Every month I receive all the trade publications for the latest, greatest and most technologically advanced outdoor gadgets conceived by the constant human drive to work “smarter, not harder.”
These ‘gadgets’ range from the “Huh, why didn’t I think of that,” to the “Somebody has WAY too much time on their hands” spectrum, with most falling into the “Re-inventing the wheel” category. Then, as I start to calculate what it would actually COST the average outdoors enthusiast to outfit themselves with these “do-all” devices, I suddenly realize that the pure and simple lure of the outdoors with all of its challenges may be drowning in a new type of “Space Race”…that of “How do I jam all of this stuff into the same cubic inches and into the same budget!”
“Two is one and one is none.” The old preppers adage rings true throughout the annals of failed and miserable outdoor expeditions, where double-checking gear before starting out took a back-seat to bravado. Not that ‘yours truly’ would ever be guilty of such oversight in checking to make sure SOMEBODY packed the batteries, lighter, toilet paper, etc… but let’s pretend for just a moment that the following fictitious scenario DID actually happen on my first overnight excursion of the year.
Too early for Spring fever? Nonsense! My Spring Fever starts about as soon as the leaves start turning all of Creator’s ‘earth-tones’ in the Fall. There’s not much else I love to do more than plan for those first hiking trips when the icy weather finally recedes and those little buds start to pop out, foretelling the ‘sneezy’ season to come…but that’s for a later article.