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Q&A

General Q&A about the great outdoors and outdoor pursuits.

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Legality of "semi-permanent" wooden structures in state and national forests in the US

Imagine the following situation: A group of friends found a remote spot in a state or national forest that they really like. They keep returning to the place quite often, lately there are at leas...

4 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by Jan Hlavacek‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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What are the pros and cons of ice axe leashes?

My ice ax came with a leash already on it and I have never had any problems with it, but almost all of the other ice axes that I have seen in use lacked one. One obvious pro is in case of droppin...

4 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Do I need to worry about inadvertently creating a distress signal while using a space tarp?

If I use a space tarp (basically a heavy-duty reusable space blanket) as a sunshade or as a ground tarp with the shiny side facing up, do I need to worry that someone might see it and think that I ...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to teach situational awareness for the outdoors?

By situational awareness I mean (but certainly don't limit it to): Looking behind to familiarize yourself with the return journey. Looking ahead to see what the best route will be. Knowing the a...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Carrying a gun openly while hiking in western North Carolina

I know that NC permits open carry but I'm actually interested in cultural implications of running into people in the woods who may be weirded out by it. I've hiked a lot in places where it's legal ...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by amphibient‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Gear storage: what gear that can be safely stocked outside?

I have plenty of gear and I live in a small apartment. I am planning to buy an outdoor closet to put on the balcony to get some extra space. Here's a sample to show you how it would be like. I ...

4 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by Dakatine‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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As of 2019, why do mountaineering courses still teach how to use a paper map?

I've been looking into learning how to mountaineer and noticed that the local mountaineering society still requires a training in navigation as part of the prerequisites for most of their basic cou...

21 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by JonathanReez‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Reel locks when reeling in then bail flips open. What am I doing wrong?

The reel seems to jam when I reel it around and then if I put pressure on the reel handle, or the line, the bail flips open. I’m sure there’s something I am doing wrong. Video attached for referenc...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by Brian G‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Fuel for a meths/alcohol stove (trangia) in Russia

I have heard on this forum and others the difficulty of finding a suitable fuel since meths is illegal or hard to find, so im trying to think of alternatives, i know Americans use HEET and i have u...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Ras Does Bushcraft‭

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What knot was used by my mountain guide to tie me in to the middle of a rope?

Twice now I have been out winter hiking with a guide and another person and I'm trying to work out what knot they used to tie the middle person onto the rope. Let's say the guide is in front, my c...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by tonicsoft‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Comparison of dangers on the glacier in summer and winter

What are the main risks of a glacier in winter compared to the risks in summer? How can you deal with these additional risks? Which additional materials or thoughts do you need to have? I would li...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by cerv21‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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UK Puffball Identification

My wife and I are new to foraging. We recently found a large number of what we believe to be puffballs in a field. They look like this: From the information on the Wild Food UK site it sounds...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by JohnLBevan‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Is it warmer to sleep naked in a sleeping bag?

When camping in cold weather, some people say it is actually warmer to sleep naked than to sleep with clothes on. Is that true, or is it better to leave warm clothes on while in the bag?

13 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by Reverend Gonzo‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How do I clean my knife sharpener?

Pictured below is my knife sharpener. I’d like to sharpen my knives, but there’s so much metal built up on the stones that it won’t sharpen. How can I clean these off? Attempts with cloths and Q-ti...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Zenon‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Risk of category three sunglasses when skiing

I am going skiing for one to three days next week. I have some category three sunglasses I am planning to use instead of goggles. Long term I would definitely use goggles but for just a few days am...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by david_adler‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Are there GriGri-like devices that support auto belay rather than assisted belay?

An answer to a related post mentions that: It's worth pointing out that these are assisted and not auto belay devices, you can't just not pay attention and expect them to work. Does this mean...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by JonathanReez‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Where are some good places for a day-hike within an hour or two of Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA?

Some friends and I were thinking of doing a one day hike somewhere in Minnesota. I have looked online for places but nothing I have found really gives me a sense of the place. My requirements are...

5 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by JIMMYPlay‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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US Military's standards for how long a soldier can go without food?

I've been trying to find the US Military's guidelines or standard for how long a soldier can go without food, for any branch of the military. Is there any such recommendation, as to how long a man...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Johnny‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How serious is bear safety in the sub-polar Ural / Komi Republic / Yugyd Va?

In Norway, Sweden, and Finland, there are resident bears, but they rarely go near people, nobody practices the kind of bear safety that is necessary in parts of North America, and this does not lea...

1 answer  ·  posted 4y ago by gerrit‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How does the R-value of goose down compare to cattail down?

I know that goose down is warmer than cattail down. But what are the R-values of each? How much warmer is the same weight/volume of goose down compared to cattail down? Is cattail down better than ...

0 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Dugan ‭

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How do I get a stuck gas canister (for hiking/camping) out of a stainless steel mug?

I nested my 110g gas canister inside my stainless steel mug for a hike. I used it about halfway through for lunch, and when I was done put it back in the way I had packed it (upside down). Now it i...

6 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Michael‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to repair the broken stitching and seams in my leather boots?

After several years of abuse and poor care my boots have completely gone at the seams around the inner ankle (see photos) What can I do to repair my boots? My current plan is to just get some t...

3 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by nivag‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Which side of an emergency blanket should I use?

A common emergency blanket has two sides, one is orange and the other silver. Which one should I keep on the inside?

3 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by Stefano Borini‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Is it possible to delete Geocaches from a Garmin etrex without plugging it into the computer?

My GPS (Garmin extrex 20) will not connect to my computer anymore (via USB), and therefore I cannot access the GPX folder of the device where Geocaches are saved. As a solution, I would like to sa...

1 answer  ·  posted 4y ago by Stockfisch‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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The best solution for carrying a D-SLR when hiking

I am planning a multi-day hike in the Drakensberg area of South Africa. This is a beautiful landscape with interesting flora and fauna. Consequently I want to have my Digital SLR close to hand. I d...

5 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by D.H.‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Long distance hikes with small children

In recent years, my wife and I completed a few long distances hikes together, for instance: Kungsleden from Nikkaluokta to Abisko, 105 km (Sweden) Landmannalaugar to Skogar via Laugavegur and Fim...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Snijderfrey‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How can I keep my iPhone going on a multiday hike?

Taking a five day hike, and I want to take a bazillion pictures. It would be nice to have the compass &amp; GPS functionality too, and I want something really small. The obvious choice is my iPh...

9 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by Affable Geek‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to make rock climbing more challenging without changing to a more difficult route?

Sometimes when setting up rock climbs for people you will have climbers of various abilities and yet not have enough resources to set up enough climbs so that everyone has something that is hard en...

3 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Other than good shoes and a stick, what are some ways to preserve your knees on long hikes?

My knees aren’t in the best shape, one in particular. I had a rather devastating 13 hour up-and-down hike on day two of a three day hike, and the last day my knees were hurting every step. What are...

16 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Sebastiaan van den Broek‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Where in the Alps is it safe to drink the water without filtering?

In some places, the Swedish Lappland for example, it's perfectly fine and even recommended to drink water directly from streams. Is it also recommended whilst hiking in the Alps, and if so is it o...

7 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by victoriah‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How do you take field notes at below 0 &#xB0;C, without freezing fingers?

I'm taking inventory on my tree farm. The temperature today is -7 °C with a light breeze. Windchill of -10 °C. I figure that there are lots of people who have this problem. Writing a journal, desc...

22 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Sherwood Botsford‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How can you navigate without a compass or GPS

What are the ways you can navigate when you don't have a compass or a GPS? For example how can you tell which way is north.

10 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by Gabriel Solomon‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Knife as defense against stray dogs

Some places I travel to have stray dogs in the city. Can a knife be used effectively if attacked by one or more of them? I've had creepy close encounters.

13 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by amphibient‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Where can I find public water tap for cleaning/bathing in the Netherlands?

We are wandering around Netherlands (on foot, hitch hiking, bicycle). We don't sleep in camping site, we put our tent anywhere "in the bush". We are use to travel on this way in Southern Europe bu...

4 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by MagTun‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to clean trail running shoes?

I've asked all of my trail running friends and the general consensus is to simply hose them off in the sink (some even just wear them in the shower...). I'm concerned that leaving soaking wet shoes...

5 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Atlas‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to begin trail / fell running?

I'm looking to challenge myself more than just running and wanted to know if there were any specifics in how to begin trail / fell running (In this case running up hills / mountains). Is there any...

5 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Aravona‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Running shoes for asphalt + winter conditions?

What is the good choice for the running shoes for winter conditions in city (mostly running on asphalt)? When the snow is shoveld, normal running shoes would be no problem, but when the snow fallin...

5 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by Danubian Sailor‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Hiking during winter in Alps

I've been hiking the the Alps for 20years and normally I go skiing every winter. But I see more and more pictures of people hiking in the snow. Is it possible to go hiking in February in the alps?...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by Nick‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Is it warmer to sleep in a car or in a tent?

Is it warmer to sleep in a car or in a tent? Suppose that our old internal-combustion-engine car breaks down in a remote place at -30°C, -40°C, or -50°C, and the engine won't run at all. Suppose ...

12 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by gerrit‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Rainfly window repair

I have a Marmot Limelight tent that the see-through window needs reglued around the edge onto the tent. Is there a common household glue that can be used for this? And what is the best glue and/ or...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by Tony Sturgeon‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Is it poor etiquette to ask fellow backpackers where they have been/where they are going?

I got a comment here that said, Please omit the "Where have you been?" part of your social interaction. That is going to set me more on edge, not put me at ease. It sounds "stalker-ish", which ...

12 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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What are essential items in an emergency kit?

What are must-have items in an emergency kit for a multi-day hiking trip?

5 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by Pekka‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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When hiking, why is the right of way given to people going up?

When you're in a path and you encounter another group going the other way, it is said that whoever is going down should stand aside to let those going up pass through. Why?

11 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by user19652‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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What's wrong with swimming out far?

I swim decently - no pro but I can do a couple of km, resting once in awhile. Many times, both in day and night, in the warm, summer, Mediterranean sea, friends have cautioned me to "not swim so f...

9 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by horse hair‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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What is the most efficient food to take a for a 12-15 day hiking trip?

Last summer I spent 15 days hiking with my boyfriend, in Sarek National Park, where there are no places to restock with more food. The food issue was a major part of the pre-planning, as weight wa...

17 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by victoriah‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Can trees be treated to deter poachers?

I recently heard from a guy who decided to cut a cedar tree from a ditch line for a Christmas tree instead of buying one. He said that after getting it home and decorating it that it started to ha...

1 answer  ·  posted 3y ago by wanderweeer‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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What's a good resource for learning to tie knots for climbing?

If I wanted to learn how to tie certain knots, or learn about new knots and what they're used for, what are some good resources to look up?

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by ShemSeger‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Comparing and combining paddles and pedals for sit-on-top kayak speed and endurance

Sit-on-top kayaks are a popular alternative to traditional sit-inside kayaks. One advantage is that they sometimes come with a foot pedals for propulsion. The foot pedals are linked, via gears, eit...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Martin F‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How can you tell if roadkill is safe to eat?

In some places in the US, it is legal to take roadkill home and eat it while in other places the meat is donated. If it was legal where you are, how would you tell if the meat is still good?

4 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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How to measure the temperature without a thermometer?

We are in the wild and need to know how cold/hot it is. How can we measure the temperature if we don't have any thermometers? Can we build something similar, etc.? It doesn't have to be necessaril...

3 answers  ·  posted 7y ago by OddDeer‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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