John Mark M.

John Mark M.

I love hiking and exploring! During the school year I'm a Spanish Instructor at a local college, and on my breaks I seek out adventures both locally and in South America.
My adventures include:
Rock climbing
Survival camping/foraging


Jackson, TN

Products I Love

Osprey Daylite Daypack

Osprey Daylite Daypack My Review

Daylite Plus

This was my first Osprey pack. As a rather budget conscious outdooorsman, I had always opted for something more affordable.
The durability and practicality of this pack has won me over. It is amazing how much I am able to fit into this small pack, in summer weather I have camped overnight in only what I can carry on this pack. I can't wait to try more Osprey packs.

Kelty Grand Mesa 2 Tent

Kelty Grand Mesa 2 Tent My Review

Just the right size

I usually adventure solo, but occasionally bring a partner. This tent is light enough to carry on solo adventures, yet spacious enough to hold two. While I would like something a little more lightweight, for the price the Mesa II is hard to beat.

GSI Outdoors Halulite Ketalist Cookset

GSI Outdoors Halulite Ketalist Cookset My Review

Wouldn't travel without it

I am a committed tea drinker. At my house I have an entire cabinet dedicated to tea. In the morning I like an Earl Grey to get me going, and mid afternoon some Ceylon Orange or flavoured black tea makes a great pick me up. In the evening, a cup of chamomile or lemon grass is the perfect way to wind down after a busy day.
While I can't bring the entire cabinet on nmost of my adventures, this kit is as good as it gets. The lightweight mess kit it perfect for brewing a cup of tea on the trail. I love how the cup, bowl, lid, and spoon all nest within the kettle. I am able to put a stash of tea bags inside the mess kit, and it is usually enough to last up to a whole week, depending on how much I guzzle.
Paired with a MSR Pocket rocket, this kit is almost never left behind.

Victorinox Hunstman Knife

Victorinox Hunstman Knife My Review

Every day carry

I've carried some model of Victorinox pocket knife ever since I was 7. My dad gave me his old one, and I proudly took it everywhere with me.
I particularly like the huntsman model, because it has scissors and a saw, but is not too thick to hold comfortably. Some Victorinox models have so many tools that they won't fit in your hand!
I carry this in my pocket every day, unless I'm flying or entering another controlled environment where blades aren't allowed.

High Sierra Access Backpack

High Sierra Access Backpack My Review

Best everyday laptop backpak!

My first year of college I bought one of these. I don't remember exactly why I chose it, but I think it was probably on sale, as I tent to be frugal. Once I started using it I came to love it. There are two large compartments, which helped me stay organized. It has a secure laptop sleeve (and newer models include a smaller additional sleeve for tablets), an outlet pocket for organizing pens, thumb drives, and other small objects, adjustable straps, etc. All of this is pretty standard for most computer backpacks, but this one also has a built in rain cover. I went to college in New Orleans, which has a monsoon season. That rain cover saved my laptop and my homework on multiple occasions.
This is such a great backpack that when it finally wore out, I purchased a new one of the same model. They've updated the design slightly, but all the features I love remain the same or improved.

UT Kilts Deluxe Olive Green Utility Kilt

UT Kilts Deluxe Olive Green Utility Kilt My Review


One of the most comfortable items of clothing ever invented! A few years ago when I got my first kilt (a more traditional one) I was impressed with how comfortable it was. I still am not sure why men have mostly given up wearing kilts and kilt like garments.
This kilt is great for hiking, it is made from tough canvas that can take a hearing. It also has pretty roomy cargo pockets- perfect for my GoPro, pocketknife, and other essentials.
It's also great for lounging or going to a cookout. I always get lots of compliments on it.
I have been hiking in this kilt for two years now, and I love it so much I am considering a second one. I do wish they were made of a material that shed water better and dried quicker. If it gets wet, this kilt does become rather heavy and takes forever to dry.

Balanzza Ergonomic and Digital Luggage Scale

Balanzza Ergonomic and Digital Luggage Scale My Review

One less thing to stress about at the airport

I have a fear of arriving at the airport with overweight luggage. I've seen other traveled surprised by the weight of their bags frantically struggling to jettison enough items to avoid the fee. This scale is the perfect solution! It lets me quickly and easily know exactly how much my bag weighs. It is also compact and light, easily fitting in my backpack. I wouldn't travel internationally without it.

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