Every time I leave the pavement, I take along my trusty hiking pack even if I have no intention of hiking. Doing this has become a habit rather than a conscious decision. My pack goes with me when a hike, camp, hunt, fish, bird watch and even when I drive out of town. Ive been a boy scout and a United States Marine so I suppose I have learned to be prepared for almost anything. My pack is full of items I hope I will never need. Whats In Your Hiking Pack? As an outdoor enthusiast, you have complete control over what you carry or what stays in the car such as a cell phone, do you carry one? I wouldnt dare go in the backcountry without all of the items listed below as Highly Recommend. Whats In My Hiking Pack? Here is my list split into two categories with the weight of each item in ounces:Highly Recommend: Cell Phone (5 ounces), First-Aid Kit (9), Flashlight (4), Food - Beef Jerky (4), Insect Repellent (3), Map & Compass (4), Multi-Tool (9), Pack (24), Signal Mirror (1), Spare Vehicle Key (1), Sunglasses & Sunscreen (2), Water, Waterproof matches (1), Waterproof windbreaker (24), Whistle (1). Total weight: 5 pounds 12 ounces, not including water.Nice to Have: Bandana (1), Binoculars (12), Cash & ID (1), Disposable Camera (4), Emergency Blanket (1), Extra Batteries (4), GPS Unit (10), Hand warmers (1), Hunting knife (8), Lighter (1), Lip Balm (1), Mini-Umbrella (10), Paper & Pen (1), Rangefinder (8), Road Flare (4), 12 feet of rope (2), Saw (7), Toilet Paper (1), Two-Way Radio (7), Work Gloves (2). Total weight: 5 pounds 2 ounces.The total weight of my hiking pack not counting water, is 10 pounds 14 ounces. My pack has a shoulder harness system that takes the weight off of my lower back and distributes it evenly across my shoulders and upper back. I hardly notice my pack when Im wearing it. One last point, if you carry something make sure you know how to use it.Weve all heard quotes about being prepared, such as Chance favors the prepared mind. Louis Pasteur and The will to win is important, but the will to prepare is vital. Joe Paterno and Chance fights ever on the side of the prudent. Euripides. I suggest carrying a well thought out pack is a good habit and a good outdoor life-skill. One day it may save a family member, an outdoor companion or even you. Plan ahead before you venture into our backcountry, even if you plan to be gone only an hour or two. It makes good sense. With just this small amount of planning youll get the most out of your backcountry experiences. Use this information and youll Get It Right The First Time. Get Outdoors!
For whitewater rafting in the Pacific Northwest, Oregon is an enthusiasts dream! The rivers available only short drives from the major cities provide beginners and experts, alike, with an exciting and fun challenge for half, one, and two day trips. For those who want a longer, more impressive experience, Oregon also offers some of the best four and five day river trips anywhere!The Umpqua River is, simply put, a dream! Flowing North of Crate Lake, the Umpqua River has Class III and IV rapids and flows through some of the most beautiful surroundings in the Pacific Northwest. The Umpqua has exceptional pool-and-drop rapids and has more rapids per mile than any other Oregon river.The Mackenzie River, specifically the Lower Mackenzie, is perfect for beginners and families. Usually run as a full day, the river alternates long, tranquil and relaxing stretches through beautiful country with spicy, exciting Class II (easiest) and Class III (moderately challenging) rapids.The John Day River is perfect for a multi-day trip, providing an excellent vacation for the family or group of friends that loves the outdoors and the river life. The river provides the opportunity for many different activities, such as camping and fishing, but also provides an excellent long stretch of Class II (easiest) and Class III (moderately challenging) rapids.The Rogue River is one of the most popular destinations in Oregon for multi-day raft trips. Located in southwestern Oregon, the Rogue River cuts through the beautiful terrain of the Siskyou Mountains. The river has over 80 rapids, with many Class III and a few Class IV surprises to spice up the trip.The Deschutes River is one of the best-known rivers in Oregon. The river flows through spectacular desert canyons and rocky mountain vistas, for sightseeing, but also has great Class III and Class IV rapids for those more interested in trying their skill against the river. The Deschutes River is very popular and, during the height of the season, youll never lack for company along the river.
Winter hiking can be a tranquil even surreal experience when done properly. The peace of walking through cold and wintry scenes captured in the outdoors is considered by many to be a great way to spend a day. Additional precautions are needed when hiking in the winter, however, as winter weather can create a number of issues not typically a problem in the summer. It is important to protect yourself from both colder temperatures and potential winter hazards this time of year. Making sure that you have the right equipment for your hike and taking extra time planning so that you can avoid many potentially dangerous situations are important to winter hiking safety.Essential EquipmentProper equipment is a winter hiking essential. Your biggest priorities are going to be making sure that you have light and warmth when you need it, as well as food and water to keep you from becoming dehydrated or hungry. A basic multipurpose tool or a pocket knife is important for any hiking situation. A small first aid kit is too. LED flashlights are the smartest choice for a light source. They use very little energy (batteries) and therefore will last much longer than a standard light. Pack both thermal blankets and chemical heat packs to ensure that you and your companions will be able to stay warm enough if caught out in unexpected bad weather. If youll be camping during your hike, invest in a sleeping bag thats designed to keep you warm in low temperatures. Make sure that you pack all of the necessary equipment that you would bring in warmer weather, and be sure that you put an extra emphasis on safety and first aid.Careful PlanningWhen youre planning your hiking trip, take extra time to plan out your route. Do your research and see if you can find out about any safety advisories in the area where you want to hike, and adjust your equipment list as needed to accommodate for any special circumstances that you might encounter based on these warnings. If youre planning a multi-day hiking trip, you might want to have an "LED flashlight" that has a lantern function as well so that you can illuminate larger areas with it. Begin watching weather reports several days in advance of when your trip is planned for so that you can make any necessary adjustments to your plans. Once your plan is set, make sure you notify two to three people of your expected route and plans for return so they can alert the proper authorities if you do not return as scheduled. Being Mindful of TemperatureTemperatures often drop quickly during the winter, and it can be very easy to underestimate the effects of these temperature shifts. You must also be mindful of the amount of sweat that your body can produce even in cold weather, as it can not only lead to you having wet clothes and skin in cold weather but you can also be in danger of dehydration. Quickly dropping temperatures can increase your likelihood of becoming sick and can also put you at risk for hypothermia. Because of this, in addition to any blankets or heat packs that you bring, its important that you dress appropriately for the projected temperatures on the day or days that youll be hiking. Dress in layers and bring extra shirts, jackets, pants, or other clothing that can be added with relative ease if necessary. ~Ben Anton, 2008
Travelers around the world enjoy seeing the sights and wonders of different places with only a backpack for all the things they need. Because they only have a pack on their backs, the possibilities of new sightseeing and activity adventures are limitless. But of course, before you head for a faraway hiking adventure with your backpack, you must make sure that you bring all the things you need to put in your backpack. Below is a checklist that would help your backpacking adventure a pleasant experience. - Backpack Of course, how can you go for a wild backpacking activity without a backpack! Pick one that is comfortable and fits well on you. - Quick Drying Towel Widely available in many stores. You dont want a heavy, damp towel on your backpack, do you?- Walking Shoes Pick comfortable shoes as you would learn soon enough that walking would be a major part in your backpacking adventure. - Underwear and socksThese go without saying.- Long Underwear This depends on the season and place where you are traveling. You might also wear your long underwear when you stay in hotels that do not have adequate well-heating systems. - Pillow Case Pillow case is an essential thing to keep when you stay in backpacker hotels.- Sleeping Bag When you stay in backpacker hotels. - Passport Dont even think of leaving the country without it. - Spy Wallet So that you could be able to divide up the money that you have just in case. - Day Pack Most backpacks have a detachable daypack.- Camera A digicam may be better, but bulkier and heavier to carry. - Journal For the writer and chronicler in you. - Flip Flops Useful when you take a shower.- Travelers Checks You can never be too sure with your money.- Wet Wipes Always come in handy. Easy to carry too. - Landry Detergent It might prove handy. - Space Savers - Rain Coat Especially if you travel on a rainy season or youre going to tropical countries like those in Southeast Asia or South America. - Lock For the safety of your belongings. - Band Aids Its better to be prepared than not at all. - Travel Guide Try picking a comprehensive yet easy-to-carry travel guide. - Personal items such as toothpaste, deodorant, soap, and shampoo For hygienic purposes.- Clothing A tip: The night before you leave, check all clothes that you need. Then take only the half. Clothing simply weighs too much. Take only what you can carry at ease.
Many hikers who are bored of the normal marked trails, and discovered wilderness areas have come to a new adrenaline rush: mountain hiking. Hiking several hundred feet above sea level gives those with a taste for the extreme the rush they are looking for. If you are that kind of hiker, then mountain hiking is for you.But wait, before you start day dreaming about the top of the summit, you first need to know how to get there. Mountain hiking isn't much different than simple hiking. The only major difference is the endurance needed and the terrain you are hiking on. Over all the same gear is needed and the idea is much the same. The three layer system that is often used in hiking also applies in mountain hiking. Let's do this real quick: the layering system offers three different layers of clothing that a hiker should follow. First is the base layer, which is responsible for keeping a dry and comfortable microclimate next to your skin. For mountain hiking, you can wear two pairs of long johns, top and bottom. The clothes should be made from synthetic fiber but not from cotton.The second layer you need in mountain hiking is the insulation layer. This layer provides more warmth if the base layer and the shell layer do not provide enough insulation on their own. And last is the shell layer, providing you protection from wind, rain, sleet, snow, etc.Shirts for mountain hiking during good weatherWool or fleece sweater or synthetic insulated jacketWool shirt or sweater, second fleece/pile jacket, vest, etc.Fleece pants - side zips are nice as they come in handy if you are getting too hotWhile in a typical hiking trip, no more than three layers of clothing is needed, this is not so in mountain hiking, where the conditions can be harsher and more extreme. That is why a fourth layer of clothing is usually added, the 'super' insulation layer. You might need to wear eye protection, depending on where you are hiking. In snowy conditions, blindness is common due to the glare, even on overcast days blindness can be a concern. Also in sunny conditions it is important to wear eye protection to protect your eyes.