4 Things You Didn't Know You Can Do With A Bug Net

Leaving on a climbing trip to southern Greenland, I was worrying about all the usual issues and fears of climbing big routes in a remote location: glaciers, complex descents, remote rock climbing. But I was also worried about the bugs. I've certainly experienced more than a few horrendous days being swarmed by mosquitos, flies and midges. But reportedly the fjords of South Greenland could be truly terrible in the middle of summer. Everyone on our team came armed with the OR Deluxe Spring Ring Headnet. We liked how you could just throw it on over a normal baseball hat or hood. However, much to our surprise and delight, the bugs generally stayed at fairly sane levels. Only on the calm and warm days—when we were usually approaching a route or climbing—did their numbers necessitate the headnets. So amidst our downtime I discovered some additional great uses for the headnet.

Rinse your laundry. Just throw in some stinky socks and crusty t-shirts and create your own spin cycle. Never use soap, even bio-degradeable soap, in a fresh water source. 

Dry your dishes. Hang the net upside down near your cooking area. Throw in the plates and cups after you've washed them.

Strain the coffee. Sometimes (often) my invented pour-over filter or my amateur Aeropress skills would result in a lot of coffee grounds mixing in to my cup. Simply drink your coffee from the mug through the headnet. Instant strainer!

Collect mussels. Camping along the shore of a saltwater fjord, we supplemented our diet with some local seafood. We realized the headnet would be a great way to collect huckleberries, gather snow from nearby snowpatches (for melting water) or basically any kind of foraging task that you don't want to use a backpack for.

Just don't forget to rinse thoroughly after any of these. The alternative is to fight off the bugs by wearing a hat that reeks of stinky seafood and dirty laundry—and that's definitely not using your head.


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