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About Trail Days Online!
Backpacking Light Trail Days Online! is a live, online user conference featuring backcountry experts and enthusiasts presenting on the topics of outdoor gear materials, design, and engineering; backcountry skills trends and experiments; make your own gear techniques and projects; backcountry routes, trips, and trails; outdoor industry trends related to hiking, backpacking, and other backcountry activities; and more.
Trail Days Online features three evenings of presentations, with each presentation ranging from 20 to 30 minutes in length, followed by up to 10 minutes of live audience Q&A.
Trail Days Online Sponsorship Info
The generous support of Trail Days Online Sponsors allows us to make this event free to the public. Trail Days Online 2024 sponsorships are now sold out, but if you’re interested in future or other opportunities, please submit your info here.
Your privacy: By registering for Trail Days Online, you agree to allow us to share your email address with our sponsors to receive special offers or marketing communications. You reserve the right to opt out of that communications at any time.
Day 1 Live Stream
Welcome to Trail Days Online! (Ryan Jordan)
Fastpacking & Multi-Day Running in the Backcountry (Bryon Powell)
Bikerafting Iceland: the Forgotten Coast (Guest Panel with Chris Burkard)
Eat Well to Hike Well (Drew Smith)
The Nose of a Bear: A Science-Based Approach to Packing Your Food in Bear Canisters and Bear Bags (Ryan Jordan)
Packrafting Arctic Canyons in Tuktut Nogait National Park (Steve Evans)
Day 3 Live Stream
American Chestnut: the Redwood of the East (Nikki Stavile)
Kayaking Maine’s Largest Lake (Willow Belden)
Take Less, Do More (Guest Panel with Glen Van Peski)
Hydrophobic Down: Past, Present, and Future (Frank Kvietok)
Meet Your Presenter(s)
Backpacking Light is a membership-based community that helps hikers and other backcountry users thrive outdoors. Our values are advocacy, expertise, and generosity. We provide trusted expertise so you can enjoy the backcountry with confidence.
RYAN JORDAN is the owner/founder of Backpacking Light and is based in Estes Park, Colorado. Backcountry passions include #alpinism #tenkara #paddling. Advocate for local community development (via the Estes Park Economic Development Center), coffee (via Kind Coffee), and public lands stewardship (via Rocky Mountain National Park). Backpacking Light Website
WILLOW BELDEN is the host and founder of Out There, an award-winning podcast that explores big questions through intimate stories outdoors. She’s thru-hiked the Colorado Trail, goes cross-country skiing almost every day in the winter, and is conquering her fear of heights by learning to rock climb. Out There Podcast Website
DREW SMITH has been eating food for 67 years, and eating backpacking food for 56 of those years. He has prepped his own trail food for decades. This food sustained him through long hikes, including the Arizona Trail, the Colorado Trail (2.5X), the PCT (CA and OR), the Theodore Solomons Trail and the Desert Trail, as well as numerous shorter hikes in the mountains and deserts of the western US. Drew's Blog
NIKKI STAVILE is a writer based in Tucson, Arizona. She has over 2,500 miles of backpacking experience and has completed sections of both the Colorado and Arizona Trails. Her work has appeared in Parks & Points, Flyway: Journal of Writing and Environment, Cleaver Magazine, Backpacking Light, and elsewhere. She is at work on an essay collection about her 2021 Appalachian Trail thru-hike. Find Nikki on Instagram
GLEN VAN PESKI is the Founder/Managing Director of Gossamer Gear, and a retired civil engineer living in Bend, Oregon. Glen has run ultra-marathons, and backpacked and bikepacked in the US and abroad. Watch for Glen’s book take less. do more. 20 Life Lessons from Ultralight Backpacking launching April 16, 2024. Gossamer Gear Website
JOHN ZOMBRO is a performance coach and physical therapist, specializing in backcountry athletics and online service delivery via The Lifetime Athlete. He has 39 years of experience in health education, fitness, sports, and rehabilitation. John resides in southwest Montana. The Lifetime Athlete Website
JEFF GARMIRE is a thru-hiker, author, writer, ultrarunner, and coach with 20 FKTs. It all started with a thru hike of the Pacific Crest Trail in 2011, and Jeff has been fascinated by every type of adventure and challenge ever since. The Free Outside Website
CHRIS BURKARD is an accomplished explorer, photographer, creative director, speaker, and author. Traveling throughout the year to pursue the farthest expanses of Earth, Burkard works to capture stories that inspire humans to consider their relationship with nature, while promoting the preservation of wild places everywhere. At the age of 37, Burkard has established himself as a global presence and influencer, accomplishing a prolific portfolio, connecting people from around the world and producing some of the most recognized creative work of our time. Chris Burkard Website
BYRON POWELL is the founder of the trail and ultrarunning website iRunFar.com and author of Relentless Forward Progress: A Guide to Running Ultramarathons. A trail runner of 30 years and ultrarunner of 20 years, he uses his legs to explore the backcountry around the world. iRunFar Website
STEVE EVANS is an avid adventurer, traveling to over a quarter of the world’s countries, often on unique endeavors to fuel his passion for multi-sport expeditions, typically fast-moving and light, over long distances, often in remote and extreme locations. He blended his interests for the outdoors with his technical capabilities and in 2008, founded Suluk 46, Engineered Backcountry Gear; a design and manufacturing firm focused on outdoor equipment. He is licensed by the Professional Engineers of Ontario, the Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists, and is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society. Suluk 46 Website
FRANK KVIETOK, PH.D. has deep roots in both the R&D and consumer sides of innovation. He has over 25 years of experience identifying business opportunities while leading product/technology development with companies like Procter & Gamble, Orange Glo International, Launch Pad, American Recreation Products, Tersus Solutions, and Lignetics across categories as diverse as cleaning, fragrance, foods, dietary supplements, textiles, outdoor equipment/clothing, biomass, and cleantech. As a Ph.D. chemist with a design-mentality, Frank has helped many companies create strong, new businesses.
SARAH BENNETT is a summer backpacking guide in the Sierras and Rocky Mountains. She grew up romping around the forests of Tahoe and inherited a love of solitude and mountain air from her mother. While on the trail, you'll see her talking about her favorite trail recipes, studying a map, or chuckling at her own stubbornness of carrying a paperback book everywhere she goes. She spends her winters in Jackson, WY, teaching people of all ages to ski.
Thank you ... what great information and resources."
This was awesome...great job everyone!
Great series of talks...thanks!
- Tom "Quicksilver" Clark
Great job to all presenters and Backpacking Light.
- Steve Schindler
A really great program!
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