Jul 23, 2014 at 9:52 am #1319187
A thread on dulcimers got me to thinking. Does anyone carry a musical instrument with them backpacking? If so, what is it? Is it MYOG?
I carry a Native American Style Flute with me on occasion.Jul 23, 2014 at 10:17 am #2121824
I bring a harmonica from time to time. This may be why I end up hiking solo…Jul 23, 2014 at 10:23 am #2121828
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Dr Hal makes an ABS flute that sounds as good as my hand made cedar flute. Perfect for hiking.
I'm a percussionist, so pots and other tin are always game. Egg shakers, finger cymbals (zills), Audubon bird calls, jaws harp are some of my favorites.
I need to learn to play a harmonica!Jul 23, 2014 at 10:31 am #2121835
…Jul 23, 2014 at 10:42 am #2121839
I've taken a harmonica sometimes, but I'm not particularly good with it. I've thought about taking the ukulele, but technically it's my wife's so I'd be a little nervous about breaking it.Jul 23, 2014 at 4:28 pm #2121936
@awsorensenLocale: South of Forester Pass
I don't, but here's this too.
Xaphoone – Pocket Sax
.Jul 24, 2014 at 2:38 am #2122024
I've checked out the site before and had forgotten about it.
I just looked again. I was hoping he'd released one that's in the key of G or preferably in the key of F# but he hasn't yet. The key of A is too high pitched for me (it hurts my ears).
I've heard a lot of different plastic models, but his sounds the most like the wooden ones, just a slight bit less breathy than soft wood.
Hopefully he'll come out with lower keys soon.
I also play the Native American hand drum, but it's too heavy and bulky to take along.Jul 24, 2014 at 9:51 am #2122122
@pgasbyLocale: North Carolina
I play guitar but would not take even the Martin "backpacker" on a backpacking trip…
But I have seriously been thinking of getting one of these to take on trips – inspiration to learn to play which I've always wanted to do…Jul 26, 2014 at 2:48 pm #2122620
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
I wish that, like Survivorman, I could play a harmonica well, then I'd take one.
But… I CAN play a radio – and my I-Pod. Does that count?Jul 26, 2014 at 2:59 pm #2122624
@millonasLocale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
What is the name of that flute Phillip – looks like a "snake charmers" flute (Eric take notice). Virtually every culture seem to have there own version, and it is hard to keep track of them. "Tin" flutes such as the Irish whistle are pretty good choices, and cheap, light, virtually indestructible are easy to learn to play. But as I wrote some year back on here I think, even the mellow Native American flute which I can play a bit sounds like a freight train in my ears after a few days solo, so I don't even try anymore. I think it might be different with more people around.
The ones I took, when I took them, were DIY instruments made out of PVC (Shachuhachi and NA flute) so they were cheap, waterproof, and unbreakable. Can even be chucked at a bear in a pinch.
Top to Bottom: Clarks Irish Whistle (a classic), plastic NA flute (bought), PVC Shakuhachi (made), Bamboo 1.4 Shakuhachi (made), last row animal calls I have used to mess with critters, owl call, hawk call, wounded rabbit call makes the Coyotes (the kind with fur) and foxes (not the kind you probably wish) come running for a photo.
If only there were a wounded plant call maybe Bob Gross could get more pictures of bighorn sheep in the mountains.
Apropos if wilderness travel and multi-purposing, the rumon/legend is that in addition to aesthetics the heavy root end of the traditional (and heavy) Japanese Shakuhachi was usable by the traveling monks who played them as a club for protection.Jul 26, 2014 at 3:17 pm #2122627
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Some reed-based flutes can take an enormous amount of air to play. Bob and Ken could probably muster it :)
The Susato penny whistles are fantastic and come in a wide range of keys/sizes. They make all kinds of wind instruments.Jul 27, 2014 at 1:24 am #2122670
I also have 2 bamboo didgeridoos, but they're a little heavy and bulky for backpacking. Both are carved and burnished as well, so I don't want them damaged.
I have Native American rawhide rattles too, but without other instruments being played along with, it doesn't exactly sound melodic.
I personally like the "breathy/raspy" sound of the wooden Native American flutes. But the higher pitch keys, Middle A and higher hurt my ears, so I prefer Middle F# and Low E. That does make for larger bores and longer lengths though, as well as more weight.
A number of NA flute makers offer backpacking models in wood. Same quality flutes, just basic models without adornments. They're a bit less expensive, so not as bad if you break it.
Some even sell kits that are pre-bored, so you just finish them up with some sanding and varnish or wax and you're good to go (even cheaper this way).
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