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Lighten Up!: A Complete Handbook for Light and Ultralight Backpacking (Falcon Guide)
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Lighten Up!: A Complete Handbook for Light and Ultralight Backpacking (Falcon Guide)

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4.12  ·  Rating details ·  364 ratings  ·  27 reviews
Short, to the point, and humorously illustrated by famed outdoor illustrator Mike Clelland, this book presents everything hikers and backpackers need to be safe, comfortable, and well-fed while carrying a very small and lightweight pack.
Kindle Edition, 112 pages
Published May 1st 2005 by FalconGuides
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Average rating 4.12  · 
Rating details
 ·  364 ratings  ·  27 reviews


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Start your review of Lighten Up!: A Complete Handbook for Light and Ultralight Backpacking (Falcon Guide)
Lianna
Oct 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good intro to lightweight hiking. I learned some things like:

-instant hummus powder exists! makes a good hiking snack
-you can put food in freezer safe bags then pour boiling water directly in for an easy meal.
-good ways to test shoes in the store before you buy
-the PCT method for hanging food from a tree. Genius!


Hilarious illustrations as well.
Eric
Apr 01, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've read a ton of backpacking books lately. This book is the shortest, and hits all of the major points. It's also more practical than the others. Trail Life or Beyond Backpacking are more wishy washy. This book is practical. ...more
Sjors
Oct 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A light and cheerful introduction to the art of “light and ultra-light backpacking”. A breeze to read with some interesting advice here and there. Must buy? No. Buying regrets? None.
Peter
Jun 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: backpackers curious about lightening their load
Shelves: own
A great introduction to lightweight backpacking. It is nowhere near a complete guide to subject, but it was not intended to be complete. It is easy to read and with many great illustrations. If you know nothing about lightweight backpacking but are curious to learn you should check out this book. If you want to go more in-depth with lightweight backpacking you should read Lightweight Backpacking & Camping.
Thomas
Jun 22, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really fun read, and excellent info, including superb illustrations. You can always learn something by reading about cutting down on weight.
Hardi
Mar 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was invaluable for my trip to Norway, even though it was mostly a series of day hikes interspersed with car rides, instead of a full backpacking trip. As a complete novice, this book gave me tons of solid tips as to what to bring, how to pack it and how to make the most of what I had with me.
Brian
Feb 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short and simple intro to ultralight backpacking. I've been doing a lot of research and browsing r/ultralight on reddit but it can be overwhelming. While this book is over 10 years old, I still think it's worth a read and I was able to borrow a digital copy from library. ...more
Aaron Andersen
I am not an ultralight backpacker, nor am I likely to become one any time soon, but I really enjoyed this short little book. Plus some of the advice is surprisingly useful when it comes to packing airline luggage or the trunk of a car for family vacations.
Luboslav Emilov
Sep 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Изключително практична!
Curtis Jensen
Good intro into backpacking, even if you're not going for light or ultra-light. Though, if you're looking for more than an intro, I don't think this will be your book. ...more
Ellen
Jul 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely out of date in a few areas, but still a really good primer.
David Paton
Aug 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Many useful ideas

Focused book helpful in planning a more enjoyable hike. Will help any hiker lighten their load whether all of the suggestions are used or not.
Stephen
Feb 11, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent overview of how to lighten your backpacking load. Funny yet useful illustration and short, to the point text makes this book a great read.
Shane
Dec 09, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This might have been fine as a first book about lightweight backpacking, but it's just far too simple and shallow. The illustrations are humorous and the book touches on important points regarding lightweight backpacking (take clothing layers that can all be worn at once for flexibility in different temperatures; maintaining safe temperatures while reducing weight; reduce unused gear, etc) but doesn't get into any details about the things that backpackers looking to get lightweight gear have to ...more
Todd Benkert
Aug 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was an easy read and a good primer for the various gear options when going on an overnight backpacking trip. While other, more thorough guides are available, this small book gave a handy overview of the various options available. The focus of the book was on packing light compared to traditional hiking techniques. For each category, the pros and cons of each gear selection were considered. Included humorous helpful illustrations. Ultimately, each hiker will need to develop their own ge ...more
Shayne
Feb 06, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: real-book
I admire the author's willingness to put out his message in such a little book, but it is an effective medium for its contents, and I think this book is about the best way possible to introduce a moderately experienced outdoorsman to lightweight backpacking. Nicely done! ...more
Philip
Dec 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this thinking I might pickup a few ideas for lightening up my pack... which I did (thought I haven't gotten it out on the trail)... but it's got me interested in the idea of ultralight backpacking...

It's informational, and the illustrations are funny.
...more
Lacy
Nov 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy the drawings that accompany this book's useful and fun tips for lighter weight backpacking. ...more
James Fearn
Wow, I didn't realize how seriously some backpackers take their pack weight.

Great ideas in the book about packing it in and taking it out.
...more
Nancie Lafferty
Sep 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fast, fun read with humorous line drawings. Great primer for light backpacking. Made me want to get out and do some overnight hiking.
James Davis
Aug 10, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recreational
Apparently you don't need to take everything you own when you go backpacking. In fact, backpacking CAN be cheap! ...more
Lloyd Fassett
Lightweight backpacking is like writing well because you only take what you need.
Andrew
Feb 20, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Informative, concise, and easy to read.
Walter Underwood
The best introduction to making your pack lighter. Don't be fooled into thinking it is shallow because it is short. This is concentrated stuff. I learn something new every time I read it. ...more
Dave Janesky
rated it it was ok
Apr 11, 2018
David
rated it liked it
Jul 27, 2009
George Stopka
rated it it was amazing
Sep 09, 2016
David Bliss
rated it really liked it
Sep 06, 2016
Aj
rated it it was amazing
Aug 28, 2013
Mary Giersdorf
rated it really liked it
Jan 12, 2008
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