My Backpacking First Aid Kit & Emergency Communication Checklist

What I carry in my backpack is not a substitute for what’s between my ears. This is especially true with first aid kits and emergency communications when hiking and backpacking in the wilderness: rather than thinking of this collection of items as a get-out-of-jail-free card, I’m much better served by having researched beforehand the environmental and route conditions I will […]

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A firefighting helicopter in the Middle Fork of Kings Canyon, September 2013

Heading to the High Sierra? Updates on the Rough Fire.

After yet another extremely dry winter, it’s no surprise that California’s High Sierra is being affected by wildfires this summer. The action was mostly in Yosemite National Park in 2013 and 2014, with the Rim Fire and Meadow Fire, the latter of which necessitated the plucking off via helicopter of stranded hikers atop Half Dome. Unfortunately, Sequoia-Kings Canyon […]

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Wish this wasn't a client of mine, but it was. Vic badly strained his LCL, to the point that self-rescue and even a mule ride was implausible. Thankfully the park helicopter and a medical crew were available.

Backcountry First Aid & Emergencies | Next SD LIVE – Thurs, Aug 20

The next SD LIVE will broadcast on Thursday, August 20, at 5:30 PM PDT. Register here to join. In this 45-minute live show, I will discuss Backcountry First Aid and Emergencies, specifically: Preparedness Wilderness medical training Items in my solo and group first aid kids Satellite communication devices, e.g. messengers and phones There always seems to […]

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The 2016 Flash single-wall tent, with its rollback fly

Outdoor Retailer: Top 4 to-be-released products from Sierra Designs in 2016

For a few days last week I was in in Salt Lake City for the semi-annual Outdoor Retailer tradeshow, where there were a dizzying number of new, updated, and proven old products for hiking, camping, running, climbing, and paddling. The focus of the summer show are items that will hit store shelves in Spring 2016. For show-wide news coverage, consult Backpacker, Gear Junkie, […]

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Extensive talus and huge vertical relief, par for the course on the Wind River High Route. It can get old.

Planning a high route? Three critical mental adjustments.

Within the backpacking community I have sensed increasing interest in “high routes,” such as the the Sierra High Route, Wind River Range High Route, and Kings Canyon High Basin Route. I think this concept will continue to expand, with most of the emphasis on “route” rather than “high,” since there are thematically similar opportunities in […]

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Food for 10+ days. When I calculated the cost/benefit of a mid-trip resupply, I determined that it was more efficient to carry all of my food from start to finish. This had the added advantage of increased flexibility: for 10 days I could go where ever I wanted, when I wanted.

Notes for next time: Gear, supplies, food & logistics

An assortment of takeaways from my Kings Canyon High Basin Route thru-hike earlier this month. They are mostly a reminder for me, but maybe they’ll have some value for you, too. If any prompt a question, leave a comment. Gear Pack weight. Take a handheld digital scale to the trailhead for a final weigh-in of all gear, supplies, and food. This […]

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