In this episode of the Backpacking Light Podcast, Andrew and Ryan talk about mental health. This is something they both struggle with, and they’ve got a lot of thoughts on how to manage it both in and out of the backcountry. As their jumping-off point, they use a recent paper called Levels of Nature and Stress Response.
Also in this episode: new favorite winter gear, updates on the new website, and some recent favorite content at BPL. Also—has Andrew finally found some trail runners that will last more than 500 miles?
- Ryan’s still freeze-drying food. Taco soup this time!
- Andrew just completed his first ultra-marathon
New Favorite Things
- Xero Shoes Alpine Snow Boot
- Inov-8 Mudclaw G260 V2
- Inov-8 Terraultra G270—Andrew’s summer testing shoe
- Black Diamond Distance Spike Traction Device
- Black Diamond Blitz Spike Traction Device
- Depression and Wilderness: The Benefit of Wilderness as Therapy
- Depression and Wilderness, Part Two: Wilderness Might Not Be Enough
- Levels of Nature and Stress Response
- Cortisol and chemicals
- Fixing vs. resetting. Vs. managing
- Interrupting cycles
- Forcing yourself to leave tasks undone
- Types of stimulus
- Phylogenic perspective
Backcountry Mental Health Management
- Simplifying your gear needs
- Depleted surge capacity
- Ben Kilbourne’s essay Backpacking in a Time of Uncertainty is a must-read.
- Trekking poles?
Frontcountry Mental Health Management
- How you treat and think about outdoor exercise is also important – are you jamming it in between other things?
What’s New at BPL
- Website update
- Andrew’s essay Salamander Song
- Emylene VanderVelden’s Nemo Equipment Kunai 3-4 Season Backpacking Tent Review
In the Forums
- A MYOG fiddle?
- The conversation around Maggie Slepian’s recent Learning Curve column Learning to Suffer
- Depression and Wilderness Part One
- Depression and Wilderness Part Two
- Backpacking in a Time of Uncertainty