Tag: Gear

2021 British Pilgrimage Packing List

2021 British Pilgrimage Packing List

With COVID pandemic restrictions lifted in the U.K. for vaccinated travelers, in late September and early October 2021 I will walk three historic pilgrim pathways in England: the Pilgrims’ Way from London to Canterbury, the English leg of the Via Francigena from Canterbury to Dover, 

CAMINO 101: Should you take a sleeping bag on the Camino de Santiago?

CAMINO 101: Should you take a sleeping bag on the Camino de Santiago?

Considering the Camino de Santiago but not sure if you should take a sleeping bag for your pilgrimage in Spain? In this Camino 101 video, we’re answering the question for pilgrims and cold sleepers on the Camino de Santiago.     DISCUSSIONS IN THIS VIDEO: 

Layering Ultralight Clothing for Pilgrimage Backpacking

Layering Ultralight Clothing for Pilgrimage Backpacking

For those who follow this blog or my podcast (APPLE | GOOGLE | YOUTUBE | WWW), you’re familiar with my essential packing list for the Camino De Santiago. If you haven’t heard me talk about my preferred gear for walking pilgrimage or backpacking, you can 

Stages and Maps for Walking the Kumano Kodo – Nakahechi Route

Stages and Maps for Walking the Kumano Kodo – Nakahechi Route

For more than 1,000 years, pilgrims have gathered to walk the Kumano Kodo (熊野古道) through the tranquil Kii Mountains in Japan.   At the center of this religious area are the three Kumano shrines: Hongu Taisha, Hayatama Taisha, and Nachi Taisha, collectively known as Kumano 

The Best Hiking Backpacks for Children

The Best Hiking Backpacks for Children

With more families looking to rediscover the great outdoors, interest in hiking and backpacking trips with children seems to be growing exponentially.

Packing List:  Backpacking Gear for England’s Pilgrims’ Way

Packing List: Backpacking Gear for England’s Pilgrims’ Way

I was first drawn to England’s ancient pilgrimage route to the shrine of St. Thomas Becket following my 2019 Camino de Santiago. With my eyes set towards Europe’s Via Francigena from Canterbury to Rome, I learned the history of the Pilgrims’ Way from both Winchester 

Review: Osprey Exos 58L Backpack

Review: Osprey Exos 58L Backpack

If I could only buy one backpack for all my varied hiking needs, it would be the Osprey Exos. Dollar-for-dollar and pound-for-pound, this go-anywhere, carry-anything pack remains one of the best (if not the singular best) backpack you can buy for the trail or distance 

HOW TO: Make Your Own Camino Backpack Shell

HOW TO: Make Your Own Camino Backpack Shell

One of the universal symbols of pilgrims in western culture is the simple scallop shell. The shell is used both both for waymarking and as a metaphor for the Camino de Santiago, its lines said to represent the different routes to the tomb of Saint 

PACKING LIST: First-Aid Kit for Blisters and Foot Care

PACKING LIST: First-Aid Kit for Blisters and Foot Care

One of the questions I get from both experienced and newer backpackers alike is: what first aid and foot care items should I carry in my backpack in case I get blisters or have foot pain? This is a really serious topic for hiking, whether 

PACKING LIST: What to Pack to Hike the California Missions Trail

PACKING LIST: What to Pack to Hike the California Missions Trail

Once the COVID-19 pandemic prompted a change in my plans to hike the Via Francigena through England and France, I set my sights on walking the California Missions Trail in the summer of 2020. With abundant options for lodging, food, and resupply, the California Missions 

HOW TO: Five Tips for Urban Hiking

HOW TO: Five Tips for Urban Hiking

Nearly all of my pilgrimage trips have included some amount of urban hiking through modern cities, including the Camino de Santiago as you arrive at the Cathedral and the California Mission Trail through the major metro areas of San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. 

PACKING LIST: Backpacking First-Aid Kit

PACKING LIST: Backpacking First-Aid Kit

As a lifelong Scout and Scout Leader, I’ve probably created and carried more than 30 unique first-aid kits over the years. I say “created” because – more often than not – retail first aid kits are not specialized enough for backpacking – lacking a few 

The Top Hiking GPS Apps for iPhone and Android

The Top Hiking GPS Apps for iPhone and Android

Looking for the best GPS apps for your iPhone or Android smartphone for your next hike? As a solo hiker and pilgrim, I never leave home without a GPS map and guidebook. Since your phone contains a GPS chip that does not require cellular or 

Packing List:  My Recommended Gear for Walking the Camino de Santiago

Packing List: My Recommended Gear for Walking the Camino de Santiago

In the summer of 2019, I set out on my first Camino de Santiago pilgrimage along the ancient route from Portugal into Spain to Santiago de Compostela. As an experienced hiker, I spent a lot of time researching my backpack and clothes to ensure I 

Gear Hack:  Refill Your Backpack Hydration Reservoir from Water Bottles or Filters

Gear Hack: Refill Your Backpack Hydration Reservoir from Water Bottles or Filters

As I’ve explained before, I use hydration reservoirs almost exclusively over water bottles when I’m hiking. For me, I drink more, stay hydrated, and make better time along the trail when I can easily drink from the tube without stopping. One of the biggest challenges 

The Best Hiking Poles for the Camino de Santiago

The Best Hiking Poles for the Camino de Santiago

Hiking poles (or trekking poles, as they are known throughout much of the world) are one of the most hotly debated items for pilgrims on the Camino. Some peregrinos swear by them; others swear at them.   Let’s settle the debate quickly: Hiking poles are