engineeredforadventure

Trail Reviewed – Northwoods Cheese

It can be hard to find a balance between foods that are interesting and tasteful, and foods that hold up well on the trail. Especially cheese. True, many sharp cheeses can hold up for days at a time, but eventually they all get moldy, slimy, and gross. In preparing to hike the John Muir Trail, my Dad and I did extensive research and testing of what we wanted to eat for lunch. PB & J seemed an obvious option, but…

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Visualizing Your Route on Google Earth

Data. It’s my favorite. As an engineer, I’m a data geek, especially when it comes to the outdoors. I’d rather spend a solid few hours on Caltopo doodling around than at a party or watching a movie. No lie. For me, one of my favorite parts of expeditions is the preparation process, the lead-up and planning and all of the work that goes into creating my dream adventure. I enjoy the visualization, the homework behind understanding the route, its features…

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Trail Kitchen: The “Oatmeal Bomb”

“This thing is like jet fuel.” I couldn’t agree more. Oatmeal is a staple for many hikers, its ease and packability making it a favorite for a power-packed breakfast. However, When my Dad and I were experimenting with trail meals for our thru-hike of the John Muir Trail, we wanted something more balanced than plain oats. Being the “foodies” that we are, we had analyzed macro and micro nutrients, seeking out ways to add protein, fats, and micronutrients, all the…

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Summer 2019

Recently, I’ve been getting the question of “what are you doing this summer??” more and more often. As an engineering student, I’m sure the anticipated response is the name of some company or an explanation of an amazing internship that I’ll be assigned to. The Answer??. . . Chapter 1: Hayduke (early May) Beginning in early May, I will be hiking two sections of the Hayduke Trail through Utah and Arizona. The “trail” is more of a navigational route, twisting…

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Trip Report — Kilimanjaro, Lemosho Route (May 2018)

“Pole Pole.” Slowly, slowly. Life moves with no rush, the sun rising and setting with a relaxing flow. The world’s largest free-standing mountain looming above. This adventure was different from all others. A foreign continent, red from its iron rich soil; a foreign language spoken, erecting a roadblock on communication; and a unique mountain, standing alone above savannah and lush jungle. || Day 0 – May 11, 2018||  Miami –> Istanbul –> Zanzibar –> Kilimanjaro Africa is different; that really…

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KAF Adventures – “Dream It. Do It”

“Dream It. Do It.” Well, I couldn’t say it much better than that. My mom has always said that I needed “exertion.” I got cabin fever really easily when I was young (hell, I still do. . .), and if I didn’t get my daily exercise in I’d be bouncing off the walls. As I grew older I spent more and more time in the gym to get my “exertion.” The most recent evolution of this “exertion” has been through…

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Trail Kitchen: Episode 1

What do you think of when I say “trail food?” For many people, the immediate thought is granola and Mountain House. But does it have to be this way? || The Realization: Food CAN be tasty on the trail || At the beginning of my backpacking adventures, I followed the conventional approach to “hiker food.” I brought a ton of snacks, a mix of granola bars and trail mix that kept my blood sugar stable enough until larger meals, that…

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A Yummy Surprise: Hunter’s Reserve Summer Sausages

I’m a foodie. Plain and simple. The most social space in our entire house is our kitchen, not the TV room or the living room. My family spends countless hours together cooking from scratch, mixing together real, whole ingredients. So in planning for my John Muir Trail hike, it was very difficult for me to find trail-friendly foods that matched my food-centered upbringing. I was not interested in living off of Snicker’s Bars on the trail, like many thru-hikers do…

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How a Pair of Crocs Legitimately Saved My Life

We made our way through an empty Tuolumne Meadows, putting in some miles on our way towards Donohue Pass. Following the banks of the overflowing Tuolumne River, we came across the first creek crossing on the trail for which we had to take off our boots if we wished to keep them dry. In no way was this a difficult crossing, as the small creek was hardly treacherous, yet the water was deep enough to warrant the use of my…

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Gear Explained: Sleeping Pads

I’ve seen people underestimate the importance of a sleeping pad. They never repeated that mistake. . . || So. . . what is a sleeping PAD? || The rarely mentioned sidekick of a sleeping bag, a sleeping pad is a crucial part of every backpacker’s gear list. Without it you will certainly have a cold bottom all night long. While a sleeping bag creates an insulating layer of air between you and the outside environment, a sleeping pad insulates your…

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Gear Explained: Sleeping Bags

With so many sleeping bags on the market, picking the “right one” can seem a daunting task. || Sleeping Bag: So What Really Is It. . .? || I like to describe a sleeping bag like a human thermos. It does not generate heat, but rather, traps heat that your body radiates to the surrounding environment. The various temperature ratings of sleeping bags, such as 30 F, 20 F, etc., measure how efficiently the bag is able to retain heat…

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