Have an Ultra Light Happy New Year

I took the month off from blogging, but unfortunately not from work.

Seems like my public relations consulting business, Lewis & Summers Public Relations, always heats up during the holidays.

Just when I think I’m taking a few days of R & R, project deadlines raise their ugly heads. Mostly, it’s been creating 2008 plans for clients. Luckily, I like all my clients, so it’s not unpleasant. In other news …
– For Christmas, my wife, Gerry, bought me a fire pit — a kettle for the backyard that allows me to make samores and believe I’m around a campfire, even if really it’s winter.

– I achieved my 2007 goal of reading 50 books (mostly novels, but some non-fiction). Breaks my 2005 record of 47 books. Favorite books: The Last Season by Eric Blehm (non-fiction) and Bookman’s Wake by John Dunning (fiction). Dunning writes about a former Denver, Colorado homicide cop who quits and becomes a “book man” and opens a bookstore where he sells rare books and seems to get involved in solving murders. But I suggest you read his first novel first: .

-Took a trip with my friend, colleague and co-owner of MendocinoFun.com, to a nature preserve near the Point Arena, California Lighthouse, where we saw Tundra Swans. In lieu of backpacking right now, these short trips — 70 miles roundtrip combined with eating the world’s best omelets at Queenie’s Roadhouse in Elk, California on the way south — are my getaway.

Be light. Be safe. Be one with the pack.

Christmas Gift Ideas for Ultralight Backpacking, Hiking, Camping

Every year my wife, Gerry, wants to know what I want for Christmas. When it comes to ultralight backpacking gear, I have no real needs, but lots of wants. Here are some ideas for you. Some are stocking stuffers, others a bigger investment. All of them I have used for know someone who has used them.

For most, I’ve provided links to Amazon, which always has good, low prices.

•Cap with built in LED lights. Hands free. My review here.

•The Last Season – suspenseful tale about a lost park ranger. Good read. My review here.
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•Light My Fire Spork
– light, colorful and very useful. My review here.
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•Ultralight peanut butter – organic, tasty, nice packaging. My review here.

•Two Ounce Backpack for Day Hikes on Trail. My review here.

•The Esbit Stove. Powerful little stove at 2.25 – My review here.

•Paper Shampoo – My review here.

•MSR Hubba 1-Person Tent. My review here.

•Steripen – Best Water Purifier. My review herenew Adventurer model available

•Black Diamond HiLight – Lightest Tw0-Person Tent. My review here.

•Personal Locator Beacon – a lifesaver if you travel in the wilderness alone. My Review here.

•Nikon Monocular – Lightest Scope for birding, spotting. My review here.

•Icebreaker Men’s Oasis Crewe Skin 200 – Merino Wool first layer. Review here.

•Manzella Windstop Fleece Gloves – my third and best pair of gloves. My review here.