Book Review-The Ultimate Hiker’s Gear Guide, Second Edition: Tools and Techniques to Hit the Trail by Andrew Skurka

gear guide book coverThere is nothing like looking at gear when the weather is to bad to be out hiking.  I have known about this book for quite awhile, but never wanted to spend the money to buy it.  I checked it out of the library and I am glad that I did.

Andrew Skurka is an ultra-lightweight hiker and has hiked all over the world, taught classes and workshops, and written this book.

I was disappointed with the book.  I felt that the focus was on ultra-lightweight and many of the suggestions were dangerous, most especially those involving clothing.  As someone who hikes in the New England area, where ticks and Lyme disease are rampant, wearing long sleeves and long pants, with a hat, is a must if you want to stay disease free.  Maybe it is different in the Western States, but not in the east.

My other issue with the book, was the idea that hiking 30 miles a day was a preferred way.  My body is not designed for speed, never has been, never will be.  While hiking the AT in 2013, a big day for us was 21 miles and we didn’t do that to often.  What is the hurry?

The photos and the descriptions would be helpful for a beginner who is trying to figure out gear, so in that regard it is a good starting point.  It has been my experience that you find out what kind of gear works for you by buying and using it.  Hence my having had 3 different backpack.

I am sure there is a place for this book in the backpacking world, I just didn’t like it in mine.


About prairiedog2013

Grew up in the Black Hills of South Dakota, but currently lives on Long Island, New York. Was a day-hiker years ago, but is now a thru-hiker. Loves living the thru-hikers life. She has hiked nearly 3,000 miles. Her hikes include the Northville Placid Trail (2011, 2012), the Centennial Trail in South Dakota (2012), the Appalachian Trail (2013), the Fjallraven Classic (2014) and many other trails.
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