My first reaction to a book titled camping’s top secrets was “yeah, right”. I’ve been a camper all my life spending a thousand or more nights under canvas or on the trail. My camping education started forty years ago with Colin Fletcher’s book ‘The Complete Walker’ and expanded to the classics written by Horace Kephart, Nessmuk and Bradford Angier. I thought I knew all the tricks until I read ‘Camping’s Top Secrets’.
Cliff Jacobsen’s collection of techniques and ideas have been tested over many years of guiding canoe trips in northern Canada. Creating a comfortable camp in such unforgiving conditions is no mean feat. No doubt Jacobsen stands on the shoulders of several generations of guides and outdoorsmen yet Camping’s Top Secrets is full of original and really quite useful information.
I have certainly learned a great deal from this book and place it among the best outdoor how-to books in my library.
Storm proofing the Eureka Timberline tent with a couple of additional guy lines and tie-outs makes a three-season tent into a four-season tent. These same principles can be applied to many tents lending them the stability of much more expensive models.
Blacken your pot bottoms: Pots that are used on open fires get quite black outside. Some experts suggest that you coat the exposed surfaces with liquid soap or shaving cream so the carbon black will clean easily. The result is an awful mess for the dish-washing crew. I leave pots black (they cook faster and more evenly) and keep them inside a plastic-lined nylon bag between uses.
Aluma Black, a chemical used to blacken aluminum gun sights and mounts, works wonders on pot bottoms. Just daub the chemical on the pot, allow it to dry, and a rich blue-black color will result. Aluma Black is available at gun shops.
Camping’s Top Secrets on Amazon