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  4. HarryNC

    Misc. Backpacking Gear for Sale

    Cleaning out the garage. I used to do quite a bit of backpacking with my boys when they were younger, but those days have passed. All equipment is in excellent, used condition. Mountainsmith Mountainlight 5000 Backpack - Lightweight, 5000 cu internal frame pack. Specs and reviews can be found here: https://www.backpacking.net/mtnlite5000-review.html and here: http://www.outdoorreview.com/product/product-archives/outdoor-equipment/backpacking-camping-hiking/internal-frame-backpacks/mountainsmith/mountainlight-3500-and-5000.html - $50 Kelty Redcloud 5400 Backpack - 5400 cu internal frame pack - Specs and reviews can be found here: https://www.trailspace.com/gear/kelty/red-cloud-5400/ - $50 Primus PTL 2245 Alpine Easylight Lantern - $61.94 new at Walmart - $30 MSR Cascade Designs Outback Oven - $30 "Bear Proof" Food Storage Canister - $20
  5. Hugh

    Hiking with restrictions

    Thanks so much. I will definitely check this out!
  6. Happylogan1

    Summer Hiker requiring little break in

    Hello good people: We are looking for a pair of summer hikers for a 2 week Colorado trip. We live in Florida and do hikes here. That being said. What shoes/boots, would you suggest which require minimal break in? Thank you Logan
  7. Happylogan1

    Logan from FLorida

    Greetings!!
  8. NicLynne

    Hello from Seattle

    Thank you Aaron!
  9. Aaron

    Hello from Seattle

    Welcome to the forum!
  10. Performing a few simple yet vital tasks, our choice of a backpacking pot is one item that the rest of our cooking gear will frequently revolve around, especially if you like to pack your entire cooking kit inside your pot. A backpacking pot serves as a vessel in which we can prepare our backcountry meals and heat or even sanitize water if needed – and despite being such a simple item it is not one easily replaced. In fact, if one were only allowed to take a few items of gear into the backcountry a good pot would be near the top of one’s list. This article will cover basics on backpacking cookware selection while focusing on the main player in this department – the backpacking pot – as we’ve already covered mug selection and backpacking utensils at the aforementioned links. Capacity With options out there in nearly every shape and size, the first step in narrowing down our cookware selection process is choosing the right capacity. In this regard we want to go with the smallest pot that will adequately cover our cooking needs, since weight increases with capacity. For solo use, pots or mug / pot combos in the range of 600-900ml are usually ideal for weight conscious backpackers. Sizes on the low end of this range will serve one well when it comes to boiling water for freeze dried meals or freezer bag style cooking, but if you like to cook simple meals in your pot, larger options are suggested. In these sizes many options will be of the mug / pot combo variety, like the Toaks 750 or the MLD 850. These choices, while often being on the large side for a mug and on the small side for a pot, can save some weight and keep your camp kitchen simple by having only one vessel, whether it’s needed for morning coffee or meal preparation. For more involved meals it may pay to go with a larger, dedicated cookpot however along with a smaller dedicated mug. For groups of 2 or more however it will be time to move to a dedicated mug for each person, but a single pot can still be shared if desired. Here it pays to increase capacity as we’ll be boiling more water at once and having a pot that can handle this capacity will increase efficiency. Generally, unless appetites are limited and you plan to split single meals, moving into the 1000ml / 1liter + capacity range is needed, and it’s nice to have a little buffer to lessen the chance of spilling or boiling over. For 2 person trips the Evernew 1.3 liter pot has been about right for me, not only for basic meal preparation but this 1.25-1.5 liter range works very well for a wider range of cooking needs, from boiling water for 2 freeze dried meals, to cooking up a pasta dish right in the pot, or for comfortably heating water for an entire Nalgene. For larger groups you will simply increase the capacity from here, although you can use your normal 2 person pot with multiple boils for the occasional group trip if needed. This won’t be convenient for meals that are made in your pot, but can work for boiling water to go around for meals that just need hot water. At some point however it may pay to take separate cooking gear for speed, convenience, and for requiring less group coordination – and large pots are difficult to pack. Additionally, larger pots may also be too unstable, or too heavy when filled, to work with your stove of choice – suggested maximum pot sizes can often be found in your stove user manual. Solo or in a group, one situation where you will want to step up in capacity is if you’ll be going winter backpacking and melting snow for water – with low water content in snow it can take a lot of snow melting to get those water bottles filled. Features Once you’ve decided upon the right capacity, there are a few other features to look for in the cookware department. One of the most important is shape. If you’re going solo and choose a pot / mug combo option, your pot will probably end up looking like a large mug. However, when choosing a dedicated pot something shallower and wider is desirable over a skinny and tall form factor and the wider pot will be able to use more heat from your stove and increase your fuel efficiency on the trail. A nice tight fitting lid is essential for further fuel efficiency, as are ways to “handle” your pot. Look for collapsible handles, and if the handles feature an outer insulating material (often for lifting the lid as well) this can be helpful while adding minimal weight. However, ultralight cookware will often omit this feature to save weight, and in this case you can still handle the pot with a pot holder (bandanna, etc.) and / or by always making sure to configure your handles upwind. If you’ll be cooking more complex meals in your pot quite often a non-stick coating can be helpful, but may have health considerations or concerns for some, will add weight, and can scratch if the proper utensils or cleaning methods are not used. The ability to perform cooking tasks such as dry baking would also be limited. Additional features to look for include measurement marks stamped right on the pot to make meal preparation easier, and a built in pour spout is a nice to have for spill reduction when you’ll be transferring hot water to another vessel. This could be the case when heating up water for a Nalgene bottle to make a shoulder season heater for example. Materials While exceptions exist, most of the time for backpacking purposes we’ll be deciding between two materials – aluminum and titanium. Titanium will be the most expensive option, but is very light and strong, allowing pots constructed of this material to be of a very thin gauge. And while debatable, if aluminum cookware poses a health concern / consideration to you, titanium would be the way to go. For actual cooking, with its thin gauge construction and tendency to develop hotspots, titanium can be challenging, but not impossible to use if you’ll be performing more complex trail cooking tasks in the pot like trying to bake a trail pizza, simmering, or when cooking less watery meals where burning is more likely to occur than with aluminum pots. Aluminum pots conduct heat across the pot surface more evenly and distribute the heat better, while still being pretty light, and cheaper. In the end the best material to choose comes down to budget and personal preference / style. Optional Items Once you’ve settled on a pot, a mug (or pot that can also be used in this regard), and your utensil of choice about the only thing left to consider might be a plate or bowl of some type. If you’re making freeze dried meals no plate will be needed as you’ll be eating right out of the bag, and if you’re solo eating out of the pot or eating freezer bag style will certainly save you the weight and extra cleanup of bringing a dedicated solution here. Lids of larger pots can be used, and mugs can perform double duty, but if a dedicated plate or bowl is still needed various solutions like the popular Fozzils Bowls are worth a look, and other options include this Snow Peak titanium option. This category is a bit of a luxury however, so it pays to go as light as you can or accomplish this task with your other cookware if possible and if weight is a concern. Whether you end up with an ultralight titanium mug / pot combo for the lightest trail weight or an anodized aluminum all around cookpot sure to be great the next time you need to sauté a side dish in camp, much like a good down sleeping bag camp cookware is one area where it does makes sense to invest. Of all the things I pack on backpacking trips and while a lot of gear changes over time, I still often pack the same titanium pot and mug that I’ve been using for over a decade. For a list of backpacking cookware that you can sort and filter by many of the options we’ve discussed above, take a look at this page at REI.
  11. NicLynne

    Hello from Seattle

    Hi All! New here and excited to learn more about this group and the various hike destinations. Taking a team to the Grand Canyon in a little over a week and looking to branch out in other hike destinations.
  12. James L

    Backpacking Headlamp Selection and Lighting Options

    Thanks for the detailed review. How many hours do the headlamps last for?
  13. Dogwood

    Backpack Causing Pain Under Armpit

    Too tight around the arm pits could be improperly over cinched shoulder strap webbing , sternum(chest?) strap, and possibly load lifters too tight. Make sure to have torso length determined with the packs specked torso length in agreement. Too short a pack torso length can result in the arm pit area too tight.
  14. iamchrisstone

    High Peak Pacific Crest 90 Backpack

    Is anyone familiar with this backpack? My dad is sending me one for my wedding gift and there is next to no info and pictures online. I'd like to see more pics of this inside, compartments, etc. I'd like info and opinions from people who own or have owned this pack. Also, what size hydration bladder is compatible with it? Thanks!
  15. Jfalco

    Hello From Mid NY State

    I am new here, but would like to share things with other lovers of nature and hiking.I live in the Adirondack Region of NY state, beautiful country! : )
  16. Aaron

    Hello from Indiana

    Welcome James!
  17. Great stories. One of my blunders was not bringing a map on a 2 night trek in Olympic National Park. My friend and I each bought a map of the trail. It seemed like an easy loop with no other trails. So as long as we stayed on the trail we would end up at the start. We decided not to bring it because we both like maps and we didn't want them to get ruined so we could hang them up at our house. Well, there were other trails that we had to figure out which way to go. Luckily we found other hikers that could confirm our educated guess on which direction to go at the fork.
  18. James L

    Mountain Bike Camping

    Hi Backpacker Bill, have you had a chance to try out Mountain Bike Camping? If so, how did it go? I did a cross country trip on my road bike. I carried a tent, food, sleeping bag, water filter ect. The biggest thing I learned is how much I was slowed down by the weight. It was a very slow pace. I can imagine it being more difficult if you had steep terrain to deal with.
  19. James L

    Hello from Indiana

    Hello, new person here. I look forward to participating and learning more from this group.
  20. John B

    Hiking with restrictions

    you might try the lost creek wilderness which is about 30 miles SW of Denver (access by US 285). Not sure if dogs are allowed, but I think so?? by late May you will probably see some snow but not excessive amounts.
  21. Aaron

    Fanny pack or hipbelt pockets?

    I’m able to fit pretty much everything that I might need throughout the day while on the move in my hip belt pockets, pants pockets, and in the side pockets of my pack...except for a larger camera. So I do take a ZPacks Multi-Pack for that purpose and it often ends up carrying a few other items as well. If I used a compact camera though it would not be needed as that could fit in a hip belt pocket.
  22. balzaccom

    Backpack Causing Pain Under Armpit

    Every pack fits differently. This may just be the way this pack fits on your body. It seems to me that you are trying all the right things to fix the problem... Only one issue: the hip belt should fit right ON your hips, not above it. Try loosening the shoulder straps until it sits right on your hips, then snug everything back up again
  23. mgraw

    Backpacking Olympic National Park - Royal Basin

    I'm on Instagram @wanderingsolestudios if you want to send me a PM there. That said, I didn't actually make it into Deception Basin so I can't offer much beta on the tarn down there. If you take the standard Royal Basin trail the pass from Royal into Deception is pretty do-able scrambling.
  24. eaglecadd

    Backpacking Olympic National Park - Royal Basin

    I am also doing a loop trip up into Deception basin via Heather Creek and Royal Basin this summer. I saw the beautiful pic you posted of the upper Deception Basin and the milky lake in the basin with the article. I would love to get more info on your route and pics if possible. Is there a way to message you?
  25. FastHamFreddy

    Backpack Causing Pain Under Armpit

    I am not sure if I am posting this in the right spot, but I recently purchased a Granite Gear Crown 2 60L and its fits well (I am pretty sure) The hip belt sits about an inch about my hip bones (the top of the hip belt) the arm straps can sit snugly on my shoulders, but when they do and I fasten the chest clip, I get this pressure/pain (like someone is digging their knuckle into my ribs right below my armpit). It is coming from the arm strap. I have tried loosening the chest strap all the way, which works (kinda) but that causes the arm straps to be too loose and the pack moves around. It just seems if I get it comfortably on my back, the pain on my ribs caused by the arm straps is there no matter what I do. Move the chest trap up or down. Try to move the hip belt a little bit up or down. Try to adjust the top straps that pull the pack all the way toward me. Bottom line, if the pack is snugly strapped to me, the pain in my ribs below my armpits seem to be there. Anyone have any experience with this, or know if I am doing something wrong? Is it an indication the pack is too big? Thanks everyone, it is very much appreciated. Cheers!
  26. dipink

    Fanny pack or hipbelt pockets?

    I'm seeing ads for ultralite hiker fanny packs. They are touted as the perfect place to keep snacks, cell phones, small essentials, that can be worn in camp or on the trail. Is this better than the hip belt pockets on backpacks? I use a Zpacks Arc Blast, and the hipbelt pockets are more than generous. Are people finding it more versatile than hip belt pockets? I've used them for short hikes, but I'm not convinced of their utility.
  27. Aaron

    From Abingdon, VA

    Not in the area myself Scribe, but welcome to the forum!
  28. Hugh

    Hiking with restrictions

    Hey all. I'm not sure if this is where to post, so I apologise up front if I'm breaking forum rules. We have a foreign exchange student (Italian) that is wanting to explore Colorado hiking. She leaves in late May, so I think weather/seasons will be an issue. Also we have a shih tzu dog that will be with us. We are wanting to hike in and camp for a day or two. My question is this: Is there a good eastern side of Colorado trail that allows dogs and camping and has nice weather in early/mid May? ...or am I asking too much?
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