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A Through Hikers Basic Gear And Equipment

Updated on September 6, 2016

The Hikers Pack

Proper Hiking Pack Weight

To get the best hiking performance, proper stamina, and overall outdoor experience. A hiker must continuously analyze and carefully consider there own pack weight. During long distance hikes all that a person currently owns is the burden on there very back. A progressive hiker desires to carry a pack that is as semi-light as possible. Every hiker wants there own pack weight to be only a quarter or less of there own bodyweight. There are many creative ways to shave and trim down on a hikers backpack weight. Many thru-hikers are very serious with removing all tags, extra strings, any un-used cords, and no need for extra buttons nor zippers. Long distance hikers must always focus on trimming down there pack weights. Good information is to aline the inside of a hiking pack with thick plastic contractors garbage bags to keep all gear inside of the pack dry and completely safe. Remember all long distance hikers will be wading or fording through many flooded mountain streams. Before setting out into the wilderness stop to study and consider the ingredients of the hiking pack. Always stop to think critically about what objects in the pack will never be used and the luxury items you could possibly live without. No hiker should ever tote around unnecessary or unused items upon there backs. Prior to setting out onto the long trail. Do take a casual walk through a local park or possibly around the neighborhood with your hiking pack strapped to your back to get a general feel. If any discomfort is noticed then do strive to lighten the load. Never hike harder, but instead always hike smarter.


Lightweight All-Season Hiking Tents

Carrying The Proper Tent

Whenever planning for a long distance hike out on the trail. Remember that buying the proper lightweight tent for yourself is extremely crucial for basic comfort, safety purposes, and general enjoyment out in the backcountry. There are currently many lightweight tent options on the market to choose from. Whenever purchasing a new hiking tent a hiker always must stop to considers the cost, the design, storage space issues, and the tents level of weather protection. The store salesman up at the local outdoors store who works completely off of commission will always attempt to sway and convince customers into a sales deal. Always remember that you and yourself alone will be living inside of this tent for a long period of time. Only choose the proper design that is the proper fit for yourself to get maximum comfort, proper safety, and the enjoyment for only you. Out in the depths of the backcountry your personal comfort level, feelings of safety, and overall enjoyment will always go a long way to remaining positive. The proper lightweight backpacking tent will most definitely keep up good morals for yourself during tough, harsh, and tough times.

High-Quality Headlamps

Importance Of Headlamps

Whenever hiking for long distances every hiker needs a high quality headlamp for after dusk to set up camp for the night. The majority of long distance hikers will try to cover as many miles as possible during the daylight hours. After a fifteen to thirty mile hiking day anyone would be ready to crash out and call it a day. Unfortunately out in the wilderness anything could possibly happen and sometimes things can go horriably wrong. Normally hikers will end there long day with walking upon a trail shelter that is already overflowing with many other hikers. A comfortable backpacking tent to set up is crucial and a bright headlamp would be benificial in speeding up the tent assembly processes in the cover of darkness.

Numerous Backcountry Cooking Options

Different Cooking Methods In The Wilderness

All backpacking stoves are lightweight, reliable, and all will support the "Leave No Trace" idea. A long distance hiker will quickly discover that many '"Wilderness Areas'' strongly prohibit any open campfires because of the increased risk of forest fires. Many times in the backcountry a lightweight cooking stove is a hikers only choice for eating dinner. There are currently many different stoves and cooking methods available for survival out in the backcountry. A closer look reveals the canister stove which runs on isobutane primarily and runs secondary off of propane. Intergrated canister stove cooking devices that offer jet boil systems are widely available. Liquid fuel stoves that operate on white gas or naphtha. These particular cook stoves run on highly refined fuel and claim to leave no impurities in the final product. Wood burning stoves are another cooking option for hikers. These types of cook stoves work by simply burning twigs and leaves a hiker collects while hiking along the trail. The basic benefit is that a hiker never needs to carry or pack any cooking fuel. Solid fuel tablet stoves are very compact in size, but are stubbornly slow to even bring water to a near boiling point. The denatured alcohol stoves are the most popular in the backcountry amongst long distance hikers. Most hiking shops along all long distance trails will always sell denatured alcohol by the ounce to hikers. Truthfully a simple and homemade cook stove is often the best option. A penny can stove is a semi-lightweight option that only weighs a mere two to four ounces. The penny can stove is made by cutting two aluminum cans in half with a pair of sharp scissors, punching small nail holes around the top of one can to create a stove eye, (similar to the eye of a gas stove) , stuff the inside of the cans with small amounts of fiberglass attic insulation, and then seal up the aluminum cans tightly together with high heat resistant silicone. Prior to cooking with a penny can stove, pour only one ounce of alcohol into the top of the stove, give a moment for the alcohol to seep down, and soak into the attic insulation inside. Simply strike a match and place the flame against the top side of the stove to ignite the alcohol inside of the stove. One ounce of any type of alcohol poured into a penny can stove will ignite and burn cleanly for roughly twelve to sixteen minutes. Depending upon the current elevations and wind factors the penny can stove could burn for a few minutes less. Be sure to never cook food items inside of any tent or enclosed areas. This will commonly causes carbon monoxide poisoning and creates a much higher risk for forest fires.

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Lightweight Cooking Pans For The Backcountry

Proper Pans For Cooking In The Woods

A hikers own personal choice of cooking stove options out in the backcountry is only half of the equation in order to effectively cook dinner for themselves each evening. A long distance hiker will also be required to carry compact and lightweight one serving cooking pans if they so desire to ever eat anything. Whatever a hiker might choose to cook and prepare for dinner to nursish themselves in the evening must be cooked up in there own cooking pans. Simply by using the gushing mountain stream waters a hiker can efficiently clren and rinse out all cooking pans after each dinner. This is practically the only method or option available for washing the dishes out in the wilderness.

The Pocket Survival Tin

Hope For The Best, But Always Prepare For The Worst

A basic survival tin is nessary for all hikers to carry on themselves at all times while hiking out in the wilderness. Long distance hikers never know when mother nature could suprisingly throw a curveball suddenly in the trail for them. Every human being is naturally vulnerable out in the deep backcountry and nobody is even close to being considered invincible. It is highly important to always carry a small pocket survival tin that contains a few of the basic survival items to stuff into a hikers back pocket. If a hiker happens to stumble over the edge of rocky terrain on the edge of a steep bluff and there hiking pack goes tumbling over the edge to fall two thousand feet down below. Strong recommendations are to pack one small birthday candle, a small six by six inch sheet of aluminium foil, an eight to ten feet piece of fishing string with a hook, two chicken bouillon cubes to make the grub worm stew taste better, three waterproof matches, a small thirty gallon garbage bag to use as possible shelter, and a ten foot piece of twine. Out in the wilderness anything could go wrong or possibly happen to a long distance hiker. A seasoned hiker who has hiked long miles will warn others to always be prepared for such a nightmarish event. Never underestimate mother nature, but instead always respect it to the fullest. Proper preparation always leads one to an excellent survival situation.

The Multi-Use Paracord

Importance Of Carrying Strong Para-Cord

In many places around the world a paracord is actually known as parachute cord and is commonly used in the suspension lines for parachutes. The extremely strong cord can be used for many different task out in the wilderness and is also always used by military personnel. Paracord has even been used on numerous occasions in outer space by astronaughts in past years. Many braided strings that are found inside of the paracord have a very high number of interwoven strands. The many interwoven strands inside of the paracord can be unwound and used to repair hiking gear by simply sewing. Often times the paracord can even be used to replace a simple boot lace or even as fishing line in a survival type of situation. Many soldiers and hikers alike will highly depend upon there strong and handy paracords. The paracord is a basic multi-purpose item that every hiker should never forget to pack for a long fellowship out in the wilderness.

Highly Important Bear Bells

Bears Run Upwards Of Thirty Miles Per Hour

A set of bear bells can be lifesavers out in the backcountry depending on where a person is hiking. Along the Appalachian Trail a hiker will encounter many different areas where a known large population of bears are present. A hiker is warned repetivly through ''bear alert signs'' or ''high bear activity signs'' within the next ten miles. In fact, inside of the Great Smokey Mountain National Park there are three black bears living in each square mile of the park. A hiker will experience many different bear encounters during the seventy-five mile hike through the national park and even bear bells have absolutely no effect on the black bears here. The bears are safe inside of the national park boundaries and a hiker is walking directly through there homeland. Normally black bears will shy away from humans, unless a hiker happens to encounter a bear who has been fed continusly by humans in the past. The bear will then consistently recognize and associate human beings as an easy source to receive free food. Although, the majority of black bears will almost always avoid people, a hiker never wants to sneak upon, and surprise a bear. Especially in cases where a mother bear is nursing her young cubs to maturity. This sudden encroachment will only provoke the mother bear to become highly defensive and push the bear into attack mode. To avoid sneaking upon bears out in the wilderness simply tie a set of bear bells to the bottom of a hiking pack. The basic idea of using bear bells is that since ringing bells don't sound remotely like any other natural forest sound, and since bears naturally try to avoid any human contact. A general belief is that the sound of ringing bells will scare away any bears in close proximity to a hiker. Black bears typically will never like loud noises or care for sudden surprises. However, if a hiker ever finds themselves face to face with an angry bear, always hold your ground, and remain calm. Make as much noise as possible by beating a stick up against a tree or even banging two pans together. A hiker should never panic and attempt to run away from any bear. Black bears are known to run upwards of thirty miles per hour and they really do enjoy chasing down there live prey.


A Short Appalachian Trail Gear Video Clip

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