Monthly Archives: November 2013

Trail_Mix Comics #2 “Physical Training”

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  This comic is in honor of the wonderful day we had today hosting our first Thanksgiving 🙂

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Introducing….. “Trail_Mix Comics”

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Categories: Eric, Kristin | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

(Eric) Our Fourth Sponsor: Dr. Bronner’s Soap

photoWe have another sponsor! This time, I think it will make anyone we run into on the trail or anyone that comes to visit us on the trail just as happy as it’s made us. Dr. Bronner’ soap.

We found Dr. Bronner’s while we were doing extensive research on what products to use for cleaning ourselves on the trail. OK, while Kristin was doing extensive research. I was sitting next to her on the couch saying things like “Why do we have to clean ourselves? We’ll be in the woods!” Or “Bears don’t clean themselves, why should we?”. It turns out being clean is actually a rather important part of hiking.

To start with its simply more pleasant for others. Sure, hikers get used to their own filth and stench, and don’t smell each other any more. That doesn’t mean, however, that the poor people selling you your fourth package of pop tarts don’t smell or see you. As hiker reputation is something serious to consider, this is something we’d like to keep in mind when we are in town. In addition, Kristin and i will be sharing a tent. Sure, we’ll both be hiking so we’ll both be dirty, but keeping up a baseline of cleanliness is just simply considerate.

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On top of the obvious de-stinkification though, there is a practical reason to keep relatively clean too. When you sweat, which we will a ton on the trail, there is salt in your sweat. This salt is left on your skin after the sweat dries and, if you don’t remove it, will get onto everything you touch. In terms of your clothing, this is just going to happen since you are wearing it all day. This is why its important to clean your clothes during your town days. However, if you don’t clean yourself at all, this salt will also get into your sleeping bag and liner. This salt will then clog the pores in the clothing or bag and it will lose its loft. The loft is what makes down so warm. So, making sure you stay clean is important to staying warm and the longevity of your gear as well.

Another, even more horrifying, problem with the salt from sweat is chafing.  Salt will increase chafing everywhere.  EVERYWHERE.  No salt.

So you can see why we are so excited to have Dr. Bronner’s on our side on the trail. One of the best things about this soap is its efficiency. It just takes a tiny drop from that giant bottle to clean your whole body. On top of that, its one-soap-for all. This means you can use it for your body, face,hair, and teeth.  You can also use it for your dishware. This saves a ton of pack weight and time at the end of the night when you’re tired and just want to plop in your bag and snore your face off.

Speaking of the one-soap-for-everything concept, this falls right in line with the philosophy of the creator of the soap. Dr. Bronner was a firm believer in the unification of humanity. His soap promotes this idea in not only in its function, but also in its label. Take a look:

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This is certainly not the least of reasons we love this soap.

The best reason, in our opinion, is the properties of the soap itself. Not only is it made of all natural, great ingredients, but it’s also 100% biodegradable. This is really important to us on the trail. The last thing we wanted to do was to take some chemicals with us into the woods that would damage it. Well, thanks to the folks at Dr. Bronner’s we don’t have to worry about that (of course, you should always follow Leave No Trace principles http://lnt.org/learn/7-principles). I also don’t have to worry about kristin kicking me out of the tent! Thanks guys!

I strongly recommend the documentary on Dr. Bronner’s soap.  It’s well done and really interesting, and about a lot more than just soap.  http://www.hulu.com/watch/475786

Categories: Eric | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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