Monthly Archives: May 2012
Deuter Fox 40
$109, 40L/2,440 c.i., 3 lbs.
One size, adjustable to fit torsos 11 to 18 inches
Osprey Jib 35
$129, 35L/2,136 c.i., 3 lbs. 3 oz.
One size, adjustable to fit torsos 13 to 19 inches
There were two things I made sure of before letting my son carry a backpack instead of a daypack on our family backpacking trips: that he was ready and eager to do it, and that the pack I gave him fit him. The first question I let him answer: I waited until he asked to carry a backpack. Continue reading →
$425, 2 lbs. 10 oz. (tent, fly, poles)
This sub-three-pound, two-person tent defies preconceived notions of an ultralight tent: it has comfortable space, is strong and dry inside in rough weather, and versatile. I found the Foray especially perfect for backpacking with a kid who’s too young to carry much, if any, gear, because living space assumes a lower priority when your companion is a child, while having a lightweight, low-bulk tent makes a huge difference when you’re carrying most of the gear. Continue reading →
Keen Alamosa Mid
$120, 1 lb. 15 oz. (men’s size 9)
Sizes: men’s 7-12, 13, 14 15, women’s 5-11
Here’s a question that’ll stir impassioned debate in certain circles: waterproof or non-waterproof boots when backpacking? Some adhere to the belief in a waterproof-breathable membrane on a multi-day trip when your feet could get wet; others say no membrane is infallible, and non-waterproof footwear will definitely dry out faster once wet. I put this philosophical debate to an unscientific test, wearing the Alamosa Mids on a four-day, 56-mile trip in Idaho’s Sawtooths in mid-September, a time of year when cold rain or feet getting wet just from dew on trailside vegetation isn’t unusual in the mountains. Continue reading →
The First 20 Minutes: Surprising Science Reveals How We Can Exercise Better, Train Smarter, Live Longer
By Gretchen Reynolds
257 pgs., Hudson Street Press, $25.95
How many books have you read that changed the way you live? This one did for me. Gretchen Reynolds, who pens the “Phys Ed” column for the New York Times (online in the Well blog on health and fitness, and in the “Science Times” print section), has synthesized scores of contemporary studies and interviews with researchers and experts in a book that is chock-full of information, advice, and data, and yet is a fast and fascinating read. I’ve returned repeatedly to my own heavily dog-eared copy. Continue reading →
By Michael Lanza
The moose cow and her calf block the trail, staring back at us with expressions that I swear look like confusion over what to do. So the feeling is mutual. They were coming down, we were going up, and now none of us are moving. With steep, rocky, wooded terrain on either side, we backpack-carrying humans aren’t interested in an off-trail detour. The moose don’t seem enthusiastic about that option at the moment, either.
We appear to be at a standoff. Continue reading →