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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Technical Canyoneering for the Ultralight Backpacker
by David Chenault
Canyoneering is challenging as it offers an opportunity to tackle a variety of terrain using new gear. Combining canyoneering with backpacking is a recipe for a legendary trip. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only High Exertion Moisture Accumulation in Rain and Wind Shells
by Alan Dixon
High Exertion Moisture Accumulation in Rain and Wind Shells Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Clothing and Sleep Systems for Mountain Hiking, 1st Edition (August 2002)
by Ryan Jordan, Jim Nelson, and Alan Dixon
Clothing and Sleep Systems for Mountain Hiking, 1st Edition (August 2002) Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Backcountry Travel on Snowshoes for Lightweight Backpackers
by Don Ladigin
Backcountry Travel on Snowshoes for Lightweight Backpackers Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Nutritional Considerations for Cold Weather Hiking
by Brenda Braaten
Nutritional Considerations for Cold Weather Hiking Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only 24: Garnet Mountain Forest Service Lookout, Montana
by Ryan Jordan
Episode 2: we focused on fast food preparation and the elimination of a whole lotta gear by hiking into a U.S. Forest Service lookout cabin. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Trekking Techniques for Early-Season Conditions
by Andrew Skurka
Andrew Skurka's insights and techniques for early season trekking can dramatically increase the length of your normal hiking season. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
The Lightest Kitchen? A Cook Kit for Ultralight Backpacking
by Ryan Jordan
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Therapeutic Ultralight: Using Lightweight Backpacking to Help Troubled Boys
by Luke Schmidt
Getting emotionally disturbed boys working together to take a backpacking trip is a big job... with many setbacks, limited gear, and almost no budget. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Lightweight Footwear Systems for Snow Travel Part 3: Model Lightweight Footwear Systems for Snow Hiking, Snowshoeing, and Snow Camping
by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl
Based on our research and testing, we recommend lightweight footwear systems for specific conditions and activities. In addition, our Backpacking Light staffers describe their favorite systems, and two ultralight nomads – Andrew Skurka and Chris Townsend – share their wisdom. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only The Petersen Test Methods for Evaluating Shell Clothing Performance
by Curt Petersen
The Petersen Test Methods for Evaluating Shell Clothing Performance Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Montana Mourning: Reflections on a Wilderness Trekking Trip
by Thomas Kight
I got less - and more - than I bargained for. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Guide to Selecting and Using Ultralight GPS Systems
by Blake Morstad and Alan Dixon
Systematic analysis of considerations for evaluating a GPS system of lightweight equipment and software for efficient navigation. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Trail Food: Keeping it Interesting and Energizing
by Rosaleen Sullivan
The basics of selecting trail food that is appetizing, energizing, and easy to prepare. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Frequently Asked Questions About Lightweight Canister Stoves and Fuels
by Will Rietveld
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Thermoregulation: An Overview of Heat Loss Mechanisms and Practical Guidelines for Staying Warm with Lightweight Gear
by Ryan Jordan
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Grand Canyon Rim-2-Rim-2-Rim
by Andrew Skurka
While perhaps a touch extreme, running Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim (RRR) is not uncommon within trail running circles. But within hiking circles, this trek does not seem to garner much attention, when there are few trips, mile-for-mile, hour-for-hour, that compare. In one day, you pass through 1.6 billion years of geology (four times) and span the grandest Big Ditch in the world (twice). Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only The Poncho Tarp: Techniques and Gear Systems for Inclement Conditions
by Ryan Jordan and Alan Dixon
Poncho Tarps are not just for the eccentric. Learn how to use them in foul weather and save considerable weight and simplify your gear kit. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Advanced Tarp Camping Techniques for Inclement Conditions
by Ryan Jordan
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Wilderness Trekking School - Ultralight Boot Camp Photo Essay
by Ryan Connelly (Photos by Emily Beers)
The ultralight boot camp is exactly like it sounds; it prepares you to meet unexpected challenges in the wilderness. Plus it's a lot of fun and the scenery is stunning. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Avalanche Safety for Backcountry Travelers
by Kevin Sawchuk
The winter can make popular locations your personal sanctuary; however avalanche safety and preparation are crucial to enjoying the pristine conditions. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Winter Backpacking Comfort: Lightweight Gear and Techniques for Shelter, Clothing, and Sleep Systems
by Ryan Jordan
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Take the Load Off: Using Pulks to Travel Over Snow
by Ed Bouffard
Pulk techniques for winter travel over snow Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Lightweight Footwear Systems for Snow Travel Part 2: Components
by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl
We cover the components of a lightweight footwear system – shoes/boots, footbeds, socks, vapor barriers, booties, overboots, and gaiters (everything on or around the foot), discuss the pros and cons of different options, and identify our favorites. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Lightweight Backcountry Professional Photography
by Anatoly Ivanov
Complete lightweight camera and accessories setup for the professional backcountry photographer. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Buying an LED Torch: Headlamp Design Considerations to Help Guide Your Purchasing Decisions
by Rick Dreher
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only How Far, How Fast, How Heavy?
Calculating the range for unsupported, long-distance hiking

by Roman Dial
Formulas and theory for predicting possible distances and times with ultralight gear for long distance backpacking. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Pertex/Pile History and Products
by Chris Townsend
Chris Townsend and the Pertex/Pile Revolution. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only SUL BikeRaftFishPacking (BFRP)
by Ryan Jordan
An SUL approach to multisport: bikepacking, packrafting, and tenkara fly fishing. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
2005 Backpacking Light Trip Planning Spreadsheet Contest Entries
by BPL Staff
Reader submissions of spreadsheet files used for trip planning and gear lists. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Igloo Building for Fun and Shelter, Part 2 - Using an Igloo as a Backcountry Shelter
by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl
Tips for igloo living and interior climate graphs to show you why you want to camp in an igloo. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Lightweight First Aid Kits for Hiking
by Bill Thorneloe
Lightweight First Aid Kits for Hiking Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Ultralight in the Icebox: Post-Trip Report
by Andrew Skurka
Andrew Skurka talks about his cold weather tenets and ultralight gear kit following a 385 mile, 19 day backpacking trip in northern Minnesota in the dead of winter. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
The Weird Science of Night Vision: Lighting Considerations for Lightweight Backpacking
by Rick Dreher
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
24: Nine Months 'til Summer
by Ryan Jordan
Episode 3: The first big snowfall of the season (in September!) had us traversing the Hyalite-Cottonwood divide for snow hiking and camping. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Backpacking Light Trip Planning Spreadsheet Contest Winners
by Backpacking Light Staff
The winners of the Backpacking Light Trip Planning Spreadsheet Contest are a diverse group. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Foot Care for Diabetic Hikers
by Gerard Olenick
Perspectives on footwear and foot care from a type II diabetic backpacker. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Saving Time and Weight: A "Winter Water" Routine Tuned for Lightweight Style
by Ryan Jordan
Water prep in the winter is a time- and fuel-consuming chore. Learn tips and tricks to save time and weight in this treatise on lightweight winter water prep using a white gas stove. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Stove Windscreen Dynamics and Design: Part II
Practical Applications for the Field

by Will Rietveld
Have you tried a double windscreen to maintain alcohol and fuel tab stove performance in the wind? It really works, and one piece doubles as a GearSheet. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Igloo Building for Fun and Shelter, Part 1 - Technique
by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl
Igloo building is a fun wintertime activity to share with family, friends, or Scouts. Build a warming hut in your favorite skiing or snowshoeing area, construct an igloo for a backcountry base camp, or design your own hut system! The Grand Shelters Icebox Igloo Building Tool does a lot of the work for you, but you’ll still need to master some essential techniques. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Getting the Most out of an MSR White Gas Stove: Maintenance Tips
by Don Johnston
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ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Selecting a Canister Stove for Cold Weather Backpacking
Part I: Stove and Fuel Fundamentals

by Roger Caffin
Fuel fundamentals and basic flame chemistry explained so that canister stove cold weather performance can be optimized. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Selecting a Canister Stove for Cold Weather Backpacking
Part II: Commercially Available Canister Stove Systems

by Roger Caffin
Many canister stove models become excellent cold weather performers with a simple twist. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Backpacking: Baby on Board
by Nick Meynen
Hiking through the French Pyrenees is challenging for any young couple hoping to enjoy some relaxation and romance in between climbing passes and breaking camp. The afternoon heat - often ending in a violent thunderstorm - brings more than one overloaded backpacker to boiling point. Now enter a six-kilo, breast-fed, three-month-old baby. Great family trip or a bad idea? Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Le Parcour de Wild Race Report
by Kevin Sawchuk and Dave Chenault
With temperatures that ranged from -5 F to 40 F, the Bob Marshall Wilderness threw some formidable weather our way and reminded us: this stuff ain't for the faint of heart! Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Transitional Hiker - An Australian Story
by Mark McLauchlin
How books about or by famous UL walkers, a sewing machine, and the most devoted UL community on the planet got me back on the trail and going light. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Bushwhacking Gear: Heavyweight Fabrics and Compatible Construction Techniques to Improve Clothing Longevity for Off-trail Bushwhacking
by Roger Caffin
Thorns, scrub and sandstone can rip ultralight clothing to shreds. What materials and construction techniques hold up to serious bushwhacking? Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only Taming Those Large Flexible Foil Windshields
by Roger Caffin
Learn the tricks and techniques required to make a stable windshield out of floppy metal foil. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Sipping the Waters: Techniques for Selecting Untreated Backcountry Water for Drinking
by Michael von Gortler, MD
Drinking untreated backcountry water can make you sick - but choosing your drinking spots intelligently can greatly reduce that risk. Here, a doctor shares the methods that have kept him healthily "sipping the waters" for the past 20 years. Read More...
ARTICLES Techniques Techniques
Members Only 24: Fall Equinox in the Hyalite Cirque of Montana's Gallatin Mountains
by Ryan Jordan
You have 24 hours to quickly engage in a Wild Place with minimal disruption to your job or your family. Where will YOU go? Read More...

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