036: Blessed, Honored Pioneer!

Today on The First 40 Miles, the top 5 backpacking tips from some hearty Americans who lived in the days before ibuprofen (1961), freeze dried food (1905), or even the zipper (1893). On the SUMMIT Gear Review™, you’ll learn the ins and outs of the minimalist hiker’s dream stove. Then, the Backpack Hack of the Week™ will send your arteries running with a to-die-for Cheddar Bacon Bannock, And we’ll wrap up the show with some “You Might Be a Backpacker” jokes and a piece of Trail Wisdom.

Show Notes: Episode 036


  • Pioneer Trek coming up for our daughter
  • Purpose: Appreciate their pioneer ancestors, have the clarity of a long walk, form friendships, do something difficult, unplug

Top 5 Tips From Pioneers of the American West

Pack Light

Heirloom furniture was left behind, piano, rocking chairs, etc

All is Well

Attitude is everything

Circle the Wagons

Care for each other

Share gear

Cotton Kills

Except when it doesn’t…

Purpose of cotton

Timing is Everything

Pioneers who left too late


Reading from the Journal of Amos M. Musser, Diaries from 1957 From the William G. Young Company

SUMMIT Gear Review™: QiWiz Dual Burner Stove


Titanium pot with lid: 3 cup capacity, TOAKS Brand

Windscreen (that fits in pot), dual fuel burner (alcohol or tablets), and mesh stand all in a bright orange padded bag that fits everything perfectly


You can use denatured alcohol or fuel tablets (Esbit or others)

The DualFuel burner like a 2 inch diameter tin with some black felt

3/4 ounce fuel capacity

Hold enough fuel to boil water with depending on outside conditions.

Titanium pot has handles and lid, so it’s really a mug that’s dressed up like a pot


5.9 ounces or 165 grams


No special maintenance, although the lid of the dual burner stove ended up getting wet and rusted on top, but that doesn’t affect the performance.


$49.95 (and shipping is included)


Easy to use

For the DIY types who value ultralight

Remember to pack fuel

Super quiet

It’s a minimalist’s dream stove

You may be familiar with another one of the products he created, the Big Dig Titanium Trowel that we spotlighted in the SUMMIT Smackdown in episode 34, PRIVVY: The Bathroom Episode.

Backpack Hack of the Week™: Cheddar Bacon Bannock

1 cup white flour (you could also use whole wheat)

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 Tbs NIDO

1/4 cup coconut oil

2 Tbs pre-cooked bacon bits

1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar

Coarsely ground black pepper (to taste)

Put flour, baking powder, NIDO, and coconut oil into a blender and blend until powdery. Add bacon bits, shredded cheddar and ground black pepper. Pulse a few more times.

Store in a zip top sandwich sized bag. When ready to make, add about 3 ounces or a third cup of water to the bag and mix with spoon or by squeezing the plastic bag. Divide into 2-4 pieces so it’s easier to flip. Cook 5 minutes on medium heat, then flip. Cook 5 minutes on the other side.

The cheddar and bacon add 174 extra calories to the traditional Canadian Bannock recipe we shared in episode 24. This recipe comes in at 1179 calories for the whole pan of bannock.

You Might Be a Backpacker…

If you’re better at folding maps than you are at folding your own laundry…

If you have a bumper sticker that says “Guns Don’t Kill…Cotton Kills”

If you’ve uttered the words “I bet this tortilla chip with salsa weighs 4 grams. Hey honey, grab a scale. I’m gonna show the guys. 4 grams. Boom.”


REMINDER: August 25, 2015 is National Park Service Birthday

Entrance fee is waived to all National Parks (other fees like reservation and camping fees will still apply.)

Trail Wisdom

“Make your feet your friend.”

-J.M. Barrie