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Explinations of terminology that you might here when backpacking

Ground Stakes: Anchors that hold a tent to the ground. Available in a variety of materials and styles.

A-Frame: A framed tent .

Guy-Out Points: Peg and tie-down loops on tents and rainflys that aid anchoring.

Base Layer: The layer of clothing between you and your outer layer.

Boil Time: The amount of time it takes one liter of water to reach the boiling point at a given elevation.

Burn Time: The amount of time a camp stove or latern will burn given its capacity of fuel.

Cinch Straps: Adjustable straps often used to compress a stuff sack or to keep a load close to your back.

Daypack: Small backpack that holds enough gear for a one-day outing.

Bivouac: Old term for a site where a tent is put up.

Deep-lugged Sole: A boot sole featuring deep ridges and grooves for maximum traction.

Dome: A free-standing tent shape where the poles create a dome by curving over each other.

Double-walled Tent: A tent made of dual construction fabric that provides insulation by trapping a pocket of air between the layers.

External Frame Pack: A backpack supported by a rigid frame on the outside of the pack.

Floor Area: The amount of usable floor space in a tent, measured in square feet.

Foot: The rounded end of a sleeping bag, also called a footbox.

Footprint: The shape and square footage of a tent floor.

Freestanding: Tents that do not require stakes or guy lines to stand erect.

Fuel: Combustible matter used in a stove or lantern. See White Gas.

Guy-Out Points: Peg and tie-down loops on tents and rainflys that aid anchoring.

Hip Belt: The main support device on a backpack. Large padded belt that buckles around the waist and is fully adjustable.

Internal Frame Pack: A backpack supported by stays on the inside of the construction.

Lash Points, Lash and Loops: Metal fasteners, loops or other places to attach gear on a pack or jacket.

Lexan: A material used in water bottles and other camping wear that is extremely durable and can withstand a wide range of temperatures.

Loft: the height and thickness of insulation in a sleeping bag. See Rating.

Lumbar Pad: A support on a backpack to comfort heavy loads on the lower back.

Modified Dome: A dome tent that has been designed for specific elements, such as wind or snow.

Mummy Bag: A close fitting, shaped, hooded sleeping bag very efficient at conserving body heat.

Overlapping Tongue: The leather piece on a hiking boot that will help keep out dirt and snow.

Packed Size: The dimensions of a collapsed tent and its contents, in square inches.

Panel Loading: Packs that allow access to the body of the bag, in addition to the top, so gear can be loaded from all angles.

Pole Sleeves: Fabric tunnels on the outside of a tent into which the tent poles are inserted.

Priming: Allowing fuel to collect in the burner of a white-gas stove before ignition.

Purifier: A drinking water system that removes contaminates and eliminates viruses with a combination of specialized filters.

Rain-fly: A tent covering that aids in keeping a tent dry and windproof.

Rand: The outer rubber strip that encircles a hiking boot or climbing shoe.

Route: Any planned course of travel.

Shank: A metal or nylon plate installed in the instep of a shoe or boot to provide support.

Shock Cord: A thin elastic cord running through tent poles to prevent separation and loss and expedite set-up.

Single-walled Tent: A lightweight, single-fabric construction tent that is chemically treated for insulation any waterproofness but may not be very breathable.

Snow Stakes: Wide, platform-type stakes used to anchor a 4-season tent in snowpack.

Stay: The backbone of aluminum or plastic material supporting an internal frame backpack.

Top-loading: A backpack that is packed from the bottom up through the main access at the top, duffel bag style.

Topographical Map: A map that identifies land features (topography), as well as roads and man-made structures.

Travel (Conversion) Pack: A hybrid pack that can be worn on the back or carried like a traditional suitcase.

Tunnel Tent: A low profile tent that is long and rounded.

White-gas: A distillate of petroleum, petroleum naptha, that burns with a white, hot flame. Commonly used in backpacking stoves.

Two-Way Zipper: Two zippers running towards each other on the same slider, can be opened from either end.

Ultralight Tent: A tent designed for one or two people, weighing five pounds or less and designed to carry on or in a backpack.

Vestibule: The area outside of a tent, usually created by an extended rain-fly.

Volume: The amount of space in a backpack measured in cubic inches.

White-gas: A distillate of petroleum, petroleum naptha, that burns with a white, hot flame. Commonly used in backpacking stoves.


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