Different Perspectives on Hiking Essentials

Discussion in 'Barefoot & Minimalist Hiking' started by BareFootBC, Apr 30, 2019.

  1. BareFootBC

    BareFootBC
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    I was primarily curious about things people take for a Barefoot Hiking First Aid Kit and saw this article. Some extreme minimalism here...

    https://mightygoods.com/barefoot-packing/




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  2. footloose2

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    I consider myself a very experienced barefoot hiker (Inca Trail and Everest Base Camp to name the 2 best known treks I have done 100% barefoot ).
    I always carry something for emergencies, usually Shamma warrior as they are the lightest, thinnest, most minimal product which is very well designed and made. I had to run for help once when a fellow hiker fell and broke her ankle.
    My first aid kit has glue, dressings, antiseptic wipes, tweezers and magnifying glass.
    I agree with the comments about always having water and regular moisturizer particularly for cold , dry and dusty conditions such Himalayas.
    I don't use or like trekking poles. I find they get in the way, trip people up, poke you in the eye if the person in front carries them like ski poles and make an annoying noise ! I hike silently to hear the sounds of nature and see more wildlife.
    I can keep pace with almost anyone but prefer to go slower to enjoy the journey and reduce the risk of too stubs!
     
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  3. BareFootBC

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    Your kit is pretty much what I have except for the glue...I think that’s something to add.

    I do plan on carting a pair of Five Toes with me for just in case. They proved themselves to me last year.

    Interesting perspective on the poles. I’ve been a pole user and never had issues although the noise mention definitely has merit.

    Thanks for the feedback.


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  4. Gordon

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    For first aid I like to have a knife with a pointy tip for digging out thorns. My minimal version is an Xacto knife blade stuck into a small piece of foamcore. I include one prepackaged alcohol wipe and a bit of tape in a tiny little box. I like the crazy glue idea from the article, but mine are always dry when i need one.
     
  5. BareFootBC

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    Duct Tape or have you found something else effective?


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  6. Christian Lemburg

    Christian Lemburg
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    I always carry one of those tiny superglue dispensers together with some Leukotape classic tape and one bandaid in a small plastic box. And a small Swiss Army knife with pincers and scissors. It is the rare barefoot injury that needs more. Having some water and/or alcohol to clean wounds is a plus. The trick is to make the kit so small and light that you will really always carry it with you. Less of a problem when hiking, more when running.

    6DBCBF48-EB3B-4289-9298-9771E351D1C2.jpeg

    Just my 2 cent,

    Christian
     
  7. BareFootBC

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    Thanks Christian, your two cents has a lot of purchase power. You’re absolutely correct about making it small/light. My hiking first aid kit used to be kinda bulky but I’ve pared it down considerably as well. As far as running keeping it simple enough that it’ll fit into my Fitletic pouch or Camelback is a must.


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  8. Gordon

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    I carry a bit of adhesive tape because I have a lot of it. Duct tape could work.
     
  9. Tristan

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    I'm pretty minimal but not extreme like some who even dehydrate drops of toothpaste and trim all their pack straps shorter to shave off a few grams. I may be taking extra risk but I don't usually carry much barefoot specific stuff, my med kit is just the usual couple bandages of a few different sizes, closures, alcohol wipes, a little bit of tape, a couple aleeve pills. I've usually carried my Unshoes Pah Tempe for backup/gravel road stretches. Only other thing for the feet are some super light down booties and waterproof overbooties if its going to be cold during my backpacking (just for around camp in the morning). Most all my products are handmade by small home businesses like those booties, unshoes, tent, sleeping bag, alcohol stove.
    Interesting, as I find them one of my most valuable pieces of gear especially since going barefoot. It may be dependent on terrain as to how useful they are. But on very rugged terrain, where footing is precarious, it helps balance and stability. Also on long descent it helps to have them for braking. Actually I did my first barefoot hike without poles just a week ago and though it was not particularly difficult or rugged, the even slope and loose/slippery surface caused me to fall several times. Without tread on my heels there is a much greater tendency for them to slip, with poles it rarely happens. And they just help in general take a little weight and strain off the feet and legs too which helps me greatly considering I never get to train adequately for a big hike when I live in the flatlands. Often times they help when the step is a bit too big, getting them extended way out, or even help giving me a boost to jump a greater distance. I also use my trekking poles as my tent poles, so dual purpose and saves weight and space in my pack. About the only time they are in the way for me is during scrambles, and I collapse them and place them in the axe loop of my pack. Your concern is valid about getting poked, but people should use common sense and not walk within striking range of poles. I have accidentally poked my own foot once or twice, but it was minor. Noise isn't really an issue on dirt, and pretty minor overall imo. Maybe the carbon ones absorb sound better, mine arent loud other than the click they make on rock.
     
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  10. Gordon

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    I tried them years ago and agree with what you describe. But ... I stopped using them when I realized that they were affecting my balance, and not in a good way. I was relying on the poles and when I didn't have them in hand, my balance was worse than before. It was an issue on steep and rough terrain where falling became much more likely. When I stopped using poles, my balance without recovered. YMMV

    I suppose that I could have never hiked without, but that would have been a huge hassle. I do a fair amount of scrambling where I need both hands on the rock, so they had to go on and off the pack pretty often. Taking the pack on and off and messing with the poles over and over again was annoying enough that I would just do short sections of hiking with them still on the pack. After several falls and near falls, mostly on the downhill, I realized what was going on. If I only ever hiked trails, I might never have noticed.
     
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  11. BareFootBC

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    The last hike I took very much reflect your observations. I was doing a lot of scrambling and the poles were more of a PITA than an asset. I also wondered if I was relying on them too much to keep going (I delayed putting my FiveFingers on for a mile or so because I was putting a lot of weight on the poles).

    Ironically I came back from a hike with blisters on my hands...part of the barefoot motivation was not wanting blisters anymore...
     
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