Bedding

No Cold Shoulder Spreader Hammock:

I like the spreader bar on this new hammock from Rei. This would stop that annoying thing where the hammock fabric compresses the insulation of your sleeping bag at shoulder-to-elbow and creates a cold spot. There are several other ways around this eg a wider mat, a pad extender, etc, but I feel that this …

No Cold Shoulder Spreader Hammock: Read More »

Massdrop In Stock

Massdrop now have some of their great specials in stock – so you don’t have to wait for a drop. For example, they have the Enlightened Equipment Quilt I recently posted about for US $219.99 (Jun 2018). Their excellent  Fizan compact hiking poles I wrote about here are just US$59.99 a pair. The Massdrop Klymit …

Massdrop In Stock Read More »

A Quilt for all Seasons

There is no doubt that a quilt can be lighter, more comfortable, and a lot less inconvenient to enter and exit than a bag. A down quilt can weigh under 500 grams for something which will rate around -10C (providing you have a warm mat), so you can see that you can definitely make one …

A Quilt for all Seasons Read More »

Blizzard Bag

A cheap lightweight reusable waterproof sleeping bag/shelter which will save your life in an emergency. I have had one of these in the bottom of my day pack for over ten years. To date (fortunately) I have never had to use it, though I have come pretty close a number of times. By the same …

Blizzard Bag Read More »

Cold Season Pads:

I have used the Thermarest Neoair Womens for years. It has an (insulation) R-rating of 3.9. I was quite warm enough in it at around zero Celsius with just a Columbia Silver Ridge shirt and trousers and a pair of thin (Holeproof Heroes) wool socks in my – 1C Montbell bag. If it got a …

Cold Season Pads: Read More »

Mattresses I have Known:

 I doubt anything else about camping has changed so much as sleeping. When I was a lad I always just slept on the bare ground. As a bit of a sissy, my only concession to comfort was to dig the traditional hip hole (which was derided by tougher-minded types) then maybe lean my head on …

Mattresses I have Known: Read More »

A Cure for Slippery Mats:

I have just spent a couple of weeks sleeping on my new Big Agnes AXL Air 300 gram mat in Scotland. It is indubitably the most comfortable mat I have ever slept on, but it does suffer from being a tad slippery. I will be taking some of my own advice below. (The dogs as …

A Cure for Slippery Mats: Read More »

Cosco Quilt

A DIY Sleeping Quilt for the Budget Hiker: A lightweight sleeping bag is one of the most expensive pieces of gear that the novice ultralight hiker will need. Lots of folks have suggested using/modifying the Cosco quilt which seems like a good idea if you are on a budget. You can buy them for about …

Cosco Quilt Read More »

Cheap Insulated Inflatable Pad:

Klymit’s Ultralight V Sleeping Pad is on Massdrop this morning for US63.74 delivered to Australia ($64.34 delivered to USA address). They have an R rating of 4.4 – enough for the coldest night. You can also pick up one of their excellent pillows for an extra US15. I would go for the 5 foot model …

Cheap Insulated Inflatable Pad: Read More »

Knee Pillow

I sleep on my side too (and have suffered from sciatica) but I must have enough padding of my own, so I have never needed one – but evidently lots of folks do. John Abela has helped out all such people who enjoy hiking with this DIY instructional on how to make your own inflatable …

Knee Pillow Read More »

Big Agnes AXL Air Pad

Great news: I wrote back in August ‘Big Agnes were showcasing a new pad at the Outdoor Retailer show. It will be 20 x72 x just under 4 inches thick – 9 ounces ie 50 x 180 x 7.5cm –  270 grams. It will be available in uninsulated (US$140) and insulated with Primaloft Silver (10 …

Big Agnes AXL Air Pad Read More »

Simple Hammock Double Up

You can hang two hammocks side by side from the one pair of trees using just one tarp with this simple expedient. You need one (or two) spacer bars (3/4″ thick branches or parts of your hiking poles will do) and some of these 25 mm (1 inch) poly plumbing fittings from eg Bunnings at …

Simple Hammock Double Up Read More »

Hammock Camping

Hammocks, I have spent months of my life sleeping in them. This is an older post which I have freshened up with lots of hammock related links for readers who ‘came in late’. A plain nylon hammock with the addition of a rectangular inflatable mattress (such as a Thermarest Neoair) is all you need for wonderful …

Hammock Camping Read More »

Ultralight Sleeping Bag:

Some folk like to lug around a lead sleeping bag. Might be useful in the event of a nuclear attack I guess. The bag I use is the Montbell Ultralight Superstretch Down Hugger #3 (-1C) which weighs about 600 grams. My wife has a Zpacks -7C sleeping bag which weighs even less than mine (400 …

Ultralight Sleeping Bag: Read More »

Ultralight Ground Sheet:

 If you are sensible and don’t use a tent, but instead sleep under a nice airy tarp, you may nonetheless want to protect your bottom and other expensive equipment with a ground sheet. As I have mentioned before a mylar space blanket (at about 50 grams) is good enough for this and does double duty …

Ultralight Ground Sheet: Read More »

Are You Beautiful in the Buff:

This will keep your nose warm at night! Obviously you can’t tuck your nose and mouth (unlike the rest of your face) in your sleeping bag otherwise it will become saturated from your breath and no longer keep you as warm. Until now I just put up with it. Recently though I discovered this wonderful …

Are You Beautiful in the Buff: Read More »

DIY Super Ultralight Pillow

Make your own 10 gram hiking pillow: These approx 17 grams (small) & 27 gram (large) Graham Medical Flexair Pillows are excellent for hiking and backpacking. The two sizes measure 14.5″x10.5″  & 19″x12.5″  They cost pennies: US $35.16 for the small & $43.41 for the large per box of 50! 70 cents each. Seriously! Unmodified …

DIY Super Ultralight Pillow Read More »

Wonnangatta-Moroka Trip Cut Short

Originally posted 2/08/2011: ‘Back early from three days’ hunting/hiking in Wonnangatta-Moroka NP due to sore toes (Have to do more research into boots) and accidentally taking the three-quarter length Neoair mat which was a bit harsh on my bad back. However saw lots of deer, some of whom visited me during the night.’ (This is …

Wonnangatta-Moroka Trip Cut Short Read More »

Bathtub Groundsheet Chair

As you can see I have completed the first prototype of this project which I have long threatened. I learned a lot in the process, so that there will be substantial changes between where it is at now and the completed project. Still, you can see that it works. I created four ‘sleeves’ along the …

Bathtub Groundsheet Chair Read More »

Continuous Loop: Another Great Hammock Idea

This is just a much better way of attaching your hammock to your suspension system. it really protects the material of the hammock so it will last much, much longer: http://www.tiergear.com.au/11/products/continuous-loop As you can see it goes through the seam you sewed in the end of your hammock, then loops back through itself so imposing …

Continuous Loop: Another Great Hammock Idea Read More »