Finding your way in the backcountry may be as simple as paying attention to the natural world around you. Raging rIvers, prevailing winds, and moss growing on tress can help you stay on course. Learn these top natural navigation clues to stay found even when you don’t have a compass handy.
Making a great cup of coffee in the backcountry is tricky. You can enjoy a silky smooth cup from a french press, but you have to lug around the equipment and the messy grounds. Or you can settle for the convenience and featherlight weight of instant coffee, but that often tastes terrible. Tune in to the Out and Back podcast to hear pro thru-hikers Heather “Anish” Anderson, Hiking Viking, Adventure Alan, and Liz “Snorkel” Thomas settle this debate once and for all.
Fifteen years ago, an owl swooped down to Mike Clelland with a message. That event changed the trajectory of his life, leading Mike to become a leading historian and author on the connection between highly charged owl encounters and UFO abduction. Yes, you read that correctly. Tune in to the newest episode of the Out and Back podcast and be prepared to never look at the world the same way again.
Learn how to overcome your backpacking fears this week on the Out and Back podcast. Allison Boyle, the face behind the ultra-popular blog and hiking resource She Dreams of Alpine, lays out the big three fears newbie backpackers feel. She shares her tried and true strategies for overcoming them, as well as why almost everyone wants to back out of their trip right before they start. Plus, learn how she turned her passion for the outdoors into a career.
Lighten your pack with these ultralight backpacking tips from Adventure Alan Dixon. Plus, it’s last call for Gaia GPS members for a 15% discount on Hyperlite Mountain Gear packs and shelters. Summer sale ends on August 31.
If you’ve ever wondered why your pack felt so heavy, it might be time to re-examine what you’ve stuffed in it. In this deep dive, our in-house expert walks you through how to plan your multi-day backpacking trip from scratch. Review how to choose a location, understand the history of your destination, plan your route, manage hazards, and find resources for planning food and gear. Plus, get a detailed three-season gear list to help you pack.
Dreaming up summer hiking and backpacking adventures? You can start getting ready for them right now, right from home. This week on Out and Back, personal trainer and founder of Backcountry Fitness Billy Gawron shares how you can get strong, fit, and mentally prepared to hit the backcountry. Minimal space, equipment, and time required.
Don’t let your weekend plans go up in smoke. Gaia GPS’s robust collection of weather maps can help you avoid current wildfires and find smoke-free skies. Learn how to use these (free!) wildfire, smoke, and air quality maps to find out if it’s safe to hike, bike, or camp at your next destination.
Knowing how to read a topographic map is the foundation to any backcountry adventure. Through the use of contour lines, topo maps bring a 3-dimensional element to a 2-dimensional paper map. Visualize the rise and fall of the land, and “see” the depths of canyons, the location of boggy meadows, and the height and shape of a mountain. Learn how to read topo maps like a pro.
Give a gift outdoor lovers will actually use — an experience. From travel, to education, to safety, our holiday gift guide rounds up the best COVID-friendly experience gifts for nature lovers and adventurers.