Top Five: Things to Have in Your Pack

1: Map/Compass
               We realize with today’s technology that a map and compass may seem like a rudimentary form of navigation, however, it’s the most reliable form.  GPS, Strava, Google Maps, Suunto etc., are all great navigation tools, but leading scientists nationwide have confirmed that electrical outlets do not grow on trees.  Thus, our technology is useless when the batteries die.  The map and compass combo is sure fire, reliable, and will never run out of battery.  Granted, you must learn how to use these tools to use them accurately, but we’re operating off the assumption that people who can figure out an iPhone can grasp the nuances of old school triangulation.  By all means pack your phones, grab your GPS, and wear your watches proudly.  Just remember to bring a map and compass for back up.

2: SOL Tinder-Quick
               Weather is unpredictable.  As a rule of thumb, no matter the forecast, always plan for rain.  Unless of course you’re camping in the Serengeti.  We don’t know why you would but it’s probably possible.  One of the most basic but awesome innovations are waterproof fire starters.  The SOL Tinder-Quick is an extremely light, waterproof tinder option.  Unravel the rope-like sections of fiber and put a spark to it.  Tinder-Quick burns hot and slow for up to two minutes, even when wet.  So if the weather gets foul, you still have fire. 

3: Adventure Medical Kits
               These handy kits have the potential to be a life saver; we just hope you don’t have to use one in a serious situation.  From simple hand wipes to medicated gauze, our Adventure Medical Kits have the necessary tools when the going gets rough.  Even the slightest of cuts can get infected, effectively lowering the level of stoke.  Pick one up for your next trip, you’ll be glad you did.

4: Accessory Cord
               It’s like string, but manlier; it’s super thin but super tough.  Our 550 type parachute cord should be in everyone’s pack.  Something so simple is so versatile.  You can tie up your bear bags, sling up your rain tarp, make a prusik, or if you’re really out in the backcountry, you could make a snare.  No matter where you’re going or how long you’ll be out there, having some tough cord on you is important.

5: Dry socks
               Trench foot is real, people.  If you’re rocking Gore-Tex in your boots, that’s awesome.  It keeps water out, but it also keeps water in.  If you sink your shoes, it’s imperative that you dry out your feet.  Nothing is more uncomfortable than hiking with soggy feet.  Prevent blisters, stop trench foot, and be a happy hiker.  Keep a dry pair of socks in stow for when it rains, when you’re crossing a river, or if you come across a puddle that’s too fun to pass up.  Whatever the case may be, your feet will thank you.

Disclaimer: Socks perform best when worn; not thrown. 

Disclaimer: Socks perform best when worn; not thrown.