Joseph Renow (jrenow)

Reviewer of the Month: September 2013

1,679 reviewer rep
722 forum posts
joined Aug 8, 2013

Full Name: Joseph Renow
42-year-old man
Occupation: Adjunct Professor
Email: private



I would describe myself as someone who likes to go to remote places and stay there for days...sometimes weeks at a time. Typically my adventures involve a backpack…a bike...a kayak…or a canoe…but I've been known to car-camp (usually in the off-season). I probably solo more than anything else...but I couple a good deal...and go as a group at least several times a year.


My general philosophy is less work and less cost are good things. Things need to be durable...and if they aren't...they should be simple/cheap/easy to replace. I like low pack-weights...but I am not a half toothbrush and polycro-tarp kinda guy...I usually carry a pillow...some fresh food...and sleeping clothes.

Big Closet

I do not consider myself a gear-head...but over the years I have (self-consciously) accumulated a lot of to minimize this anxiety I am always attempting to reduce my collection. Doing so requires thinking about gear choices rather closely...which is sort of why I am here and why I participate. I figure participating in and advocating for minimalist practices is a way I can offset the paradox between a love for the outdoors and the costs of loving the outdoors.


Though I have slept outdoors in many places…I very much have what I would call a home-region. Familiar terrain for me stretches roughly from Missouri in the West...Tennessee in the South...Virginia in the East...and Wisconsin in the North. Though not perfectly accurate...I would say I primarily spend my time in and around river-valleys and heavy woodland. For me...trees and water tend to be plentiful...sometimes too plentiful.

Finally...I do enjoy sleeping outdoors when the temp is below least not without an external heat-source. I have spent a lot nights in cold weather...but I don't like it...and what I have experienced is nothing like the snow-cover for months at a time and 20-30 degrees below freezing variety...more freezing sleet with wind...its miserable and I have an out-sized love of fleece because of it.