022: If You Know Four Notes

Today on The First 40 Miles, Heather shares a little trail wisdom she picked up from an airplane magazine. Next, the top 5 reasons why wearing pants is a good idea (do we need 5 reasons to wear pants?) On the SUMMIT Gear Review, we’ll show you a quick way to make fire. On the Backpack Hack of the Week, you’ll save some grams and gain some peace of mind with disposable documents. And we’ll wrap up the show with a little trail wisdom from our good friend on the trail, Pulitzer Prize Winning Poet, Wallace Stevens

Show Notes: Episode 022


  • We’re teaching what we’re learning
  • Quote “If you know four notes, teach someone who knows three”
  • Heather teaches some basic survival skills to two youth leaders
  • Nickname: The “Bear Gyrlls”
  • Discovered that knot skills are severely lacking…

Top 5 Reasons To Wear Pants


  1. Permethrin Mosquito Repellent
    1. Doesn’t work on skin—only fabric
  2. Sun protection
    1. Some hikers choose to wear pants plus long sleeve shirt (even in hot weather) just for that consistent protection from the sun.
  3. Versatility
    1. You can always shorten pants, but you can’t lengthen shorts
  4. Safety
    1. Ticks: You can’t tuck your shorts into your socks
    2. Avoid scrapes
  5. Pants are multi-use
    1. floatation device, extra fabric, pre-filter, bandage, etc.
    2. I’d rather be caught in a bad situation with a pair of pants, than a pair of shorts

Upcoming SUMMIT Gear Review: The Macabi Hiking Skirt

SUMMIT Gear Review™: BIC Mini Lighter


Kid-proof feature on it that was quickly hacked by every kid in our family

In fact if you want to take the kid-proof piece off, all you need is a pair of pliers or a knife tip

Leakproof, disposable butane lighter


1450 ignitions

They come in lots of colors which is nice because it makes it easier to find in your pack

I’m trying to avoid buying black things for backpacking because of that reason…

Perfect length for wrapping a section of duct tape around


11 grams, .6 ounces

2.2 grams of fuel


There’s no easy or safe way to refill a BIC mini Lighter, so once it’s done, it’s done

However some people keep it because it still creates a spark. There are better ways to make a spark, though.

If your BIC Mini gets wet… Can still light after it gets wet—just shake it out, and roll the striker on a piece of material for a couple minutes (camp towel) until it starts creating sparks

How to tell how much fuel? Hold it up to a flashlight!


Roughly a dollar each

Best place to find is either Amazon, or the smoker’s check out lane at the grocery store


Work great


Work best if you’re lighting something above the BIC instead of below (because the flame goes up and could burn you)

Beware, the flame makes the metal around it HOT, so do not put back in your pocket until it has cooled down

Also, in extreme temps, the butane may not light until it’s warmed up in your pocket.

Backpack Hack of the Week™: Disposable Documents

You may not want to add the weight or the risk of taking along your wallet.

If you pack is ransacked by local wildlife and dragged off, it’ll be much better to have disposable documents with you than the real thing.

Drivers License + Health Insurance Card + Family Photo

Copy front and back of documents, store in a small zip top bag to protect from elements

Trail Wisdom

“Perhaps the truth depends on a walk around the lake.”

-Wallace Stevens