Hiking

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What To Look For When Buying a Tent

buying a tent

What to Look for When Buying a Tent

When sleeping outside, having the right tent can make all the difference. If a tent is flimsy, too small or doesn’t provide adequate protection, the camping trip won’t be a success. To ensure that your next camping trip goes as smoothly as possible, consider all of the following characteristics as you select your tent.

1. Purpose

Before choosing a tent, think about how the tent will be used. For example, while three-season tents are designed to withstand the conditions typical of spring, summer and fall, extended season tents can also be used in early winter. For campers that plan to take trips in middle and late winter, four-season tents are recommended.

2. Capacity

Tents come in a variety of sizes and capacities. In most cases, tent packaging will include information about the number of people the tent is designed to hold. Remember to include extra space for any pets or equipment you will be bringing with you, as well as for people who are claustrophobic or tend to move a lot at night.

3. Durability

Chances are you will be using your tent on more than one occasion. For this reason, it’s best to purchase a tent that is able to withstand the elements with breaking or leaking. Some of the features that may indicate that a tent is durable include:

  • Heavy duty zippers
  • No-see-um meshing to keep bugs out
  • Waterproof floor material
  • Double stitching
  • A large rainfly
  • Aluminum tent poles (as opposed to fiberglass)

4. Price

Tents will vary considerably in price based on their design, size, durability, brand and other characteristics. Try to choose the most affordable tent that meets all of your other requirements. However, keep in mind that it is better to purchase a good quality tent for a higher price than it is to purchase a tent that becomes damaged after a single use. Weak tents must be replaced or repaired frequently and often end up costing more in the end.

Regardless of the size or type of tent you need, it’s best to buy from a brand you can trust. Buy yourself a durable & lightweight tent from Litefighter good for camping, hiking hunting & more

150 150 Mike Coachys

How to Identify Poison Ivy

poison ivy

 

More than half of people are allergic to poison ivy, a common plant found throughout North America. Because an allergic reaction to this plant can cause uncomfortable symptoms, knowing how to properly identify this common plant is recommended, especially for people who spend a significant amount of time outdoors. Below is some information people can use to properly identify and avoid poison ivy.

Why is it dangerous?

Poison ivy contains an oil known as urushiol, which causes a rash in people who are allergic to it. The rash typically consists of fluid-filled blisters that may itch and weep. To contract the rash, people must come into direct contact with the oil. The oil may be found on the plant itself, as well as on objects, people or pets that have touched the plant. Reactions may also occur among people who inhale smoke produced by the burning of the poison ivy plant.

Identifying Poison Ivy

Poison ivy plants can be found in a variety of locations, from vacant lots to deep in the woods. Poison ivy may grow as a single plant, a bush or a vine. Typically, poison ivy plants are characterized by various stems that each contain three leaves.

The leaves will be close together, and they may appear shiny. Leaves on poison ivy plants are usually bright or dark green in the spring and red or orange in autumn. If the leaf is turned over or viewed from below, the bottom will appear fuzzy and lighter in color. Poison ivy plants also produce dense clusters of berries, which are white in color and usually appear late in the summer and remain on the plant until winter.

Dealing with Poison Ivy

If you come across poison ivy in your backyard or on your next hike, avoid touching any part of the plant. If you accidently touch part of the plant, wash the oil off your skin immediately with warm water and soap. Keep in mind that not all soaps will effectively remove poison ivy oils. Special soaps are available for purchase, or you can simply use dish detergent. If you develop a rash, you can treat the symptoms with topical steroids and anti-itch creams. In severe cases, oral steroids may be necessary. Regardless of the severity of your reaction, you should not scratch the rash, as this can lead to skin damage and infection.

From special soaps for removing poison ivy oils to the right type of tent, having the proper equipment is essential for the success of any camping trip. For your next trip in the great outdoors, be sure to have a durable shelter from Litefighter.

150 150 Mike Coachys

How To Properly Dress For The Cold In The Outdoors

dress for the cold

Learning how to dress for the cold in the outdoors is important not only for comfort, but for safety. Winter weather, especially in certain climates, can be unpredictable and dangerous. But even if one is not worried about scaling mountain passes, it still pays to be able to adjust one’s temperature throughout a winter day – with all of the variations in temperature that can occur.

How To Dress for the Cold Weather

The two key things one should remember when choosing winter clothing are materials and layers. Certain materials work better to keep one warm and dry than others, and knowing how to dress in layers is key to remaining comfortable in the cold.

Materials

White cotton socks and cotton t shirts are fine in the summer, but cotton is not a material well-designed for cold weather. When cotton becomes wet it loses its insulation properties. This means if boots fill up with snow, get doused in water or one just sweats from exertion, cotton goes from a comfort to a hazard.

Wool, on the other hand, is an ideal insulator even when wet. This is why it is still considered a prized material for winter weather underlayers – even with the creation of a range of useful synthetics. Merino wool in particular is used as an underlayer because it is both comfortable and warm.

Synthetics are perfect for outer layers. They can shed water and snow so well that one can remain completely dry in most circumstances – unless one falls in water or sits on snow so long it melts and soaks through the material.

Layers

With an understanding of materials, it is easy to start creating layers. A base layer is always recommended, such as long underwear made out of merino wool or a synthetic material. Then comes more layers – the number depending on how severe the weather will be. Warm footwear should also always be a priority, with waterproofing if possible.

For a walk in the woods it may be enough to put on a base layer, then a pair of outdoor pants or snow pants and a long sleeve shirt or sweater, and a jacket. Someone doing a serious hike in the snow might increase the layers and bring a backpack to store layers that he or she is shedding as body temperature rises.

So remember, know your materials and learn to dress in layers. And for your next hike or camping trip, be sure to pack a Litefighter tent to stay warm!

150 150 Mike Coachys

Finding The Best Wood For Starting A Fire by Friction

 

fire by friction

There are seemingly endless modern tools to use to start campfires, but no one is properly prepared unless he or she also knows how to start a camp fire with no outside equipment at all. This is because mishaps can cause the original equipment to be lost or broken. When these things occur, it’s important to know how to start a fire by friction.

The friction method is sometimes known as “rubbing two sticks together,” but this is really just one way to do it. Usually, it’s actually done by rubbing a wood stick against a wooden base. No matter which specific method is used, the principle is the same: The rubbing must create enough friction to heat the wood until it’s hot enough to ignite materials that are then placed around it.

Even though it seems simple, many people find that when they attempt to make a fire this way, the wood just gets hard and shiny. The slick, shiny surface produces almost no friction when rubbed, so it won’t heat up. What causes this problem? It turns out that this is the result of using hardwood.

While different campers may prefer different types of wood, all agree that softwood is a necessity. They also prefer the bow drill fire starting method, in which a stick is quickly rubbed into a base. A hardwood stick can work, but the base must always be softwood. Using softwood for both parts works great.

One specific type of wood that has been mentioned as the best wood for a fire is white pine. Other types of pine are also commonly used where available. If there are no pine trees around, other softwoods are also acceptable. To determine if wood is soft enough, try to dent it with a thumbnail. If it dents, it’s softwood.

The other key is to make sure the wood is dry. Dead wood that has been on the ground will have absorbed water, so it won’t work. An easy way to get dry, dead wood is to look for a dead branch that’s still attached to a tree.

This may turn out to be one of the camping tips that turns out to be a lifesaver, but the ability to start a fire is just one of the things that’ll be needed on a trip through the woods. For your next camping trip, be sure to pick up a durable Litefighter tent for shelter and warmth.

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How to Hydrate Without Water While Hiking or Camping

hydrate without water while hiking

It is generally understood that the human body can go only 3 or 4 days without any sort of hydration. Water is an absolute necessity to human survival, whether it comes from a pristine lake, a can of soda or cactus pulp. When a person gets lost or otherwise stranded out in the wild it can be difficult to find a reliable hydration source. Fortunately, with the right knowledge one can still hydrate without water. It just may take a little more work than turning on a faucet.

How to Stay Hydrated Without Drinking Water

Life thrives on water, which means if one can cultivate, catch or kill either animals or plants, it is often possible to get moisture in one form or another. Of course, some of these have more accessible water than others. Some of these include:

  • Berries – These are an ideal source for hydration and probably the tastiest option on this list. Just make sure the berries are edible, like blackberries, raspberries, blueberries or huckleberries. There are a surprising number of edible berries out there, most of which never make it to grocery store shelves. Of course, one needs to know how to recognize them.
  • Green coconuts – Another delicious option for those in a tropical location. Green coconuts have a good amount of coconut water – probably nature’s most ideal form of hydration – while brown coconuts offer coconut milk. Stick to the younger green coconuts for hydration purposes, although coconut milk is better than nothing.
  • Cacti – Certain fleshy cacti contain a decent amount of water. One should remove the spines and chew the pulp to obtain the moisture. The taste might take some getting used to, but a truly thirsty person may not notice it. Remember that there are often numerous smaller spines at the base of the larger spines. Use a rock or cutting too to remove all spines, and possibly skin, before chewing.
  • Water from gutting animals and fish – Often animals will have some liquid in their bodies surrounding their organs, which one can collect in a basin as he or she cuts open the abdomen of the animal to begin preparing it. Not the most desirable moisture source, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
  • Blood – Blood from birds, amphibians and other animals can also be consumed for moisture.

Being prepared is just smart, whether you are heading to the mountains or the desert. For your next hike or camping trip, be sure to pack a LiteFighter tent! Quality, dependable gear for all situations.

150 150 Mike Coachys

How to Choose the Best Footwear for Hiking

Best Footwear for Hiking

Hiking is an exciting pastime that allows you to challenge yourself physically and enjoy the outdoors. However, if you don’t have the right shoes, you may find that your feet become tired and sore long before the hike is over. In some cases, wearing the wrong hiking shoes may even cause you to sustain an injury. Below is some information to help you choose the best footwear for hiking any trail.

Style

Mountaineering Boots

Mountaineering boots are weighty, stiff boots that are durable and designed to accommodate heavy loads. Of all types of outdoor footwear, mountaineering boots are the heaviest and strongest.

Backpacking Boots

Backpacking boots are not as stiff or as strong as mountaineering boots, but they are still suitable for carrying heavy loads. They can be used on or off trails. These boots are not as durable as mountaineering boots, but they are lighter and more flexible.

Hiking Boots

The lightest and most flexible style of boot is the hiking boot. Although these shoes can be worn on the trail, they are not as durable as the other boots mentioned here. They are best for light loads and shorter trips.

Cut

If you are looking for the best footwear for hiking, you should also consider the cut of the shoe. Hiking footwear comes in one of three cuts: high-cut, mid-cut and low-cut.

  • High-cut boots have the most ankle support. They are best for heavy loads and rough trails.
  • Mid-cut boots offer some ankle support, but not as much as a high-cut boot. They are best for moderate loads and shorter trips.
  • Low-cut boots offer the least amount of stability and ankle support. They are best for smooth, well-maintained trails, short trips and light loads.

Fit

When thinking about how to choose the best hiking boots, fit is the most important consideration. Be sure to try on boots before purchasing them to ensure that the fit is correct. Regardless of the style or cut you choose, the boot should fit securely and comfortably. Your foot should not slide around inside the boot, but it shouldn’t feel constricted either. The boot should be long enough so that you can wiggle your toes easily.

Although choosing the right boot is important to the success of a hiking trip, other equipment is also essential. For your next hiking trip, be sure to pick up a durable Litefighter tent.

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Best Trail Mix Ingredients for Hiking Trips

best trail mix ingredients

Trail mix is the quintessential hiking food. Lightweight and packed with nutrients, it offers an ideal balance for people in the outdoors. Generally one is burning a great deal of calories while hiking, backpacking or even working outside – meaning he or she must replenish those resources. However, not all trail mix is created equal. Store bought varieties can be chock full of unnecessary salt and sugar, and may not offer a balanced energy source. Homemade trail mix is a better solution, one where the end-user can control the mix.

Healthy Trail Mix Ingredients

Trail mix generally consists of roasted nuts, dried fruit and possibly vegetables, and possibly some sort of sweet candy like chocolate. Here is the lowdown on the best trail mix ingredients:

  • Nuts and seeds – Packed with protein and a range of other nutrients, nuts typically make up at least 50% of the mix. Nuts should be dry roasted for preservation purposes. Some prefer to use salted nuts, as one naturally secretes salt while sweating that must be replenished. However, avoid putting too many salty ingredients in the batch. It is best to use several nuts for nutrition and variety – but make sure only one type is salted.
  • Dried fruit – Dried fruit has a ton of nutrients and often packs plenty of sweetness. The fruit provides vitamins that nuts cannot, making it a necessary part of the mix. Fruit also provides a different texture, which is important to keep the mix interesting.
  • Dried vegetables – While dried veggies may not sound appetizing at first, they can often be incorporated sparingly into a mix to provide even more nutrition and fiber. They also have the advantage of containing much less sugar or fat than the other ingredients. One can experiment with different dried veggie options, such as dried red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes and pumpkin.
  • Chocolate or other sweet ingredients – It is arguable whether ingredients like chocolate are truly necessary for a trail mix. Plenty of people stick to a straight Nut/Seed/Fruit and possibly vegetable mix. However, a bit of dried chocolate or some honey roasted nuts may be a perfect way to make the trail mix more fun to eat – and one is probably going to burn off all the extra calories anyway.

There is no perfect trail mix recipe. Proper proportions are important – at least 50% nuts, a balanced salt level, not too much sugar – but the rest is up to the maker. Healthy trail mix is ideal, but there are many combinations that can create healthy trail mix recipes.

Next time you go camping or hiking, bring plenty of homemade trail mix and your own Litefighter tent for durable protection from the elements!