The $20, 1lb. Ultralight Down Summer Quilt – A Gear Review/DIY Tutorial




Though I tend to be quite picky about the quality and reliability of the gear I take with me into the backcountry, there is a side of me that loves finding decent gear on the cheap. While it may be nice to have the latest and greatest gear when heading out into the woods, cheap gear is an unsung hero of the backpacking world. Whether you are starting off, or just can’t justify spending $400 on a new sleeping bag, cheap gear helps you get out there and enjoy the mountains, which is all that matters. Gear, while shiny and cool, is a means to an end… and in that light, cheap gear is a doorway to adventure. Continue reading

Klymit x Massdrop Ultra Light Static V Insulated Sleeping Pad – Gear Review


Recently, the community based gear purchasing site known as Massdrop has been releasing some interesting new products based on feedback from the ultralight and hiking communities. The latest product of these efforts presents a partnership between the website and well known sleeping pad manufacturer Klymit. Historically, Klymit has made some acceptable sleeping pads, but never anything that was outstanding. This new offering, the Ultralight Static V Insulated, is a huge step in the right direction for Klymit, featuring very competitive specs and a superb price point. Check out the video below for all the info and a comparison to my favorite pad, the Thermarest Xlite. Continue reading

Can you hear that? – Better audio equipment is here, thanks to my Patrons!


Having decent audio in my videos has always been a goal of mine, and up until now it has been lacking. Being able to hear the true sounds of the natural places I adventure, the steady din of hiking shoes crossing a trail, or even of the needle on the sewing machine as it carefully places each stitch will hopefully add whole new layer of depth and enjoyment to my videos.  Continue reading

How to make a rain skirt (step by step) – DIY Gear Tips


Rain skirts are a quick and easy way to keep your shorts dry while hiking in the rain. Far more breathable and at a fraction of the weight of rain pants, they are my go to rain gear for much of the hiking season. Though there are a few places that sell rain skirts, they still aren’t quite mainstream yet and prices are not cheap. This means that you’ve got two options: buy an expensive rain skirt from one of the few vendors, or make your own! Continue reading

Continental Divide Trail – Colorado


This series has been several months in the works now, but alas my final CDT edit is done. Looking through all of my footage from the trail has been both wonderful and horrible. It’s wonderful to go back and relive these memories, but it makes me horribly homesick for the trail.  Take a trip along the lovely Continental Divide Trail with me as  I complete the last state in my thru hike: Colorado.  Continue reading

Respect your elders – The 1983 Kelty Sonora III backpack


Recently a customer at the gear shop I work for, brought in a relic from the early(ish) days of backpacking. He told me of the great adventures he and his Kelty backpack had shared since it’s original purchase date in 1983. Regretfully, he said, it was time for him to move on. He had been using this pack somewhat frequently since day one, but no longer gets to backpack as frequently; he longed for a lighter and smaller pack to bring him into the modern backpacking scene. He kindly donated the pack to the shop, as he didn’t have any room to keep it stored at home any longer. Upon first inspection, I was amazed at the great condition and build quality of the pack. This got me thinking… maybe it’s time we look back at where backpacking once was. Sure, it’s easy to see that modern backpacking has changed for the better, with lighter, more comfortable loads, but let’s not forget how we got here. The early backpacks may have been heavy by todays standards, but they were beasts of design and craftsmanship. Continue reading

Full Granary Canyon – Moab, Utah – Canyoneering Trip Video


This past Memorial Day marked a new chapter for me in my continual exploration of nature. Thanks to some great friends, I was introduced to the world of Canyoneering and am happy to report that I’m hooked. Delving downwards through ever deepening, winding canyons, while getting to see the sheer power that water can have over time is like opening up a door to a whole new part of the natural world. Flowing red curves of canyon and steep drops where water once fell coexist with the beautiful desert flora I’ve come to love in my past hikes. Essentially, canyoneering is like combining hiking with rappelling (and maybe a little climbing should be thrown in there too.) Let’s explore: Granary Canyon. Continue reading

Continental Divide Trail – Wyoming


Once again, it’s time for an edit from the Continental Divide Trail (CDT). This weeks video will focus on the unfathomably gorgeous state of Wyoming. After pushing my way south through Montana and Idaho (Seen in this post/video), I passed through a final “goodbye hail/snow storm” sent from Montana as a final parting gift for my travels. With snow on the ground and an icy sun rising in the distance I passed over the MT/WY border and into a new realm of discovery. Continue reading

How to make a stuff sack (Step by step) – DIY Gear Tips


Though I’ve done a few tutorials and videos on DIY gear in the past, I’d like to start doing more. With the price of gear creeping ever higher (I’m looking at you Dyneema), a lack of reliable and lightweight gear from large manufacturers, and the wait times we often find with the cottage companies we love, DIY is a great way to get the gear you want for much cheaper than retail. Let’s not forget about how incredibly fulfilling it is to be out in the woods alone, using gear that you have made to survive too! To kick off this new wave of DIY videos on my channel, I figured I’d start with one of the most simple projects around. A project that makes a great intro into the world of DIY (Do it yourself) and MYOG (Make your own gear): A stuff sack. But not just any ol’ stuff sack. A reinforced, cinching, quality stuff sack. Continue reading

Why you should switch to a backpacking quilt – Ask A Thru Hiker


If you are unfamiliar with my “Ask a thru hiker” series, the basic premise is that I attempt to answer some of the more common questions I receive from various hikers and backpackers. This week I am focusing on one, very frequently mentioned topic. Quilts. Although there are a myriad of questions that most people have about backpacking quilts, today, I’m going start simple and explain some of the advantages that backpacking quilts have over the sleeping bags you’ve probably been using. We’ll get to the deeper questions in future posts, though if you do have questions, please leave them on the video. Continue reading