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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:27 am 
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I need to get better at this backpacking thing I like to do. First thing is figure out how much and what sort of food to carry. I've tried to stay away from the dehydrated stuff but, at least for canyon hiking, I may have to go that route next time.
I'm still using an MSR whisperlite stove that I bought in 1988 for my bicycle trip to Alaska though I do have a two burner Coleman for car camping. Bought a water purifier a few years ago and that is the one additional thing I wish I had stuck in my backpack this trip.


Are you an ultralight hiker? Do you carry everything?


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:31 am 
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lukethedrifter wrote:
I need to get better at this backpacking thing I like to do. First thing is figure out how much and what sort of food to carry. I've tried to stay away from the dehydrated stuff but, at least for canyon hiking, I may have to go that route next time.
I'm still using an MSR whisperlite stove that I bought in 1988 for my bicycle trip to Alaska though I do have a two burner Coleman for car camping. Bought a water purifier a few years ago and that is the one additional thing I wish I had stuck in my backpack this trip.


Are you an ultralight hiker? Do you carry everything?

I've only gone on single-day hikes, and a couple of two-day hikes, but we went back to camp each day, so we carried light. I'd also like to do this more now that school is out, so I'll be watching this thread for ideas.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:37 am 
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Well, things I have learned that work include carrying a blister kit if you are hiking any distance at all, cheese will stay good for days if it doesn't get too warm, headlamp flashlights are very handy and don't wait until you are hungry to eat. Get a pocket knife that you really like.

One thing I need to figure out is if it is possible to get cat pee odor out of a rain fly.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:43 am 
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Get a pocket knife that you really like.


Survivorman taught me its better to carry a multi-tool.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:56 am 
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I have an SOG multi tool that I use for work and camping as well as a folding knife with attached fire starter/flint. What a geek.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 9:58 am 
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It's better to smell bad than carry an extra 15 pounds of clothes. Get an appropriate sleeping bag for your conditions, a decent night's sleep is incredibly important. Boil in a bag dehydrated food is light, packable and doesn't taste half bad. Bring a filter because water is heavy but you'll always need it. If you have a renewable source you can cut weight a ton. Have comfortable boots. If you're a flatlander, don't take on serious hikes unless you know your limits at altitude. Altitude sickness is hell and will ruin an expedition. Always share what you can with any other hikers in need. Don't [expletive] litter you douche.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 10:01 am 
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The dehydrated meals they have now are actually pretty good. And when they say they feed two, they mean it.

A good way to save some weight and space is to plan on stuffing clothes into your sleeping bag sack and using that for a pillow instead of carrying a backpacking pillow.

The air sleeping pads are more compact and are nicer to sleep on, but the ThermaRest foam rolls are lighter.

Wear good hiking socks and good boots, and blisters will rarely develop, in my experience. Those $10 SmartWool socks are worth every penny.

I caved and spent the money to buy a UV water purifier. I love it, as long as you're around enough clean streams to fill bottles.

Always keep in mind that you can't backpack nearly as far in a day as you can hike. Schedule in plenty of breaks. Your legs and back will thank you later.

That's about all I got for now.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 10:06 am 
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thrill wrote:
It's better to smell bad than carry an extra 15 pounds of clothes. Get an appropriate sleeping bag for your conditions, a decent night's sleep is incredibly important. Boil in a bag dehydrated food is light, packable and doesn't taste half bad. Bring a filter because water is heavy but you'll always need it. If you have a renewable source you can cut weight a ton. Have comfortable boots. If you're a flatlander, don't take on serious hikes unless you know your limits at altitude. Altitude sickness is hell and will ruin an expedition. Always share what you can with any other hikers in need. Don't [expletive] litter you douche.



On this trip I stupidly carried too many clothes, too many books and too much heavy food. But dammit, I'm stronger for it now. And I know better.
I'm thinking about getting a dehydrator for fruits and veg b/c I don't like to go w/o for too long.


Funny, my daughter was looking forward to using the trowel to dig a poo hole except I don't think she was really actually looking forward to it but maybe I'm wrong. Fortunately or maybe unfortunately, all pooing took place in the campground toilets.

I also had to tell her to ease up on the drinking water b/c she was draining her camelbak on the first half of the hike in and peeing it all out. I think it was like chewing gum for her. Typically you don't tell someone to drink less on desert hikes.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 10:12 am 
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I don't know if I would describe myself as "ultralight" because I like some comforts on the trail, but my pack tends to get lighter and lighter.

It is hard for me to avoid foil bags for trips longer than two days, but I have a few recipes I can share with you. Fanatastic Foods chili is yummy, especially with some canned chicken, sun-dried tomatos (rehydrated), mushroom, onion and pepper thrown in. Also a fan of steel cut oats with powdered milk, dried blueberry and banana, and maybe some almonds.

You can shave the most weight by being really smart about clothing. No cotton anything, except maybe a bandana and t-shirt for sleeping (a cotton tee absorbs oil and moisture than can damage your sleeping bag liner). Go for convertible nylon shorts with mesh liners (no underwear). Bring a set of waterproof outerwear and use it also for cooler weather. Add a fleece, and use it as a pillow by cramming it inside a stuff sack. Extra socks are a good idea. A hat will keep you just as warm as many jackets.

Henry Shires makes several designs of his Tarptent. These are excellent shelters for the weight (around 2 lbs for 2 person shelters). A good 2-man, 3-season tent need not weigh more than 5 pounds, especially for the shorter versions (<85 inches long). REI's Quarterdome series is quite good now. Northface tents are also affordable and high quality. You can also look at Cabela's XPG tents.

The Whisperlite stove is fine. Jetboil makes an integrated system that really sips fuel (good for longer trips), but also costs $100. It's great for boiling water for coffee and foil bags, but titanium is tough for making stews, eggs, etc. as it tends to burn the surface. MSR makes a small aluminum fry pan that works well.

The MSR Miniworks is a great water filter for the money. It's reasonably light, very reliable, and can be field-serviced.

I make coffee using a foil-screen filter that sits atop my thermal mug. You can drip and steep with it. Weighs a few ounces.


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PostPosted: March 25 09, 10:14 am 
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lukethedrifter wrote:
I think it was like chewing gum for her. Typically you don't tell someone to drink less on desert hikes.

Ah, this is a good point. I like gum when I'm hiking. I realize you have to spit it out and that is littering, but chewing gum helps keep me distracted which helps with my altitude headaches, keeps me off my camelbak and helps with hunger.


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