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Six of the Most Useful Outdoor & Survival Knots You Should Know

Knot-tying is one of those skills that never go out of fashion—especially for outdoorspeople, but really for anyone who wants to become more resourceful on the off-chance they find themselves in dire straits. If your experience in the art up till now has been restricted to tying shoelaces and the occasional in-a-pinch overhand knot, knots can seem a difficult, even esoteric challenge. But while there are many kinds of knots better- or worse-suited for all sorts of situations, you actually can get by fine for most everyday applications learning just a handful. The following are some of the basic, tried-and-true … Continue reading

The Best Mountain Lakes in the USA

It probably comes as no surprise to you, given our brand name and our backpacking-ready products, to learn that we here at Mountain House are big fans of mountain lakes. And we’re going to go out on a limb and assume that you Mountain House blog readers are, too. Though the first snows may be piling up in the heights this time of year, there’s no reason why we can’t start dreaming of blissful backcountry lakes to escape to next summer, right? Here we’ve compiled a list of some of the best lakes in North America’s high country: from sprawling … Continue reading

Effects of Altitude on Water Boiling Time

The siren song of the mountains calls loud and clear to most backpackers, which means we’re often camping well above sea level. Besides impacting our own physiology, altitude has an influence on how long it takes to boil water—and, therefore, how long it takes to prepare uncooked food. For many of you, the following will be a no-brainer rehash, but a goodly number of people still get (understandably) confused about the relationship between boiling point, cooking time, and altitude, so we thought we’d run through a quick and basic primer on the subject. Whether you’re going ski-touring in the near … Continue reading

Tips for Surviving in a Snow Storm

Winter weather can be lovely: There’s not much prettier than big, feathered snowflakes lazily falling in a frosted forest. But it can also be ferocious. Enter: the snow storm.  Whether you’re into winter sports and recreation or simply hunkering down for the season at the old domicile, preparation for winter weather is vital. Here we’ll run down some of the basics of winter storm survival: at home, in the car, and out-and-about in the backwoods or mountains. Winter Storm 101: Hazards & Terminology Whether you’re headed out into the wintry woods on snowshoes or skis, or you’re packing the car … Continue reading

Winter Camping Basics

When the first subfreezing night temperatures hit and the first real snowflakes start falling, some outdoorspeople hang up their packs and camping gear for the year and settle in for a winter of trip-planning for the following summer, maybe with some skiing or snowshoeing thrown in as daytrip adventures. But as many of our Mountain House readers know from experience, winter camping can be amazing: quiet and solitude abound, the snow-draped scenery can be transcendent, and you can justify an extra cup or two of hot cocoa around the campfire. Newbies often find the idea of winter camping intimidating, but … Continue reading