The 2 Oz. Backpacker: A Problem Solving Manual for Use … (2024)

James Morrison

178 reviews3 followers

October 8, 2018

Some of the ideas are outdated, odd, and some are actually dangerous. He recommends not using sunglasses because they are simply a "crutch." It as an odd book in several respects. I felt like he was giving his opinions and in many respects I know an experienced outdoors-person would differ. The book was published in 1982 so it is also badly outdated. By the way, the author is not the well known author, historian and explorer Robert L. Wood. In some cases he reiterated common backpacking myths that are not at all well founded. He suggests reading his other book to get complete information in a number of cases. Hmmm... Because of the writing style and obsolesce I would recommend any other more recent book, even the beginning backpacker. Very good artwork. Questionable poetry.

Jessica Fellows

122 reviews

June 9, 2018

2 ounces of an individual hikers personal notes and tips on hiking. Not necessarily a fun read but good tips such as vapor barriers, types of food to eat for energy etc.

Will Smith

9 reviews

January 7, 2021

Interesting read. Was ahead of his time, being that it was written in 1982.


329 reviews

January 6, 2024

This little gem is more than 40 years old but much of the information still seems relevant. I enjoyed the fun illustrations and how he referred to the outdoors as "the wilds."


295 reviews8 followers

January 1, 2014

This book's premise is that it is the bare essentials of what you need to know while on the trail. That premise is false. Roughly 75% of the book are subjects to be addressed before you even set foot on the trail, i.e. where to go, what to bring, and what to eat.

The remaining subjects are how to tell time/sunlight left, what to do if you get lost, and first aid. You should ignore the first aid chapter. Things like putting Vaseline on burns and cutting out snake venom have since been discouraged as not helpful and probably making things worse.

The author has a talent for writing and obviously loves hiking. The book is dated (Goretex is the big new thing!) and a bit sexist, although he does encourage women to hike, but it is interesting to see how much the philosophy of how to interact with nature has changed in the past 30+ years. Those reasons, plus the easy reading bring it back up to 3 stars, as long as you don't rely on this for actually backpacking.

    e-books how-to library


31 reviews

February 23, 2022

I found the authors writing style endearing and a little quirky. I learned some new things about leave no trace such as hiding blackened rocks so no one will know you had a fire. I was challenged by his statement, “Wilderness Travel means getting off the trail”. I’m not sure I’ll ever achieve true “wilderness travel” but I like the idea.


156 reviews2 followers

December 17, 2021

Essential. Covered a lot of ground (pun intended) in a packable size. Very impressed with the succinct and to the point writing. Reading before, during or in-between trips. Also helps brainstorm and branch off for your own planning.

Katharine Rudzitis

747 reviews12 followers

April 7, 2018

Simple and great for any outdoors adventures.

Kevin Moore

50 reviews9 followers

November 25, 2018

Interesting mish-mash of hiking advice from 1982. Some of it is outdated, but it's interesting to reflect on that fact and wonder - which practices of today will come to be seen as antiquated?


595 reviews7 followers

May 10, 2019

Quick interesting read. No nugget take-always tho.


27 reviews

June 16, 2020

Obviously dated, a few little tidbits that are helpful still today...

Steph Russ

2 reviews3 followers

February 15, 2022

Interesting to read a 40 year old perspective on backpacking. Some things don’t change but a few that have- Leave No Trace principles and women’s place as equal outdoor enthusiasts.


65 reviews2 followers

March 22, 2022

Dated, but still a good, extremely portable read!


284 reviews

January 19, 2017

Lets begin with that this book is about 25 years old when I read it. Its purpose is to be an on the trail assistant to help a backpacker figure out what is the best thing to do in common situations. The 2 oz' comes because Wood wanted this book to be light enough that it could be carried by a weight conscious person.

Does Wood accomplish his goal? It is a mixture. He is at his best when he describes things like how to select a camp site or getting into shape. But there is some things which are dated and should not be followed, such as wrapping your feet in plastic or choices of equipment or when to use a fire to cook.

My recommendation on this book is it is ok to read. But use with caution and double check his advice with more recent wisdom.

For more, you can read my blog.

    library outdoors

SJ Loria

461 reviews80 followers

September 24, 2011

One of my favorite camping books. It's good, practical advice for camping plus it's sprinkled with gnarly illustrations of happy little animals and a contemplative hiker. Certain passages are hilarious, such as the author talking about lucid day dreaming as a way to chill while hiking. Good advice and this guy must have had some good shrooms back in the 80s.


69 reviews4 followers

October 25, 2009

Great little read! I recommend this book because it has a few helpful hints that other books just don't seem to have. I heard this from others, so I got the book. I do recommend it for all backpackers and hikers (even dayhikers)!!

    appalachian-trail backpacking continental-divide


98 reviews4 followers

July 17, 2010

This is my hiking 'bible.'
All in all it is a compact survival guide, or fire starter. I actually have two copies... one of which is only the core of the book as the rest was used as a fire starter on a particularly cold and wet night on the Appalachian Trail.

    hiking my-library survival


737 reviews31 followers

August 28, 2016

Excellent Hiker's Guide

More of a hikers guide, I was looking for more of a travel guide. This is an excellent book to plan or start hiking and it has me interested in giving it a go. Although I'm not sure I would go far into the wilderness.

    summer-reading-2016 wobble-challenge-books


127 reviews

October 8, 2016

Dated, but I knew that going in. My main issue with the book is that it's touted as an on the go problem solving manual, but not written in that kind of reference format. I'm not sure why you'd want to bring this along on a trip, but useful to read beforehand.

Ronald Broun

21 reviews1 follower

February 10, 2013

Book seems dated. Has some good tips.



355 reviews1 follower

January 24, 2015

Pretty out of date stuff.

The 2 Oz. Backpacker: A Problem Solving Manual for Use … (2024)
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