Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Went backpacking in Zaleski State Park last weekend, and I realized how profoundly I dislike my tent and pad. I'm too tall for my tent, so I have to sleep diagonally, which meant that I didn't fully fit on either of the ground pads I had brought. Normally it's not such an issue, but the weather was so cold that the ground sucked out a lot of my body heat in the single digit weather, and I didn't sleep very well.

I was thinking of ditching my tent in favor of a hammock with a sleeping bag peapod over it for insulation. I'm looking at the Eagles Nest setup with this Wiggy's bag over top the hammock. The downside is that the 20 degree bag is nearly four pounds, but ditching the tent and whatnot should help make up for the weight.

Is this a good idea? Does anyone have any recommendations or advice?

Editvv: I'm about 6'4". I usually just take a mummy Liberty Mountain inflatable pad, but I doubled up with an open cell foam pad since it was snowy and cold. My tent is just a basic, cheap High Peaks tent that I picked up a couple of years ago.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 15:55 on Jan 24, 2014

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Rime posted:

For like $60 more you can pick up an Enlightened Equipment Enigma or Revelation quilt which weighs </= 1LB and comes with the option of Down Water-Resistance and a wide variety of colors.

Those guys are just brutally overcharging, unless there's some magic to the product that I'm missing.

Yeah, it's a bit pricey, but Wiggy's bags are some pretty great stuff--the mummy bag is what I use now. Basically the fibers in the bag are silicone coated, making them antistatic. Because of this they regain the original loft after being compressed, are machine washable, and eliminate the need for baffles, which create cold spots :science:

The bag itself is massively overbuilt with giant zippers and oversized draft tubes, and basically last forever. The downside is they're a bit bulkier to pack, but I've had nothing but good experiences with mine.

Editvv: Thanks! That's exactly what I was looking for--I'll take the hammock chat over there.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 19:12 on Jan 25, 2014

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

You should check to see if there are any state parks around you that have a backpacking trail. I betcha there's tons of great places nearby... may not be the grand tetons, but it's a good overnight test for your preparedness on top of being easily accessible.

Two quick pieces of advice... make sure you have a sleeping pad of some sort. Beyond being uncomfortable, the bare ground convects heat away from you, so you'll freeze your bum off at sixty degrees, even with a 0 rated bag.

Also, cotton kills! It absorbs water and sweat, and doesn't ever dry out. Artificial fibers (polypropylene/underarmoresque) wick water away, so they'll dry out and you won't die from hypothermia.

So so so much more, good shoes/boots, dress in layers, leave no trace, etc... but you'll figure it out. Just do some googling, ask around, and have fun!

Edit: oh, and one more thing--freeze dried food sucks! Spam, Madras lentils, canned chicken, hawaiin rolls, etc are some of my favorites. For real, go nuts, be creative.... there's tons of shelf stable food you can toss together into a delicious heat and eat casserole. Pb&j is great to make for lunch too, just bring some peanut butter and jelly packets and enjoy! And snack packs--don't forget dessert

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 02:26 on Mar 24, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Casu Marzu posted:


Also, first time loving around with Hyperlapse. Pretty cool app. Wish I knew about the 1080p option before shooting all day though.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cr6IaO5PTAA
That's really cool! Thanks for sharing--I found myself wishing for this exact kind of thing last weekend in Red River Gorge :)

Edit: If you don't mind me picking your brain... did you have some sort of shoulder harness for your phone? What kind of picture interval did you use? How much juice does a day of hiking suck up? Do you just do hour intervals, or does the app quit if your screen locks?

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 01:13 on Apr 2, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal


:magical:

What a great read!

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

bunnielab posted:

I went to buy a hammock and there clearly has been a huge advancement in hammock technology sense I last bought one. The price range seems to be like $20 to $200. I just want something simple

You should absolutely check out hammockforums.net (yes there's an entire site dedicated to this question). But to answer your question, no, it's all the same ripstop/taffeta nylon. The hammock part actually matters very little, more important is the underquilt/tarp/suspension:can:

It's stupid easy to diy a great hammock/suspension straps for twenty bucks. Buy a taffeta nylon table cloth, whip the ends with some amsteel blue, and get some climbing webbing and two climbing carabiners for the straps to hang with (simple knots required, eg slippery half hitch).

Here's a picture of my setup, from backpacking in Red River Gorge last weekend:



And bonus pic of luncheon ridge (didn't do so hot capturing how awesome that spot really was):


Three-Phase posted:

Hiked deep off the beaten path in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park today.

He-ey, another Ohio Goon! Ever done Zaleski? I've never been up to Cuyahoga... How does that stack up to other Ohio spots?

edit: Don't buy a Kammock--my buddy bought one and it is cut all catterwampus and not at all comfortable. Diamond ripstop weave is the exact same as square ripstop weave nylon.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 02:29 on Apr 6, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

bunnielab posted:

Thanks man, just ordered a singe in Orange.

Also, these guys must be buying some huge loving grapefruit.

Depending on how tall you are, a double might have been more comfortable. The trick to a hammock is to lay at a diagonal--that lets sleep flat. The wider it is, the better you can lay out straight and sleep in it

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

^^ it's more fun to go with people... try checking out meetup and see if there's a hiking group near you. Also try an overnight trip somewhere close and easy to test your gear before going too far into the woods.

Pack size via REI:
http://m.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/backpack.html

I'd go ~60 liters--you'll condense gear the more you go and realize you don't need to bring the kitchen sink, but the extra space is always nice (even if you just fill it with an uncompressed sleeping bag).

Speaking of bear canisters, does anyone have any recommendations for lightweight non-bear food storage containers?

I don't typically hike in bear country, but protection against raccoons and the occasional curious animal would be real nice. I was looking at Ursacks since they're light and claim to be chew resistant, but a container would be nice to lock out smells and protect smashable foods.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 16:45 on Apr 7, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

SaltLick posted:

This is going to become an expensive hobby real quick isnt it

Quoted for truth... There's always more awesome kit to buy :(

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Internet Explorer posted:

Are there any equally as good deals for synthetic bags? My wife is allergic to down and it seems a lot harder to find a synthetic good bag.

Down is great for lightweight and small size, and I've got down quilts from
underground quilts
for my hammock that are just awesome, but for a synthetic sleeping bag I think you'd be hard pressed to do better than a Wiggy's bag.

It's bulkier and heavier, but Wiggy's bags:
-Have no baffles, so there's no cold spots
-Use a proprietary anti-static fill so fibers don't break down and will always stay fluffed, even after being stored compressed (unlike regular synthetic bags)
-oversized full length draft tube, so cold air doesn't leak in via the zipper/hood
-Largest YKK zipper available, so it's easy to zip and doesn't pinch
-Work even when wet (which is synthetic's advantage over down)

He also makes these jackets, which are fantastic--warmest jacket I've ever owned, like wearing a sleeping bag. It's so good, it's the only outer layer I usually wear in winter.

For a small, lightweight synthetic bag I've always been curious to try the big Agnes bags with the integrated sleeping pad pocket-it's a really clever idea, since there's little point to sleeping bag material under you when it's compressed.


Edit:

Thoren posted:

Will a bag at that temp be okay in the summer though? How does the "upper" range of sleeping bag temperature work? I'm definitely going for versatility here--I'll be traveling all over the USA next year.

Whatever you buy, I'd aim for a 20° bag--you can always unzip and stick your legs out if you're too hot, but it's going to be a miserable night if you're too cold

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 03:30 on Apr 13, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Didn't get too many pictures, but here's a few from backpacking Caesar Creek this weekend:







OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

dreesemonkey posted:

Can anyone recommend some specific brands/models for some hiking boots? I'm looking more towards hiking boots than backpacking boots. I'd like something that I could use in warm and coldish weather.
I've got a pair of full leather Lowa boots ($200)--and they are by far and away the nicest boots I've ever owned. Full grain leather boots are probably your best bet for comfort--your feet won't stew like gore tex (which is not very breathable at all), and they'll stand up to abuse for years and years (with proper care)

I've also heard trail runners are nice because less weight on your feet = less effort to walk. I'm a clutz though, so I need the ankle support--it's saved my butt more than once.

I've also got some Merell Moab Ventilators, which I wear everyday, and though I like them, they're not as breathable as a mesh trail runners (because of the padding). Nice boots, but I just wore them backpacking for the first time last weekend, accidentally stepped in a muddy puddle, and had soaked feet the rest of the trip. Won't ever wear those backpacking again.

Most importantly with boots-- DON'T WEAR THEM STANDING NEAR A FIRE.The glue will re-activate, and the sole will separate from the toe.

I call them talking boots :v:

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal


I've had several times where a tightly laced full boot has outright stopped my ankle from twisting enough to sprain it on a fall or stepping in an unexpected divot. No it's not foolproof, but it certainly helps.

I've sprained my ankle playing basketball, so I'm more prone to repeat injury now, hence why I take whatever precaution I can. Plus I love the grip you get from proper boots.

That being said, I think trail runners can be great. Lighter weight on your feet= lot less energy expended walking, breathability, etc. You gotta figure out what works best for you.

Here, have some science:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16558606

TL;DR
RESULTS:
The high-top shoes significantly reduced the amount and rate of inversion. The high-top shoes reduced the amount of inversion by 4.5 degrees , the maximum rate of inversion by 100.1 degrees /s, and the average rate of inversion by 73.0 degrees /s.

CONCLUSIONS:
The high-top shoes were more effective in reducing the amount and rate of inversion than the low-top shoes. Depending upon the loading conditions, high-top shoes help prevent ankle sprains.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Thoren posted:

Would a pair of Red Wing Iron Rangers be too heavy/clunky for long distance hiking?

Yes.

Weight on the feet is disproportionately more exhausting than weight on the torso, because you have to swing your feet in an arc. The adage is one pound on your feet = five on your back.

Link for science!

No point in steel toed shoes for hiking unless you already have some and wanna save a few bucks till you can get some dedicated footware

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 14:59 on Apr 14, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

It's 100% personal preference. Both have their advantages and are better suited to different things for certain situations.

The only thing I can say with certainty is that gore tex sucks.

Edit:

Levitate posted:

I think they're also (again along with Western Mountaineering) basically the only mainstream made in the US sleeping bag manufacturer left

And Wiggy's!

Though the mainstream part is debatable, dude sucks at advertising :v:

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 19:06 on Apr 14, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Speleothing posted:

Goretex is good if you're going to be in a rainstorm. Or if you're going to be standing in a puddle or bushwacking through a swamp. If you're on a trail in nice weather, less useful.

Oh, no, you're absolutely right--Gore Tex is awesome for waterproofing, especially on a rain jacket... but the breathable bit is greatly overexaggerated. Especially when you wind up just as wet inside your jacket from perspiration.

I should have clarified that--Gore Tex is a great idea in principle, less so in practice.

My philosophy is to just get wet, but wear polypropylene/nylon clothes that dry out in minutes rather than a futile fight against the elements.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

While on the topic of boots vs trail runners... how about those internal vs external frame packs???

It's the same kind of argument, everyone has their preferences. There's no right or wrong answer. I freaking love my boots, but I think the popular trend now is towards trail runners and ultralight gear. I think there's definite sacrifices in things such as durability and ankle protection, but less weight is awesome and there's a lot I would sacrifice for that.

How you do it doesn't matter. Just getting outside is a privilege that most people don't get to experience in such an intimate way :iia:

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Koivunen posted:

I always use Sno-Seal, it's a beeswax based salve that works great on leather. Haven't experimented much with other products, tried a spray once that was okay, because Sno-Seal has always done the trick.

Sock Chat: we got some sock liners from REI that we wear under our thick wool long distance socks. Thought it might be a gimmick but they're really nice to have, they suck away the sweat so your feet feel dry inside the shoe. Rinse at night, hang up, and in the morning they're ready to go. Feels rather nice to have a fresh-ish liner to put on your feet when the wool starts to get crunchy.

I've always heard of sno-seal being the recommended one, though I've never needed any on my boots.

Thin nylon liner sock + wool outer socks are awesome. I almost never get blisters wearing that combo.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

I only ever trust someone to bring food, even then only one shared meal. I've seen people forget everything else, but never have I seen someone forget to bring food (even though it's really one of the least important things--water is waaaaaay more important).

Sleeping bags? Had a buddy forget to bring one. Stoves? More than one occasion. Unless it's a spouse, I wouldn't rely on others to share stuff like shelter.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 11:26 on Apr 16, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Hungryjack posted:

If I'm sharing a sleeping bag with a buddy who forgot his, that motherfucker is going to make it up to me in a big big way in the future.

It's gonna be a life or death situation before I try to share a mummy bag with someone :wink:

Splitting up stuff art the trailhead is perfectly fine--I always divvy up booze and food. Tent poles/fabric is another good thing to split up if you're sharing, and bringing spare stuff to the trailhead in your car is always a good idea--I usually wind up lending hiking poles, sporks, etc.

But I usually hike with forgetful people, or first timers, so I'm pessimistic to rely on them. A couple of extra ounces to ensure my comfort and safety is absolutely worth it. Especially water treatment--other people's filters could clog, fail, or treatment get spilled/expire. A backup is always an excellent idea.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

That's spectacular! The horses are a nice touch too... I'm so sick of hiking in the woods. If I could line up a job, I'd move out west in a heartbeat.

One of my buddies always does a yearly kayaking trip through Big Bend, hopefully next year I'll be able to finally get the time off work.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Levitate posted:

I used a knife to cut cheese

That's the most action the knife on my multi tool has ever seen.

One of my buddies used to carry his K-Bar, but gave that up pretty quickly. Another used to carry a hatchet. That was moderately useful for gathering firewood, but I ain't seen that hatchet in a long rear end time.

Soooo... No, a knife hasn't been very useful in my experiences. It's not like your gonna defend yourself from anything with it.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal


I had originally looked at that one before going with the Gerber Dime, because I wasn't such a fan of how the pliers were actually scissors on the leatherman. Only thing I wish it had was a can opener, but a P-58 squirreled away in my pack serves the same purpose.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

OMFG PTSD LOL PBUH posted:


If it ever turns out that Autism is contagious I'm never using a shelter on the AT again, because there was also a lot of that on the trail, too.

It looks like your far more likely to encounter Autism, Katanas, and even a minority, than Bears on the AT.


:psyduck:

People scare me far more than anything else in the wilderness (expert perhaps moose and brown bears). A few years ago I was stargazing on a rocky cliff jutting out into Red River Gorge when a guy came up from behind me and asked me if I had heard about the hikers that were recently murdered and that the authorities were on a manhunt for the guy responsible. Not able to walk away with him blocking the only way out, only thing I could do was talk to him.

He then proceeded to mention something along the lines of "how do you know I'm not carrying a gun" to which I just kind of chuckled and said something about "sure are lots of crazy people out there" and decided right then it'd be a really good idea to take my leave.

Obviously there weren't any murders, and I'm sure the guy was just trying to yank my chain, but it really soured me on doing solo stuff

E:

Thoren posted:

I've always wanted one of these but I feel like I'd never actually use it.

Does anyone own one of these and actually use it with frequency?

A miniature multi tool is awesome--the screwdriver is helpful for undoing boogered knots, scissors for opening packaging, can/bottle opener gets used a lot, I've used my pliers to pull zip ties tight to repair my gear after I lost a stud holding my backpack to the frame, knife is great for cutting cheese or skinning a stick to make tinder, and if you don't already have stone tweezers in your first aid kit, they're stupid useful for splinters or brambles/thorns. Splinters are easy to get on wooden rails for stairs/bridges.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 15:15 on Apr 18, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Thoren posted:

Have you ever used the blade sharpener on there? How are the wire cutters?

I have strange hobbies.

If you're using wire cutters while hiking, I think you're doing it wrong

If you're not hiking, you should get these instead!

http://www.amazon.com/Tools-VISE-GRIP-Self-Adjusting-Stripper-2078300/dp/B000OQ21CA

They're awesome :sun:

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

COOL CORN posted:

I can cross one thing off my bucket list now. If anyone is in central NC and is feeling up to it, the 5 Overlooks Challenge at Hanging Rock state park is a
Thanks for sharing--this is officially on my bucket list now as well!

Re: Ticks--one thing that's always worked well for me is the Peppermint Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap. If you can ignore the apocalyptic biblical rants covering every square inch of the bottle, it's real good stuff. It's made by a Mennonite community with real peppermint plants, and ticks don't particularly care for that kind of thing.

Re: Gore Tex chat--if the stuff is legit Gore-Tex (and not a manufacturers knockoff),Gore-Tex will replace or repair it for you, free of charge, for life.

One of my buddies is actually getting a repair on his thirty year old North Face bivy from Gore-Tex after North Face weaseled out of their warranty.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal



:stonk:
I'm glad you made it back alright to share the tale!

Spooky though, especially with the abandoned stuff and whatever was following you. Do you think it was a brown bear looking for brunch?

I just don't have the intestinal fortitude for solo hiking...

Thanks for posting up all your photos by the way--they are just spectacular!

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

COOL CORN posted:

Is there a go-to site for finding new hiking spots? I'm sure there are a lot of hidden gems in my area, but there are about 1000 iterations of hike.com/hiking.com/allhike.com/morehiking.com/haveahike.com/etc and they all basically look the same and have the same touristy hikes. At least in my area.

What's your area?

Everything I've found has been either word of mouth, or looking into State/National Parks for overnight trails

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Discomancer posted:

How set are you on having a "real breakfast"? Hitting the trail immediately as you get up and having a granola bar/protein bar while hiking will a) save you a good half hour at least, b) warm you up quicker, c) give you less hassle to deal with in the morning.

And go without coffee?? You heathen.

Rime posted:

This will be the hike of a lifetime. :stare:
So... What's the particular attraction to go someplace where there's a legitimate chance of becoming horribly maimed or killed (through no fault of your own)? I mean, there's plenty of amazing places to travel and visit around the world, why someplace with an active minefield? Is there something like Angkor Wat tucked away there?

It's not like Dolly Sods where every couple of years someone will occasionally find some unexploded ordinance...

hailthefish posted:

Or just make a habit of grabbing a few extra every time you get fast food, heh.


This--I always snag a handful of jelly packets when I go to Chik-Fil-A, so I can pack bread and Jason's peanut butter packets and have a pb&j on the trail

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 02:06 on Apr 22, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

HarryPurvis posted:

These aren't coffee, but they are a yummy form of caffeine that are great ways to start your hike out of camp.

Shot Bloks - Black Cherry
Blech...

I'll stick with coffee and breakfast burritos on the trail. Ain't nothing better than breakfast in the hammock to bookend your day

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Sierra Nevadan posted:

Is there any real difference between Marmot Jackets and North Face Jackets.

I have never used Marmot, but have a North Face ski jacket I like.

Fleece is fleece is fleece. Your 5$ wallie world jacket will perform basically the same as your 200$ North Face jacket, and was probably made in the same factory.

North Face used to make nice stuff, but then they realized people would pay obscene sums to have NF branded clothes, so they basically ditched any real attention/products they had devoted to outdoorsy pursuits.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Blinkman987 posted:

I've read that something people do when having a mental break due to cold/hypothermia is that they get naked. So, if they were in soaked clothing under certain weather conditions, that's actually correct and better than being in your soaked clothes?

No, not necessarily. I'd imagine much of the time that stage of hypothermia occurs, the clothing is perfectly dry, and it's the dilation of the capillaries that causes the intense feeling of searing heat that makes people want to strip down. I think it's the same science that touching something lukewarm/something cool simultaneously simulates a feeling of intense burning, basically how your brain interprets the mixed signals.

With regards to wet clothing, neoprene works by trapping a thin layer of water to the skin, which your body heats up. Depending on how fast evaporation occurs/the loft of the fabric, I'd imagine a similar mechanism plays a role in addition to the straight evaporative/heat transfer for synthetics/wool.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 14:44 on Apr 25, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Terrifying Effigies posted:

Jumping on the trip report bandwagon - finally made it up to Dolly Sods for the first time this weekend, and it definitely lived up to the hype. It was a bit odd to see spring just now arriving at ~4,000 feet, but otherwise the weather was perfect.























The mud totally lived up to its reputation as well.

Definitely check it out if you haven't already and live in the Midatlantic area. Even doing +20 miles over two days I only managed to see about half of the Wilderness Area if that.

Great pics! If you don't mind me asking, which trail did you take?

I'm heading down there in a few weeks with some buddies and just starting to plan things out, and would appreciate any suggestions!

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

theroachman posted:

Alright, glad we got that sorted out. It's funny how stuff like that gets thrown around until it's basically accepted as a fact by nearly everyone (including me, I must admit). That gets me wondering, any other commonly accepted myths that need to be busted?

Whoah whoah whoah, hold on, I wouldn't call that one busted, not even close. You DO only want to wear only your base layer or skivvies in your bag, otherwise you're not heating up the air and insulation around you and your bag isn't able to insulate properly. I wouldn't call wearing three jackets "sleeping warm"--that's clear proof your bag was not adequate.

If you want to stay warm at night, get in your bag early instead of hanging out by the campfire--that actually lowers your body's temperature. Also filling a spare water bottle with hot water, stuffing that in a sock, and cramming it between your thighs will radiate heat all night through your femoral artery, which in turn pumps the warmed blood all throughout your body.

Also sleeping bags are rated with a heated copper tube in a lab, which is a piss poor approximation for how it'll do in the real world, with wind, perspiration, etc sapping heat away. Pay attention to loft, construction (eg baffles that create thin/cold spots in the insulation), how you store your sleeping bag (keeping it in the compression sack reduces loft/life), material (synthetic if you're expecting it to be wet, down if it's cold and dry), etc etc etc.

Other thing people don't realize with putting all those layers on is exactly how much water you lose via perspiration overnight. All those extra layers trap that water close to your body, which only serves to convect heat away from you. You want your bag to breathe, otherwise you're going to be cold and wet. After all, why do you think there's so much condensation on the inside of your tent in the morning?

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

cheese posted:

Talked to a backpacking friend about my shoulder/hip pain who suggested underinflating my NeoAir X Therm sleeping pad. Took a nap on it this afternoon with it underinflated and I had a lot less pain. I'll be sleeping on it Monday night to try that out. if not, this Ultralight Cot seems to be a really popular choice for people who can't ever get comfortable on inflatable pads. Anyone heard of it/tried it?

I think at that point you might be better served looking into a hammock. I'm a stomach/side sleeper, and upgrading to a hammock is the best move I've ever made. Really though, anything that helps you sleep better is money well spent in my book.

Only other thought with that cot is that you're still gonna want to bring your pad for bottom insulation.

Question about Bear Canisters--I don't necessarily need one for most of the hiking I do, but I'd really like to get one (mainly so my food doesn't get squished, plus it makes a free camp chair). Raccoon/mouse proofing is another compelling reason for to upgrade.

Is the Bear Vault still the best value proposition? Or is bearikade worth the extra two hundred odd bucks?

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

^^ I'm sure they'll be fine for a week, but be sure to check your straps for UV damage just in case.

cheese posted:

Ya, I love the hammock option but its a bitch in the Sierras. I guess I'll try out other pads first.

Derp, that's a pretty critical detail...

You need the Neo Air Dream Mattress if weight < comfort. My buddy bought one of these things and yes, it is absolutely as comfortable as it looks. It's basically an air mattress/foam pad combo.

I dunno about the cot you linked earlier, but I have an older cot I picked up at a garage sale for shits and giggles, and it's intolerable for side/stomach sleeping. It's honestly barely any good for back sleeping... then again, I'm sure science has since made cots better.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 02:53 on May 12, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

bunnielab posted:

Awesome man, thanks! I never tried a ridge line but have plenty of 5mm cord at hand. I used to be a theatrical rigger so I have a bunch of rope, webbing, and such laying around.

I really don't want to buy a tent or a sleeping bag yet but I really want to do some overnights on the C&O canal in July.

http://theultimatehang.com/hammock-hang-calculator/

Punch in your height/weight/hammock length, get your ridgeline length, and just set it up so said ridgeline is barely taut. It'll be right everytime, no muss, no fuss.


TheEye posted:

Hey guys, I'm pretty new to hiking, but did a decent amount at Zion and a bit at Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon a couple years ago, and am going to Yosemite soon. I need new shoes though, and am wondering which of the shoe types would be the best for me to go with.


Get a nice pair of full grain leather, ankle high boots, and they'll last you forever. It'll protect your foot from twisting and rolling your ankle, and leather will be comfortable temp wise and protect your feet from getting soaked and soggy. Don't do gore tex because it doesn't breathe much, so it's like sticking your feet in a plastic bag. Also get some good nylon/wool socks to wick away moisture from your feet. Nylon liner sock + wool outer sock = awesome.

Just don't hang out in front of a fire with shoes you like, because the heat well reactivate the glue and the soles will start flopping around.

Trail runners are nice if you have an ultralight pack (<15 lbs). I think the calculation is 1 pound on the feet=5 on the back, so it's less effort to swing your feet. But if you're in an area that'll be wet, I honestly think you'd be better served with boots. Yes mesh shoes will eventually dry, but not for a long rear end time, especially in high humidity, and your feet will be wrinkly hamburger by the time you're done. Mostly depends on what part of the country you're in.

OSU_Matthew fucked around with this message at 11:17 on May 14, 2015

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

alnilam posted:


Also non-waterproof trail runners dry really fast OSU_Matthew :confused: mine dry in like 15-20 minutes on my feet, as opposed to waterproof boots which take forever even off the feet.

I never said waterproof boots--those are just miserable for hiking. Leather is a great barrier that's durable, comfortable, and naturally water resistant. Letting your shoes dry out all depends on where you are, the temperature, humidity, and especially the construction. If it's just straight mesh on the shoe, sure it'll dry quickly. Most shoes though have a bunch of extra padding that just sponges water, especially around the tongue, so it all depends on what you buy.

My experience, for instance, with Merrell Moab ventilators, was that I sank in one stinking puddle, and those suckers were wet for the rest of the trip. Freaking miserable. Even in all day downpours, my feet are nice and dry in my Lowas.

If I were perhaps out West where it never rains, and generally low humidity, I'm sure I'd have better results than hiking around Appalachia.

It's all situationally dependent, different things work better for different people. Good quality leather boots are a great compromise that'll cover most things quite well, and last a heckuva lot longer than trail runners.

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Vivian Darkbloom posted:

I have a Jetboil that prepares boiling water but gets totally hosed up if I try to cook in it. I tried using and reusing one Mountain House pouch to rehydrate stuff (like couscous or oatmeal that doesn't need continuous heat) but this is pretty unhygienic and untasty. What's the best option - freezer bags to cook in, a titanium bowl, or just get a stove that simmers and a cookpot? I think having the ability to do real cooking would be kind of fun, if I have the energy by the time I camp.

It's hard to cook with such direct heat in such a thin pot. Casseroles are usually the best bet in my opinion for cooking. Or, if you're winter camping and can deal with a few extra pounds, cast iron is amazing for camp stoves. My buddies and I have done everything from reeses pancakes to hash browns and bacon burritos with cast iron, and it's amazing. Totally impractical for most trips though.

I'm looking forward to trying the freezer bag meals someone here linked awhile back:

https://web.archive.org/web/20071016093037/http://www.freezerbagcooking.com/dinnerricedishes.htm


alnilam posted:

I agree with everything in this post expect that the ventilators are a bit heavier than most trail runners, maybe that's your issue. My salamon xa pros dry out in like 20 minutes after getting soaked, in PA humidity.

But yeah, boots are gonna be better for marshy places for sure, or for heavier packs.

I think you're absolutely right--despite their name, those ventilators don't do a very good job of, well, ventilating. Comfy, but not very breathable. Not at all what I was hoping for when I bought them :(

Everybody has their preferences. There are tradeoffs no matter what you choose, you just gotta decide where you're hiking and what works best for you in that environment, as well as what your hiking style is.

Personally, I hike principally in Appalachia, and the extra weight is worth the extra protection, dry feet, and durability boots offer. Six to one half dozen to the other. Just getting out and enjoying all the spectacular scenery this world has to offer means you're doing it right, regardless of your choice in footwear.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

OSU_Matthew
Aug 23, 2010

IT ME




Toilet Rascal

Vivian Darkbloom posted:

I've seen a lot of one-pot recipes online, but maybe they're better-adapted for steel pots - no way am I lugging cast iron anywhere. With the titanium pots do you think some basic sauteeing is out of the question? It seems like it would also be good for stews and other liquidy food.

Absolutely not--I almost always fry up a slice of spam, season it up, and cram it between a Hawaiian roll topped with cheddar cheese.

Downside is that titanium is an absolute bitch to clean, so I just bring a piece of foil for each thing I plan on frying. A bit of olive oil helps too.

My buddy picked up a MSR aluminum frying pan, and that thing is awesome for frying/cooking. Nonstick and super light. Highly recommend if you plan on cooking like that. However I usually just carry my titanium pot/frying pan lid (and titanium mug because I can't live without my morning cuppa joe).

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply