Backpacking

Soylent

Emergency (No-Cook) Hiking/Survival food, hopefully NOT such a by-product as in the film ‘Soylent Green’ (Book: “make Room! Make Room! Harry Harrison); 459 gram sachet = 2000 calories: ‘Soylent is a simple, efficient and affordable drink that possesses what a body needs to be healthy. Soylent is a new option for maintaining a balanced state …

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Hiking for Voyeurs

Following hot on the heels of ‘Wild’, Bill Bryson’s ‘A Walk in the Woods’ is soon to hit the big screen with Robert Redford in the starring cast. Della will want to see this. I admit I enjoyed the book, though I suspect I would enjoy the walk even more, so long as too many …

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Keychain goodies:

Spyderco Bug Knife (1 1/8” blade): add this to your Photon Freedom Micro (torch) and Verbatim Store’n’go Micro USB Drive (now in 32 Gb) on your keychain. There are so many other keychain knives to choose from though, eg: http://www.knifecenter.com/kc_new/store_store.html?ttl=key%20ring%20knives&eqpif5datarq=key&a=folder& Of course you CAN have it all-in-one with Victorinox Swiss Flash LED 16GB!

Survival Laces

Put a fire starting kit on your feet. When out in the wilderness, it can be a good idea to take along a backup fire-maker, just in case your matches get damp or rubbing sticks gets you nowhere. With this in mind, Survival Laces include a small fire starting kit, and some fishing line too, …

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Hiking Food: McKenzie’s Quick Cook Soups

McKenzie’s Quick Cook Soups (180 grams per packet). We tried the first of these, Hearty Vegetable tonight. I expected it would need a bit of spicing up but it did not; it was excellent. HIGHLY recommended. Also discovered that you can thicken a soup (and add nutrition) by stirring in some Continental (Deb) Mashed Potato …

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The Ideal Pack

PACKS: A comfy pack will certainly make the difference between a hiking experience being enjoyable and its being a nightmare you are not going to want to repeat. When I was a young teenager I started out with an old ex-army framed pack which was hideously uncomfortable as soon as you put any weight in …

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Wirilda Track

A couple of delightful hours yesterday afternoon. The lower half of the track follows the one of the original Morwell water supply pipelines. There were/are a series of weirs (lowest shown) on the Tyers River long since replaced by the much larger Moondarra Dam. The first pipeline was wooden – you can see the carefully …

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Dusky Track Adventures #1

I have been on this track now EIGHT times, first in March 2000; the last time April 2014. I hope it is NOT the last! Other folk go different places, I know, yet I keep returning to this magical place. (I go SOME other places too!) One reason I guess is I really like the …

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Dave Canterbury:

‘ Good Judgement Comes From Wisdom, Wisdom Comes From Experience, Experience Comes From Poor Judgement’ http://woodlandwisdom.blogspot.com.au/

Upper Yarra Track – Winter Update:

Spot and I planned to finish checking out the Upper yarra Track on Sunday, but we had to defer as seasonal road closures have come into force. The gates now have all these nice new signs on them. Perhaps someone at DSE has been noting my posts. Now we have dates for the road closures …

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Water: Survival Still

Four methods for purifying water when hiking: Method 3   NB: On the Kon Tiki they drank a ‘shandy’ (for two months) of 40% seawater 60% fresh water with NO ill effects. As soon as you realise there is a shortage of water, add your own urine to your fresh water supply to extend it. …

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Blisters:

This guy is RIGHT: One way to prevent heel blisters is to learn to tie your shoes differently, eg: http://life.damn.com/the-secret-of-the-extra-shoe-holes/?utm_source=nym&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=shoeholesnym One other thing is sure, as soon as the skin on your feet starts to warm up, pop on a blister pad – available from pharmacies. Always carry some! See also: http://www.theultralighthiker.com/foot-care/

BACKPACK GEAR TEST: Dry sacks follow up:

Folks at this website field test various hiking gear and write a detailed report about it. This is a very useful resource to consult before you launch into parting with some of your hard-earned on the latest new bit of gear For example, here are some reviews of the Sea to Summit Ultra Sil Nano …

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DRY BAGS: Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Nano:

Your choice with dry bags can save you quite a few grams. Without them, you could have some sadly wet gear and maybe a disastrous trip. You need to check the seam sealing on the inside of the bags before each trip to ensure they remain waterproof. If you have any doubt, pour a few …

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ZPacks Hexamid Solo-Plus Tent:

NEW Model: (http://www.zpacks.com/shelter/hexamid_plus.shtml) I see Joe and Sheryl have added a cross-over ‘vestibule’ to their new model of ‘our’ tent. I had been thinking of extending the beak on ours down a bit as a storm flap, and to add a bit of vestibule room. This crossover design is clever, and eliminates the need for …

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Col Townsend Whelen’s Forester Tent

(Bradford Angier 1958): ‘If you need to cut weight or cost, the Forester tent is a good solution. It’s one of the best tents ever devised for a chronic woods loafer, particularly for one who yearns to live close to nature and who objects to spending any of his or her outdoor hours confined in …

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Rail Trails

https://www.railtrails.org.au/ Our taxes have been busily at work creating these lately. There are now some really long ones http://www.murraytomountains.com.au/the-rail-trail/ http://www.greatvictorianrailtrail.com.au/ https://www.railtrails.org.au/trail-descriptions/victoria/gippsland?view=trail&id=143 Some could be combined with an existing hiking trail to make an interesting loop walk, eg the George Bass Coastal Walk and the Bass Coast Rail Trail: http://parkweb.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/352803/Park-note-George-Bass-Coastal-Walk.pdf & https://www.railtrails.org.au/index.php?option=com_railtrails&view=trail&id=203&Itemid=244

Amazing Torch 4.5 GRAMS!

Pak-Lite Pilot LED Flashlight : Great emergency/hiking light; 80+ hours on the brightest setting and 1200+ HOURS on the lowest from a 9V battery at 45 grams (including alkaline battery) 38.5 grams (lithium) plus a 10 year shelf life. White and red LED. Also comes with a headband. Some folk have hiked the entire Pacific …

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South Coast track Fiordland NZ: Waitutu Forest Fiordland: Warm Air Pockets

One of the things which most surprised us about this beautiful forest was how warm generally it is – around 3-4C WARMER than nearby Invercargill, so very similar to Southern Victoria. I saw little difference between food growing in our hosts vegie garden at the Waitutu Lodge http://www.waitutu.co.nz/ than you would find here. We lived …

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South Coast Track Fiordland NZ: Westie’s Hut: Topo Map Errors

Westies Hut, Price’s Harbour, Fiordland NZ. I have encountered this once or twice before (also with the Australian series): Westies Hut, at the end of the South Coast Track is marked in the WRONG position in the DOC and Linz topo maps. It is actually located at the WESTERN end of Price’s Harbour, as a …

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