For the past year, I have only been using two methods to treat drinking water while backpacking. When in camp, I boil the water that I will use for cooking or making hot drinks. When on the trail, I use Aquamira Water Treatment drops. Aquamira has many benefits over other treatment methods. They are fast, easy, lightweight, reliable, and scalable. Continue reading
Today we will discuss a simple backpacking water strategy for staying hydrated. According to studies, up to 75% of Americans may suffer from chronic dehydration. Many of the signs of dehydration are overlooked or attributed to other causes. These include fatigue, headaches, dry/itchy skin or eyes, or dizziness. Proper hydration is critical for every system in the body. Water is necessary for carrying nutrients, regulating temperature, flushing toxins, purging digestive waste, and much more. When we’re exerting ourselves on hot days in the woods, it is all the more important to have a sound backpacking water strategy. Continue reading
In a few weeks, I’ll be running another one of my very popular Intro to Backpacking seminars at Harriman State Park. I ran my first seminars at Harriman State Park in November and December of 2015. Among the attendees was a very enthusiastic young lady who now goes by the trail name “Kremlin.” Kremlin was having a rough time fitting into civilized life and was looking for something more exiting to do. She asked me if I thought she should go on a thruhike, and I said “do it!” She started her hike from Katahdin after 6 months of preparation and finished just around Thanksgiving of 2016. Recently she referred a friend to me to get some thruhike advice of his own. Continue reading
In a few weeks I’m going to be hosting an “Intro to Backpacking” Seminar at Harriman State Park. I’m hosting this event via the Meetup Group “Hudson Valley Hikers.” Meetup events tend to get a lot of RSVP’s, but also a lot of No-Shows. In order to vet people out before giving them a spot at the seminar, I’ve asked them to email me questions about backpacking. Some of them are pretty good and I’ll be sharing the answers via a series of posts called “Ask CampingJay.” This post will discuss Water Treatment Methods. Continue reading
Several years ago, I went on a guided backpacking trip in Great Smoky Mountains National Park with A Walk in the Woods. I had a great time and learned a lot. One of the most important lessons I took away from that trip was “The Rule of Threes.” This simple rule has become the cornerstone of my philosophy for lightweight backpacking and enjoying the outdoors safely. Continue reading
Backpacking in the winter is a lot of fun, but presents a lot of challenges. Its cold. Trails are tough to follow. Fire wood is buried in snow. One of the things I actually find easier about backpacking in the winter is finding water. In the summer, I often have to walk some distance from camp to find water in a spring or stream. In the winter, however, there is water everywhere. This article is about how to melt snow for water, which is actually pretty easy.