Thru-Hikers at the Appalachian Trail Days

A band of Ruffwearians is headed  to Damascus, Virginia, for the Appalachian Trail Days.  Upon arriving, they’ll send us stories of cut-off toothbrush handles, taped up boots, and dental floss stitch lines.  “I’ve always said you can fix 90% of gear with duct tape, zip ties and dental floss,” says Thomas Horsh, our East Coast Rep.

We find this all very interesting.  Thru-hikers are like MacGyver with beards (or braids)—able to fix anything with a little dental floss, duct tape and a Swiss Army Knife.  But if you are new to backpacking, or new to dog gear, here’s a list of eight quick trail fixes using common things carried by backpackers and thru-hikers.

Zip Ties: Use to repair attachment points, adhere broken buckles, and replace broken snaps.

Dental Floss: Use as thread to mend stitching, or to secure rips or broken attachment points.

Duct Tape: Place over worn or ripped fabric to prevent further damage, wear, and tear.  Duct tape can also be used to “resole” a blown-out dog boot by wrapping it around the entire boot, and can be wrapped around irritating seams or edges.

Safety Pins: Another option for fabric tears and rips, or to secure broken attachment points.

Needle and Thread or Fish Hook and Dental Floss: Use to repair rips or tears in gear.  A little duct tape over the mend will help prevent re-opening.

Super Glue: Use to seal rips or tears.  Super glue will put a stop to unthreading or raveling of fabrics and seams.

Multi-purpose Tool: Use the pliers to crimp broken zippers together

Patches: Use to patch up rips and tears.  Be sure to cut into a circular shape so corners don’t catch.

With a few simple steps, the power to repair and lengthen the life of your gear–and your adventure–is yours.  Live it up!

Bark at us: What do you use for quick trail-side fixes?

2 thoughts

  1. I’m agree with Ruffwear. Three things like dental floss, duct tape and army knife are very effective and can do a lot of things.

  2. While walking a client’s 5 very small dogs I noticed that one dog’s harness kept coming unbuckled. The dogs was wearing a bandana, so I was able to remove her bandana and use it to secure the harness together so we could get safely home without her wriggling herself out of her harness!

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