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Johnny Cakes

(or ‘journey cakes‘ as they once were known) also fried scones and maybe ‘bannock’ (from the Latin, ‘panis’ or ‘bread) if you hailed from Scotland. You can see that their (European) origin is quite ancient. They  were once a basic food item. Folks took little else into the bush (by way of food) except for …

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The Olfa Knife

This is just about the greatest knife ever! I’m just a little late to the party concerning this knife which has been around nearly as long as I have – at any rate since 1956. As you can see it has a 55 mm blade. That’s just under 2 ¼”. (55mm = 2.16”) You could …

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Cuteness Alert

(Photos/Video Added) 3 weeks old, eyes open, 3 little bundles ready to start some supplementary feeding (to give Honey a bit of a break) and take over the house…for a little while! Thanks to our daughter for the super photo! One of the puppies is already spoken for with nearly a month to go before …

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Everything you ever needed to know about down jackets:

I have Montbell down clothing. At the time of purchase it was about the lightest and most economical I could find – I am also more than happy with the build quality and its durability (considering its extreme lightness) over the years. I carry a ‘Superior Down’  jacket and a vest, weighing approx 200 + …

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Della’s Way Bread

or Biscotti. You may or may not have tried Hard Tack which is what unfortunates such as British sailors used to have to subsist upon. Italian sailors were better chefs so they came up with Biscotti. Della has tweaked their recipes for this wonderful food until it is just perfect. It is as good as …

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More Simmer Stoves

It is easy to make an ultralight alcohol stove which will boil water (instructions here and here – and in the comments below) but a bit more difficult to make one which will simmer. Many of my recipes require that the food simmers for 10 minutes or so (usually to soften lentils etc). I guess …

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Down Socks

If it is going to be particularly cold (winter camping say) I always carry a pair of these. I have a pair of Goosefeet Gear’s which I have found more than satisfactory for well over ten years. Mine are Size: Medium and weigh 2.2 0z the pair. They cost US$65 (July 2019) but you can …

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Poncho Shelters

One of Sea to Summit’s ultra sil nano tarp ponchos which are 265 cm x 145 cm and weigh 230 grams (A$79.90 July 2019) as well as being excellent rain gear also provide all the shelter you need particularly if paired with an ultralight bivy bag of some sort. The US$16.99 Tyvek one I posted …

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Tyvek Sleeping Bag Cover

or Ground Sheet. For those of you who can’t sew but don’t mind spending US$16.99, Flame’s Creed has this little beauty. It should keep your sleeping bag clean and dry (and only weighs 130 grams apparently). I bought a couple of their ultralight tents and found them to be very good value and quality. You …

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Jobs Around the Farm

(Della): So the last little while has been amazingly busy! (Sorry if I seem to be ignoring everyone here!) Having decided to finally have a blitz on ALL the major jobs that have needed doing chez nous, Steve and I started by demolishing the old fallen-down “buggy shed” on the property to make way for …

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Tiny Keychain Pen

 The Tipen: ‘The most striking quality of the Tipen is its size. At 50mm long and weighing only 4.3 grams, the pen stays true to its name. Combined with its lanyard-compatible keyring attachment point, the Tipen offers so many ways to carry it so you’ll never be without a pen. The most obvious way to …

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Who Wants a Jack Russell?

The Jack Russell is the Swiss Army Knife of the canine world. Regular readers will know we have owned one or two of these wonderful mutts over the years. This post is to announce that our current pair, Spot and Honey are as of yesterday now the proud parents of two girls and a boy. …

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The Complete ‘Must-Have’ Ultralight Hiking Accessory

 Instaprivy. Only 7 pounds! No, I don’t think you will be taking this beauty hiking; for that you need this or this. But for your next 4WD ‘adventure’ it might be just the ‘bee’s knees’. https://www.instaprivy.com/ Pre-order on Indiegogo from US$75 (July 2019) See Also: https://www.theultralighthiker.com/2015/11/20/ultralight-personal-hygiene/ https://www.theultralighthiker.com/2016/11/18/the-rolls-royce-of-back-country-trowels/  

The Pack Rifle

The only readily available sub 500 gram take down rifle available in Australia is this little beauty. It is available in .22LR only and single shot. However if you need a bunny or perhaps a duck for the pot, or some protection from wild dogs (which are becoming ever more dangerous) in the High Country …

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Upper Yarra Track Map:

Here is a map showing the whole of the (Extended) Upper Yarra Track from Lilydale all the way to Moe, approximately 250 km and 8-10 days: Australia’s oldest and best long distance hiking track. It could be a better map, but it is better than no map. I have used the 1:250,000 Australian Topo map …

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Thermoplastics #101

I have been playing a bit with heat sealable materials. I decided to buy a sealing iron $A50 – a sound buy. Tried it out on one of the pillows I bought for my sleeping pad side insulation which I had been reluctant to touch as I was finding it so comfortable, but at 100 …

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A Wider Lighter DIY Sleeping Pad

Unless you are tiny (like my wife Della) I’m sure that you have found that when you sleep on your back your arms fall off the sides of a ‘standard’ 20″ sleeping pad such as my wonderful Exped Winter mat shown. This is both uncomfortable and cold. Of course you could buy a (much) wider …

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Upper Yarra Track Instructions:

I have posted dozens of times about this wonderful trail which (in an extended version) can be walked all the way from Moe to Lilydale. Here  is some indication of track times and distances and here is a detailed set of instructions. Below you can find some of my posts about it in the order …

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Helium Too Good to Miss:

Outdoor Research’s Helium rain jacket (and pants) are available at the moment on (Mass)Drop, the jacket at US$99 and the pants at US$70! This is outstanding value for a highly praised set of rain gear. Whether they are the lightest/best is always arguable. I have Montbell’s offering which I am quite happy with (but at …

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Ultralight Cutlery:

How much can you say? I remember buying my first set of these (I guess) when I set about hitch-hiking to Cairns and back with a back-pack when I was about 13-14 years old. I had this, a home-made nylon sleeping bag cover, a billy and not much else. During the several cyclones I encountered …

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