Trail’ology: Is It Safe To Hike Alone? Two Tools for Safe Solo Hiking

Last Monday we talked about where to find other people to explore with so it's only fair that today we discuss solo exploration and whether or not it is safe, feasible and practical to hike alone. Al and I tend to hike alone quite frequently, in fact Al still hikes alone 95% of the time. There's something we love about the solitude and peace that is found on a solo adventure but there's also added risk. So, what if you're one of those people who likes to hike, ski or mountain bike alone? What do you do to minimize risk…

Trail’ology: I don’t have anyone to hike with!

Throughout my life there have been periods where I prefer the solitude of hiking and skiing alone and other times where I've enjoyed the social aspects of exploring with a group. One common barrier to outdoor adventure is simply not having anyone to explore with. Today on trail’ology we're talking about where to find people to explore with and recommending a few resources to find group hikes or meet new outdoorsy people. 1. Meetup Groups. We like meetup groups! The concept is simple, login, sign up, show up, make new friends and hike (or ski, or snowshoe or cycle etc). In…

How To Store Water Bottles

If you're like us every trip into the mountains requires several water bottles and travel mugs. The bin that I was using to store our water bottles and travel mugs has been my nemesis. It was a cluster of lids, random bottles (some with lids, some with missing lids) and chaos. I couldn't stand it any longer. So, I headed to the store and wandered the aisles looking for something, anything that could put an end to my water bottle woes. The solution: One of those shoe hangers that drapes over the door of our laundry room (make sure you…

DIY Collapsible Camping Cup

Making things out of duct tape is all the rage today (...with 8 year olds) but that didn't stop me from trying to make this collapsible cup out of duct tape yesterday. After a duct tape cup that we made earlier this summer I had high hopes for this one. The result of this cup experiment was an epic failure but the fact that I now own penguin duct tape made it a small secret victory. Today's trail tip was inspired by this "pin." So, is making drinking devices out of duct tape a good idea or a bad idea?…

DIY Boot Dryer

It's been downright soggy here in Laramie the past week and I made a discovery. Our kid only has one pair of shoes that fit him. He also has a mild obsession with running through mud puddles and playing in any form of water, dirt and mud that he can find. Last week keeping his shoes dry was somewhat of a challenge...until I realized that I could prevent the wet shoe problem by making him play outside in his snow boots. Or I could always order him a new pair of shoes... When it comes to wet ski boots, hiking…

DIY Cheese Wax Candle

Today's trail tip is inspired by one of our favorite food items on the trails, cheese! And of course, this 'pin', this article at Backpacker Magazine, and this blog post over at the awesome site, Trail-Dad.com. Since my goal with trail tips is to use whatever I have on hand and whatever I have that might be in my pack I used several layers of dental floss all squished together as a wick. My dental floss wick didn't burn for very long. So overall, while it's fun to eat cheese and make your own candles with cheese wax this is…

DIY Cardboard Box Oven

Recently we tried our hand at cooking brownies using a homemade cardboard box oven, which was inspired by this 'pin.' While not really a trail tip, we do dig alternative cooking methods and thought this might be a fun one to try. But, since I don't even like cooking and baking in my own kitchen and we didn't have the right sized box for this oven I probably should have followed my gut and not tried to replicate this oven in my backyard. But, live and learn. Here's how our box oven (and the brownies we tried to bake in…