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Q&A

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

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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 4y ago by Snijderfrey‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 & GPS functionality too, and I want something really small. The obvious choice is my iPh...

9 answers  ·  posted 12y ago by Affable Geek‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 4y ago by Sebastiaan van den Broek‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 12y ago by victoriah‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 5y ago by Sherwood Botsford‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 12y ago by Gabriel Solomon‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 5y ago by amphibient‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 9y ago by MagTun‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 5y ago by Atlas‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 7y ago by Aravona‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 11y ago by Danubian Sailor‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 4y ago by Nick‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 6y ago by gerrit‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 4y ago by Tony Sturgeon‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 6y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 12y ago by Pekka‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 7y ago by user19652‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 6y ago by horse hair‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 12y ago by victoriah‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 4y ago by wanderweeer‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 6y ago by ShemSeger‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 4y ago by Martin F‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 7y ago by Charlie Brumbaugh‭  ·  last activity 4y 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 8y ago by OddDeer‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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What is the proper way to use a sauna?

I thought that, according to what I've read from the web, people alternate between sauna and swimming. I tried to do that but people thought that I was in trouble. I posted the whole experience to ...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Michael Tsang‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Would top-roping in this limestone quarry be reasonable?

So there's this limestone quarry that looks like a beautiful place to rock climb. It's about 40 feet high, and the top is easily accessible and has many trees that look like they'd make fine top-r...

1 answer  ·  posted 4y ago by user42541‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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What is the ecological justification (if any) for bird feeders?

Like many people, we have bird feeders, and a bird-bath. We also have a feeding station (replenished in the mornings only) that attracts squirrels and chipmunks and some of the larger birds. Duri...

3 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by ab2 MonicaNotForgotten‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Which is more dangerous, icy roads or icy roads with snow on top?

Where I live, we are about to get a bunch of snow (5”-8”). This has brought about the question of which is more dangerous an icy road or an icy road with snow? Does the snow help traction on the ic...

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

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How to repair worn hiking boot eyelets

I noticed one of the eyelets on one of my hiking boots is very worn. The lace was fraying at the point of the worn eyelet, so I have put new laces in. However it does not look like the eyelet will ...

5 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by vegemite4me‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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How to waterproof leather gloves & mittens?

I have leather gloves and mittens and I want to waterproof them. I usually use mink oil on my leather boots to condition and seal them, Can I do the same for gloves and mittens or should I use som...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by James Jenkins‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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What is the safest and most effective additive to keep drinking water from freezing?

I know that the antifreeze used in fresh water RV tanks is non-toxic and can protect to -50F. Thinking Sugar might be a good choice I posted the question How to calculate how much sugar to use as ...

5 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by James Jenkins‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Which tree produces heart shaped seeds enveloped in a long pod?

Which tree native to Florida produces these seeds? The pods are really long and the seeds inside are in the shape of little hearts.

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Ann‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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What is this tiny round shiny black bug that bites?

Can anyone tell me what type of bug this is? I found two of them in my bed in Tennessee, United States. It's not a tick. The shell is hard. It was alive and you could see it moving. It's .016", ...

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Terresa Morris‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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How warm should a down jacket be in a layering system?

I'm building a layering system for cold Colorado winters where I will be going from strenuous hiking to standing still in below freezing weather to take photographs. In full my layering system wou...

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

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How long does water need to be boiled for to kill all bacteria / viruses?

This has come up a few times in a few other questions, but I've heard varying opinions from different people in a number of answers and comments on here - some saying that just boiling for a moment...

4 answers  ·  posted 12y ago by berry120‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Is a type of walking trailer a good alternative to a heavy backpack in off-road conditions?

Heavy backpacks can spoil the pleasures of being in the outdoors. There are two ways to resolve this: Carry less Find an alternative to the backpack While the first option is usually the best o...

7 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by Ben‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Transferable skills between rock and ice climbing

I would like to understand if skills/experience gained in rock climbing are going to be useful in climbing steep ice/hard-snow. Of course the gear as well as techniques involved in either are diffe...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Yogesch‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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When to kill and bleed a fish

I am getting into fishing (I bought an entry-level spinner and plan on going to some nearby rivers/lakes) and have been reading a lot of conflicting information in regards to the sequence of events...

11 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by TicketMonster‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Where do white tigers live?

We saw this magnificent white tiger in a wildlife rehabilitation center in the United States. I don't like seeing animals out of their natural habitat, but all of these animals were rescued from ci...

2 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Sue Saddest Farewell TGO GL‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Which Ultralight & Compact Jackets are suitable for Winters (minus 10-15 deg. Celsius)?

I am not sure if this question fits here but since I like to travel and often face difficulties because of different weather conditions in different cities/countries so, I am hoping that somebody c...

4 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by skm‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Waterproof mittens for cycling and snow-fun: leather or synthetic?

I have a pair of nubuck leather mittens that are nice and warm but do not last very long when cycling in the rain in autumn/winter or when building snowmen and throwing snowballs. So now i'm looki...

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

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When should I use spray-on versus wash-in waterproofer for treating DWR garments?

There are both spray-on and wash-in products available for treating my DWR (Durable Water Repellent), gore-tex, eVent and other garments using products such as nikwax wash-in or nikwax tx-direct. ...

5 answers  ·  posted 10y ago by Benzo‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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If I kill a deer how long can the body last before preserving?

This isn't a question for a real life situation I am in, but more for a simulation that I want to be as accurate as possible. My setting is pre-refrigeration and someone has just successfully hunt...

4 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by SeriousBri‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Jelly Knees while climbing

I have been climbing for more than 10 months now. I had been climbing regularly for 6 months before, unfortunately, I had a 2-3 months break from climbing. When I have gotten back to it now, I find...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by nGlacTOwnS‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Guide mode ATC with locker to belay loop

So just questioning some advice I received once: When in guide mode when belaying a second from above, is it ok to take the locking carabineer and attach it to your belay loop? The primary benefit...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Daniel Harvey‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Can I get away with less advanced food storing methods if backpacking in areas where meeting bears is unlikely?

A page like this one, as well as a number of questions on this site, discuss how to pack food safely from bears. What about other animals? This post advises a pretty sophisticated way to protect ...

4 answers  ·  posted 11y ago by gerrit‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Where can I get little durable cases you can hang on your climbing harness?

On longer climbing sessions I like to keep my cell phone close by, but most of the time I have no backpack with me. So I would like to pack the cell phone in a little case that I can put on my clim...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Andreas Schwab‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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What do you call the criss-crossed elastic strap on this Northface backpack?

This Northface backpack has an elastic strap which criss-crosses the back side of the pack. What is this type of strap called? The image below shows what kind of strap I'm talking about:

4 answers  ·  posted 8y ago by Lexi‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭

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Worm catching with electricity?

I have heard about people using electricity to catch worms, mostly around catching worms for fishing. How does this work? Is it safe?

1 answer  ·  posted 7y ago by James Jenkins‭  ·  last activity 4y ago by System‭