213: Health Benefits of Backpacking

Show Notes: Episode 213

Today on the First 40 Miles, if you haven’t figured it out by experience, then we’ll give you one more huge reason to begin backpacking…the health benefits!  The list of health benefits is huge!  Then our SUMMIT Gear Review today is a 22 pound piece of gear… but hear us out… it’s 100% backpackable and incredibly fun!


Top 5 Health Benefits of Backpacking that We’ve Experienced

SUMMIT Gear Review:  Jimmy Styks Puffer Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board


  • Comes with pack, inflatable stand up paddle board, paddle, repair kit, loop for your foot, fin
  • Adjustable Carbon Fiber Travel Paddle
  • Dual Action High-Pressure Pump
  • 10′ Coil Leash
  • Click N’ Go Standard Fin
  • Premium iSUP Board Bag
  • Repair Kit


  • To use, pack it in, puff it up
  • Pack doesn’t have room for other gear, so have another one of your hiking buddies pack the rest of the gear.
  • Attach pump and pump it up on site
  • Handles for easy carrying to the water
  • Stretch band in the front so you can stow other gear like wind breaker, lunch, etc.


  • 22 lbs—and that includes everything except the life vest…which you don’t have to use if you use the ankle tether
  • Length 11’6” (350.5 cm)
  • Width 31” (78.7 cm)
  • Thickness 5.9” (15 cm)
  • Board Avg. Weight 20 lbs (9 kg)
  • Weight Limit 260 lbs. (117 kg)
  • Inflate to 18 PSI


  • Repair kit comes with ISUP


  • $699


  • The Jimmy Styks Puffer Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board is a piece of outdoor gear that comes in its own pack, can be hiked in, adds to the experience of the trip, and can be a feature activity, instead of the miles.
  • Worth the weight for a day trip or overnighter
  • Can fish from it
  • Fun, low impact, LNT activity, so quiet, so peaceful, so calm
  • We didn’t inflate ours all the way, just until it felt firm

Backpack Hack of the Week™:  “The Absorber” Super Absorbent Towel

  • Found in automotive section
  • Can be cut down
  • Excellent for rainy hikes (December is rainy here), tent rain gear, etc.
  • $12
  • They can be used as camp-towels, to dry off gear, clean off condensation inside your tent
  • Heather added a grommet to hers

Trail Wisdom (VOTE on the one you like best)

“The sun shines not on us but in us.”
—John Muir

“The wilderness holds answers to questions man has not yet learned to ask.”
—Nancy Newhall

“It is solved by walking.”
—Latin Proverb

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