Australia’s best hiking snack bars
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
3M ago
It feels like almost every freeze-dry company or hiking food brand is coming out with their own snack bar. They’re all claiming to be the best but what does that really mean? I’ve picked up some of the hiking staples and some new entries into the market to see how they all stack up. (this is a list of the best bars available in Australia, not made) I’ll be ranking the bars on three factors: Taste – always a key part to choosing your hiking snacks! Nutrition – often overlooked, nutrition is vital to a great hiking trip. Bang-for-buck – nobody wants to spend an arm and a leg on a weekend away, s ..read more
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Is new technology the future of hiking?
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
6M ago
Technology, both physical and digital has increasingly become part of the hiking experience. This technology includes everything from navigation apps to Gore-Tex and is changing the ways in which people tackle their big adventures. Some traditionalists say these evolutions in gear and software are ultimately taking away from the hiking experience, but I have another take that I think has much bigger implications for the future of hiking. What had changed from the early days? Long gone is the days of canvas hiking packs, today we have a range of ultralight materials available to us which make h ..read more
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Are Some Outdoor Retailers Becoming Too Commercialised?
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
7M ago
In recent years, the outdoor retail industry has seen a significant transformation. Once dedicated solely to promoting exploration, environmental awareness, and adventure, some outdoor retailers seem to be veering towards a more commercialised path. One prime example of this shift is National Geographic, a brand that has been synonymous with exploration and conservation for over a century. However, in recent times, it has been increasingly compared to fashion brands rather than an institution fostering a love for nature and exploration. National Geographic was once a nonprofit organisation un ..read more
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The Growing Footprints: Are Some Hiking Tracks Becoming Too Popular?
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
8M ago
Hiking has always been a great way to escape our busy world, however, with the growing popularity of trails around Australia, many concerns have been raised about overcrowding, environmental impacts, and diminishing track exclusivity, leaving many hikers with a sour taste in their mouth. This rapid growth in the number of people walking popular trails can be seen around the country with a prime example of this being The Overland Track in Tasmania which has for many years, seen ever increasing demand by hikers from all over! The Overland Track: The Booking Rush The Overland Track in Tasmania, i ..read more
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Hiking in a thunderstorm: tips for avoiding lightning
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
10M ago
Let be serious, hiking in a thunderstorm is scary. Even if the risks are low, you can’t help but get sinking feeling every time you hear the crackle of thunder while up on a ridgeline. Thunderstorms pose many risks while out in the open and when combined with wet and cold conditions, they can often be quite dangerous. Today I’ll go through some ways you can help protect yourself when a thunderstorm hits in the middle of your next hike and even go over a little bit of how lightning works. Understanding Lightning: How it Works Understanding how lightning works isn’t super important but is someth ..read more
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How to make a super simple meal plan for a day hike
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
11M ago
When you’re heading out on the trail for a weekend day hike, the last thing you want in the way is the obstacle of planning. Though it is often as simple as putting a sandwich and snack in the pack, I often find myself getting a little bored of this. In this short article I’ll run through the absolute basics of packing food for a day hike and some examples of what I bring with me on my weekend escapes. Ideas for hiking lunches on day hikes When planning your menu for a day hike, you obviously want it to be simple so you can just pick your next spot and set off on your adventure! Of course sand ..read more
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Why ultralight packs aren’t as good as you think they are
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
1y ago
The world of ultralight hiking can sometimes be obsessive (trust me, I’ve been there). Reducing pack weight can often be a really good thing but this isn’t always the case, and many pieces of ultralight gear can actually make your life harder rather than easier. The most prominent of these would be none other than your hiking pack – the basis of all your adventures out on the trail. For almost has long as they have been around, hiking packs have weighed a ton! Their evolution was slow in the early days, they were mostly being made out of heavy canvas which had nowhere near the room we have to ..read more
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4 Reasons Why Cotton is Bad for Hiking
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
1y ago
We’re all told that cotton isn’t good for hiking but many of us, especially newer hikers, don’t actually know why. There is often a temptation to just bring the clothes you would wear down the street with you on a hike but as we’ll discuss, there is quite a few reasons why we say avoid cotton. Cotton absorbs and retains moisture Firstly, cotton is a highly absorbent material, which means it can easily soak up sweat and moisture, especially when it gets wet out on the trail. This can be a major problem for hikers who are hiking through the rain as once cotton clothing becomes wet, it loses its ..read more
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One of my best gear investments: a long hiking spoon
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
1y ago
When you look back and think about some of the best pieces of gear you own sometimes the smallest things can be the best. Between expensive Gore-Tex rain jackets, stupidly over engineered hiking packs and my many sleeping bags, one small, and what could be considered insignificant purchase, still comes out on top. Several years ago, in an effort to become more ultralight, I ditched my set of metal cutlery for a plastic spork, satisfied the weight saving would be worth it but this change did have one drawback beyond just losing the ability to cut and stab with the fork at the same time and thi ..read more
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A Guide to Hiking for Beginners: Tips and Tricks to Get Started
A Hikers Friend
by Josh Welch
1y ago
Hiking for the first time can be an amazing way to explore nature, challenge yourself, and exercise but for many people, they simply don't know where to start. Whether you're a beginner or have been hiking for years, there's always something new to learn so here are 10 tips and tricks to help you get started on your hiking journey. 1. Choose the Right Equipment The first step to a successful hiking experience is to have the right equipment. This includes comfortable and sturdy hiking shoes, a backpack to carry water, snacks, and other essentials, and appropriate clothing for the weather. Make ..read more
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