The Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT) was my first long-distance solo hike. The trail covers 165 miles around Lake Tahoe. What makes the TRT a great option for a first thru-hike is that it’s a loop. That makes logistics easier: you end your hike where you begin it. It also offers numerous bailout points along the trail in case something were to go wrong.Continue reading “Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT) overview and ultralight gear list”
I already had a lot of backpacking experience before the trip. I had even thru-hiked the Tahoe Rim Trail the previous summer. But the JMT would be quite different. Much higher in elevation longer stretches between resupplies. I wanted to be ready.Continue reading “My (almost) ultralight JMT gear list”
Suunto 9 and Garmin Fenix 6 are the top sports GPS watches currently. Both are well made and include more features than you probably know what to do with. But both are also very expensive. How do you know you get the right one?Continue reading “Garmin Fenix 6 vs Suunto 9 in-depth comparison – there’s a clear winner”
As I was hanging up my gear to dry after my recent trip to Colorado, I happened to notice something odd with my XLite inflatable pad. The insulation was gone.Continue reading “NeoAir XLite feeling cold? Check the insulation”
I’ve been hiking in zero-drop trail runners for the past several years. They’re lightweight, comfortable, and dry out quickly, so I don’t need to worry about taking them off when fording creeks.Continue reading “Inov-8 Terraultra G 260. The best zero-drop trail runner? [review]”
The course navigation feature in the Garmin is really helpful, but it took me a long time to figure out it even existed.Continue reading “Garmin Fenix 6 navigation: how to easily load a GPX file”
Confession: I have a lot of backpacking stoves and pots. I have a Jetboil that’s fast and fuel-efficient, but heavy. I also have a couple of different sized titanium pots that I use with a MSR Pocket Rocket 2 stove.
But the stove setup I most often end up using is the GSI Halulite Minimalist. It’s light enough, it packs small and comes with an insulated sleeve. And perhaps best of all: it’s cheap—less than $30 on Amazon.Continue reading “GSI Halulite Minimalist II review: the best budget ultralight cook set (in my opinion)”
For the past several years, my go-to stove and pot combo for trips where I want more capacity has been the MSR PocketRocket 2 and 800ml MSR Titan Kettle. The pot is large enough to accommodate cooking larger meals and, when empty, can fit a 100g gas canister, the stove, and a lighter with room to spare.
I recently ran across the new Jetboil Stash, Jetboil’s first venture into the ultralight stove game. I’ve been a long-time fan of the Jetboil Flash for quick boil times, but its weight makes it impractical to bring on longer backpacking trips. Could the Stash deliver quick boil times and low fuel consumption while shedding almost half the weight?Continue reading “Jetboil Stash review and boil test: an efficient and convenient ultralight stove”
Last weekend, I had a chance to field-test the new Platypus QuickDraw water filter system on a 3-day trip to Yosemite. This review is based on my initial impressions. I’ll update it as I get a chance to put it through more use.Continue reading “Platypus QuickDraw review: a great filter with a big flaw”