the nitty gritty of being a lady outside

So last year when I started my first b12308363_10204330410694272_632819222802126837_nlog that this one is now replacing, my first post was about having a period while backcountry camping. I’m copying a pasting that post here now because it remains an important topic for female adventurers. So many times, I’ve had women use their period as an excuse to not go outside. To me, a period is the perfect reason to get outside. Here’s the original post from my old blog:

“First post, and it’s about female hygiene on the trail! I found this article last year, and it’s pretty great. It covered a lot of territory with some great tips and tricks.

The one thing this article doesn’t talk a lot about is having a period on the trail, but that’s a really important thing to have information on.

This article
lists three options for periods in the backcountry. One of these options is birth control that keeps you off your period, and one is using a diva cup or something similar. The other option, of course, is just using tampons and pads on the trail. I know, it sounds grody and uncomfortable but it’s not any worse than having to keep up with a diva cup. So how do you go about having a period on the trail? Well, for your trash, take a ziplock baggie and cover it in duct tape. This way, you have your own trash bag, and you can’t see what’s inside. Then, in another baggie, think of periods past– how many tampons do you use in a day and night? Multiply this number by how long your period lasts or how many days you’ll be gone with your period, and take that many tampons plus two. I recommend tampons over pads because you can’t feel them and they won’t deteriorate with movement or burst if they get wet. Just carry some hand sanitizer with you, and make sure your trash baggie goes up with the bear bag. Don’t let your period keep you out of the woods. When we’re inside, following the dull path of everyday life, we often forget how much exercise actually helps periods. By being in the backcountry with your period, you have no choice but to be active. Stay hydrated, and bring some midol if you need it, but don’t let Flo get you down! Having a period outside really isn’t scary once you give it a shot!”

As a side note, one year later, another possible period option for the trail is period panties! Period panties are still a new thing in the world of feminine hygiene products, and right now they aren’t the most economically appealing option, but they might be a great alternative to someone looking to replace pads and decrease waste. I’ll let you know how backpacking with them goes once I have the opportunity to give it a shot. However, that may be a solid six months since I won’t be doing much, if any, backcountry camping while I’m in Italy.

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