Hunting

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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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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Ultralight Bivy Bag

How much is your life worth? Is it worth laying out $80 and carrying 273 grams for example? This is the Outdoor Research Helium Emergency Bivy, a trimmed down version of their regular Helium Bivy (510 grams). If you carry a raincoat you could make a raincoat shelter for your head, and you could hold …

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Even More Free Stuff for Hiking

Yet another sixteen ‘free’ ultralight hiking ideas. Enjoy. 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. …

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Tim Tinker

I am tossing around some ideas concerning DIY tent stoves – as you know, so I was delighted to stumble upon this amazing website: https://timtinker.com/ by a fellow Gippsland Senior – we are good for something still after all. As you will see Tim camps in the snow all the time, so his ideas clearly …

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Seamless Tyvek Tipi

How big a tipi can you make in a single piece out of a 3 metre (10’) wide roll of Tyvek? I began this project as I want to take one in and leave it in a canoe drum along with a small wood heater to warm it on winter nights at ‘our’ new ‘hidden …

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The Ultimate Camp Shoe

Just like practically everyone I guess I had an ad from the ‘hellosunny’ shop (see below) for Waterproof Shoe Covers. I had spent a lot of time on this idea before coming up with my own 13 gram DIY version (https://www.theultralighthiker.com/2017/04/14/19-gram-dyneema-camp-shoes/) which have proven very serviceable and durable on many trips now. I guess that …

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Extempore Hiking Poles

You can use Pipe Insulation to make extempore hiking poles or tent poles when you are in the bush. The piece shown weighs 5 grams. It certainly saves you carrying hiking poles when you don’t need them. When you do you can cut them to length with this 28 gram DIY ultralight saw. If you …

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Winter Tent Stoves

A blast of Antarctic air is coming through Victoria in the next week so that it might be time to consider how to warm your tent. This great company Titanium Goat have extremely lightweight titanium stove (heaters), stove pipes, stove accessories, and a tent boot you can sew into an existing tent to vent your …

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The Ultimate Hunting Trip

(or, A Further Use for Toilet Trowels) Disaster will sometimes happen upon you in the wilderness. The important thing is to survive it – as less experienced folk frequently don’t! For months I have been ‘stir crazy’ what with slow recovery from my back operation and (seeming to) need a new knee, but I have …

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Embryo Wire:

The Americans call this ‘O.B. Wire’ (for ‘obstetrics’). Vets use it to cut up a stuck calf inside its mother! I have used this stuff to de-horn hundreds of goats in past years (It is not possible to breed poll goats as the poll gene is linked to hermaphroditism). You can quickly tie a length …

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Thermarest Lite Seat

I recently bought one of these for Della for canoeing (weight saving is still relevant if you might have to portage). Her glutes are a bit underwhelming so she gets a very sore behind after a few hours paddling. She was using Klymit’s Ultralight Pillow (which is an excellent sleeping pillow) but it was not …

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Cheap Comfy Hiking Pillow

I was after a couple of cheap light weight pillows for another project (more about that later), so I sourced two of these on eBay for less than A$20 delivered (the pair). These pillows are approximately 18” x 12’ x 4” (45 x 30 x 10 cm) and weigh 100 grams.They have a delightful soft, …

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Stop Losing Your Pillow

Does your pillow creep away from you during the night – or do you sometimes lose it altogether in the dark? I know I do. Here is a method of preventing that for a weight penalty of 1-2 grams. Well worth it. i think it is self-explanatory. I have just tied a piece of 1 …

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Waterproof Carbon Fibre Playing Cards:

Maybe not ultralight, but certainly ultra-cool – and you can cut a banana with them! https://drop.com/buy/xc-carbon-carbon-fiber-playing-cards#overview 91 grams. US $60 (May 2019) ‘No more frayed edges, stains, or fading: if cared for correctly, carbon fiber playing cards can last a lifetime. Made from 100 percent carbon fiber, these thin and durable cards have a twill …

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Lightest Hiking Garment

I am a big fan of Montbell gear. Their new Ex Light Wind Vest comes in at a mere 37 grams. Pair this with these 28 gram shorts for an extremely light dry change (65 grams) eg when you are doing the washing. I usually wear a vest of some sort most days as I …

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Closed Cell Foam Pad  Reinvented

Nemo Equipment have ‘reinvented’ the closed cell foam pad. Agreed, it is bulky Well possibly even bulkier – at least than an inflatable) but their new 2 cm thick ‘Switchback’ pad promises much greater comfort still with a very acceptable weight (293 grams in 51″ length and 415 in 72″) and greater durability without the …

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A Snippet in Time

SOG have a very nice little multi tool in competition with the Leatherman Micra, the ‘Snippet’. ‘Not every situation warrants a large, full-featured multi-tool. Sometimes you need something that will fit on a key chain, or even disappear into your pocket. For times like that, we have Snippet. A tool designed to help with quick …

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