Best hiking & camping books according to redditors

We found 597 Reddit comments discussing the best hiking & camping books. We ranked the 274 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Hiking & Camping:

u/garmachi · 35 pointsr/AdviceAnimals

Not OP, but I am an author with a book in Kindle Unlimited. The rate Amazon pays authors varies from month to month based on how many subscribers KU has, but it averages around half a penny per page.

The number of pages per book is "normalized" because the number of pages varies based on which Kindle you have, what font size you use, etc. They don't tell us their algorithm, but using mine as an example, it's 690 normalized e-pages. (The paperback is 338 as a reference.) Which means that every time someone reads my book on KU I get a little more than $3, which is close to what I see from every ebook purchase.

u/hobbes305 · 29 pointsr/Survival

Youtube is loaded with videos on the subject:


One great practice to get into is to use your more advanced navigational aids primarily to confirm or correct what you have already determined by more basic methods.

For instance, get used to reflexively observing your surroundings (Especially stopping every 100 paces or so to look at and study your back trail). Practice estimating the distances/direction that you have walked and the times elapsed. Become aware of the position of the sun or the prevailing winds (Observing the effect that these winds have over time on local vegetation).

Even jets flying overhead can provide clues as to general directions. In my area of Upstate NY, the vast majority of jets flying at altitude maintain a roughly east/west flight path. Even on a cloudy night when the stars and the moon are totally hidden, I can often see the lights of jets blinking through the cloud cover, giving me a clue as to whether or not I have begun traveling in a circle in the dark.

A GREAT read:

Several times a day, without looking at your map estimate your location and heading direction/distance to your starting point and your destination. Once you have done this, take out your map and confirm your estimates. If you have a good vantage point, take several bearings with your compass on significant features (Focusing on contour features on your topo map) and then triangulate to determine your location.

The most important practice is to primarily rely on your GPS as a means of confirming and correcting your earlier navigational estimates. As you get more accomplished and as your confidence levels rise, you will find that observational navigation will become second nature to you.

u/mdzealot · 26 pointsr/Ultralight

I mean, you can drop 15 pounds just by changing your tent, backpack, and sleep system without sacrificing any comfort. It's more of a money thing for those items. After that, it's an issue of "do I really need this" or "is this overkill?" than it is "am I losing comfort?"

You really don't start sacrificing much comfort until your load is well under 10lbs. You're just getting rid of weight that isn't necessary until that point.

For instance, you have a great setup with your titanium cooking pot and spork.. but then you have a 16oz stove. Why? You could use a Pocket Rocket that weighs 3oz that does the same thing and that would save you close to a pound.

I suggest you read Mike Clelland's Ultralight Backpacking Tips. It will help you a lot.

u/chadcf · 20 pointsr/Eugene

Near Eugene? Or in Eugene? We're a pretty small city, so living near work is pretty swell as you can get around by bike and save on gas. 15th and Lincoln is a good area, had a grad student friend who lived there. You're far enough away from campus that it's mostly grad students and less noise, but still pretty close to downtown. Where to live depends on your goals though, proximity to work, proximity to restaraunts/bars, bike friendly, quieter, safer, etc etc.

As a Columbus transplant myself, you'll probably find it a pretty easy transition (at least I did). Some notes:

  • No sales tax is awesome
  • You can't pump your own gas
  • No one really uses an umbrella
  • Invest in a good rain jacket
  • It rarely dips below freezing and snow happens once every 2 or 3 years. I find winters far far preferable to Ohio. The typical winter day here is in the upper 40's with off and on drizzle.
  • The beach is cold. Even in August. Don't wear shorts and t-shirts like you would on the east coast. Bring a sweater even in summer. Don't plan on swimming.
  • It does not rain in summer. Like, ever (mostly). It is glorious. But you will miss summer thunderstorms (we don't get those).
  • We have a lot of bums and homeless people. You'll get used to it.
  • People here tend to be friendlier, more talkative, and often weirder.
  • We take our beer much more seriously out here, though from my recent trips back to Columbus the beer scene there has also started to pick up.
  • You can get Jeni's Ice Cream at Capella Market, and Graeters at Fred Meyer. We don't have Bob Evans, White Castle or Waffle House :(
  • If you want to explore the outdoors, start here
  • Get an REI membership. You'll use it.
  • Don't leave your bike outside if you can avoid it, no matter how good of a lock you get.
  • If you plan on driving to snowboard/ski/snowshoe, get snow chains. You are legally required to at least have them in the car in the mountains (and they will check and ticket you). They tend to cost about $80 or so and you can buy them at Les Schwab and return them in the spring if you never use them. Practice putting them on before heading to the mountains. Unlike central ohio, we have real mountains and no road salt. No matter how good of a snow driver you think you are in the midwest, the mountains out here can be TERRIFYING.
  • Visit Crater Lake. Preferably in June, when it's warmish but there is still snow on the ground.
u/vectorhive · 16 pointsr/Ultralight

Ultralight Backpackin' Tips: 153 Amazing & Inexpensive Tips For Extremely Lightweight Camping

u/FIRExNECK · 16 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

Darn Tough socks, Membership to the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, REI gift certificate those seem like solid gifts.

Edit: How could I forget Andrew Skurka's [The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide] (!

u/ItNeedsMoreFun · 16 pointsr/Ultralight

I'm a big fan of books. Here's two books I quite enjoy that I don't think have been linked yet (lots of good books already linked by others, so check those out too!):

u/MaidenATL · 14 pointsr/Ultralight

They started out as a ultralight backpacking company. They were successful at that and had some of the best gear out there.

They abandoned the designs that they started with, and replaced them with gear that I really didn't even consider ultralight. I'm not sure if they got rid of the breeze, and cave because Jardine owned the designs or because they didn't fit their new business model.

Even after the Jardine era some of their gear was quite nice, and still pretty light. But over the next few years they seemingly decided to compete with companies like The North Face, started selling 'lifestyle clothing' and things like that.

If you need proof that they completely abandoned their original mission check out their history page.
They go out of their way to not mention Ray Jardine, or Beyond Backpacking/the pct hikers handbook. In fact they use the phrase "lighten up" which IMO is a cheap way to plug this book as opposed to anything Jardine may have in publication.

And besides how can a company called Golite have a founder who is overweight?

u/ecp12 · 14 pointsr/boardgames

I really enjoyed Backpacking Light. The articles are okay but the forums are absolute GOLD. All of the users are super passionate about backpacking, especially about backpacking "lightweight." Aka, trying to carry as little as possible so you can walk faster and further/save your knees in the process.

It's a bit daunting to get into, I'll give you that. I also found this book to be super helpful.

u/ieatfishes · 13 pointsr/askscience

It is mostly contained in the books I've read. I have been out of the backpacking scene for a while so I may be a bit rusty on the exact details and perhaps his methods have fallen out of favor. Some of his weight cutting techniques are a bit extreme by my taste such as only taking an umbrella and tarp instead of rain gear and tent. However, my father and I cut quite a bit of weight in our week long trips. We were starting with packs around 40 pounds and wearing big hiking boots and eventually got to around 20-25 pounds and would just wear a nice set of running or trail shoes.

Some of his books:

This site mentions him and a quick Google search with his name and 'water filter' brings up quite a few references as well: He's by no means an end-all authority but the ultralight backpacking he pioneered was pretty widely known.

u/Dogwoodhikes · 13 pointsr/Ultralight

UL is not just about gear! Get him/her a class on GPS and/map&paper navigation, Wilderness FA, wild edibles(get him started locally),..They can be less than $50 through Backpacker, REI, an outfitter, etc.


Get him a subscription to BPL.


If he doesn't have it Mike Clelland's Ultralight Backpacking Tips.


Get him a Zelph's alchy stove.

u/gamerx11 · 10 pointsr/Ultralight

I really enjoy Lighten Up! and Ultralight Backpackin' Tips as well. Those two really helped me think about what I was carrying on my trips. It made me a lot more weight conscious.

u/Yeah-BUDDY · 10 pointsr/CampingandHiking

Do it!

I think most people can physically achieve a thru hike. Its definitely more of a mental challenge. There is a great book called Appalachian Trials which I would highly recommend reading if you are seriously considering an AT thru hike

u/Bhelkweit · 9 pointsr/LifeProTips

My brother gifted me this book one year for christmas. I highly recommend it. Filled with tips like OP. Helped me drop my pack weight to 20lbs for a 5-day trek. And that was actually too much food.

I can practically run all day fulled loaded.

u/Teabag1 · 9 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

Reading Trail Journals is always nice because you're getting a day by day account of how hiking operates rather than a stylized narrative. Just at cursory glance, I saw few guys I hiked with who should have pretty accurate journals:


Frankenstein - I hiked around him for a good portion of the hike. Pretty detailed and should give you a good idea of life on the trail.



That's not to say a stylized narrative isn't pleasing to read and get's you hyped for your trip. A Walk in the Woods gets some shit from thru-hikers but it's a book about the Appalachian Trail for people who are not thru-hikers-so you!

Ray Jardine's Trail Life is indispensable for preparation. Even if you don't agree with all of his points, he gets you thinking and presents the organization of gear in a straight forward fashion. It was so hard to get a direct answer out of anyone online in regards to gear; every question was greeted with "just do what works for you!" I had no hiking experience and wanted something of a base to start from. Trail Life at least gives you a starting point to experiment with. I would say this is the most important book for practical preparation you need to make.

Honestly, not much you can read is going to help a ton, the AT doesn't need that much prep work. Here's a pre-hike check list that I would suggest.

  • Save up $4500 - You can do it on much less but hurting for money on the trail is no fun. It's not that I wish I had more money on my hike, living with an overwhelming lack of funds gave me one of my most poignant learning experiences, but it allows you more freedom-you can be on the trail longer and actually replace your shoes instead of wearing them until you find a newish pair in the hiker box.

  • Go on weekend test hikes once you have enough gear to go backpacking - There where little details I didn't like about pieces of my gear that I would never have noticed unless I used them for an extended period of time. Find out now that ENO straps sink you to the ground or that your sleeping pad doesn't insulate enough for a March start.

  • Go through your guide book and circle things you think might be interesting - I compulsively looked through my guidebook when I was bored and checked a lot of things I didn't want to miss. It's nice to open up to a town and already have the buffet circled and the cheapest resupply marked down.

    Be prepared for the AT to be very different than you expect. Be confident and social with everyone you meet. Meet Ms. Janet! Immerse yourself in the whole experience and don't think too much about home.
u/mt_sage · 8 pointsr/Ultralight

I had a similar conversion about 10 years ago, also after a long hiatus (due to injury). Hauling big weight really starts to lose its charm as you age.

I used a scattershot approach (and it was rather hit and miss) until I got Mike Clelland's book, "Ultralight Backpackin' Tips", which had just been published. It's the smartest $14 I ever spent on backpacking gear, and it dropped weight from my BPW faster and better than I could have believed. He gives you a comprehensive approach that is not just about gear but also about mindset and technique. It showed me how to evaluate every single item in my pack from the perspective of a very experienced UL backpacker.

I was able to drop my BPW in half rather quickly -- without doing a lot of gear buying -- and then chip away at it one piece of gear at a time, picking and choosing what was next in a logical progression. Just about everyone one in transition finds that they achieve a "plateau" BPW that is not bad at all (well under 20 pounds) fairly quickly, and then it takes work to approach the "magical" 10 pound BPW.

It looks like you've already made some good choices. Keep up the good work.

A note on your pack; some years ago, UL backpackers often used packs that are considered to be "high volume" today -- about 60L, like your GG pack. You pack your bag/quilt, down puffies, and soft insulated items uncompressed, and that way they fill up the volume of the pack. It preserves the optimal shape of the pack for the best carrying behavior, it makes the entire pack soft and slightly squishy, and hence very comfortable to carry, and it makes packing up in the morning quick and easy. As a bonus, it makes your insulated gear last much longer; extreme compression is tough on gear, be it down or synthetic.

u/Hanginon · 8 pointsr/Survival

"Where do I start? You've already started.

Hiker, rock climber, runner, you've developed some skills & fitness applicable to a lot of outdoor endeavors. You want to do some outdoor survival self training/teaching? Get a library card. The card will give you access to a huge amount of print resources, peruse them at will, learn the skills you want and save your money for gear.

Survival, camping, woodsmanship, bushcraft is not so much "something you learn" It's an ongoing endeavor, there's always more skills to absorb. It's the pursuit of a lifetime.

IMHO, starting Here is as good as anywhere.
Hypothermia/Hyperthermia is the #1 killer outdoors, so learning how to not die is the fundamental base of learning how to survive work & play in natural surroundings.

KNOTS--- they're job specific, and multi use. Rigging a tarp shelter, you'll only need to know a couple of knots. A midshipman's hitch makes an adjustable loop for tensioning guy lines, A bowline makes a stable, non slip loop, A prusik knot is useful for adjusting the tension of a tarp on a ridgeline.

Lashing, as in tying branches/saplings together for a shelter, seat, or bed. Square lashing, diagonal lashing, tripod lashing, all good simple ways to connect structural pieces.

Paracord is the darling of the outdoor crowd, but not always the best Tool for the job so do some reading on different applications of different cordage. (Rope... to the uninformed...). I use this for tarp/tent tiedown cord, smaller. less stretch, and it has a glow fiber woven in for less trippage in low light. Tying knots in the context of their usage will help you retain the technique. Get some cordage & start practicing knots, larger, 1/4 dia or larger is easier to work with for practice tying. Piece of clothesline (Samson cord) is adequate.

Equipment, got some friends who camp? Will they spot you enough gear, sell you some old stuff they don't use, or take you with them to get out & try some things?

Larger Libraries often have camping/outdoor equipment that you can check out just like a book. some outfitters also have rental equipment.

u/barry_baltimore · 7 pointsr/CampingandHiking
  • Do water filters on the market make all stream water safe to drink?
    No. No one backcountry water purification method can handle every single situation. No filter is capable of removing ALL chemical contaminants (some remove none), and many filters do not remove viruses. If you are hiking in North America viruses are not generally considered a problem. (See: 1)

  • How do i know if a stream or lake i'm hiking near contains contaminated water?(biological and chemical)
    You don't. But you can minimize the risk by only purifying water that you would feel reasonably comfortable drinking without purification -- eg: running water, no funny smells, some small wildlife living in the water (lack of toxins), no strange colors.

  • How much water do i need to bring on an all day hike for two people?
    Depending on weather and conditions, I'd go with no less than 3 liters per person for an all-day (dusk to dawn) affair. SectionHiker goes into great detail about managing water on a hike.

  • How do i get a hold of maps for the areas i plan on hiking in?
    You can buy maps at a local outfitters, from National Geographic, or download and learn to read the USGS maps. If you are asking this question, you should also learn how to stay found -- I recommend Be Expert with Map and Compass

  • How do i know if i can have a campfire?
    Ask the regulatory agency responsible for the lands you are on.

  • What about going to the bathroom? Do i just make a hole go or..?
    For pooping: Dig a hole with a small trowel about 8 inches deep and 6 inches wide. Do your business. Put your toilet paper in the hole, and using a found stick mix it up with a splash of liquid (pee or water) and some dirt. Cover the hole thoroughly and pack it down. For peeing: Take care to pee on rocks or sturdy trees. Don't pee on fragile plants.

  • What kind of soap or hand cleaners are the best to bring?
    Biodegradable soap or Dr. Bronners if you must use soap. Most people use Purell instead to save water.

  • How do i know if animals are a danger in the area?
    Consult the regulatory agency responsible for the lands you are on or local experts (gear stores).

  • How do i deal with a potentially dangerous animal?(bears, cougars, snakes, or spiders)
    Leave them alone. Make plenty of noise so you don't surprise them. If you are wearing your pack and attacked by a stalking-type animal, curl up into a ball and cover your neck and get on your hands and knees. Cook and store your food about 50 feet downwind of where you make your camp.

    (1) Water purification: Keep in mind that none of these will work on chemicals found in the water like arsenic or toxins made by blue-green algae.

  • UV works on: bacteria, protozoa, viruses. (Doesn't work on tapeworm eggs, which are typically only a problem in Isle Royale.)

  • Filters work on: bacteria, protozoa, parasites, maybe viruses. (Works on viruses if it has a 0.1 micron filter or an iodine membrane.)

  • Chlorine dioxide works on: all biological entities.
u/delawalk · 7 pointsr/CampingGear

When I crossed over, my parents bought me a lot of outdoor gear. It was all exciting and cool and I loved it, but most of it was heavy, designed for car camping, and ended up going unused, like the snakebite kit and bright red fanny pack and campfire toaster. I’d encourage you to help support your new Scouts to go backpacking and go lighter - give them tools and knowledge and inspiration.

  • A good-quality map of a backcountry area near you to help them plan an adventure, $20-$30.

  • A pair of Darn Tough wool socks - they don’t stink, keep feet dry and warm in winter and cool in summer, and come with a lifetime guarantee, $15-$20.

  • An annual pass to your local state park system, $20-$30.

  • A practical how-to lightweight backpacking book, such as one by Mike Cleland, $10. ( Ray Jardine’s Trail Life is great as well, but may be a little advanced for some.

  • A lightweight cathole trowel, like the Deuce of Spades, $20.

  • Sewing lessons and some fabric to start with. Seriously. Get them on the path to making their own gear and they’ll be set for life. (h/t to /r/myog).

  • A good wool watch cap from your local surplus store, $10.

  • A wool Buff, $13-$22.

  • A lightweight packable daypack, like REI’s Travel Stuff Daypack, $30. It’s boring-looking but larger, lighter and cheaper than its more popular cousin the Flash 18.

  • A digital kitchen scale for weighing their gear, $10.

  • A hammock is a great idea. Even if they have troop tents, hammocks add versatility and flexibility. You can find serviceable ones for $20 (don’t forget to add straps).
u/[deleted] · 7 pointsr/hiking

If you do three consecutive years, you won't really need to worry about getting in shape, just staying in shape during the off seasons (I assume you won't be hiking in the winters). If you live in the south, you can still get outdoors to hike. If you live in the north, then treadmills and stair steppers are the way to go if you can't stand the cold (like me). The bigger concerns, at least for me, are personal health and money. Injuries and sickness happen, so you have to avoid those. And you need to make sure you're insured while on the trail. You also won't have much, if any, income for 3 years. That's tough. I have an AT thru-hike slated for 2015 and a PCT thru-hike for 2016, but it's already tough on me financially. Things keep popping up and eating into the PCT fund.

For general long distance hiking, here are some of my favorite books:

Andrew Skurka

Michelle Ray

Jan Curran

The Logues

u/notalbertcamus · 6 pointsr/books

This isn't necessarily literature or anything, but I bought my younger sis The Daring Book for Girls for Xmas a couple years back. She was around 9 or 10 then (I'm ~12 years her senior) and she liked it. There's a ton of really neat activities and projects in there (e.g. standard stuff like hopscotch and jump-roping to more "mature" things like hiking and science experiments and yoga), as well as lots of information on important women throughout history (e.g. a section entitled "Queens of the Ancient World," an excerpt on Joan of Arc, female Olympians, etc) and just overall a ton of really neat potpourri that's doesn't come off in the slightest as patronizing or anything like that. Plus I'm pretty sure it suggests books/literature for young XX minds to read or at least consider. I'd suggest you at least thumb through it at a bookstore or on Amazon. Hope that helps a little!

stealth edit: There also appears to be a Part II (Double-Daring...) if Part I seems like a good idea.

u/AK47Uprising · 6 pointsr/preppers

Pizza's idea of the Sawyer was an excellent suggestion and would be one of my top recommendations as well. To hit some other categories for ideas:


u/blackbodyradiation · 6 pointsr/Ultralight

I've found Backpackinglight's forum very helpful. In the gearlist section, people post their lists and get comments on them. Lighten Up is a short and simple book on the topic if you are completely new to lightweight backpacking. Also, "ultralight" is a loaded term. It implies a base weight (all the gear without food and what you're wearing) in the single digits. If this is what you really want, check out Ultralight Backpackin' Tips Otherwise, a baseweight in the teens are usually considered "lightweight" backpacking.

Also, don't just stick with stuff from REI. There are a lot of cottage industry stores that sell quality backpacking products. A few that I can think of off the top of my head are: Tarptent, Gossamer Gear, Six Moon Designs, Jacks R Better, ULA, Feathered Friends, Nunatak, Tenkara, and Bushbuddy. Of course, they are a bit more expensive, however, they are all well tested and trusted by a lot of backpackers.

Get your backpack last.

u/OffTheRivet · 6 pointsr/Ultralight

Gear is expensive so I'll give you a range, from cheapest you may find to very expensive but awesome.

Pack - get one that fits or face the back pain consequence - $50 for an ASolo UL to $500+ for Custom bag.

Sleeping bag - consider a quilt instead - All depends on where you live. I have a $35 dollar bag and a $450 bag I use one in the tropics on one in the alpine or arctic.

Tent - If you're camping alone, in a treed area, get a henessey hammock. They're $150 or so. You can also get a tarp ($50) and bivy ($100 used) combo. Don't lug a 4 person tent around for 1 or 2 people.

Next purchase - Stove. Make (check r/myog or cat food camp stove for info) or buy. You can also get a bomb proof msr stove for $35 + fuel.

Getting a pack that fits is the most important thing. A sleeping bag will fit in any pack because it's just fabric and fuzz.

Tent basics:
Big Agnes, TarpTent are the reasonably priced and best performing UL tents.
If you are 1 person get a 1 person tent. If you are 2 people, get a 2 person tent.
Look into hammock, bivy/tarp, and tent options and pick the one that suits where you'll be camping.

You'll want a 50-70L pack for trips longer than a weekend.

Mike Clelland has a really cheap and great tip book, he was a NOLS leader forever and knows his shit, and explains it with cartoons.

u/zorkmids · 6 pointsr/Ultralight

I'd recommend either Andrew Skurka's book or Dan Ladigan's book.

Andrew Skurka's website is also a good resource.

The Backpacking Light forums are excellent.

Ten Pound Backpack is pretty helpful for gear comparisons, once you know roughly what you're you're looking for.

u/armchairbackpacker · 6 pointsr/Ultralight

Before you buy anything I would recommend you read this book. It might save you some time , money and trouble.

u/MrManBeard · 6 pointsr/WildernessBackpacking

For a complete beginner I usually recommend you pick up a book. There's so much information that it's hard to get anything from Reddit replies. Backpacking becomes a very personal activity after a few years and everyone has different ideas about the best set ups for gear and what not. So start with one of these books and really get an understanding of all the different types of gear. Also if you're in the states and have an REI close by you should see what kind of courses they offer. Most REI's have some kind of free intro to backpacking course. If you're cautious and prepared, going solo is just as safe as going in a group.
The top 3

The Ultimate Hikers Guide

The Backpackers Field Manual

The Complete Walker IV

The first one is probably the most easily digestible. The 3rd is my favorite but that's just because I enjoy the writing style. It's also arguably the most comprehensive.
I'd suggest you grab one or more of those books and start getting an understanding of all the gear. You could start with some easy overnight trip.

Edit: I just want to add, if you've never been backpacking at all you should look into gear rental and plan a quick trip. I've known plenty of people that think they want to do it until they do and they hate it. REI's have gear rental, some colleges have Outdoor Rec departments that rent gear. You could also look for a group near you and message them about wanting to learn. I used to go out with a Meetup group and we would always gladly put a bag together for someone wanting to try it out.

u/bannerad · 6 pointsr/yellowstone

I've found the book "A Ranger's Guide to Yellowstone Day Hikes" by Roger Anderson and Carol Shively Anderson to be very useful in assessing the difficulty and distance of the many hiking opportunities in Yellowstone:

They're kids. Pull up by a small stream and let them play in it. Thats what my kids always wanted to do.

Fishing, too. Get yourself a small spinning rod and a some single hook spinners, pull off the road where Soda Butte Creek meets the Lamar River and toss it in. I bet you catch a fish. There are numerous opportunities to do some light fishing in the park. You'll need a license, but the kids don't (I think...check at the park office).

u/mattymeats · 5 pointsr/Ultralight

Start with a good book or two. I recommend Beyond Backpacking, Lighten Up!, and The Ultimate Hiker’s Gear Guide. Any of these books will give a good 50,000-foot view of the world of things you should be thinking about when introducing yourself to backpacking.

u/MungoParkplace · 5 pointsr/Ultralight

Buy these books before you spend any more money on anything else. They can save you a lot of money over the course of your upcoming months of gear-nerding out.

u/RobMaule · 5 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

I found Michelle Ray's book, How to Hike the A.T.: The Nitty-Gritty Details of a Long-Distance Trek, invaluable to my preparation. Not knowing anyone who had any long-distance hiking experience, this was the next best thing.

u/rusty075 · 5 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

You're probably going to be disappointed in the responses you get to this question. "Best Gear" is sort of like asking for best ice cream flavor, or best color - you're going to get a lot of opinions based on personal preference, but very few hard-and-fast "best" verdicts.

Best Gear will be whatever works for your needs and hiking style. Take sleeping pads for example: my "best" might be a luxurious thick, heavy pad so I can sleep really well and rest my sore back, but your "best" might be a super thin and light pad to reduce your pack weight. Both are right answers, just for different reasons.

But the good news is you've got time. You can start researching, and doing little test trips to try out different things to see what works for you. If you want to get started learning about gear, and the philosophy behind it, Andrew Skurka's book is a pretty good read.

u/xueimel · 5 pointsr/motocamping

I'm a big hammock fan, so I'm sorry if I get long winded. Been through a few hammocks in search of perfection (never worn one out). I started with this one, have the most experience with this one, most recently started using this one. Used hammocks to cover the south half of Wisconsin's state parks in 2013 on a CB750 wearing this backpack.

Finding trees the right distance was (impressively) never a problem for me. I've been thinking there should be a way to hang one side on the motorcycle should the need arise, but haven't yet had to test it. I'd really like to be able to hang from the motorcycle on one side and the frame on that pack on the other side, but don't know if the pack will support a person (hasn't been warm enough to test since I thought of this).

In terms of rain, I started with a generic big blue tarp from a hardware store. This was a bad idea, thing was bulky, loud, and inflexible to the point of being hard to work with. Now I use this and it does the job pretty well. I used a large size of this tarp for a while, but the one I got was too big and ultimately heavier than needed.

I'm sorry to bust your bubble, but hammocks can get cold at night. I used this sleeping pad, after a while added this to keep the shoulders warm. Sleeping on what feels like a massively oversized menstrual pad never felt right, plus they get a little awkward in a hammock. Everybody I've heard from recommends underquilts for proper insulation, and it took me until this year to bite the bullet and get one (they're not cheap). I just got this yesterday, and intend to test it tomorrow night.

This book has been widely recommended. I haven't read it yet, but at $4 for kindle, that's not a bad price. You can read it on a smartphone or computer with the kindle app (which is free).

It wasn't until I typed this all out that I realized how much money I probably spent on all this stuff. I didn't buy it all from Amazon, just convenient links.

u/lizardlike · 5 pointsr/TheForgottenDepths

Check out this book - it is pretty much the bible for single rope technique for caving.

u/sargon2 · 5 pointsr/Ultralight
u/anonmarmot · 4 pointsr/CampingandHiking

no pic. here's a link to what I had in 2011, not sure how outdated that is but it'd give you a sense. I did it again in 2013 or so and added a pound or two to my pack, mostly in the form of a 1p tent. I MUCH preferred a single person tent. I got one of those Solong ones made for tall dudes.

re-reading that list there's nothing I brought that I didn't end up wanting. Lots of lessons in general, mostly stemming from this book. Essentially think about the need, and alternatives to fill that need. Think about overlapping items and how to pare it down. Think about how happier you'd be hiking 200+ miles if you left 5lb of stuff at the trailhead and try to find ways to do that.

u/sissipaska · 4 pointsr/Ultralight

In addition to what others have already said (weigh everything and make a lighterpack/trailpost), also look at what other people are carrying. The sub is full of trip reports which all have gear lists. Compare those lists to what you're carrying to see what to leave behind and which items would benefit most from lighter replacements.

Just few examples from the sub:

Stumbled on those after just few minutes of browsing through the top submissions.

Also Cam Honan's articles on the gear accomplished long distance hikers carry are pretty useful:

And Mike Clelland's book Ultralight Backpackin' Tips can't be recommended enough:

u/justinlowery · 4 pointsr/Ultralight

I'd recommend picking up a few books. Ultralight Backpackin' Tips by Mike Clelland, and Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide by Andrew Skurka for starters. These will help you a ton.

Then, what was just said, ask yourself with each item, "Am I packing my fears?" "Do I really need this?" and "What would realistically happen if I left this at home?" I'm seeing a ton of unnecessary and/or redundant stuff, not to mention all the heavy stuff.

For example, paracord, multitool, lantern, lots of heavy stuff sacks, an ultra-heavy water reservoir, full bottle of soap (you only need a few drops of that stuff), 3 heavy knives (a tiny swiss army classic or even a razor blade would do the trick), tons of excessive, heavy and redundant clothing (use a simple, versatile layering system with no redundancy), etc. Your first aid kit weighs almost 13oz! You can easily make a good one for under 3. You have a space blanket and two redundant fire starters (emergency only items) when you are carrying a gas stove and a sleeping bag (actual versions of the things your survival kit is supposed to improvise). The list is quite long.

Also, I'd take a serious look at some of the UL/SUL hammock guys on YouTube and get some ideas from their videos on how to dramatically simplify and lighten your hammock system. It seems incredibly complicated and heavy to me, esp. based on what I've seen online from other Hammock guys. For instance, a +6oz gear pouch? A suspension system that weighs more than your actual hammock? Yikes. Definitely take a look at lots of the lighterpack links you see in people's flairs on here too and just get some ideas for how to simplify, reduce, and eliminate items in your gear list. YouTube is your friend. There are tons of UL and SUL guys on there who camp in Hammocks. Learn from their experience and save yourself from having to re-live their mistakes.

Good luck and have fun! I know it probably seems overwhelming now, but just whittle down one thing at a time and you'll get there. You're already off to a good start with having all your gear in a list online to create accountability and show you the true weights of everything. It's fun to see how light you can go with your gear list and your back will thank you for it!

u/CalifOregonia · 4 pointsr/Eugene

Others have mentioned William Sullivan's guidebooks, this one is virtually the hiking bible for our area. There is a newer version that I couldn't find on Amazon, but has recently been made available at REI.

If you plan on staying in Eugene for awhile that book is worth every penny. Just make sure to be a respectful hiker if you buy it, many of the trails that he lists used to be fantastically secluded, but have recently become much more popular.

u/GreenSpartan12 · 4 pointsr/yellowstone

Make sure you get up early (like 7 am) and head to Lamar Valley look for a parked cars and you are sure to see Wolves or a Grizzly. This was the best thing I did while I was there

My 2nd piece of advice is do some off road trails. Yellowstone really awards you for putting in the work. We had to hike about 9 miles to see Fairy Falls and it was totally worth it. There's also one we did that goes behind Mammoth hot Springs and gives you way prettier views with no one around. Theres a loop when doing wthe southern canyon trail that allows you to see some really cool thermals. this booke offers a lot of great options

When doing any major attractions I would just try to get there early. Getting to Biscuit Basin around 8 or 9am allowed for easy parking and less crowded boardwalks.

I would defnitley make a point to get down to Tetons. Its really chill and peacful there. We stayed at Signal Moutain campground and the lodge seemed like a nice place. People wroking there were very cool and helpful. Also if you enjoy craft beer Melvin in Jackson is one of the best brewries in the country.

u/SuperJoan · 3 pointsr/AskReddit

I think there should be one of these in every purse/backpack. Good reading when there's nothing to do and you're bound to learn something useful.

u/l_one · 3 pointsr/zombies

For the machete a Cold Steel kukri is an excellent option.

Field strip the MREs: here's how.

Get the Chinese military shovel instead, it's really awesome. Here's one link to buy it.

Would advise a Camelbak or other mini-backpack style hydration bladder, much better for mobility.

For the rope: get milspec 550 paracord.

Gorilla brand duct tape is advised.

For the multitool either SOG or Leatherman are excellent choices. A couple of good picks from each: SOG PowerAssist and PowerLock as well as the Leatherman MUT and the Charge TTi.

Check out 4Sevens for excellent quality flashlights - really these guys are among the best in the flashlight market.

For the gun I would advise a Ruger 10/22 with a folding stock for compactness. Add some 32 round interlocking magazines and a box or two of ammo (.22LR is cheap, they come in boxes of 500 or so).

I would also recommend a Red Cross multifunction solar/crank radio.

The SAS Survival Handbook and of course the Zombie Survival Guide would make good additions.

u/myotheralt · 3 pointsr/science
u/meaty_maker · 3 pointsr/WildernessBackpacking

I'm reading this book now: Expert with Map and Compass and then will be look at this one: Wilderness Navigation

edit: readability

u/azoeart · 3 pointsr/Ultralight

What do you already have? Not everything needs to be replaced. A list with weights is always helpful. We like to weigh stuff, and we are obsessed with that (okay, not everyone is).

There are two books that really helped me Lighten Up! and Ultralight Backpackin' Tips.

u/aggietau · 3 pointsr/backpacking

Check out for a gear list. It has some ultralight ideas with pack weights on one of the pages. It's divided by ounce so you can get a feel for utility vs. weight. You may want to buy lighten up the book with cartoons to understand where you'll need to invest and what's really important. It's easily readable in a night or two and really fun too!

u/upvotes_cited_source · 3 pointsr/Ultralight

> Any required reading for someone not necessarily looking for a budget list?

Relevant no matter your budget.

u/cwcoleman · 3 pointsr/CampingandHiking

Here are a few:

Ray Jardine's Lightweight Backpacking for general techniques and 'ultralight' ideas

Freezer bag cooking - a method of cooking I prefer

More mountaineering than basic camping/hiking - but a SOLID reference book is Freedom of the Hills by The Mountaineers

Real experience is really your #1 learning tool for these sorts of skills. Preparing is key - but at some point you need to get outdoors and practice what you've read. Start with small trips, even around your neighborhood (with a full pack) works. Then work up to the longer / overnight adventures. Ask questions!

u/Trickytrout · 3 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

I highly recommend Appalachian Trials! to any prospective thru-hiker. I'm reading it for my third time now and I feel that, going into the my hike next year, I already have a major advantage.

u/highwarlok · 3 pointsr/CampingandHiking
u/eidnarb · 3 pointsr/Hammocks

Check out: The Ultimate Hang: An Illustrated Guide To Hammock Camping by Derek J Hansen

u/ElusiveReverie · 3 pointsr/camping

Side-sleeper-in-a-hammock here. You can do it, if that's your only reason not to. The key is to lay diagonally, like this I only go to ground if there are no trees :)

The book that image is from is awesome, and so easy to digest. I highly recommend it.

Best night's sleep on the trail, bar none. And of course, shout out to /r/hammocks

u/Tvcypher · 3 pointsr/Hammocks

The Ultimate Hang is considered the premiere work on the subject. You should be able to order it online.

u/JaxHiker · 3 pointsr/Hammocks

Pick up a copy of Derek Hansen's The Ultimate Hang ( Sometimes it takes some experimentation to find the right combination for you. Keep at it. I don't know if I know anyone that's gone back to the ground after trying out a hammock.

u/airchinapilot · 3 pointsr/vancouver

I liked this book too 109 Hikes of the Lower Mainland

Here's one I haven't read but it's the same author: 103 Hikes Southwestern British Columbia

Hundreds of possibilities .. easy ones are Lynn Canyon, Cap, Stanley Park, Lighthouse Park, do all the beaches, Minnekhada, Colony Farm, Seymour Demonstration forest, +1 on Pacific Spirit, Deer Lake

u/asocktipus · 3 pointsr/CampingandHiking

My SO and I stayed at the Norris campground, which was great. It's pretty central so we were able to do things like drive down to grand tetons for the day and not have to move campsites often. We stayed at Gardiner the night before and woke up early to drive to the campsite. We got there 45-30 mins before they started accepting check-ins, and we were like 8th in line.

If you're doing first come first serve plan to get there EARLY to get your site.

As far as hikes, my personal favorite was Elephant's Back, you get an incredible panoramic view of Yellowstone lake, and almost nobody goes up there.

We didn't plan a ton in advance. We had a copy of this book:
And just picked a region and picked a couple of hikes to do during the day based on distance, views, etc. Worked really well.

u/unwiredmatt · 3 pointsr/CampingandHiking

There are tons and tons of things to do and see in Yellowstone. If you just stick to the backcountry you'll miss a lot. You could spend 3-4 days just doing the more touristy stuff. I bought this book to help figure out what hikes to do. Mt Washbourn was an awesome day hike. There was a place where the Boiling river met with a much colder river and you could swim in it. That was a lot of fun. The hike to the petrified trees in the northeast corner of the park is a great hike to go on and get away from the crowds. The park is basically two giant circles. I'd start at one end and go around until you hit everything.

As for camping I'd recommend making a reservation at one of the camp site now. You can't just pull off the road and camp and will probably need a permit for any backcounty sites. I stayed at the Canyon Campground last time I was there and it was a great camp site. Make reservations at campsite near the stuff you want to do and leave early or you'll sit in bear jams for hours....

u/amoxy · 3 pointsr/alpinism

So spent a fair bit of time (4 weeks) wandering the Khumbu (Everest) Area a few years ago. I didn't climb any technical peaks, but I got up to 5800m on Chukkung Tse (it was a fairly easy walk to the top).

If you are a competent hiker/route finder/traveler, I would recommend going alone. There were some people who I met along the trail that had guides, they seemed hit or miss. Some were awesome and would help the clients do whatever they wanted, some were a bit too controlling for my tastes.

For costs I took a ~$5 bus to Jiri and walked into the Khumbu, very nice, cheap, tons of very friendly Nepalis and virtually no other trekkers, but not feasible if you've got limited time and/or a lot of gear. Daily costs were around maybe $10 a day. If you find a group of people you can negotiate prices (if the 6 of us eat here will you give us the room for free). Cost to fly in or out of Lukla ran about $200 one way I think, I flew out instead of walking out.

As for climbing, most of the 6000m+ peaks are called "Trekking" peaks. The most common one to climb is Island peak. From what I've been told it was super cool to climb those, but you NEED a guide. There are a lot more permitting issues than for a simple trekker like myself. You'll have to go through a local company. My suggestion if you are set on climbing one of those peaks is to hang out in Thamel (tourist region of Kathmandu) and find westerners who have dealt with local companies. You'll save a boat load of cash over booking through a western agency and you'll get to meet the people in charge before you put down money. If you get a bad vibe, just walk away. For guide companies, I would first suggest Ang Rita Trekking: The manager, Mingma, helped organize the trek my parents met in the late 70s and became a family friend and helped me tremendously when I was there. It's also cool because he was born in the Khumbu and his son is now a guide. I never did an actual trek with them, but I can vouch they've been a stand up organization for 35+ years.

For the Everest Area the best guide book by far is Trekking in the Everest Region By Jamie McGuinness. Especially if you are just trekking on your own this guide is invaluable.

PM me if you have any questions

u/LocalAmazonBot · 3 pointsr/alpinism

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u/fallacybuffet · 3 pointsr/climbing

The local climb shop (Summit Hut, Tucson, AZ) recommended On Rope when I asked this same question. I never bought it, but did page through it. Seems very detailed. Probably the best book about climbing rope. Lots of knots, too. Even if it is about caving.

u/thomas533 · 3 pointsr/Survival

You get what you pay for. Neither of these look like they are any better than the free advice you get here and on other websites. Save your money for something useful.

u/CaptCuke · 3 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

Where's the Next Shelter? (Green Giant Travels Book 1)

u/Derporelli · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

SAS Survival Handbook. Not a novel, but definitely a useful real. It doesn't hurt to know a little about survival.

edit: spelling

u/SNAFUBAR · 2 pointsr/collapse

The SAS Survival Handbook is a good one. There's a broad range of material covered; in just one book.

u/CourierOfTheWastes · 2 pointsr/zombies

i actually posted about the bible.

>Ignore the bible (Unless you're religious, then add whatever scripture you like. Make sure it's waterproof or at least compact. Ill have This Book)

And you're probably right about the bible.

And cash is great in the first few days after SHTF. If stores wont take it, some idiot will. Money, even today, is only worth what we believe it is worth. Otherwise it is still cloth paper....but even after the dead rise, SOMEBODY will believe it worth something.

u/fireflygirlie · 2 pointsr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

These aren't under $5, but definitely worth getting and HAVING. I've been increasingly interested in surivalism (as a result of hanging out with my paranoid dad), so definitely get these books:

u/burritoace · 2 pointsr/pittsburgh

It's not too complicated, you could also just pick up a book like this one.

u/OnlyFactsNoContext · 2 pointsr/Mountaineering

There's a really good series of cartoon books about lightweight backpacking and mountaineering by a few guys from NOLS which really helped me adjust what I thought was "necessary".



General Backpacking

I had a really solid mountaineer once tell me that the key to success on the mountains is camping like a champion. If you're poorly rested, poorly fed or angry with your partners because of a crappy camp setup, you're less likely to achieve your goals.

I mostly do ski mountaineering with some summer stuff thrown in for kicks (I'm in the Canadian rockies so "Summer" is relative). Typically I'll have my ski touring day pack 35L+ and my wife carries a 45L+ bag (she tends to carry but not wear more layers) on any trip where I'm based out of a base camp or hut. We'll drag our gear in on a pull sled or we'll both bring our 65 or 85L bags (depending on trip length) to camp, then ditch em.

u/MissingGravitas · 2 pointsr/WildernessBackpacking

First, yer gonna die. I say this only partially in jest, because your question indicates you haven't done the initial research on your own, and I can make a fairly good guess at how the story will play out, particularly if you were to attempt it this late in the year.

Now that that's out of the way, I suggest you start with these two books:

u/GemJump · 2 pointsr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

Lighten Up! - A book about effectively preparing backpacking gear to prevent injuries and strain.

Thanks for the contest /u/Internal_Cannon!

u/jack4allfriends · 2 pointsr/Ultralight

Read Skurka gear guide before you buy anything & Ultralight Backpackin' Tips to get you in "UL mode', there rest will be sort of easy..

Learn to love trail runners - it changed everything for me

u/DontWorry-AboutIt · 2 pointsr/Ultralight

Check out the book Ultralight Backpackin' Tips by Mike Clelland. He put together a pretty comprehensive and digestible, and really nicely illustrated book that breaks everything down and explains the reasoning behind each technique and suggestion.

Andrew Skurka's book is also really well written, but Clelland's really emphasizes the fun and grooviness of ultralight technique.

u/doh_tee_horne · 2 pointsr/hiking

Buy this book and read it before you spend any money. This will give you a great idea of how to squeeze a lot of enjoyment out of hiking & backpacking (IMO). It might not all appeal to you, but there are some real great tips and philosophies in here that will help a new hiker.

ultralight backpackin’ tips

u/PrettyCoolGuy · 2 pointsr/AppalachianTrail

You could try this one, but I've never used it:

Check the sidebar of this subreddit--lots of good info there.

u/atetuna · 2 pointsr/camping

As /u/cwcoleman said, that's a long trip, especially for a newbie. The biggest issue with long trips is food. Many new long distance backpackers have found that what looks great on a spreadsheet turns out terribly after a few days of trying to eat it.

What is the nature of your trip? Are you hiking all day, every day? Short hike to a site you'll stay at all week? Something else? It makes a big difference in what you'll want to pack and eat. Either way, I highly recommend going on your camping diet for a few days at home. Look into freezer bag cooking and dehydrating your own meals. That can give you tasty meals that are easy to make and have virtually no cleanup.

Please post a gear list of what you already have. Share your budget too if you're looking for gear recommendations. I hate giving recommendations for good reasonably priced gear, only to find out that the budget calls for free gear and buying a few things from Walmart.

I really like that you know about not eating where you sleep.

Ray Jardine's Trail Life has some really good tips about camp site selection. It makes a huge difference. He has some oddball ideas in the rest of the book that can work, but you probably shouldn't follow them exactly. For example he's a big fan of corn pasta, but the same thing he was using doesn't really exist anymore, so you won't get the same dietary benefits. It's still a great book for getting you to think creatively though.

u/PoundNaCL · 2 pointsr/AppalachianTrail
u/spiffae · 2 pointsr/CampingandHiking

I was introduced to hiking in one of the most mindblowing hikes of my life - the Obsidian Trail near Sisters, OR. It's best described in this book: 100 Hikes in the Central Oregon Cascades

You cross a lava field, pick up a little of the PCT, check out alpine meadows with streams and ponds, can basecamp and then climb up to a glacier, or just find a nice meadow and spend the night under the stars.

If I could choose a few day trip to do out there, I'd hike up, basecamp at the base of the middle sister, summit the next morning, hang out, and then hike out on the third day.

Here are a couple pics I took on that first ever hike.

There are almost unlimited amazing opportunities out there, this is just one and may not be what you're looking for - either way have a great time and let us know how it goes!

u/douglasa · 2 pointsr/CampingandHiking

Well, for starters, I definitely recommend this guide for the area! The author is from Eugene and is extremely knowledgeable. His books are pretty much the Bible when it comes to Oregon hikes.

I've enjoyed every trip I've taken from that book into the Mckenzie foothills!Separation Creek and Sahalie falls are some highlights my wife and I have done recently. We're headed out to Olallie Mountain this weekend.

I don't have the book on me at the moment (at work) but it has a ton of great hikes in the area.

u/ChiefBromden · 2 pointsr/backpacking

Um. no. It's really not. It's a fantastic book, written by arguably one of THE best hikers in the world. Andrew Skurka. The book answers the types of questions many people come here and ask like: 'hey, I'm going X, what type of gear is best for this trip'. Take a look inside at Amazon Sure, he names some specific product names...but there is far more information on just general gear selection in there.

u/Benny_Lava · 2 pointsr/Hammocks

I purchased an inexpensive hammock (ENO Double Nest) as a test. I put a couple of heavy-duty lag screw eyes in my bedroom ceiling, for a "test hang" in the privacy of my home, without worrying about weather, bugs, etc. That was six months ago, and I still sleep in it every night.

I do intend to get a different hammock for camping, and all the related gear (tarp, whoopie slings, bug net, etc.)

Have you found Hammock Forums yet? One of their members wrote a book on hammocks, that I've found invaluable. It's called "The Ultimate Hang", by Derek Hansen. I got my copy from Amazon.

u/grantizzle · 2 pointsr/Hammocks

Buy this book

it is a very quick and informative read and it will answer all your questions. seriously.

u/Kiarnan · 2 pointsr/myog

We were tagging three 4000 footers somewhat near Zealand falls... First night we night hiked and climbed Mt. Hale, then we continued night hiking til almost 3 am lol...there was almost a full moon and coming through the section of the AT where it meets the Zeacliff trail was epic at 1am with almost a full moon shining on the talus fields below Whitewall Mountain. We then camped for the night a little past that section after an exhausting bushwack looking for a legal spot off trail. We spent the next night at an overflow spot off of the AT and waited out most of the rain that day. The next day the weather cleared and we climbed Mt. Tom and Field. Was a great trip :D

Ya you should definitely give hammocks a try sometime! A few tips to ensure that you have a chance at good nights sleep in a hammock...make sure that you are using a hammock that is at least 10.5 feet long...11 foot is even better. Anything shorter than that is only really good for lounging in, not sleeping (in my and many other's opinion). You need a proper length hammock to get a good diagonal lay, which is the position that most people find the most comfortable. With a good diagonal lay, you can get your body almost completely flat (as opposed to laying in the hammock like a bananna, which is not comfortable for most folks). You will find that you have a dominant side that you like to position your body which usually corresponds to your dominant for example, I am left handed and I find it most comfortable to have my feet to the left and my head to the right. A lot of right handed people find that laying the opposite (feet right, head left) is more comfortable for them though. You just have to play around to figure out which position works for you.

Hang angle is also very important in achieving a comfortable position. Your suspension should typically be around 30 degrees to the tree, although I find I like my head end a few more degrees than that. Make lots of micro adjustments to find what is ideal for you. Also, most folks find it more comfortable to have the foot end slightly higher than the head end so that you are not slipping down towards the bottom of the hammock all night. I like to find trees that are spaced about 7 paces between them.

Some sort of bottom insulation is quite necessary to stay warm unless it's around 70 degrees or above. On the ground we lose heat due to conduction, but when hanging we lose heat due to convection. A simple CCF or inflatable pad will do the trick for sure but nothing beats an underquilt for comfort and simplicity...pads work but there is much more "fiddle factor" involved in getting them where you want them, and that process starts over when you get out and back in... but it's totally doable and not that bad... but an underquilt will forever spoil you after using one.

I highly recommend reading Derek Hansen's book The Ultimate Hang before embarking on a journey into the world of's a fun, easy read and will give you all of the essential info that you need.

Regarding the weight issue, while it is true that you will be probably be able to go the absolute lightest with a ground setup using something like a torso length GG CCF pad and minimalist tarp etc., you can go pretty darn light with hammock setups these days using something like a hammock made of the 1 ounce per yard fabrics like Hexon 1.0 with a partial bug net (a Dutchware Half-wit or an add on net like the HUG available at Arrowhead Equipment) , Dutch's new Dyneema 2.0 straps, whoopie slings and an 11 ounce partial length underquilt like a Hammock Gear Phoenix 40 degree. That is essentially my setup at the moment (with a few different tarps that I swap out depending on weather conditions). I've been rocking my whole setup in a GG Kumo with no hip belt and am usually right under a 10 pound baseweight for warm weather loadouts. The slight weight penalty that my hammock setup incurs over ground setup has been totally worth it to me because it has translated into a very consistent sleep experience and has really opened up so many new camping locations. I find that a hammock setup under a tarp is so much more enjoyable when having to ride out a storm as well...the hammock can be used a super comfortable seat to do all sorts of camp chores from. If you take one side of the hammock and fold it over on itself it makes super comfortable seat (you do this to avoid the feeling of the hammock pressing into behind your knee when sitting in it normally). Poor drainage is not as much of a concern as well in a hammock setup which is another huge plus.

My last tip would be expect that your first few trips using a hammock are going to be learning experiences and you may not get it right the first few times. It can take a few trips to get your setup dialed in, but once you do, it's amazing! I'd be happy to answer any questions that you have and I am sure that many of the other hammock users around here would as well. Happy hanging :D

u/Jakuskrzypk · 2 pointsr/Bushcraft

You should check out:

Cody Lundin 98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive

Dave Canterbury Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Surviva

Mors kochanski Bushcraft: Outdoor Skills and Wilderness Survival

Lofty Wiseman SAS Survival Handbook: The Definitive Survival Guide

George Washington Sears Woodcraft

Horace Kephart The Book of Camping and Woodcraft: A Guidebook for Those who Travel in the Wilderness

Warren H. Miller The Sportsman's Workshop

I also compelled a list of youtube channels that are worth checking out for another thread:

And lastly the common sense answer go out and enjoy the wilderness.

u/-709 · 2 pointsr/teararoa

South Island navigation is much easier than North Island road walking navigation. Far less chance of getting lost. Good idea on the non waterproof, goretex just keeps the moisture inside your shoes. Quick draining shoe/sock setup is where it's at, as you will litteraly be hiking for days in rivers. If you want to take it to the extreme, thin dress socks drain and dry even quicker than merino (merino for me though)

I hung with an EE revelation 20 quilt and a gossamer gear thinlight hammock pad, using my rain jacket as a pillow and it was plenty warm for the whole trip. Only had to sleep with all of my clothes on a few times. In the colder, more exposed areas there are usually huts.

I highly recommend this book for just all around becoming more smart about thru hiking:

u/seanomenon · 2 pointsr/onebag

This is something I've thought about a lot. I've only managed it for overnight trips, I like clean underwear too much. But if nothing else, it is a fun thought experiment and helps you get the bag even lighter. Your list of things that you absolutely must bring gets a lot shorter if it's all going in your pockets.

You might find some interesting info in the world of ultralight backpacking. It's very different, but oddly the same.

These are people who go wilderness camping with a 10lb or less base pack weight. (Base weight = not including the food and water you'll consume during the trip.) You don't need to bring food, bedding and shelter, so you're a step ahead.

One ultralight trick is to repackage toiletries, to bring just enough toothpaste, deodorant, hair gel, etc., for the trip. Small bottles and contact lens cases are great for this.

The best book I've read on it is Ultralight Backpackin' Tips. It's fun and funny but is also full of cool ideas.

u/GCanuck · 1 pointr/AskReddit
u/Gnall · 1 pointr/AskReddit

I'd rather have this.

u/ashbash8289 · 1 pointr/promos

I have this!

u/fredfredburger · 1 pointr/AskReddit

It took me over a year to get pretty consistent with it.

Oddly, one of the best descriptions I ever got of the mechanics was from "The Daring Book for Girls"

But piles of trial and error were probably what did it.

u/thermidorian · 1 pointr/preppers

SAS Survival Handbook

Wilderness Medicine

Where There Is No Doctor

First Aid For Dogs

These are the ones I have. The SAS Survival guide is great for general survival know-how. Wilderness Medicine and Where There Is No Doctor are both great resources on field medicine and first aid. I got First Aid For Dogs because I probably wouldn't go anywhere without my dog and I want to be able to take care of him like he's part of the family.

If you buy all these off Amazon, then they will give you many more suggestions on good resource books. These are just the ones I keep ready and good overviews of many different scenarios.

u/ChiefMcClane · 1 pointr/Random_Acts_Of_Amazon

I recommend surplus Army .50 ammo cans for your cache! Those are fantastic.

People that have robbed banks have used those to store weapons and money in remote caches I'm the woods.

I recommend either
U.S. Army Ranger Handbook: Revised and Updated Edition by Army


SAS Survival Handbook, Revised Edition: For Any Climate, in Any Situation by John 'Lofty' Wiseman

u/yamichi · 1 pointr/preppers

I'm newer to this but also live in WA state and intend to "bug in" rather than out in a shit scenario.

SAS survival guide is awesome so far. I'm reading through it and I got a spare copy to keep in my SHTF can.

As a nooby hunter, I grabbed this one too- "Basic butchering of livestock and game"

also "A guide to canning, freezing, curing, and smoking meat, fish, and game."

I'd say that Ed and Jack there are a bit overzealous. You SHOULD have these books and be reading them before SHTF but the idea that books are worthless is... stupid, frankly. In the first 72 hours? Sure. You need to KNOW what you're doing to make it through the first couple days. But if the power goes out or something, what else are you going to do? You're gonna get bored and keeping your mind busy is a big step toward not going crazy. Keeping your mind busy on stuff that will HELP rather than sudoku makes a lot more sense to me.

Anyway- First aide, food, resource storage/gathering, and defense are the ways to go, IMO.

u/darkmooninc · 1 pointr/AskReddit

Something like this

u/Freelancer47 · 1 pointr/zombies

Zombie related: The Zombie Combat Manual by Roger Ma. The Walking Dead By Robert Kirkman. Zombies( by Don roff

Survival Related: The SAS Survival Guide, The Ultimate Sniper by (Ret.) Col. J. Plaster, The Emergency-Disaster Survival Guidebook.

I know it's not a book. The Colony is an interesting watch if you ever get some time to sink in information.

u/digit0 · 1 pointr/AskReddit

I would be most concerned with the following:


u/CreativeCthulhu · 1 pointr/LifeProTips

All but the absolute cheapest compasses have declination adjustment. A $9 Silva or Suunto has the adjustment and to suggest that someone needs to spend Brunton money to get an accurate compass is ridiculous (and I HAVE a Brunton). Fake edit: I just remembered that Brunton makes normal compasses and not just transits and geology tools, not all their products are $300+ although they’re REALLY nice!

My Brunton transit is the only compass I have with E/W flipped because it’s a direct read compass. None of my others, including my Suunto MC-2G read that way. The majority of compasses that anyone will ever have will read normally, there’s no need to complicate this.

Here is more compass than most people will ever need and includes the clinometer functionality of the higher-end Brunton compasses. Less than $40.

Spend half that on a cheaper compass and buy a book like this and/or this one (I have no preference, I own both) and spend some time with them.

Also, if you print your own maps it doesn’t hurt to invest in waterproofing, it also makes them last longer!

If you REALLY want to hone your nav skills, find a local orienteering club! It’s a lot of fun, and once you’re past the initial investment (a compass) there’s not really any other cost other than time.

Source: Have been wandering around in the woods for 30-odd years and have spent much time teaching other people to not get lost in the woods.

u/meommy89 · 1 pointr/Ultralight

I found the inspiration in this book: Ultralight Backpacking Tips , Mike Clelland

If you go this route. Measure twice, cut once. I snipped a couple straps that probably could have stayed.

u/Natural_Law · 1 pointr/Ultralight

That's just a free image floating around on the internet draw by Mike Clelland.

I HIGHLY recommend his Ultralight Tips book. His illustrations are hysterical and he's been a NOLS instructor all his life (so he knows whats up). I actually learned to telemark (backcountry) ski and winter camp using some of his older books (and amazing drawings).

I don't get any money from anyone for recommending it, but I bought mine here:

u/kinohead · 1 pointr/backpacking

Congratulations! I think it's very cool that you're going to be setting out to do this. I've thought about it. I don't think very many people have thru hiked this trail. There's a book about a couple who did it that might be worth trying to hunt down. The name escapes me, but it obviously has "Bruce Trail" in the title.

I would really suggest trying to go light weight with gear. Check out r/ultralight. I've found it MUCH tougher to go ultralight with gear from Canada than the States. I suggest giving this book a read for consideration:

Also, here's an interesting article about someone who thru hiked it:

SO much more, but good luck!

u/ajtrns · 1 pointr/Ultralight

Yes. In excessive detail:

While squatting over a cathole, 6" or deeper, you shit into the hole, then you wipe most of the shit off your ass with a smooth stone, clump of foliage, or paper product. You deposit that in the cathole with the rest of the shit.

Then you scoot to the side a bit and use water to wet your hand (for modern humans, usually the right hand -- left hand holds the water bottle), with the cathole catching the rinse water. With your wet hand (index and middle finger usually) you wipe your anus, rinse your fingers, wipe, rinse, repeatedly. Anus is now as clean as it would be after taking a soapless shower or using a bidet. Which is to say, more clean than just wiping with paper (the old saying: "if you got shit on your arm, would you just wipe it with toilet paper and call it good? no, you'd wash it off.")

Then you've got your right hand. Two fingers are rinsed off but not hygienic. Dry that hand with a bit of paper towel or grass, dry your ass, deposit in cathole. Then disinfect your hands. Some people use wet wipes for this and other parts of the process. I use alcohol gel, hospital-style. Hit the outside of the gel bottle and the water bottle while you're at it. Other people use soap and water.

This is roughly Clelland's method from "Ultralight Backpacking Tips".

(All this is somewhat beside the point. Cholera usually spreads through poorly managed drinking water, not human-to-human fecal-oral contamination.)

u/ovincent · 1 pointr/WildernessBackpacking

This book is the best intro resource I’ve found to teach beginner’s the essentials.

If you don’t have any gear or friends to go with, you might want to try getting a hotel near a destination and doing some day hikes, or try a car camping trip.

Otherwise, just make sure you’re not getting in over your head - don’t go somewhere you don’t know, make sure you have the essentials especially navigation, and have fun!

u/VaughnTomTucker · 1 pointr/minimalist

Of all things, the book "Ultralight Backpackin' Tips" (available here, is what inspired me to start down the path of minimalism. It showed me what was truly important to have in that particular hobby, and general tricks on how to look at things and see what's important and why. Once I pared down, I experienced the happiness that comes with having little, yet still what I needed. That snowballed into paring down all my possessions.

Random, but if you like backpacking, could be a good catalyst :-)

u/PowPowPowerCrystal · 1 pointr/AppalachianTrail

You can find the information in here for free on the internet, but if you are looking for a nice summation of everything you would have to track down piece by piece, check out How to Hike the A.T.: The Nitty-Gritty Details of a Long-Distance Trek

u/urs7288 · 1 pointr/Ultralight

Take this along:

and you will read about "trail shock". Don't worry.

I usually keep myself so busy hiking, cooking, setting up camp, breaking camp, hiking on, taking pictures, no time to feel lonely or homesick, just busy busy and then dead tired...

I avoid music or any urban entertainment. Listening to the noises of nature and enjoying the generally more quiet environment is part of why I hike.

HAPPY trails then!


u/xrobin · 1 pointr/Ultralight

This is the early edition I have, which is the one I'm referring to in terms of historical context. Years later he released an updated edition of it with some changes and a different title. If I remember right, it's less focused on PCT planning and more about taking his philosophy on any trail. Then years later he released a version of that one with color photographs and a few more updates and a new title. So it depends on if you want the version with historical interest or the one with more updated info or the one with updated info and color photographs.

u/lUwUl · 1 pointr/AppalachianTrail

I found this book interesting

My goal is to be a 2019 NoBo, so I haven’t been out there yet, but the book was decent brain candy while waiting. Good luck!

u/dark_stream · 1 pointr/WildernessBackpacking

Andrew covered that. Saves you from rebuying the whole kit until you finally get it right:

u/YepYepImaRep · 1 pointr/Ultralight

All the data says pepper spray is more effective than guns in bear attacks, so I'd lose that right quick. Second, read Ray Jardine, Justin Lichter, and Andrew Skurka.

You will find every suggestion we could come up with on here and more. Personally I find ponchos to be a shitty option, and sleeping bags and quilts are very nice. If you're on the Kenai, you will want a bugproof shelter, too.

u/ryandury · 1 pointr/CampingandHiking

You're actually better off getting a pack that's 'too small' - It forces you to be a little more disciplined in what you pack. I would suggest nothing larger than 50 Litres. I highly recommend reading 'The Ultimate Hikers Gear Guide by Andrew Skurka' - Your body will be thankful. It's seriously worth the investment. Guaranteed your backpack will be more than 10lbs lighter after reading it.

u/camawon · 1 pointr/WildernessBackpacking

This book by long distance backpacker Andrew Skurka is quite useful. Anybody can pick it up and read it. He's all about taking only what you need via thorough preparation before your trip, but he isn't "stupid light" nor elitist about gear.

u/biggyww · 1 pointr/CampingandHiking

This is a topic that is incredibly well covered by everyone who has ever slept an evening in a hammock. You should have read something, anything, about hammock camping before you tried it. I struggle to muster any sympathy, and all I'll do to offer help is [this] (

u/LessThanUnimpressed · 1 pointr/britishcolumbia

Think about crossing into the U.S. and taking in the north Cascades area. The Mt. Baker area, in particular, has some fabulous hiking, but the best hikes might still be snowbound at that time of year. Also in the US, Mt. Rainier is absolutely incredible to see, but will be a bit more a trek from Vancouver, so may not be worth it given a limited schedule.

There are a lot of hikes in the Whistler, Pemberton, Duffey Lake Road corridor. This book has some great options to check out. You can camp at Nairn Falls Provincial Park, just south of Pemberton and that puts you 30 minutes north of Whistler and about 45 minutes south of Joffre Lakes. The drive up the Sea-to-Sky and through to the Duffey is worth a day, even if you didn't get out of the car.

u/wherewithall · 1 pointr/vancouver

Get these books:
109 Walks and
103 hikes
The directions/explanations aren't the best, but at least it will give you ideas. And lots of the listings are not super well known, so often it's less crowded. I like just flipping through and picking a random spot. The walk book has walks that can take from a couple to many hours, but the hike book has major hikes - many of them are carry-in camp style for more serious hikers. Happy adventuring!

u/p00psicle · 1 pointr/vancouver

Garibaldi Lake is really nice and not too far for a day hike. I did an over nighter and had to dig out a tent pad under a meter and a half of wet snow... that was a bit unnecessary.

103 Hikes is a good book for info. You can also pick one up at MEC I'm sure.

u/dinot2000 · 1 pointr/yellowstone

It seems like you have a good grasp on what to expect on your trip which is great. I would suggest going to the hotel and saving the GTNP visit on your way to the airport.

Lamar Valley is a pretty big area and it's best to visit it early in the morning or at dusk as bears and wolves are most active at that time of day. If you see a bunch of people with spotting scopes and large camera lenses standing by the side of the road they are most likely observing one of those big animals.

If you want some books to help you with your trip, Yellowstone Treasures: The Traveler's Companion to the National Park is a very detailed one. For day hikes A Ranger's Guide to Yellowstone Day Hikes book is good and Trail Guides Yellowstone web site is an excellent source for all things Yellowstone.

u/Creek0512 · 1 pointr/travel

Yellowstone NPS - Day Hiking Guide

Trail Guides Yellowstone - Day Hikes

A Ranger's Guide to Yellowstone Day Hikes

Obviously, there is a lot of crossover on those. Last year we hiked:

  • Mystic Falls Loop - nice waterfall and lookout over a lot of the Lower Geyser Basin.

  • Mt. Washburn - go early before the parking lot fills up and it gets hot

  • Harlequin Lake Trail - really short hike to a small lake at the end of the day.

  • Trout Lake - the only short hike heading toward the NE Gate on our last day heading to Billings.

  • Fairy Falls and Imperial Geyser - make sure you go all the way to the geysers if you do this one, they aren't big but they are sort of constantly erupting

  • Osprey Falls - the waterfall at the end is awesome, but almost no one does this hike, we only saw 6 other people on the trail

  • Rims of the Grand Canyon - there were 4 of us, 2 of us got dropped of at Obeservation Point and hiked to Artist Point, the other 2 left the car at Artist Point and hiked the other direction

    I also highly recommend going to Grand Teton NP as well, and hiking the Cascade Canyon Trail up to Lake Solitude.

    Also make sure you look up how big Yellowstone is, and how long it takes to drive from one place to the next, assuming there aren't bison in the road.
u/deck_hand · 1 pointr/CampingandHiking

For a "Kickass view from the top" it is hard to beat Brasstown Bald. But, I like anything in the Cohutta Wilderness. The book Hiking trails of North Georgia is an excellent guide, and is probably available at a local library, or maybe a hiker you know has a copy.

Jack's River Falls Trail is one of my favorites. But... it's not known for it's long views. There are a couple of approach trails and AT side trails that are very nice, and have great views. Of course, the AT from Springer Mountain....

u/Stubb · 1 pointr/CampingandHiking

All hikes I mentioned are 8+ miles over hilly terrain. The Gahuti is the easiest of the bunch.

I'd recommend picking up a copy of Hiking Trails of North Georgia.

u/DNZ_not_DMZ · 1 pointr/Nepal

Get the Lonely Planet like /u/the-invisiblefriend said. Also get this book, you'll be surprised how many walks there are that don't require a whole lot of fitness.


  • Kathmandu gets much nicer once you get out of Thamel. That said, OR2K in Thamel is the shizzle, they do Nepali-Israeli food in a very funky environment.

  • Eat Momos and chicken chili, both yummo!

  • Visit Boudhanath and Swayambhunath.

  • Check out Dwarika's Hotel and have a drink and/or a bite there. That place is incredible, it feels like you're stepping through a gate to another dimension. They actually do a BBQ on Wednesdays that'll cost you about 30 USD each and that's quite lovely.

  • If you have the time/budget, visit Chitwan National Park and go bathe with the elephants. Pretty amazing experience.

  • Always check the cost of flights to get from A to B. We flew to Pokhara and paid about 100 USD each. A bus would've been half that, but taken 8 hours or so.

    Now for some unhappier bits:

  • DO NOT TOUCH ANY WILDLIFE WHILE THERE. Rabies isn't something you want to risk in a country as poor as Haiti! Should you get bitten/scratched by an animal (even superficially), go to a hospital immediately.

  • Take your vaccination pass and go talk to your doctor about the journey, he/she will know what needs refreshing. I had refreshers on MMR, HepA/HepB, Tetanus and got something to reduce the incidence of Cholera.

  • Have a water filtration bottle and a head-mounted LED lamp. The water quality ranges from 'ok' to 'factor 10 beyond the limits prescribed by the WHO for feces and bacteria' and power outages are a part of everyday life.

    Lastly, do enjoy your time. Nepal, despite being not the most user-friendly of places, is an amazing, amazing place with lovely people and stunning views. You'll be back! :-)
u/nattfodd · 1 pointr/climbing

Hehe yes, seeing Everest is something everybody should do once in their lifetime, like going to the Galapagos.

The prices on the Jagged Globe website include flight from the UK, but you can fly on your own from the US and join them in Kathmandu, or maybe ask them to book a connection in London for you. Don't hesitate to get in touch with them with that kind of issues, they will be glad to help.

Except on summit days, we rarely do more than 5 miles a day and gain 1000-1500 feet at most, since going any faster would lead to altitude issues. Most people will be ok (though everybody will suffer to some extent) but some are just unlucky and come down with bigger health problems. One member of the group had to be helicoptered out as he had a very worrying chest infection that required immediate medical attention. It's quite rare, but it does happen.

You will probably like my photo essays from the trip (the Khumbu Diaries), it gives a day by day account of the expedition. I also strongly recommend getting Jamie McGuinness's guidebook, Trekking in the Everest region, as it is very thorough and informative.

There are not really any hidden costs, except maybe for tips (which you are told about at the beginning, and usually doesn't exceed 50-70 USD) but anything out of the regular meals will be very expensive in the mountains, and a soda or a candy bar can become very tempting after a long day. I burned through 300USD in a month without indulging too much, and could easily have spent double that amount.

u/jeremy1701 · 1 pointr/climbing
u/Gobias_Industries · 1 pointr/AskReddit

No offense to climbers, but you need to be asking cavers instead, this is really their sort of thing.

You're looking at SRT, single rope technique, ascent. The cheapest way is a pair of long prussiks, one for each foot, plus a chest harness to keep you upright. Another similar option is one long prussik for both feet, and a prussik off the chest harness linked to the seat harness, this would be similar to a Frog System that cavers use. It will be hard going, dangerous, but possible.

If you want a book about it, check out On Rope, which has more info than you'll ever need.

EDIT: I also just realized something. If you have a good length of static line, use that instead of climbing rope. Ascending on bouncing climbing road is a pain in the ass.

u/VonHavoc · 1 pointr/Survival

Cody Lundin's 98.6 Degrees and When All Hell Breaks Loose are both good reads.