Archive | Tips and Tricks

Tips and Tricks help you use your gear smarter and lighter. If you have a tip or a trick you would like to share with us, email it to us and we will post it to help all our tribe.

Thoughts on Walking Straight

Over the years of my thru-hiking endeavors I have progressed in my ability to be a better hiker. I think most long distance hikers naturally strive to do the same, no matter the pace and skill level. Our skills and knowledge about the gear we use, the food we eat, management of our bodies and […]

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View from the Wonderland Trail

The Art of the Bail

Remember the Clint Eastwood movie, The Eiger Sanction? During the climbers meeting, Clint suggests that their planned route leaves no room for retreat and the head honcho snidely chides him for planning for defeat. Most of us want to think that our planned trips will go, well, as planned, but circumstances arise that can throw […]

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Seam Sealing

Seam Sealing Tarps and Tents

Seam sealing tarps and shelters terrifies many people. Honestly it’s the easiest thing you can do. A few ground rules: Seal the outside. That’s where the rain will fall and you need to seal the stitching there to repeal water ingress. Make sure its not too hot 6of/15c is ideal temperature to seal up your […]

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Cut a small water reservoir in half and use it as a water scoop in small streams

Water Dipper

Ever want to carry a scooping cup for those tiny pools and barely flowing water sources? You’ve probably also thought “I don’t want to carry another half Smartwater bottle or small cup for that purpose.” Too bulky and too much extra weight for the gram weenies. Well, here’s a light and refined solution: If you […]

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Devils Thumb Pass Sunset

The Weekend Warrior

Over the course of my hiking “career”, I’ve been blessed with being able to hike weeks or even months at a time. I’ve seen the spring flowers of the Appalachians, the first snows hinting at an upcoming winter in the Rockies and the green of summer giving to the brilliant colors of fall. I’d put […]

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Reducing the weight and size of small items makes it easier when you have to carry 7 liters of water and tools for 3 days of dry camping and trail maintenance.

Making Small Things Smaller to Save Weight and Space

Inspired by my friend Trail Ambassador Rik Christiansen who unpacked all his hygiene and other random little items for me one night, I decided I would try to shave even more weight from my pack by going through everything and seeing if I could make it smaller. This kind of “gram weenie” behavior smacks of […]

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Section Hiking the Appalachian Trail: Planning and Logistics

When I set out to hike my first section of the Appalachian Trail in Georgia in October 2000, I had no aspirations of hiking the entire trail. Planning this first hike had been rather complicated for an A.T. novice, so 2200 miles of trail seemed out of reach. On subsequent trips, as state lines were […]

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