Tuesday, December 10, 2019

My Gear Favs

Here are some of Blissful Hiking's favorite gear picks - I love this stuff...
As I tell others, some collect shoes and what-have-you - I collect gear!
(And I've got a series of great adventures on our National Scenic Trails!) 

Sea to Summit Ether Light Insulated Sleep Pad - Check out a full review of it on SectionHiker. Nice pad, very comfy, sleeps a bit cold though compared to Neoair X Lite in my opinion.

The Evernew water bottle. Compatible with the Sawyer squeeze filter (see below which has blown out my Platypus and a substitution for the Sawyer bags which also fail. Bombproof, works great.

Socks are a hiker's best friend, and it might as well be a pair that works great and lasts forever. Hence our fav pick is Darn Tough. They are pricey but a high-quality sock with an unlimited guarantee to boot. In fact, they dare you to wear out their socks! Pretty cool.

Assorted cuben fiber stuff sacks. Waterproof, durable, great for adding protection in your backpack or for keeping sleeping bags and clothes dry. We have used them in all shapes and sizes (they make a good hiker wallet too). The thicker the material, the more durable Z Packs has a great selection. Cuben fiber (now referred to as Dyneema) has also been used in ultralight tents and backpacks as well (but they are pricey).
Other gear websites: Mountain Laurel Designs, Hyperlite Mountain Gear

Basic rain gear is a must in a hiker's backpack. If only out for short jaunts, Frogg Toggs makes an ultralight and cheap means to stay dry with a jacket and pants for around $30 bucks (though be warned, they are NOT durable for lengthy ventures). We find the jacket also provides good warmth in windy weather. Another fav is the rain kilt or rain wrap that does a great job of protecting without the need for cumbersome and hot rain pants.
Some gear shops for a rain kilt:
Lightheart Gear,  ULA

The Sawyer Filter -  a fav for Appalachian Trail adventures. We use the bigger model that filters water much quicker than its smaller mini model for a mere ounce or two more (though some like to have the smaller Sawyer mini filter attached to a Smartwater bottle for quick drinking).

Of all the eating utensils, the simple titanium spoon is our fav. Unlike the Light My Fire sporks that seem to break on a whim (and we've gone through many), This has been on dozens of trips and remains tried and true (gets out gooey stuff like PB from a jar without breaking), and good also for scraping away food while cleaning the pot, too.

National Scenic Trail Adventures - for the Wanderer in All of Us!

To a backpacker who dreams of hiking the Appalachian Trail or just someone who wants to read a tale of adventure, especially with a mom and son, this one-of-a-kind book covers the trail north and south, including ideas from a teen son hiking with his mom, a solo adventure, and the spiritual aspects gleaned on a long distance adventure! Endorsed by long-distance hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis. Available on Kindle or paperback.


So what's it like doing a long-distance hike in Florida of all places, among the palms and palmettos, and yeah, the gators, cotton mouths, and other critters? Check out Gators, Guts, and Glory! An adventure on the wild side!


1 comment:

kathygaynor said...

Stuff sack that when turned inside-out doubles as a pillow. Just stuff in your jacket, clean stuff, or whatever to fill it out. Nylon on the outside, fleece on the inside. https://www.backcountry.com/therm-a-rest-stuff-sack-pillow?s=a