Insects are the creatures most likely to torture you while you're in the woods. You might hear tales of lost hikers going insane from being incessantly swarmed by blackflies and mosquitoes. Blackflies are at their peskiest from late May through to the end of June, while mosquitoes can be a bother from early spring until early autumn. Ticks are an issue from March to June.

Generally, insect populations are greatest deep in the woods and near water, and they increase the further north you go. You'll be fairly safe in clearings, along shorelines or anywhere there's a breeze. Mosquitoes are at their peskiest around sundown; building a fire will help keep them away. A tent with a zipped screen is pretty much essential while camping.

Minimize skin exposure by wearing long-sleeved shirts tucked into long pants tucked into your socks and/or boots, as well as a close-fitting hat or cap. As a rule, darker clothes attract biting insects more so than lighter ones. Perfume, too, evidently draws the wrong kind of attention. If you're venturing into the backcountry, a bug jacket (essentially a mesh jacket/head-net), available at most camping stores, is recommended.

Take plenty of insect repellent and, to enhance protection, also apply the spray to your clothing, shoes, backpack and tent. For additional information, see p332.

Digital Cameras For Beginners

Digital Cameras For Beginners

Although we usually tend to think of the digital camera as the best thing since sliced bread, there are both pros and cons with its use. Nothing is available on the market that does not have both a good and a bad side, but the key is to weigh the good against the bad in order to come up with the best of both worlds.

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