Hey Wilderness Trekkers! Plan a fun and safe hiking trip with a little help from this REI infographic. This illustrated map gives you a bird’s-eye view of the United States’ 11 National Scenic Trails which measure more than 18,753 miles combined. You’ll also find tips on what to bring and trail trivia.
Check out REI’s wide selection of hiking gear!
Know the Three Layer System for Your Emergency Winter Survival Gear
The most basic requirement in facing the harsh conditions of the outdoors, especially during winter, is proper clothing. Dressing up appropriately for all the expected conditions is your first line of defence when considering your safety. Have you heard of the “three layer system”? This is a popular term for people who are seriously into extreme outdoor activities like winter hiking and climbing. But even if you are not into these things, it is still best to be aware as to when or if ever a situation or an emergency arises, you will know how to be protected in the winter cold. As you go through the rest of this article, you will find out the types of clothes you need for your emergency winter survival gear.
The first of this three layer system is the base or inner layer which is the clothes directly in contact with your skin. This is actually not just to absorb body moisture. Primarily, this layer should wick the sweat away from your body and somehow send the moisture to the other layers of clothing so it can eventually evaporate. A secondary function is for additional insulation that is most needed in extremely cold weather condition. Examples of these clothes are capilene shirts, thin socks, thinsulate hats and full tights or leggings.
The second or mid layer is mainly for insulation. Examples are fleece jackets, wool hats, wool socks, wool mittens and wool pants. Notice that these are thicker fabrics than those you need to wear as the base layer. It is best to use garments that are made of polyester, wool and fleece. Down fabrics are good for insulation but is not really effective as an aid in the moisture wicking process, so try to do away with this as much as possible.
The third and outer most layers is referred to as the “shell” which aids in repelling water from snow, rain, fog and dew. These are also for protection against wind and act as a shield against scrapes, abrasion and chafing. This layer may include a hooded parka, nylon pants, rubber boots and leather over mittens.
The mixing and matching of the above garments will depend on both the amount of heat and cold needed by the body during winter survival. Bear in mind the basic rule, the mantra, in surviving such weather conditions, “cool and dry stay alive”. Too much sweating is not good so you have to limit the garments in such a way that you are also getting enough coolness to limit the sweating process.
Proper winter clothing gears are among the basics in winter survival but all of us know that there is more to just wearing good clothes in order to survive such conditions. You also have to be ready with other emergency winter survival gears like flashlight, whistles and a GPS handheld unit if possible. You can check stores that offer these things to be sure that you will be well protected in such explorations.
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The Backpacker’s Field Manual, Revised and Updated: A Comprehensive Guide to Mastering Backcountry Skills by Rick Curtis
When it was first published in 1998, The Backpacker’s Field Manual set the standard for comprehensive backpacking books. Now exhaustively updated to offer a more complete view of backpacking today, it covers the latest developments in gear—such as Global Positioning Systems and ultralight hiking equipment—first aid, and Leave No Trace camping, and includes a chapter devoted to outdoor leadership resources and basics. Beginners and experienced hikers alike will find this book indispensable for trip planning strategies and also as a quick reference on the trail for:
BACKCOUNTRY SKILLS—how to forecast the weather, identify trees, bear-proof your campsite, wrap an injured ankle, and more–illustrated with more than 100 line drawings.
TRICKS OF THE TRAIL—time-tested practical lessons learned along the way
GOING ULTRALIGHT—downsizing suggestions for those who want to lighten up
Every traveler knows that space in a backpack is limited, so on your next trip, carry the only guide you’ll ever need—this one—and take to the great outdoors with confidence.
Backpacking – One Essential You Need When Hiking This Summer
By Dave Artman
It is getting to be that time of year when millions of Americans will go on vacation. Even if it’s just a three-day weekend, many of your friends and neighbors will go into the back country for camping, hiking, backpacking, to enjoy a little fishing or just the great outdoors.
This is a favorite activity of families, couples and just single individuals who love the outdoors. It is not only great exercise but it is a way to see part of our country by exploring areas you’ve never been before. But it is not without its risks. If you have the right camping gear and camping supplies for your overnight stay in the wilderness, you’ll be okay. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure as they say.
So if you are planning a backpacking trip into the Rocky Mountains or anywhere there are bears, there is one essential that you need to carry with you as part of your camping supplies and camping gear-bear spray.
Just remember that you are a visitor when you go into this wilderness. And while the chances of seeing bears or encountering a bear attack are small, they do happen. And let me tell you if you’re not prepared, it could be a trip you won’t ever forget all for the wrong reasons.
There are three major brands of bear pepper spray in the marketplace. Mace brand bear spray is EPA approved and can shoot up to 35 feet away. It is a full 260 gram unit which is the minimum required for bear pepper spray. The unit can empty in 5.4 seconds.
The second may be the most well-known brand. It is the only bear spray that’s endorsed by the Alaska Science and Technology Foundation. It has undergone more than six years of extensive testing in the wilds of Alaska. It is also EPA approved and has an invincible 20% ultra hot spray specifically for bears. The range is approximately 15 to 20 feet in a 260 gram canister.
And the third and maybe the most effective is a bear attack deterrent in a 9.2 ounce container that fires a full 35 feet. This brand has twice the amount of the minimum of Capsaicin and Related Capsaicinoids(CRC). A one second blast of this spray contains up to 84% more spray than other brands. Remember that an 800 pound bear can run 30 feet in one second. This is the only brand heat sealed to ensure quality performance and tested at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska.
So this summer when you go into the back country for backpacking, hiking, camping, fishing or just recreating in the great outdoors, make sure part of your camping supplies and backpacking gear includes bear spray to avoid a possible bear attack.
Frontiersman Bear Spray shoots out to 35 feet and is one of three bear sprays you must have when in the back country this summer.
The most well-known brand is called Guard Alaska.
The Home Security Superstore is one of the oldest and largest independent distributors of high quality home security, surveillance, spy, self-defense, survival and safety products. We carry a wide range of self-defense products including tasers, stun guns, pepper sprays and other nonlethal weapons that can save your life in the event of an attack.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Dave_Artman
Follow the link below to REI’s site for an extensive checklist of things you should carry on a day hike or longer hike. There are even more recommendations on the more extensive list ‘Beyond the Ten Essentials’. You need to customize your checklist based on the season and location or your particular trek, hike, backpacking adventure. Be safe, be prepared!
American Hiking Society’s 19th annual trails celebration, Saturday, June 4th
This is a quick review of the CamelBak M.U.L.E. 100 OZ. Hydration Pack often referred to as the camel back mule. If you are interested in buying this item online you can get it at Amazon at this link http://tinyurl.com/camel-bak-mule The positives Well built almost bullet proof in fact from a construction stand point. I have had mine for well over a year, used it hard from hiking to working in the back yard and on the homestead and not a tear, rip or even a loose thread. Huge water capacity, in fact the thing is pretty heavy full so you should only top it off when you are going to need it but 3 liters is a lot of water and if you are hiking with a spouse you can share that much on many day hikes. Cool iPod slot that makes listening to your pod or any MP3 player for that matter really nice. The wires route over your shoulder, the only down side is you have to take it off to turn up the volume, change what you are listening to, etc. Very comfortable to carry, the ventilation on the back is really nice at keeping your back sweat from getting bad or soaking the pack. On hot days this is really a big deal. Great ergonomics, the mouth valve is great, it is easy to add ice to the bladder and the pockets are well divided up with the ability to segregate gear well. Little touches like the key chain clip to make finding keys fast and easy are really nice too. The negatives This isnt really a good wilderness pack while the compartments are really nice the cargo space is quite limited. Not a great pack for the big man, even though it fits me comfortably the straps that are supposed to go around your waist area are a joke. Sure I need to loose a few more pounds (20 this year already though) but even when I am at my ideal weight this thing will never go around my torso. It doesnt really matter though because I cant imagine why this feature is even needed or desired. Other than that it is a great pack and again the quality of construction is simply exceptional.
Duration : 0:3:53
If a safe resting place emerges on a hike, try resting with legs elevated to help circulation. Elevate the legs to rest on a trail with an experienced trail guide in this free hiking video. Expert: Joanna Joseph Bio: Joanna Joseph has lived in Canyon Country since 1974. She has been leading hikes in the southwest for the last five years, mostly with Elder Hostel, which includes individuals 55 and over. Filmmaker: Mike Phillips
Duration : 0:1:37