Trail Essentials: Bug Defense
Basically, if you are going somewhere warm, or somewhere that has water... make certain you have trustworthy bug spray. We learned the hard way, from a forest camping to desert hiking, there are bugs everywhere. They like your sweat or they just like to "bug" you. Either way, protect yourself. We have found a few tricks that help...
A Citronella Candle:
For just hanging around a campsite, we like to light a citronella candle. From Cutter to Repel, they all do pretty much the same thing. Light it and leave it. We use the ones that come in a little can, with lid and handle, as they are easy to pack away and not damage. While these can help around a campsite, be sure not to leave the flame unattended (only you can prevent...) and certainly don't use them in your tent.
We love Green Goo "Bugs Be Gone" spray. We've used the other stuff, with all the chemicals, and while it works sometimes, it also leaves you sticky and smelly. Bugs Be Gone doesn't come packed with chemicals, dries soft on your skin and actually smells great. Most importantly, it works, even on those super obnoxious little black flies. From their site: "Made with herb infused Witch Hazel. Deet Free. Citronella Free. Chemical Free. Oil Free. Does not stain clothing." Thanks to Cairn for introducing us to this great product!
A Face Cover:
On a long hike in the Cleveland National Forest, we were literally breathing bugs. We had just received this "Black Strap Daily Tube". We had no idea how we would use this item, but we quickly learned. It kept swarming flies from going up our noses, into our mouths, and into our ears. Needless to say, this item is in our packs on every hike now... just in case. (It also keeps your neck from getting sunburned!) This is another great Cairn addition to our packs!
(This is an unsolicited review. We did not receive any product for review and we were not asked for this feedback. If you want to get some cool outdoors gear in a surprise box every month, sign up at www.getcairn.com!)