Nothing beats a nice, hot shower after a hike….

Oftentimes during my several hikes, and especially whilst negotiating a particularly taxing climb, I had often wondered about the possibility of rigging up some kind of a shower system in the bush, that would help relieve the tremendously tiring and sweaty periods of any hike in the wilderness.

Unfortunately, all my thoughts remained as thoughts and I never had the time or patience to design something like that, until I found the very thing at my local hiking shop!

As you may have read in my past articles here, I am a sucker for MEC, a fantastic mecca for folks like you and me who are into any kind of leisure pursuit, be it on land, up a mountain, on the water or snow and ice.

There I found The Hot Tap wilderness shower pack. It’s a superb idea, and is capable of providing you with a very adequate hot shower for up to 10 minutes.

All you do is dunk the pump in water, light the propane burner and hey! presto, you have an instant hot water shower in the middle of nowhere.

What is it like in use? As always, I only comment on the things I have used personally, and this is one of them. It comes with it’s own fully illustrated instructions that are clear and easy to read.

The shower is able to give you around 8 to 10 minutes of hot water. I found it to be enough to remove the normal grime, sweat and tears of a normal hike….of course, with any shower, you really want to stand under it as long as possible, savouring the life-giving heat of the water on your body, but don’t forget, this is not the shower in your home, and so you have to get on with cleaning yourself rather swiftly before the water runs out!

Batteries for the pump are needed…if you forget to pack them, well, let’s just say your hot shower in the wilderness will remain a dream! I do know some of my friends who bought this unit have used rechargeable batteries, which last longer and can obviously be recharged when required.

All in all, a very, very ingenious item and well worth packing for your hike.

Click here to read more about this very useful hiking must-have accessory.


Leave nothing but your wishes!

That’s what a Navajo man once told me.

He was referring to my love of being in the wilds, whether up north in the snow and ice or in slightly balmier altitudes in rainforests of the Pacific Northwest.

Why, I asked him? Why leave only wishes?

“Because”, he said, “the wilderness of the earth is where our greed has pushed the Great Spirit. Once, the Spirit was everywhere….in our homes, in our buffalo, in our hearts. But…when we learnt how to become civilised, we forced the Great Spirit out of our lives…..and so now, it has only one place left to go on earth….the wilderness. When you go there, walk gently, do not go there to destroy…..go there to bring back a little of the  Spirit with you…nothing else. Leave nothing, but your wishes”.

When I think of that, it brings tears to my eyes. What have we done indeed? We think we have become civilised, but look what is happening to our earth all around. And we still go on and on and on, never satisfied with what it has given us.

That is why, whenever I go on a  hike into the wilderness, I make sure I bring nothing back..apart from perhaps a bit of peace….a little of the Great Spirit.