Catskill Mountaineer

Reviews of other miscellaneous hiking items.

Bear Spray - Bear spray is considered the best deterent from aggressive bears. It is capable of knocking down a 1,000 pound grizzly bear for 10 minutes. While most black bears are very docile, but when they learn that they can get food from people they can become very aggressive. Years ago, a couple of hikers were cornered in a Lean-to by a black bear looking for food. The other situation that causes hikers a concern is when the hiker comes between a mother and her cubs. This product gives you a piece of mind in those exceptional encounters. It should be noted: This product should NEVER be used on humans. It should NOT be used on every bear encounter. It should be used when you are being charged, attacked, or an attack cannot be avoided.

The picture on the right show the product without a nylon holster. The nylon holster allows you to attach the bear spray to your pants belt.
bear spray
bear spray

Clippers - Most hikers carry either clippers or a knife. If you are a good survivalist you know that with a knife and a shoe lace, you can make a fire. A fire can keep you alive and warm in the winter if you are injured and lost. A fire can also be used to keep coyotes away from you if you are injured. garden clippers

Foot Glide - FootGlide is a hidden secret by avid hikers. BodyGlide is very similar product to FootGlide. Apply FootGlide to any place on your foot that is suspectable to blisters and chaffing. It can also be applied to other parts of your body. It is important to apply it and let it dry before putting your socks on. Once applied and dry, the applied area will be very slippery, and will help prevent blisters and chaffing. It should be noted that if you are breaking in new boots, you may have to apply adhesive tape also. foot glide

Sun Screen - Sun Screen is important for hiking in the summer and the winter. A good sun screen can be important for protecting your skin from developing skin cancer and from sun burn. Lower SPF will protect you less then hinger SPF. The Sun Screens are the ones that have a dry finish. Wet finish sun screen will hold in the heat of your body and make you feel hotter then dry finish sun screens. The dry finish sun screens are more expensive, but the extra comfort is well worth the money. sun screen

Nikwax - Nikwax is a newer type of boot waterproofer. It has the approval of Scarpa Boots. nikwax

Bug Spray - Bug spray is very important for hikers in late spring and the summer. From early spring until mid-summer you will find Black Flies. You will find Black Flies at lower elevations in Late Spring. By mid-summer, you will only find them on summits of the Catskill Mountains. They are black, small, and have a very gentle bit. But, the welt they leave is very large. Most hikers work hard to avoid being bit by Black Flies. They usually go after bare skin.

Bug spray is also important to avoid mosquitos. Mosquitos will bit bare skin, as well as, clothing. During wet years, mosquitos can be particularly bad in the Catskill Mountains

Deer ticks and regular ticks are a problem in the Catskill Mountains. Deer ticks are just now starting to invade the Catskill Mountains. The problem with deer ticks is that they carry Lyme Disease. Deer ticks are very small. About the size of a pin head. Regular ticks are larger. If you are bitten by a deer tick that has Lyme Disease, you will develop a large red welt. The welt will look like a bulleye. If this happens you want to go to a doctor immediately for antibotics. to drive away deer ticks, you need to use a bug spray with a high level of DEET.
Bug Spray

Sno Seal - Sno-Seal is the most common form of waterproofing and leather treatment used by hikers. It has been around for decades. It is a bees wax formula. People heat up their boots on a radiator or forced-air heater grate. They then apply the Sno-Seal to the boots. You can also apply it to a room temperature boot, and then use a hair dryer to melt the Sno-Seal so that it penatrates the leather.

Sno-Seal also make a silicon based sealer for silicon impregnated leather. Scarpa Boots use a silicon impregnated leather. It comes in a spray bottle or liquid form.

Sno-Seal makes a variety of waterproofing products, seam sealers for tents and clothing. They also make a spray for coats and Gortex.
sno seal

Hiking Socks - Thorlo Hiking Socks are a very important part of an enjoyable hike. You never want to use cotton socks. You want to use socks that will wick the moisture away from your foot. This is important all year long. Not, just the winter. In the past, most hikers used wool socks. They would use processed wool as the liner sock, and raw wool as the outside sock. Today, we have better materials to use for hiking socks. Thorlo socks are one of these types of socks. They are smooth, expandable, and have excellent wicking capacity. They also are reinforced in the right places. The picture on the right is the heavy-duty sock. Some people use medium-duty socks in the summer . sun screen

Maps - VO maps are the next generation of maps. As of 2009, it is the best map of the Catskill Mountains. VO maps have the trails GPS located for exact location. It also has the exact milage on each leg of the hike. It has so many new features that it has become the ultimate map for the Catskill Mountains. It is waterproof and tear-resistant . vo maps

Links and References:
Bear Spray - Counter Assult
Foot Glide & Body Glide
Sun Tan Lotion - Neutrogena
Hiking boot sealer - Nikwax
Hiking boot sealer - Sno-Seal for regular boots
Hiking boot sealer - Sno-Seal for Silicon treated boots
Hiking boot & fabric sealer - Sno-Seal for boots, coats, tents, etc.
Seam Sealer - Sno-Seal Seam Sealer for stitching on boots, coats, tents, etc.
Bug Spray - Off! Deep woods
Hiking Socks - Thorlo

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