold in your sleeping system, then you need to change your system. An adequate sleep system for cold weather constitutes two sleeping pads: a solid foam sleeping pad underneath of an insulated air mattress. Your sleeping bag should be rated to well below the temperature you're sleeping in. I don't know who comes up with these ...


24

What mistakes did these girls make during their camping trip? I don't know that they made any glaring mistakes. The only caution I would note (and you'll see that it's of limited value in this particular case) is that they were two women camping alone in a very remote area of North Africa (although Morocco was not considered a threat to tourists at the time)...


23

It's not really about the tent, it is about planned "bivouacs" (that means you plan to sleep outdoors) and emergency bivouacs where the latter of course aren't forbidden. That means if you carry a tent and sleep in it, it was obviously planned to sleep outdoors where people possibly do harm to the nature because they generally don't follow the Leave No ...


20

Your best bet may be to take along a set of titanium shepherd-hook-type stakes (Vargo makes a decent set). Their advantage is that they are very narrow, so less likely to hit underground rocks. Further, the titanium is somewhat bendy in the ground, so you can often work them around rocks when they do hit (but they spring back into shape when you remove ...


20

I like being out alone. Generally you have more time for introspection, for getting calm and enjoying what’s around you and inside of you. Of course there’s times when you have to deal with yourself and your fears when you’re out alone. Even after many nights that I have spent outside alone, I’m still a bit nervous when the sun sets. (I guess it’s an old ...


20

In Central Europe there is a much higher population density as e.g. in many parts of the USA, Canada or Scandinavia. There is almost no valley without a village. So private property is rather rare and the land owner want to protect it. In Austria there had even been a law from 1852 (Reichsforstgesetz), which prohibited entering the forest completely. Not ...


19

Here are some other things you can try, Fill a water bottle with hot water, wrap it in a t-shirt and put that inside your sleeping bag. Don't drink warm tea before you go to bed, as that will increase the chances of having to get out of bed or being uncomfortable all night long. On the other hand, eating before bed will give your body fuel during the night. ...


19

The way to protect yourself against attacks like this is to greatly reduce the probability of being attacked. Granted, you can be attacked anywhere (Yosemite, the Appalachian Trail) for any reason or for seemingly no reason -- but choose a place for vacation where such attacks are very low probability -- Yosemite and the Appalachian Trail, despite one case ...


18

If the wind is blowing from all directions, then you need to get as low as possible to the ground. Do your best to find a spot that is somewhat sheltered from the wind. The lee of a crest usually works, but if you have wind blowing from all directions then try to find a recess in the ground - a low spot where the ground that slopes up in all directions away ...


18

I think having it vertically using side compression straps or bungees on the rear of the bag effects movement the least (ie not getting caught on stuff). As Kate Gregory mentions the pads are really light and don't affect the balance of the bag too much so I wouldn't worry about that. foam pads like the one you have are also really tough! Unlike an ...


17

This sounds like a great idea. Wild camping is permited under the Land Reform Act. Outdooraccess-scotland have put together a useful summary of how it relates to your access rights. Key points from which are; Does it mean I can camp anywhere? The main places where access rights do not apply are: houses and gardens, and non-residential ...


16

You don't have to go on a solo trip to experience a little solitude. For example, you can go with a group, and when you're planning the trip, plan for a day during which you will go off on a solo hike, while the others stay at camp and fish or read or the like. Or perhaps it's a day where they all go off on a hike and you loiter around the camp alone. This ...


16

Have an emergency kit, and a first aid kit. Keep both of these on your person at all times, but at a minimum, keep the emergency kit on you. People have died less than a mile from camp because they left all their gear at the tent and went for a "short hike" Set up a some sort of check in system. These range from the simple cell phone to the fancy (and ...


16

If you absolutely must have a fire, reset your thinking from "fire pit" to "fire mound" Creating a fire mound is a great way to enjoy a back-country fire with little to no impact to the ground / vegetation. Carry a small sheet of plastic, burlap, or a section of an old fire shelter, or anything of the like (it shouldn't get hot enough to burn if your mound ...


16

I've been hammock camping for about four years, and there are a few issues you should be aware of. First, as already noted in the comments under your original question, insulation is critically important. I know that below about 65 F (18 C), I sleep uncomfortably cold. This is because your insulation (sleeping bag) beneath you is compressed by your body ...


16

A multi-tool or a knife? A multi-tool can be a very appropriate tool for backpacking. It combines the function of many of the tools you mentioned. You may carry the tools you mention above, though. (Note: I've NEVER needed a bottle opener...) If you mean a knife, read on... I do a lot of backpacking in the Eastern US, so I am going to assume that this ...


16

A rolled up sleeping pad is generally pretty lightweight, meaning the "you could misbalance your pack and strain your back" concern is probably one you can ignore. People try not put them inside because they may not fit, or they may get squashed. If the pads are waterproof, which is common, you really don't need to worry about the pad getting wet from ...


16

According to Backpacker, and the National Park Service, peeing attracts some large predators because animals like the salty taste: ...urinate well away from camp on rock, sandy areas, or duff. Animals are attracted to salts in urine... I would argue, therefore, that urinating around your campsite is not a good idea when near large predatory animals. ...


16

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 ...


15

I'm afraid studiohack's advices are too cautious to be useful in practice. For example in Spain or Austria, almost every piece of land is private and/or behind fence, so you'd have to sleep on the track then. My personal experience (mostly from Europe; please follow here) is that it's not so hot. If you don't provoke the land owners, they are mostly very ...


15

Depending on your activity level, access to water, etc, the types of food you carry should change accordingly. Some points to consider: Dehydrated foods are great in that they are light-weight since they have no water in them. But they might not be a wise choice if you are dry camping with no water available (e.g. in the desert) since you would just have to ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible