Fitness, Memory Cards, Coolers, Libraries and Clotheslines


Looking for a simple way to keep fit while travelling? Bring along a couple of resistance bands. Lightweight and easy to use, the bands can be tied to door knobs, chair arms or legs, shower rods or any other secure piece of furniture that won’t come loose. By bringing along your own workout, you’ll be able to keep up your strength for whatever type of adventure crosses your path.


No one can bear the thought of losing one’s pictures from an extended trip, and a few close calls have made me ultra-cautious. While in a taxi, airport or on a bus, I remove the memory card from my camera and safely stow it in a leg or hip belt. If your camera or pack is stolen, at least you still have your pictures. Similarly, I travel with a GB jump drive, and frequently save my pics to the drive for backup. Just remember to keep it separate from the rest of your camera equipment.


The mesh storage bag that often comes with a camping cook set is more than a great way to keep your pots together. During meal preparation, use it to strain pasta or vegetables. Or, if you’re close to a stream or lake, try it as an impromptu wine cooler—put your bottle or pouch of wine into the bag, tie it to a log and then place it into the water to ensure your beverage of choice will be sufficiently chilled.


On a recent road trip through the Yukon, I found the best way to get free Internet access—visit the local public library. Internet cafés are few and far between off the beaten track, and they can be quite costly. A public library, on the other hand, typically serves a community where every home does not have a high-speed Internet connection, and its staff is usually very helpful. It’s also a great place to browse books on local culture, history and activities, or even find maps. Definitely worth a visit!


For hanging up wet clothes while travelling, take about two metres of nylon line and, for clothespins, use the plastic tags that close bread bags. Package both the line and the tags in a small Ziploc bag—it’s a handy kit to bring along on your next camping trip.


If you’re heading to Africa to see the mountain gorillas, take along a pair of gardener’s gloves. When you’re navigating the mountainous terrain that comprises their habitat, you’re likely to grab onto a plant to pull yourself up a steep section or to prevent a fall. Your hand might come into contact with a prickly plant or a patch of stinging nettles—not the most pleasant experience, to say the least. Wearing the same type of gloves would also work well during hikes in the rainforest.

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