Outdoor Resources

It takes a village.

Important Stuff

A shortlist of items that can make or break your outdoor experience.

Doggy Emergency

Prepare for the unthinkable.

Doggy Emergency

Emergency dog-carrying harness.
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Beginner Backpacking

Overnight to multi-days.

Beginner Backpacking

Your basic backpacking checklist.
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Trip reporters

Route information (beta) is easy to come by these days. One quick search on the internet and a plethora of reports will turn up. But over the years, I've observed the lack of gratitude from climbers. While praising their successes online (i.e., social media), they forget those who made their successes a reality.

These are folks who have generously shared their findings through the years with detailed write-ups. So others can too have the experience. They may not know that they've played a big part in my successes with their GPS tracks and route information. But I continue to value these unsung heroes' efforts behind the scenes.

NWhikers

An excellent resource of obscure climbs. I've used Matt's many in-depth reports.

NWhikers

A Seattle Mountaineers' climb leader, Brett's writes meticulous reports.

NWhikers

A long-time obscure peak mountaineer with dependable reports.

WTA

One of the active obscure peak mountaineers with dependable reports.

blog

A hiking veteran, Jim's trips have inspired me since my early hiking days.

NWhikers

Presumably, a womxn, their reports of obscure and remote scrambles are a hidden gem.

NWhikers

I can count on a report from Rich when visitors to obscure scrambles are few.

Peakbagger

A peakbagger who enjoys climbing unnamed points as well as the famous ones.

Peakbagger

In a world full of white male narratives, Milda talks some sense into us.

NWhikers

A hiking and climbing veteran specializing in Middle Fork Snoqualmie River area.

NWhikers

One can find many of Adam's reliable reports on SummitPost and NWHikers.

blog

Eric's immense knowledge of the Pacific Northwest landscape continues to wow me.

Recreation Websites

These sites are the primary sources for my trip preparations. Combining information using different features offered through each site helps to ensure data integrity.


peakbagger.com

nwhikers.net

summitpost.org

wta.org

caltopo.com

Launch Year

1997

2002

2004

1998

2012

Summary

A popular climbing database for tracking climbs or building progress toward personal goals. Since its inception, the site has grown exponentially, with over 1.5 million ascents logged to date. It now serves thousands of people globally. The site remains a home-grown project maintained by its creator.

A popular online forum for hikers and climbers alike. As the name suggests, the site primarily serves outdoor enthusiasts in the Pacific Northwest. Most trip reports center around off-the-beaten-path adventures. But folks from other regions are welcomed to contribute to the plethora of trip reports.

A popular collaborative content community for hikers and climbers alike. Volunteer member writers build Mountain info and route descriptions into templated pages, aka articles. Each article contains essential information such as climb overview, seasons to climb, warnings, gear, etc.

A hiking website primarily serves the State of Washington. Trip reports center around day hikers and novice outdoor enthusiasts. The site's unique value: "It is vitally important for everyone to have the opportunity to access the outdoors."

A basic plus subscription-based web tool initially designed to integrate map layers for search and rescue. It is now widely used globally among first responders and outdoor enthusiasts.

Cost

Free

Free

Free

Free

Free, plus paid plans

Pros

  • A fast way to track personal progress
  • Simple text input with few photos
  • Lots of numbers and data for nerds
  • Obscure peak reports
  • Snow conditions
  • Mountain conditions
  • Pages dedicated to peaks with details like overview, approach, routes, red tape, and when to climb
  • Obscure peak pages
  • Planning day hikes
  • Trail conditions
  • Helpful report thumbs up feature
  • Land management agencies
  • Slope angle
  • Extensive map layers with opacity control
  • A free account provides sufficient data for basic mapping
  • Mileage labels on roads and trails

Cons

  • Only 11% of recorded ascents include trip reports over 100 characters
  • A small portion of reports link off-site with more details.
  • Basic map layers
  • Need to weed out clique conversations and self-accolades for relevant information
  • Non-people of color centric narratives
  • Ad-supported
  • Low-key brag and irrelevant comments
  • Non-people of color centric narratives
  • Thumbs up feature borderlines social media likes.
  • Premium features require paid subscriptions

Smartphone Apps

Yes

No

No

Yes

Yes

Bruh-Free

I write my own narratives.

Exclusivity-Free

I share the outdoors.

Mansplaining-Free

Go and tell it on the mountain.

Basic Gear Lists

Let's be real--climbing is expensive. Plus, climbing gear is often a determinant of one's involvement in the activity beyond the beaten path. I continue to remind myself that it's a privilege to have the means to do what I enjoy in the outdoors.

gear

Where to buy

Helmet

Amazon*

Ice Ax

Amazon*

Crampons

Amazon*

Gaitors

Amazon*

Trekking Poles

Amazon*

Climbing Rope (30-meter)

Amazon*

Climbing Rope (60-meter)

REI

Day Pack (all purpose, single-day)

Amazon*

Backpacking (overnight, multi-night)

Amazon*

*Amazon affiliate links.

Pups Gear List

Our canine companions need love too! Before I started carrying their food, I relied on the Ruffwear multi-day packs. They're so sturdy that I still have one of their packs I purchased on our first backpacking trip in 2011!

gear

Where to buy

Collar

Amazon*

Leash

Amazon*

Harness

Amazon*

Brush Guard

Amazon*

Bacpack

Amazon*

Snow Jacket

Amazon*

Musher's Secret

Amazon*

*Amazon affiliate links.