Forum Replies Created
Jul 5, 2009 at 9:17 pm #1512212
Doug, I enjoyed the article. Wish we had done something like that in Girl Scouts.
To clean my glasses, I use a dribble of water to remove sandy particles, and polish the lenses with a woven microfiber cloth purchased from the optometrist. It doesn't register on my scale, so it's less than 1/8 oz.Mar 9, 2008 at 10:09 am #1423586
I looked at the ultralightliving website and didn't get too excited, but I love the discussion we're having here. I read about simple living and decluttering for years before I even considered backpacking, but doing lightweight backpacking has helped me understand the message better. Instead of asking "how can I get more stuff with less money?", I'm now asking myself how I can get by with less and put the money to better use. If I buy less, I save for an earlier retirement (let someone who needs a job take mine), save money for charity (like Bill, I'm a friend to stray cats), and I consume fewer raw materials (less environmental and global impact). Living for days from a bag on my back has made me realize that almost everything I own is for convenience or window-dressing. For sure, I wouldn't want to live in a tent and sleep on my blue foam pad every night, but there is a happy medium between that and the way many people my age are living.
I went to an estate sale at the home of an elderly woman who had been a hoarder, and it was sobering. We're talking true mental illness: laundry baskets full of cans of tuna,stacks of dish drainers bought on sale in the 1960s and never unwrapped. Scores of people were rooting through her dusty, torn, mounded stuff, which she had safeguarded for decades as the neighborhood declined around her. Much of it was no longer usable because it was rotten; the thought of a life spent accumulating goods was depressing. What I took from this: get out and live, be with friends and family and nature instead of your possessions, and give away the unneeded items because they don't get better with age.Feb 18, 2008 at 5:07 pm #1421056
I can't speak to any of the AT besides the Whites, but you might want to check out Ben & Lauren's blog at http://bltadventure.blogspot.com/. They were '07 NOBOs and had a gear list that was very similar to yours. FWIW, they carried GoLite umbrellas and Dri-Ducks jackets. If you got a similar garment, it could double as a windshirt, thus taking an item off your list (you could omit the umbrella then, too). I carry a silnylon poncho, windshirt and brimmed hat, myself, and hike in wind pants 'cause I'm a klutz.
Your headlamp could be lighter; have you looked at the Petzl e+lite or a Photon Freedom with a hat clip, each of which is well under an ounce? That also sounds like a lot of DEET to start out with. I know the following will add weight, but have you thought about: camera, sunscreen or visor/hat, earplugs in case you're stuck in a shelter or hostel with snorers? Oh yeah: and a little soap, like Dr. Bronner's, and some alcohol gel (Purell).
Ok, enough from me. Time for some thru-hikers to weigh in. Have fun!!Jan 10, 2008 at 4:16 am #1415583
Email sent from Hotmail account. :-)Jan 3, 2008 at 5:19 am #1414673
Sew a scrap of 1.1 black nylon over it.
I wonder if your Kelty pack has more international cachet than my Rick Steves daypack? :-DDec 29, 2007 at 3:18 pm #1414072
For your viewing pleasure, I submit the following, found on Ebay:
Only $589 with shipping! Relive the good (?) ol' days of waxed canvas and bedrolls!Dec 8, 2007 at 3:03 am #1411757
Here's a BPL thread on Bill Fornshell's cuben hammock:
Hammock weight has so many variables: rigging, bug protection, insulation, tarp, and the hammock itself. You could get pretty light with a Speer-type hammock (top-entry), cc foam pad and poncho-tarp, but this depends on your need for bug netting and warmth. Take a look at hammockforums.net and Just Jeff's site at http://www.tothewoods.net. Lots of nice folks over there (some, but not all, are even concerned about weight!).Dec 4, 2007 at 4:12 pm #1411258
You wouldn't be the first to use cashmere for hiking — a backpacker in one of Lynne Whelden's videos recommended a cashmere sweater as an insulating garment. I think this was in the pre-fleece era. But if you've got it, why not use it?
IME, cashmere can be washed in a washing machine, on the gentle cycle with mild detergent. Lay it flat on a rack to dry.Oct 26, 2007 at 10:35 am #1406738
That was a great haul, for sure. It pays to live in an area with a lot of outdoorspeople. The most exciting thing I've found lately was a 1-liter Platy with sport cap for 25 cents. This was in that most unathletic of places, Woonsocket, RI. They didn't know what to do with it in the thrift shop, so they put it in with the curtain hardware, soap dishes and air filters. :-DOct 20, 2007 at 1:12 am #1406083
"Earlier this year… Disappointment struck upon waking at 3am to a thunder and lightening storm which I have not seen the likes of in some time."
LOL! I think this is when my husband and I met the two of you. Nice to see that you were finally rewarded with a great weekend! (and you got the Bushbuddy)
When Joe and I did the Pemi Loop later this summer, we apparently just missed an impromptu keg tapping at Galehead. I thought all those folks were milling around the hut because of the rain… ;-)Oct 19, 2007 at 5:01 pm #1406066
I haven't had the chance to try this yet, but I like the sheet metal screw idea, with some variations on this site: http://www.vermontphoto.com/wildwhites/screwbootgallery/index.htm.
I had a pair of light-duty Yaktrax (no strap across instep) and wore the rubber out from pronation after fewer than 10 walks with them. That rendered them unusable.Oct 3, 2007 at 5:46 pm #1404480
Hi James – how do you remove the baskets? These don't unscrew.Oct 2, 2007 at 2:17 pm #1404340
Knowing not much about trekking poles (and less about ski poles), I picked up a pair of aluminum ski poles from a trash heap and hacksawed them to size. Instead of putting the heavy grips back on, I epoxied some Target "gel" bike grips onto the ends, after running a loop of soft shoelace through the weep hole on the end of the grips. I also trimmed the plastic baskets with heavy shears to make them smaller. The shoelace is just enough to keep the poles with me while I hike, and the total weight is 13 oz. for a 36" pair. Not going to win any Lightitude Awards, but I've climbed 12 of NH's 4000-footers with them.
Of course, I just got a pair of Leki Juniors, adjustable — which will be a whole other thread…Sep 30, 2007 at 7:17 am #1404077
I have only one very wee change-purse-sized pocket on my Deuter; not sure what they were thinking when they designed that. It fits a bottle of Purell, a compass, and a few pieces of Cow Tales candy (in case I start bonking). However, I recently removed the unnecessary lid from my pack and am planning to add larger hipbelt pockets per this BPL thread: http://tinyurl.com/3bsogf.
Thanks, Nathan!Sep 26, 2007 at 7:44 am #1403650
Ben, I loved the story, too — you're a great writer. I enjoyed the psychological angle of hiking with others, as well as the scenery/weather (from the comfort of my air-conditioned room).
Question about the food: had you tried your meals at home beforehand, and then found them lacking in the field? Or were they untested recipes? I've had the the "completely unpalatable after long day of hiking" experience even with things I enjoy at home.Sep 13, 2007 at 4:56 am #1402046
Roleigh, I re-weighed them and they are actually 5.5 oz. That aside, I am a women's size 6, so, assuming you do not want to remove any of your toes, I will weigh my husband's size 8 Airwalks (Payless Shoes) for you… They are 9.12 oz. There are weight differences between knockoff Crocs; the 5.5 oz. ones are from Wal-Mart, and they are an ounce lighter than the ones I got from Ocean State Job Lot. You could provide a bit of entertainment to discount shoe store employees by bringing a scale with you.Sep 12, 2007 at 8:02 am #1401949
I have big problems with wet trail runners when the humidity is high (as it usually is during New England summers). They take well over 12 hours to dry, and when the temperature drops into the 40s or 50s at night, I wind up with disturbingly cold, peeling feet while cooking/setting up camp. The "newspaper bag" approach has worked pretty well while hiking, but ultimately I've decided to take a 5 oz. pair of knockoff Crocs (Crockoffs?) on my next journey. It's a tradeoff I'm willing to make.Sep 12, 2007 at 7:35 am #1401946
Not SUL, but a lightweight plastic food container might work as well, and accommodate other (soft) items. After weighing my optometrist-supplied glasses case, I found that an oblong cat-themed playing card container was lighter and held either my glasses or my digital camera, depending on what I wanted to protect at the moment. A truly random re-use of a household object.Sep 1, 2007 at 4:56 am #1400717
Joe uses an Ozark Trails camping utility strap from Wal-Mart, cut to size. $3 and 1 oz. for a size 34 waist. The profile is thicker than the Patagonia, but I bet you can get the Paty-type buckle and nylon strapping from a large fabric store. This is a great first-time DIY project.
Yes, MacGyver, the belt would make a good cinch strap for a foam-pad-turned-splint (just took a WFA course).Aug 31, 2007 at 11:01 am #1400629
Have you posted this question on Views From the Top?
We have camped on the Dry River trail at the first official campsite (marked with a tiny knee-high wooden sign on the left side of the trail, about 1 mile or so after you descend from Lakes). That seemed to be the first truly level area that wasn't choked with deadfall and scrub. Our plan was to stay overnight and backtrack to Lakes/Mt. Washington the next day. It wasn't a *bad* idea, but… it rained for 7 hours that night and we didn't want to ascend the wet ledge/dropoff that we had cautiously crawled across on the way down. It wouldn't be a quick stop-off for camping; if you have a hammock, though, you may not have to descend as far. Then there's the 200-feet-from-the-trail rule… ;-)Aug 30, 2007 at 12:51 pm #1400538
I'll have to check Target out… for myself. ;-)Aug 30, 2007 at 12:36 pm #1400536
Charles, I'm a cat person, but I found a way-heavy canine first aid list at http://tinyurl.com/aflo4. Looking at it, I see a lot of things you'll already be carrying for yourself (tweezers for ticks, bandanna, maybe even an emergency blanket and Benadryl) and some things you could improvise (i.e., instead of buying dog booties for an injured paw, use one of your spare socks and a plastic bag instead). I bet that some plastic food wrap would help keep a bandage on without sticking to fur. Tiny scissors would be handy for both of you. The thing that concerns me most when I see dogs on the trail is that they are getting enough H2O and that their paws aren't suffering from the rocks. HTH.Aug 28, 2007 at 6:41 am #1400214
Your comments have all been very helpful/enjoyable. I'm an obsessive researcher (former reference librarian) but find it difficult to make a decision because I'm also a tightwad!
Brett, your point about REI's return policy is a good one that I always forget (I'm not a member, yet).Aug 15, 2007 at 10:23 am #1398690
Boy, I've been listening to waaaay too much NPR. I thought from the title that this would be a discussion about the space shuttle repair (as it applies to UL backpacking?).
Don't mind me! %-)Aug 15, 2007 at 10:08 am #1398685
I guess "so many" is relative… I've seen several here, a couple on Ebay, one or two on WhiteBlaze. Might be that I see them because I'm looking for them!