As a former Steamboat Springs local, I’m a bit biased toward the hometown team of Big Agnes. Having already used their Fly Creek and Copper Spur tents, I was excited to try the blended design of the new Tiger Wall series. But after a couple of test runs, I decided to forego the weight savings and stick with the Copper Spur. Here are 9 reasons why…
I know firsthand how challenging it is to deal with food sensitivities and allergies, especially in the backcountry. So after researching what pre-packaged, freeze-dried meals were compatible with my various medical restrictions, I built a comprehensive chart for the more commonly sold meal packets. Each product listed indicates the presence of major food allergens at the time that this post was published, including dairy (D), egg (E), nuts (N), seafood/fish (F), soy (S), and wheat (W), while also indicating lower/medium/high levels of FODMAP ingredients and the existence of meat. Each product then links to the manufacturer’s website where the exact ingredients should be verified before ordering while also verifying the physical labels before consuming.
I started backpacking in high school with an external frame pack, a 4-pound sleeping bag thrown on top of a heavy foam pad, a tent that would drip condensation on my face nearly every night, and a wardrobe that oftentimes included a cotton shirt tucked into my denim jeans. The Eagle badge on my Boy Scout uniform is living proof that you don’t have to be perfectly equipped with the latest and most expensive ultralight gear in order to “be prepared” and enjoy your trip! But flash forward three decades and my aging body certainly appreciates the innovations that modern chemistry has done for my current backpacking gear.
My first multi-day backpacking trip was a 5-night excursion through the San Juan mountains of Colorado. The snow-capped fourteeners and lush river valleys were quite a sight for a 14-year-old from Kansas. Flash forward nearly three decades and I was now driving my wife and two children to that same mountain range for our first backpacking trip as a family. And despite a few hiccups, everyone ended up having a fantastic time.