Most random helpful thing in your pack?

6:09 p.m. on October 12, 2009 (EDT)
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I was just wondering, and hoping to benefit from everyone elses trial and error so to speak... what is one or two of the most helpful little tools you have in your pack. I am not looking for a poket knife or bear spray... really more of something random you wouldnt think about when packing

7:37 p.m. on October 12, 2009 (EDT)
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Hey, these are not true tools but.....

Dental floss

Duct tape, I like to wrap a small amount around my water bottle, not carry the whole roll of course.

Glue stick, just a very short piece should be enough. Great for repairs, and will fix blown boot parts well.

Razor blade, can be fixed inside a stick split on one end, and bound in place with the dental floss, duct tape, or glue stick.

Extra boot lace!! Can be used for other things as well.

Bandana, many uses for backpackers.

Small LED key chain type back up light.

10:46 p.m. on October 12, 2009 (EDT)
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Mont Belle Potty trowel. Strong lightweight digger.

10:05 a.m. on October 17, 2009 (EDT)
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Something to sit on -- ThermRest makes a LiteSeat that's basically the toe end of a ProLite 3 pad, though I find the inflation part is overkill. You can also get a small slice of Z-rest called a "Z Seat." Either way they're light and can help insulate your hydration bladder (very handy in summer).

Or you could just hack the end off one of those cheap closed-cell pads.

8:46 p.m. on October 21, 2009 (EDT)
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Fishing line. I can fish with it, repair a pack, tent, or sleeping bag, tie sticks for a shelter, clean your teeth, set snares, hang food etc...

3 foot of thin rubber hose for getting water from those hard to get at places.

10:28 p.m. on October 21, 2009 (EDT)
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Hmmm . . . really trying not to be too random these days. Trying to think what I might have carried this summer that I never used (as in, too many random batteries, which I had) I barely brush or floss on long trips, but I met a guy dumb enough to put his canister in his pack for the night––he certainly got to use all his dental floss to stitch it up . . . Duct tape is of course, a part of everyones trekking poles or water bottles and I think potty trowels are seriously overrated when (if you choose you spot wisely) a good few boot kicks will do the job.

3:32 a.m. on October 22, 2009 (EDT)
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Thanks to trouthunter for mentioning (first, no less) the single most important thing I recommend for boy scouts to carry in their packs: dental floss! It may seem a random thing, but look at the uses you get from this extremely lightweight, small, and strong product:

1. Fixes most toothaches (nearly all are caused by food stuck between teeth)

2. Excellent fishing line

3. Very strong sewing thread (clothing, tent and gear repairs)

4. Spare bootlaces

5. Build a snare

6. Substitute tent guy line

And I've probably forgotten a few uses. Most helpful "random" thing ever!

5:38 a.m. on October 23, 2009 (EDT)
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I carry a 12 inch by 6 inch peice of closed cell foam to sit on, fan a fire,make a splint-this was cut from an old sleeeping others iIwrap duct tape around my waterbottle. 12 feet of guy cord for pulling packs up cliffs oe for shoelaces.

2:52 a.m. on January 6, 2010 (EST)
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Try to anticipate what you might need the dental floss for. What I mean is, if you're going to be using it for your teeth, any kind will be fine. However, I've found that non-waxed dental floss works best for most "unconventional" applications - mainly because it is able to hold a knot better than the waxed stuff - such as those listed by Scouter Ed.

I'm no climber, but I always carry 100' of 550 paracord (daisy chained to save space) and a few carabiners. I've never HAD to use the stuff, but I think I coulde come up with a few different uses if faced with the challenge.

I also try to carry a zip-lock bag of dryer lint. It takes a spark like nothing else I've used.

Other than that, most of my gear is traditional stuff. I pack light as it is.

10:46 a.m. on January 8, 2010 (EST)
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I pack 2 dryer sheets.

one will last a few days, and it keeps the bugs away.

I use the other one in my tent

5:30 p.m. on January 8, 2010 (EST)
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A lightweight,collapsable 3 liter bucket that weighs almost nothing.Great for hauling water to a more comfortable spot for filtering,washing dishes and yourself away from water sources.

I always pack a couple of extra gallon size ziplocs if you need to pack something that has gotten wet,keep cleaned fish cold in snow or a stream,packing out trash of course.

5:41 p.m. on January 21, 2010 (EST)
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> Ziplock Bags < (I prefer the freezer bags) keeps cell phone, camera, wallet, permits, maps, licences, ect dry- can be used to organize gear, carry water, store trash, etc.

> Para Cord < I use the stuff constantly! Hang bear bag, repair pack, boot laces, synch straps, tie downs, splint wrapping, shelter binding, hold down pant leg over boots, tent guy lines, a thousand other uses, ect

> ShamWow < Buy a whole friggin box of the things at Walmart for $25 and you have the cheapest quality pack towels you could ask for.

>Duct Tape < Repair Tents, sleeping bads, boats, shoes, water bottles, packs, and just about anything else. Also use in place of moleskin, and to wrap sprained or broken joint and limbs. Impromtu bandage/hold bandages in place.

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