Hacks you just learned even after years of backpacking
Aug 15, 2022 at 1:30 pm #3757413Bruce MSpectator
@va3pinnerLocale: In the shadow of the Shenandoah
7. Tea and coffee taste better with sugar rather than salt. Check before leaving. Learned the hard way.
Really??? Somebody else did this too??????Aug 15, 2022 at 1:43 pm #3757415
Coffee also tastes better with sugar than with crystal light lemonade. Don’t ask me how I know.Aug 15, 2022 at 2:39 pm #3757417Paul WagnerBPL Member
@balzaccomLocale: Wine Country
Yum! I’ll have to try that….NOT!Aug 16, 2022 at 7:52 pm #3757511Justin MckinneyBPL Member
I think it’s an obviuos one,( but my hiking buddy didn’t know it) but placing a sturdy stick through your tent tie outs , and then placing a rock onto it, is as good as a tent stake in the ground , when you don’t have that option.Aug 16, 2022 at 10:15 pm #3757514Alex VBPL Member
@valleyjoLocale: North Cascades
You can measure the remaining fuel in a canister stove to ~1 gram using ONLY your trekking pole as a balance. Way better than floating the can. A fellow group member taught us this on a Skurka trip, my mind was blown.
Here is the video explanation from the backcountry magician himself:
Edit after posting I see Jan already shared this with BPL years ago, hope you all don’t mind the repost.
Original post: https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/104621/Aug 16, 2022 at 10:40 pm #3757515
Wow that is some serious nerd stuff on measuring the fuel. But it still leaves you with a partial can at home, or running out of sufficient fuel for coffee on trail.Aug 17, 2022 at 4:26 pm #3757574
leaves you with a partial can at home
Or a good excuse to refill the canister maybe? If you do that, do NOT exceed the original weight.
CheersAug 17, 2022 at 4:38 pm #3757577Jerry AdamsBPL Member
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
I stick a stick through tent stake loop and put rock on it. If it’s hard to drive stake into ground, this works even better. Or you can stick the stake through the loop and put a rock on the stake. You need a good sized rock. It’s possible for the tent to rub against the rock and abrade – avoid this.
“leaves you with a partial can at home”
or, buy cheap butane from the Korean grocery and use it to fill up your canister to the desired level for a particular trip. A lot of threads about this subject.Aug 17, 2022 at 4:43 pm #3757579
buy cheap butane from the Korean grocery and use it to fill up your canister to the desired level for a particular trip.
Works great in summer time, and very cheap.
CheersAug 17, 2022 at 6:26 pm #3757582BlackHatGuySpectator
@sleepingLocale: The Cascades
“leaves you with a partial can at home”
which I then use to boil coffee/tea water until the canister is empty.Aug 17, 2022 at 7:51 pm #3757587
Yeah: 10 g is enough to make coffee for the two of us on a day walk.
CheersAug 20, 2022 at 9:49 am #3757716PaulWBPL Member
@peweg8Locale: Western Colorado
For older shoes, if it’s just the midsole cushioning that’s getting worn out, I’ve had good success extending their usable life by switching to a pair of slightly more cushioned socks. Seems obvious, but the only socks I’ve worn for some years now are Darn Tough Hikers and I never tried anything else until last winter.Aug 20, 2022 at 10:15 am #3757717Jerry AdamsBPL Member
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
I use cheap butane at 20 F, no problem
My current favorite technique is to use a butane lighter on the outside of the canister to warm it up, if it gets too slow for my patience
I have a couple canisters of iso-pro but just haven’t bothered using them. One of them I found under a tree in the wilderness – trash left by a human. Maybe they intended it to be a survival item they left for others?Aug 20, 2022 at 3:35 pm #3757749
I’ve been doing this for a few years, but I’ll add it here because it did take me a while to think of it.
Hydrating dehydrated meals with boiling water at high altitude can take more than twice as long, because the boiling water isn’t as hot (e.g. only 190F or 88C at 12,000′ or 3650m). So I insulate the bag to keep it from getting cold. Wrapping it in a sit-pad or other CCF works well. In a pinch, I’ll use a puffy or quilt if I’m absolutely sure the bag is clean.Aug 23, 2022 at 11:36 am #3757920Alexander SBPL Member
When traveling home from thru hikes I use my antibiotic ointment packet from the first aid kit as deodorant. This keeps me smelling ok for about two days of air, bus, train travel.
After the TRT I hiked close to the end TH, washed / groomed clothes and self in a creek, put my “deodorant” on and bussed, flew home next morning without causing an uproar.Aug 23, 2022 at 2:39 pm #3757984Steve MBPL Member
@steve-2Locale: Eastern Washington
Some great tips here…especially the surgical scrub & antibiotic ointment as deodorant. I tried 20% zinc oxide (my sunscreen) once, but sadly it didn’t work well as a deodorant. YMMV
My favorite super cheap/super light gear item is foam ear plugs. If you ever hike or camp on top of a very windy ridge they can save your sanity…as well as helping you to get some sleep.Aug 24, 2022 at 7:05 am #3758213
Wake up, walk one or two hours, then stop for breakfast, rather than eat before starting: two breaks for the price of one.Aug 24, 2022 at 10:07 am #3758221
I have always been a breakfast eater, and coffee drinker. During a hike last year on the JMT, my companions did the “get up and hike” thing, with a later break. I tried and it was just plain awful! I was exhausted first thing in the morning and never recovered. My blood sugar is so low when I wake up – usually in the 60 range – that I must, must eat first thing before hiking. It’s a good hack if you can do it, but some of us simply cannot. HYOHAug 24, 2022 at 11:33 am #3758228
I had the same issue with blood sugar before I read Deep Nutrition by Dr. Catherine Shanahan (https://www.amazon.com/Deep-Nutrition-Your-Genes-Traditional/dp/1250113849/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=), probably the single best book on food and nutrition out there. Until then, a handful of nuts and a couple of dates before breaking camp is a quick energy booster.
New tip: Small water bottles occupy less volume in a pack for the same amount of water.Aug 24, 2022 at 12:18 pm #3758231
New tip: Small water bottles occupy less volume in a pack for the same amount of water.
Haha, that’s funny if you read it literally. But I know what you mean, small bottles can more efficiently exploit existing free volume.Aug 24, 2022 at 1:42 pm #3758234
I shouldn’t do this Atif, because it’s thread drift but… in my view most nutrition books are utter quackery, even those written by doctors (perhaps especially those written by doctors, who are not scientists). There’s so much that’s still unknown, and promotions of this or that food, supplement, method of eating, diet plan, etc. are based on small studies not otherwise verified. Your genes want this food but not that one – really?! Seems like more special diet nonsense to me, with a few citations thrown in to convince us to believe in it. For example, how many reliable large scale scientific studies verify that eating meat on the bone is better than eating it cut off the bone?! It’s just a way to sell books, which is easier and far more profitable than practicing medicine in the examining room. [Side note: For those that follow Dr Oz, have you seen the video of him testifying before Congress admitting that he lied to his readers in order to sell products?! And he hasn’t stopped lying.]
I know your heart is in the right place Atif, but I eat a healthy diet and am a healthy person. Adopting an unproven fad diet is not something I do. Barring accident I’ll probably live to at least 85, and maybe even 100 (heaven forbid, no thank you). My blood sugar is low in the morning because I haven’t eaten for 14 hours. I eat and it’s fine. Nothing rare or unusual or dangerous or requiring of a fad diet.
Rant over!Aug 24, 2022 at 7:44 pm #3758369
Appreciate your wisdom and share your concerns regarding diet books. And will try to keep this within the realm of “hacks,” given that fat and sugar are pretty important energy sources for the walker. For what it’s worth, Deep Nutrition is as non-diet as it gets. I’ve read dozens of books in order to fix my elevated lipids and unstable sugar levels, and only this non-diet/lifestyle shift solved it permanently. I’ve seen it again and again with about two dozen friends and family who also shifted to traditional, ancestral eating, and the results have been nothing short of revelatory. I would say, give this one last book one last chance:) Unrelated to Dr. Shanahan, Dr. Maffetone, a triathlon level coach who helped Mark Allen finally beat Dave Scott in the 1980s using a fat-burning training method, advocates many of the same methods utilized by Shanahan. Fat-burning has clear benefits for walkers, especially those wishing to stabilize sugar levels, and, like you correctly point out, it’s not a diet or a fad that works, but rather understanding our own physiology.Aug 24, 2022 at 9:12 pm #3758410
traditional, ancestral eating,
(Tongue in cheek)
Does this mean moving away from a diet of Coke and Maccas?
CheersSep 20, 2022 at 5:58 am #3760349Russ WBPL Member
@gatome83Locale: Southeastern US
Whoever said (I think it was Tim Marshall) you could pack your tent in a HMG pod. Reduces morning packing up time and fits my pack better. A real game changer!Oct 18, 2022 at 4:38 pm #3762222Bret BBPL Member
Just recently started using one of my shoes as a water bottle holder while in the tent. The other shoe can hold all the other misc. ‘stuff’, especially if my hat is on my cold head.
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