I canâ€™t believe May is almost over already. But the good part of a month flying by is getting to share a some random cool stuff I gleaned this month – from the Internet, from books, wherever.
Up first, letâ€™s talk about some interesting things Iâ€™ve started to do with stuff out of my foods dehydrator. My two favorite dehydrated foods are jerky and apples. But check this out – there are a few things you can do with jerky and apples next time you go camping â€¦ beyond just eating them as-is.
First, the jerky. If you use those dehydrated meal packs, youâ€™ll notice that theyâ€™re generally low on protein. Bump that protein factor up by tossing some jerky in there – but be sure to add a bit of extra hot water. If you make a nice jerky in a good marinade, this will also make your camp food far tastier. Speaking of dehydrated camp meals, Iâ€™ve heard that some people make complete dehydrated meals at home: If you have some advice, please pass it on – Iâ€™d like to take a shot at this, and I trust any advice from a reader more than a random Internet search.
The same goes for the apples. If youâ€™re making oatmeal, toss some apples in there for extra flavor. Delicious!
Now Iâ€™m about to get personal. Ever since I went to the Aboriginal Living Skills School, people have been wanting me to try getting on the TV show Naked and Afraid (this includes many of my relatives, and I am more than slightly disturbed by how many want me to run around naked on TV).
Anyway, I ran across a reference to some of the gear choices Naked and Afraid contestants picked at the start of the show. It got me wondering what Iâ€™d pick. Only one of them picked a piece of gear that I use: the Swedish Firesteel. This is a solid piece of gear that Iâ€™ve used to start many fires – even at home for my barbecue grill: Like anything, using a flint is a skill, and itâ€™s one you should practice even when you donâ€™t need to. Iâ€™ve also started more hand drill fires at home than I have camping, no contest.
Back to the Firesteel: I think a smart Naked and Afraid duo would be smart to make it one of their choices, with the other person using a small bushcraft knife. Iâ€™d suggest resisting the urge to go with a machete, big quasi-survival knife or hatchet. Not even a bottle – there are ways to make water-carrying vessel, one that can endure heat to boil water for purifying; iif you could get the Swedish Fireknife, youâ€™d get knife and flint in one and be able to let your partner grab a water vessel. Thatâ€™s a pretty kick-ass little knife with a sharp Scandinavian-ground edge. The flat spine and thin-but-strong blade make it great for batoning, which negates the need for an axe. It’s also stupid-cheap, yet very decent, un-fancy quality for frugal folks.
Third up – Iâ€™ve absolutely fallen in love with my 32-ounce BPA-free REI bottle. It holds plenty of water, and a pair of them are with me on every hike. I had only one problem with them, and that was the wide mouth. One false move, and Iâ€™m wearing more water than Iâ€™m drinking.
I discovered the Guyot Designs Splashguard, a cool silicone insert that turns many types of wide-mouth bottles into sippy-cups for outdoorsy adults.
But thereâ€™s another really cool thing the Splashguard can do: Have you ever had a pair of bottles, one with water thatâ€™s disinfected and ready to drink, and one that you just treated with a few drops of iodine â€¦ and you canâ€™t remember which is which? Your Splashguard can be the key. The bottle with the Splashguard is ready to go, the other isnâ€™t. Of course, you can also have different-colored bottles. The Splashguard is still a pretty solid way to keep from drinking untreated water.
Letâ€™s take this back to modern times. You know how much you hate the middle seat while flying? Well, one company has a solution to that problem. How likely are you to see this on an airplane anytime soon? I vote â€œno chance in hell.â€
There are so many great ideas out there – like scramble crosswalks and movies that arenâ€™t sequels/prequels/reboots/remakes – that never come into use. Donâ€™t ask me why. Itâ€™s just the way of the world. And airlines, especially those based in the United States, take a special pleasure in ignoring any way to make flying better.
That’s all I have for you today. See ya next month!
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