A Compendium of Useful Information for the Practical Man/Camping and Hiking

The Camp SheetEdit

From time to time in this department I have mentioned an oiled muslin sheet for the camp outfit. In the first place it should be made with the idea of accommodating itself to the usages of a two man camp, because more often two go together than one alone; or more than two in company, unless it is a regular party camp, which is usually fully equipped. For two men you should buy a piece of sheeting such as is used in making ordinary bed sheets. This should be not less than twelve feet long, fourteen feet is even better. The cloth itself is about two yards wide, so that a piece of it fourteen feet long gives you a sheet about six by fourteen feet without a seam in it. When you have this piece of cloth, have it hemmed across the ends. Then get some boiled linseed oil and pour it on the cloth a little at a time, and rub the oil into the cloth between the palms of the hands as you go along. Rub in only enough oil to saturate the cloth without putting on oil enough to run. Painting it on with a brush will not do; you must rub it in with your hands. When you have rubbed the cloth full of oil, tack it up in the shade some place where the air will get at it, and let it dry for ten days. Do not put it in the sun at this time, and be sure that it is tightly stretched all around, putting your tacks close together entirely around the cloth. It should also be put where no rain can reach it until it has thoroughly dried. In the summer time ten days will dry it nicely, though the weather has something to do with this, and it may require even fifteen days to dry the oil as it should be dried. Do not try to rush this process, for you will not gain anything thereby.

After you have let the oiled sheet dry until it no longer feels sticky or "tacky" take it down and restretch it where the sun strikes one side one day and the reverse side the next. This should be kept up for perhaps six days, until the oil has hardened nicely in the glare of the sun. It is now "cured" so that it is absolutely water proof, and it will remain so as long as the cloth holds together. Even a great amount of folding will not make it leak unless you fold it in the same place right along and fold it down tightly, which process will in time break the oil film and give you a leaky sheet. The next thing to do is to take a good heavy cotton fish cord about the size of a lead pencil, and sew it to the edge of your sheet all around, turning the edge of your sheet over the cord and sewing it down the same as a bolt rope is sewed to a sail. Leave a three-inch loop in your cord at each corner, two more loops on each end and four or even five loops on each side of the sheet. These give you points to tie guy lines to or to use in any one of the dozen ways that you will find use for as you go along. When this cord is sewed in your sheet is finished, and it is the most useful thing in camp. It can be folded to carry in a pack, as it does not weigh a great deal and it has the advantage of being absolutely and reliably water proof. You can make a tent out of it that will hold two men and their equipment nicely, and in case of rain you can use it as a fly over another tent if you want to, or you can use it alone in many ways.

If you are not using a tent you can spread it out on the ground and make a bed for two men on the end of it; then pull it up and cover the entire bed with the other end, and you will have enough left to make an awning over your head. If you set up a pole on a couple of crotched sticks two feet high about the head of the bed, and stretch the surplus canvas out over the pole and guy the corners to stakes. This latter results in water-proof sheet under the bed and a water-proof sheet over it, with slope enough to the roof to run every bit of the dew or any rainfall entirely off the bed and bedding. Two men can sleep under this covering perfectly dry without a tent. Its water-proof qualities also make it wind-proof and it is a very warm bed covering for winter camping if it is tucked in at the edges or if strings are tied across from one side to the other from the loops. It then becomes practically a sleeping bag for two, keeps the bedding off the ground and protects the sleepers from the outside cold. It can be thrown over a boat and used as a water-proof boat cover in case you are camping in a canoe. It can also be used to cover the whole outfit in a canoe if you are traveling and rain happens to come on. In fact its uses are so many that it would be hard to enumerate all of them.

Make one and use it the next time you go camping, and you will never go without one thereafter. The treatment of the cloth as described above renders it absolutely water-proof and it is also a good idea to apply to provision bags or any article which you wish to water-proof.

http://books.google.com/books?id=f0BYAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA294 Field and stream, Volume 24

Rolling up your BeddingEdit

Let me impress upon the minds of all travellers a golden rule: never omit seeing to the 'rolling' up of your bedding. There is a right and a wrong way of doing it; if managed as it should be, no wet can get into the blankets, however hard it may pour with rain, or if the pack-animal carrying the tent-freight amuses itself by rolling in every stream it arrives at, a pastime mules are very much predisposed to indulge in if they are not looked sharply after. Should the weather be fine, pack your 'dressing gear' if you are going to shift camp, 'strike' your tent, fold, roll, and place it in its bag, with the pegs and mallet, and tie your poles tightly together. Now carefully fold your blankets to the length, and a trifle narrower than the mattress, and lay them on it, double your buffalo robe, and place the mattress and its contents upon it. Begin at one end, and roll the whole tightly, turning in the ends of the ' robe' as you progress in rolling, having a stout cord or a small ' hide rope' ready to tie round as tightly as you can haul it. The more compact this bundle can be made the better it will be found to pack. Then spread the waterproof camp sheet, and lay the bundle on one side of it, and bring the edges of the waterproof over each end of the bedding, and thus continue to roll it in the camp sheet. By doing this it is next to an impossibility for water to find an entrance. The whole should, lastly, be securely lashed with a stout hide rope, or ' lasso.'

To find all one's bedding saturated with wet—a misfortune I have often had happen, arising to my trusting another with what I ought to have seen to myself— when camping after a day's march, would aggravate a saint. Those painted canvas 'bed envelopes,' artistically fitted up with buckles and leather straps, made round at each end, and bound with drab-coloured leather, containing what is called by outfitters a ' complete camp bed,' I would not accept as a gift, if compelled to take one abroad to be used for mule travelling. It may answer very well for army purposes, where all baggage is conveyed in wagons; but take advice, and never purchase a 'complete camp bed.' If you want what is really and practically useful, rather procure each of the articles I have recommended at the best shop, and of the best quality. A stout 'India-rubber camp sheet,' or a square of canvas soaked in boiled linseed oil, will answer better to wrap round your bedding than any 'case' or envelope made for the purpose I have as yet seen. With a 'case', if a hole rubs through it, or a snag tears it, there arises the immediate necessity to repair the damage, or the chances of a wet bed are before you. With a wrapper rolled many times round, the probabilities are ten to one against a hole being torn through all the enwraps; and if such a mishap should occur, why, it is only to alter the rolling, and the holes are securely hid, and hence effectually stopped.

Another advantage a plain camp sheet has over a 'bed case' is, that you can spread it on the ground when sleeping in a tent to place your mattress on; for in a tent a bedstead is a useless encumbrance. If it rains, and there is any chance of the water draining underneath the tent, all that is necessary is to fold the sides and ends of the waterproof up over the bed after you have safely turned in, and let the water find its way past and under you. There can be no fear of getting wet underneath so long as the edges are well turned up. I never use a pillow, as it increases the size of the bundle, and I find my clothes when folded up answer every purpose. Moreover, this plan keeps your garments from the chance of getting wet. We found this plan of sleeping on the ground, 'and rolling the bedding,' to answer admirably whilst doing the Commission work, and nearly all the officers dispensed with the ' bed case' altogether, and the bedstead during the summer field-work.

19th century knowledge hiking and camping rolling the bedding.jpg

At home in the wilderness: being full instructions how to get along, and to ... By John Keast Lord

General Comments on TentsEdit

Although tents are not worth the trouble of pitching, on dry nights, in a healthy climate, they are invaluable protectors to a well-equipped traveller against rain, dew, and malaria. But a man who is not so equipped, who has no change of clothes, and no bedstead to sleep on, will do better to sleep in the open air, in front of a good camp fire. Napoleon I., speaking of soldiers, says (' Maximea de Guerre') :—" Tents are not healthy; it is better for the soldier to bivouac, because he sleeps with his feet to the fire, whose neighbourhood quickly dries the ground on which he lies; some planks or a little straw shelter him from the wind. Nevertheless a tent is necessary for superior officers, who have need to write and to consult a map." To a party encamped for a few days, tents are of great use as storehouses for property, which otherwise becomes scattered about, at the risk of being lost or pilfered.

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Permanent CampEdit

19th century knowledge hiking and camping permanent camp.jpg

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Tent Pitched over an ExcavationEdit

A hole may be dug deeply beneath the tent floor, partly for the purpose of a store-room, and partly for that of a living-room when the weather is very inclement. This was practised before Sebastopol in the manner shown below. The notched pole acts as a ladder for ascending from below.

19th century knowledge hiking and camping tent pitched over an excavation or hole.jpg

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Tent PegsEdit

Tent pegs should be of galvanized iron; they are well worth the weight of carriage, for not only do wooden ones often fail on an emergency, but cooks habitually purloin them when firewood is scarce.

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Materials for TentingEdit

Light canvas is usually employed, and is, to all intents and purposes, waterproof. Silk, of equal strength with the canvas, is very far lighter: its only disadvantage is its expense. Calico, or cotton canvas, is very generally used for small tents. Leather and felt are warm, but exceedingly heavy; and would only be used in very inclement climates, or where canvas could not be met with. Light matting is not to be despised: it is warm and pretty durable, and makes excellent awning or covering to a framework.

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Macintosh SackEdit

Mr. Falconer writes: "I travelled in 1841 from Austin in Texas to Mexico through New Mexico. I left Austin in June, and reached Zacateras on Christmas Day. During nearly the whole period we travelled from Austin to New Mexico, I camped without any covering at night for myself, except a large macintosh (a rubberized coat), made up as a sack, with a piece so laid as a continuation of one side, as to be used as a coverlet, sufficient in length to be brought from the back, over the head, and down on the breast. Inside I placed my blankets. I slept under this covering during many a heavy storm at night, and got out of my soft-coated shell dry in the morning. My opinion is, that every traveller who works his way with a horse should fix on his own saddle the said macintosh sack, two blankets, a tin cup, and a frying-pan. It is amazing, when you get into real working order, how few things are sufficient."

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

Sheepskin Knapsack Sleeping BagEdit

These have heen used for the last twenty-five years by the French doaaniers, who watch the mountain-passes of the Pyrenean frontier. The bags are made of sheepskin, with the wool inside. When not in use they are folded up and buckled with five buckles into the shape of a somewhat bulky knapsack, which the recent occupant may shoulder and walk away with.

The accompanying sketches are drawn to scale. They were made from the sleeping-bag belonging to a man 5 feet 6 inches in height; the scale should therefore be lengthened for a taller person, but the breadth seems ample. Its weight was exactly seven pounds. The douaniers post themselves on watch more or less immersed in these bags. They lie out in wet and snow, and find them impervious to both. When they sleep, they get quite inside them, stuff their cloaks between their throats and the bag, and let its flap cover their faces. It is easy enough for them to extricate themselves; they can do so almost with a bound.

For the sake of warmth, the bag is made double from the knees downwards, and also opposite to the small of the back.

During the daytime, when the weather is wet or cold, the bags are of much use, for the douaniers sit with them pulled up to their waist. When carried in the manner of a knapsack the bag sits perfectly well against the shoulders; but, owing to the yielding nature of its substance, it lies too close to the back, and is decidedly oppressive. A wicker frame might well be interposed.

19th century knowledge hiking and camping sheepskin knapsack sleeping bag.jpg

19th century knowledge hiking and camping sheepskin knapsack sleeping bag in use.jpg

19th century knowledge hiking and camping sheepskin knapsack sleeping bag rolled up.jpg

The art of travel, or, Shifts and contrivances available in wild countries By Francis Galton (sir.)

CachesEdit

To a people often on the move, the cache was indispensable. War or hunting parties often placed in reserve extra ammunition, moccasins, tobacco, dried meat, etc., in pits. A hole about four feet in depth and of sufficient size was dug, lined on the sides and bottom with stones and closed with a heavy slab of the same material, the whole concealed by a covering of earth. Should the party be separated, a straggler would open the cache and take what belonged to him, leaving the remainder for their rightful owners. However, food was seldom cached in this manner because rodents and other animals smelled it out and burrowed into the store. To meet this difficulty various expedients were resorted to. Dried provisions in a parfleche (an Indian rawhide bag) were sometimes hung in a tree near the trail along which a party expected to return. A safer method was to climb a tree beside a young birch, lean it over and tie the parfleche to the top. Rattles of hoofs or deer-claws were tied on to frighten small climbing animals. It was the belief of some, that gun powder rubbed over the package would have an analogous result. Again, food tied in rawhide bags was concealed in hollow trees. Fresh meat was sometimes tied to a stone and anchored under water. When in a rough country, holes in high ledges of rock were used, the opening being securely stopped with stones.

Material culture of the Blackfoot Indians, Volume 5 By Clark Wissler

A Lighter Camp AxeEdit

Several years ago I worked out a scheme on a camp axe that may be of interest to fellow sportsmen. The weight of a standard axe is against it on many trips, and the standard hand axe is sadly lacking for effective work. That they are a little better than a heavy knife is about the best you can say for them.

To overcome the difficulty I purchased a hand axe of the "easy-chop" pattern, as the chip - breaker recesses would lighten it considerably. I took special pains to get one that was soft enough to sharpen with a fine file. An eight-inch flat file does not take much space or add appreciably to the weight of your kit and cuts faster than any stone.

My axe, like most of them, gets careless occasionally and brings up against a stone or a spike which blunts the edge instead of breaking out a chunk. The softness is especially desirable in bitter cold weather, as a spruce knot or stone has ruined many an axe when the thermometer was flirting with twenty below zero.

The second step was to remove the short handle and sort over the dealer's stock of axe helves. I found a helve for a boy's axe that was of fine straight grained hickory and about twenty-eight inches long. The axe was hung on this helve and then the helve scraped and sandpapered till it was thin enough to whip slightly under the weight of the axe.

This gives a combination that is twenty-seven inches over all and weighs thirty-two ounces.

You can split wood or chop without standing on your head and with your feet out of the danger zone. It's a real surprise what effective work you can do with this tool. Of course, it won't take the place of a standard axe for heavy work, but it is a vast improvement over the hand axe or hatchet, with very little increase in weight.

A sheath to slide down over the handle was made from an old piece of belting riveted as shown in the attached sketch.

Try it yourself, and you will find the little axe will not only go on camping trips but also see service around the house.

Forest and stream, Volume 92 By William A. Bruette

Getting Rid of the Blanket/Sleeping BagEdit

The principal difficulty with the blanket and sleeping bag is not their weight, but their bulk. It is not hard to devise a light, warm, water-proof envelope to sleep in, but when you come to pack it!—well, by the time it and your tent and your cook-kit are assembled and a mountain of assorted clothes, provisions, and dingbats are piled around these and rolled up in one huge pack-cloth you begin to look like the rear end of a moving van!

Then Peary's experiments with fur, in his efforts to eliminate the sleeping-bag and reduce weight and condensation troubles, were published. Any fabric that will soak up and hold moisture will at once loose its heat-resisting capacity. Absolutely kiln dry cotton is nearly as impervious to heat as wool. But cotton in any form will take up water in its cellular fibres, thereby increasing its conductivity nearly ten times; and it will do this without being actually wetted, as it takes up dampness from the woods air. Any man who takes shoddy blankets or cotton quilts into the woods with him will pay dearly for it with cold, chilly sleeping, and rheumatism the following winter.

Eight years of living under Arctic conditions convinced him that wool must be discarded for fur, principally because any woven fabric will hold condensation, while fur will not. Even fur sleeping-bags were discarded because they would accumulate moisture from the body, and become heavy and conductive to heat. Now, as any camper will tell you, the most vulnerable part of your body as regards cold is from your knees to your hips, a distance on the average man of about two feet. The feet and lower legs are easily taken care of with wool socks and night slippers; and the upper part of your body lies close around the centre of combustion—your lungs; so no especial covering is needed there.

Following these considerations, the night rig of the Peary party boiled down to a simple piece of fur, 2 feet wide by 4 feet long, which was wrapped around the hips, reaching down to the knees. From there on night socks of the fur of the Arctic hare presided over their pedal extremities, and for the upper part of the body the kooletah, or hooded fur shirt, was made so that one could withdraw his arms from its sleeves and fold them across one's main decks when sleeping, drawing also the pucker string at the bottom of the shirt and at the hood to make the rig air-tight. Thus equipped, Peary's people got rid of 40 pounds of damp fur sleeping-bags per man, and were able to turn in on a snow-bank at 54 below zero and sleep comfortably.

Camp craft: modern practice and equipment By Warren Hastings Miller

Handling Very Heavy or Bulky LoadsEdit

Very heavy and/or bulky load should be handled across the back.

There are many pack-bags or sacks on the market but they are only useful for ordinary camping trips. In really serious packing the loads carried are so heavy and of such bulk that a pack-bag of a restricted shape is useless. In carrying our loads we used an adaptation of the Russian-Aleute pack-strap of my own make. It was composed of padded canvas, and when it was adjusted over the shoulders, the principal weight came on the chest strap. There was no possibility of chafing, and the harness was light and easily adjusted. Whenever heavy loads are carried the "tump-line" or forehead strap is a necessity, as a heavy weight can be borne on the head and neck.

19th century knowledge hiking and camping method of carrying heavy loads.jpg

The Boy Scouts' year book, Volume 6 By Boy Scouts of America

The conquest of Mount McKinley: the story of three expeditions through the ... By Belmore Browne

The Aleute (Belmore Browne) Pack StrapEdit

Although I had been experimenting in a small way, it was not until I had tried the pack-strap used by the Aleutes on the south coast of Bering Sea that I was successful in evolving a pack-strap that has few, if any, faults.

The first thing that struck me on seeing the Aleute harness was its extreme simplicity, for it consisted of nothing but a piece of wood with two long strings made of walrus hide attached to each end. The stick was formed to fit the chest and the strings passed over the shoulders, around the pack, and, passing under the arms, ran upward to the breast-stick where they were fastened by a half hitch. On using the harness I found that the breast-stick was upward and outward where the shoulder-strings pulled, and downward and outward where the strings from the bottom of the pack pulled. It took only a moment to see that a soft piece of cloth could be used in place of breast-stick and that the shoulder-strings could be changed for broad straps of canvas padded with cloth with small ropes sewed into the ends. It took less than an hour with the aid of a palm and needle to make the experiment, and the result was the most satisfactory harness that I have ever used.

In 1910 I equipped a party of five men in addition to myself with this pack harness and we packed an outfit that at the start weighed more than twelve hundred pounds, from the Chulitna River to Mount McKinley, a distance of forty miles over glacier ice. It was the first time that I had subjected the harness to such a severe test and it won the unqualified approval of every man. Since then I have carried packs of more than one hundred pounds, day after day, through the trailless wilderness north of the Alaskan Range, and after long trial and the hardest use I believe it to be the simplest, lightest, and most easily adjusted pack-strap known.

My reader must not make the mistake, however, of believing that by merely equipping himself with a good pack-strap he will be able to carry a heavy pack without fatigue or inconvenience, for he is doomed to disappointment. The mere fact that a fifty-pound pack adds just so many pounds to the weight of a man's body results in a heavy strain on his muscular system, and such a strain cannot be endured without acquiring experience, strength and sticktoitiveness.

19th century knowledge hiking and camping aleute belmore browne pack strap.jpg

The Boy Scouts' year book, Volume 6 By Boy Scouts of America

Touring afoot By Claude Powell Fordyce

The Tump Line (Boy Scouts of America)Edit

The method of carrying weight by the head and neck originated among the Indians of the eastern United States and Canada. The strap is called the "tumpline" and consists of a soft band of some strong material which passes over the forehead with the ends hanging behind the shoulders. The burden is made fast to the ends of the tump-line so that it rests against the back of the packer. Its chief advantage is the ease and rapidity with which it can be fastened to different kinds of packs, and this is a valuable asset where short portages necessitate the rapid loading and unloading of canoes. As one travels west, away from canoe and portage country, the tump-line is superseded by more elaborate harnesses, for, where there is no canoe water, men must carry their supplies day after day, and in carrying heavy loads with the tumpline the head is bent forward and downward to support and balance the weight and continuous travel in this position becomes irksome. The pack also lacks security, and where men must use their arms to climb or chop trail the tump-line is not satisfactory.

To my mind the greatest value of the tump-line lies in the ease with which it can be combined with the shoulder strap. As an illustration we will suppose that two scouts have gone on an overnight camping trip. They are carrying twenty-five pounds apiece in their knapsacks, when an accident makes it necessary for one of the scouts to carry both loads. After tying the two knapsacks together he starts onward, but before he has traveled far he finds that the weight is beginning to hurt his shoulders. It is at this point that the knowledge of how to use a tump-line will save him hard work and suffering. Taking two strings—shoelaces will do—he ties them to the outside lower corners of the knapsacks. He then ties the loose ends to his handkerchief and adjusts them so that when he stands up with the handkerchief across his forehead, his shoulders will be relieved of a considerable portion of the weight. This method of distributing weight between shoulder straps and tumpline is one of the most important lessons to be learned in packing.

The Boy Scouts' year book, Volume 6 By Boy Scouts of America

The Tump Line (Warren Hastings Miller, Clark Wissler)Edit

Like the birch-bark canoe, portages and packs have been with the native Red American since long before the white man came. Curiously, the original Iroquois pack, with its wooden frame, is the type which represents the survival of the fittest, for the latest pack of the present moment is of this type, after years of trial with pack baskets, harness, packsacks, and rucksacks, all of them white man's inventions. The Indian had just two carrying devices, the tump strap and its thongs, and the carrying frame. These two seem to have been universally distributed all over the country. With modifications, you will find them from the Micmacs of the extreme Northeast to the Papagos of the Southwest, the tump strap being made of every conceivable natural material from rawhide to woven basswood fibre, and the frame varying in the same way, according to the material available in the region in which the particular tribe lived. "With the Iroquois it was made entirely out of mockernut hickory, including the tump line, not a stitch of animal matter appearing in the makeup; with the Pima and Papago the frame is a mere natural fork of mesquite, spreading a deep net of yucca fibre. With all of them the two main natural principles of big weight portable by the strong neck muscles, and a frame holding the load off the small of the back and transferring its thrust to the brisket muscles, are the guiding motives in the design.

For, while a load with shoulder harness is very limited—say, 60 pounds as a maximum—the amount that can be carried with the tump line and frame runs up into the hundreds of pounds. The reason why shoulder harness has such a low limit is not the fatigue nor the disposition of the load on the shoulder blades, but the mere fact that constriction of the big arteries of the arms is produced by the pressure of the straps passing up from under the armpits over the breast muscles.

19th century knowledge camping and hiking various tumplines.PNG

Camping out By Warren Hastings Miller

The American Indian By CLARK WISSLER

Various Tump Lines and Back PacksEdit

19th century knowledge camping and hiking various packs.PNG

Camping out By Warren Hastings Miller

Duluth Pack SackEdit

19th century knowledge hiking and camping duluth pack sack.jpg

Touring afoot By Claude Powell Fordyce

Trail Hikers OutfitEdit

The thing most impressive about my first extensive wanderings in a semi-wilderness, was a sore back necessitated by toting enough sporting goods to equip an Arabian expedition for a month's journey in the Sahara. I had a partner whose ideas were to the opposite extreme. He insisted that a small fry pan, rifle and blanket were the only articles necessary for a protracted trip of exploration anywhere on the American continent. At first I accused him of being a shiftless, lazy cuss, but before the end of our trip I agreed with him to the extent that I was willing to go one better by discarding the blanket.

It takes considerable practice to arrive at the "happy medium" of what is necessary and what is superfluous in a hiking outfit. Everybody has peculiar personal ideas and whims for certain things not necessary even to live in civilization. Some men will err on the side of taking too little; others on the side of taking too much.

Two hardy trail men are capable of taking everything necessary for their comfort for two weeks, at least, if due care is exercised to select articles of minimum weight. Dailey and I last year went into an unsettled country fully equipped for a three weeks' stay and tools to build camps, besides two guns, and our packs only weighed about ninety pounds each. With plenty of game and fish, which we did get, we could have lived in comfort for a month. It is not necessary to eliminate all the comforts of life to take a trip into the back-packing country; neither is it advisable to make life miserable by toting too much junk.

An experienced trail man can carry forty to fifty pounds with ease day in and day out. An Algonquin Indian thinks nothing of carrying a couple of hundred pounds over a long portage without a rest. Wielding a hoe or pick, I would tire out, body and soul, within a short time. But after a few weeks getting in trim in the fall I can propel myself very rapidly under a hundred pounds of traps or deer meat and consider sixty pounds a fair pack for hiking. Some of these go-light cranks claim they get a two weeks' hiking outfit down to thirty pounds, enumerating sundry articles of equipment besides rations, but I don't see how they do it. I would say forty pounds would be a safe estimate.

Whether a man takes much or little on the trail depends on his preferences and the object of the trip. If he is going into a sure game, berry and fish country, and has plenty of time, he can live almost an indefinite period on thirty or forty pounds of concentrated and properly selected "store" foods. On the other hand, if he is engaged in some duty that occupies all his time, or must arrive at a certain destination in a given time, his outfit and rations must be selected with utmost precision.

Most hiking trips are made for the purpose of prospecting, usually in the fall of the year. Trappers especially are accustomed to take a few days off prior to the trapping season and either look over their old trapping grounds or explore new ones.

The shelter problem is first to consider. If going into a snake, mosquito or insect infested country a tent is almost necessary. For North woods travel late in the fall where weight must be cut, I should depend on brush shelters or "rock houses." Yet, a shelter tarpaulin made of balloon silk or similar light-weight material should not weigh more than three pounds and cost more than five or six dollars. Such an oblong sheet of tenting can be pitched into different forms of shelter, and erected in a moment's time.

Usually the outdoor man is dressed in woolen clothing and a wetting does little harm, but for hiking in the fall, khaki or corduroy may be more desirable and in these clothes it is not advisable to get wet more than necessary when far from medical aid. For this reason the tarpaulin or tent is more dependable than lean-to's. A lean-to requires time and making, not to mention experience. It is only fairly water-proof, and where trees do not grow, it is out of the question.

There is at least one compact tent on the market that weighs about six and a quarter pounds. My favorite tent is one that comes in two pieces, weighing about three and a half pounds, I believe. Where two men go together, as is the case, this is a very satisfactory t"^1 piece makes a fair lean-to type shelter, t" individually if the parties get separated, a two together make an "A" shaped tent.

The Compac tent is very practical i hikers, and is absolutely bug and mosqnh It may be pitched with or without psleeps two in fair comfort. There is not a room in the tent (quite unnecessary* rather difficult to prevent touching the nxij will bring the water through in a heav> ta

Much care is necessary in selecting fo» Personally, I wouldn't wear anything sell's Ike Walton boots for both foot a ai:d protection. They cost a little more rial siore goods, but you get it back in service, viar should fit properly. Never make the ke of trying to break in a pair of shoes on a The moccasin style boot is most satisfactory ail going.


»ki or corduroy is noisy but otherwise satory for woods use during the fall. Flannel , light woolen underwear, and soft felt hat, "pen country, or cap for the woods, comthe clothing needs. A sweater may be , is necessary and serves for a pillow at , A coat is useless in the woods; however, men prefer a vest for its handy pockets. M any of the small cooking kits on the ft will serve two persons on a hiking trip, ne 1 use is made by the Wear-Ever people oy scouts and the quality is excellent. It is of aluminum and weighs about two pounds, lure.

ten a trip is taken by car, boat or wagon, we ake along hams, beef, potatoes, cabbage or an> thing a finicky appetite may dictate. But it must all be carried on the back day after intil consumed, the food question is not one solved at the point of purchasing over the ry counter. One should know something ative food value of various foodstuffs, proper ig (if not scientific), and "balanced rations." i it comes to food, I am like a lot of old fellows, I can live indefinitely on flapjacks aeon. But I do know from experience that >ld trail gag won't keep a man in the best i. Somehow or other strenuous outdoor life >ps such a voracious appetite the same thing >e eaten day after day without tiring of it. i.e. food may not be balanced or sufficiently icus so that the insatiable appetite is a direct ng the body is not properly fed. ewith is the food list I used last year for > weeks' trip for two men. Owing to so game and fish, at the end of the two weeks med we had as much as when we started, ice and pancake flour, I believe, were run^hort. The crisco was unnecessary, as we >acon grease for cooking. It gives an excelavor to the food :

ke prepared flour 10 Ibs.

flour _.... 5 Ibs.

meal . 2 Ibs.


STARTING ON THE TRAIL.

In a pinch for light weight 1 could cut this list some, but the foods listed are necessary for good health. Fruits should be taken evaporated; also a dehydrated vegetable would be desirable. The raisins and sweet chocolate are excellent foods for munching on the trail, and there is no other food that will keep a man going so long. Cheese and macaroni are two valuable concentrated foods, but are not always practical for trail use. Rice supplies everything that is in potatoes and is not nearly so bulky and heavy. Baker's powdered egg is excellent for cooking purposes, but can be dispensed with.

One or two wool blankets on a bed of balsam boughs makes an excellent bed, with the sweater for a pillow. A six-ounce air pillow can be taken for the tenderfoot. In the South, where rattlesnakes and copperheads are a menace, I use a light hammock, swinging it several feet off the ground.

In the ditty bag, so named, I believe, by that pioneer of go-lighl trail, "Xessmuk," should be


Fur-fish-game, Volumes 31-32

Last modified on 22 February 2011, at 02:24