For Hallowen 2013, my family and I visited lovely Gatlinburg, TN. My wife dressed up as the Wicked Witch and I was just a guy in a banana costume. Seemed kind of lame, so I put on some of my hiking gear that I brought with me on the trip. I had planned to go on several hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, so I looked through my stuff and added a few pieces of gear to give my banana costume a little more personality. And thus, the Backpacking Banana was born.
Not that it’s a big deal. It’s just a little character that will probably appear in one or two comics here, at most. But I wanted to at least let you know ‘why’ there’s a cartoon version of myself in a banana costume appearing in some of these comics.
The gear tip in this comic is a pretty smart one, albeit really simple. So simple, in fact, that I slapped my forehead with my palm and said ‘How is it that I hadn’t though about this before now?’ I was watching a gear review video by Chad (code name: Stick) of Stick’s Blog and he mentioned using a plastic water bottle cut in half to help fill up a water storage bag for his Sawyer mini filter. My only gripe about the Sawyer squeeze filters is that if you’ve got a shallow creek that’s just barely moving or, as a last resort, a puddle of murky water, it’s really hard to fill up a bag. So, having this little cup really makes it a lot easier to just scoop up some water, no matter how shallow a pool or puddle may be, and pour it right into the bag. Also, the mini filter is so small, you can roll the bag up tightly and squeeze it, along with the filter and drinking straw, into the plastic cup to keep it all contained together. Plus, it weighs practically nothing.
So, anyway, I thought I’d draw up this fantastic idea as a ‘GearToon’ with The Backpacking Banana, and show everyone. The thought crossed my mind, however, that maybe everyone else out there already knew this…maybe it’s an idea that should be so obvious to anyone with a brain, that nobody saw a need previously to write about it, which is why it’s only new to people lacking any common sense (like me!) Well, that’s possible, I guess, but if that’s the case…. please don’t tell me. I’d hate to know that I wasted 8 hours drawing something pointless.
But anyway, , if you’ve got a really great gear tip idea that you think other folks may not know about …but NEED to…email it to us and it I may turn it into a comic. Of course, you’ll get the credit for the idea. (Then everyone will be impressed by your big brain!) But just be sure to either send a picture of what you’re talking about or describe it REALLY well.