Rural Lifestyle Blog

Life in Rural America

Tag: backpacking gear

What To Expect From A 31 Cent Compass

cheap compass

After digging through Ebay I was able to find a 31 cent compass. The pictures looked rather neat. The compass was in a plastic housing which had a cord attached to it. To get the price down 31 cent, I ordered 40 of them.

What would these be used for? A backup compass and nothing more. Just something that can be attached outside the pack so someone can get a quick reference.

Why look at a 31 cent compass? Part of my videos for 2018 are doing reviews of low cost survival gear. I wanted to start with compasses, just because. The first video and article was about a 50 cent compass.

As I was pulling the compasses out of the package, some of compasses fell out of the plastic housing.

Some of them do not point north. Most will point north. Out of 40 of them, just a couple did not point north. Some of them, the compass has to be perfectly flat to rotate. Someone may say, “So what, a compass has to be flat to work.” The compass has to be almost perfectly flat to work. It seemed that any kind of imbalance and the compass would not work. Continue Reading….

Going Through My Backpacks

Hiking trip

Got several backpacks out of the storage room and went through them. The issue with having a collection of packs is the gear gets spread through them. Depending on the length of the hike, and what I am doing, certain gear may be brought along. After awhile, gear is spread through all the packs. There might be a stove here and a stove there, and a knife here and a knife there.

Things get so disorganized the packs have to be pulled out, emptied, and everything rounded up.

For example, I have been using the Sawyer PointOne on a couple of outages. However, I still like to bring the Katadyn Vario from time to time. This means the Sawyer Pointone is in one pack, and the Katadyn Vario is in another pack. The problem starts when I forget which filter is in which pack. then I have to go digging through the packs until I find the gear I am looking for. Continue Reading….

Maxpedition Condor-II Backpack

Product Features Dramatically improved second generation of our military-style daypack Y-shaped top compression strap and 4 lateral compression straps Upper front pocket approx. 9 x 5.5 x 2 Lower front pocket approx. 9 x 8 x 2 with pen organizer Breathable ergonomic shoulder straps From my review at Amazon As with all Maxpedition packs, the Condor II offers top notch quality, expandability and quality workmanship. The pack is a top loader, so you can cram in your gear until its full, stomp on the top, then cram some more. The bottom of the pack has lash points so you can attach a bed roll or sleeping bag. I used a couple of nylon straps and attached a 32 degree sleeping bag to the bottom. The Continue Reading….

Lets talk about multitools

Survival Forum Dam B Southeast TexasMultitools are one of my favorite tools to keep around the house, bug out bag, gun cleaning kit and tackle box. The thing about multitools, they have a great service to weight ratio. They weigh almost nothing, but are cram-packed full of useful tools – knife, file, scissors, saw, screwdrivers,,,,, just all kinds of useful stuff. Another thing that I like about multitools, is that they come in a wide range of sizes and prices.

The wide range of prices, sizes and features is what makes multitools so cool. If you want to buy a cheap multitool for your gun cleaning kit, there is probably one out there for you, if you want a small multitool for your tackle box, there is one out that will probably fit your needs.

While I was looking through my multitool setup, I realized that I had them arranged in 3 levels – primary, secondary, and tertiary.

My primary multitool is a Gerber – I dont even remeber what model it is, its about 10 years old, has a knife, file, saw, scissors, and has a good pair of pliers built in. This this the tool that I bring on my hiking, camping and backpacking trips. When I need a multitool, this is the one that I usually go to.

Secondary multitool is one that I keep around, somewhere close at hand. Lets say that my gerber is in a backpack, this is the tool that I go to. Its some generic no real brand name multitool and probably cost less the $20. Regardless of the low cost, it still has some tools that can be handy when in a pinch. Continue Reading….

Setting up a one man tent

One man tents allow backpackers and campers to carry a shelter without weighing them down too much. Even though this tent does not offer a lot of protection from the elements, it does offer good protection from insects. The tent in the video is a Wenzel Starlite, and is about 13 years old. Even though I have owned lots of tents over the years, this one has probably given the best service. Its light enough to take just about anywhere and fits perfectly across the bottom of a Medium Alice pack.  The fact, the Medium Alice along with this tent makes a pretty good combination. One of the drawbacks to the Wenzel Starlite, it is not a free standing tent.  There is one pole in Continue Reading….

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