Carl Stanfield

I'm Carl "Professor" Stanfield, and I love backpacking. I studied Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education at Brevard College in North Carolina, then spent about 3 years living and working at a camp in Leavenworth, Washington. After my time there ended, I decided to attempt a thru hike, and in April 2018, I set out on my adventure on the Appalachian Trail, finishing at the end of August 2018. I fell in love with the wondrous life of thru hiking and decided to make it a priority. I had another successful adventure on the PCT in 2019 and, after a few years of saving up working in Outdoor Retail, took on a Calendar Year Triple Crown in 2022. I’m now living the hiker trash dream as a part time writer and full time hiker.

Posts

Professor: The Strategy That’s Helped Me Afford 6 Years, 15K Miles of Thru-Hiking (Jobs, Budgeting Tips, and More)

Professor: The Strategy That’s Helped Me Afford 6 Years, 15K Miles of Thru-Hiking (Jobs, Budgeting Tips, and More)

Ever since my first thru-hike on the Appalachian Trail in 2018, my life has revolved around the trail. By the halfway point of that first hike, I was

Jun 25, 2024 : Carl Stanfield
Zpacks 20-Degree Solo Quilt Review

Zpacks 20-Degree Solo Quilt Review

Over the last 5 years, I have spent over 500 nights camping in the backcountry during all four seasons. Yet before any of that, Zpacks was one of

Dec 8, 2023 : Carl Stanfield
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite NXT Sleeping Pad Review

Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite NXT Sleeping Pad Review

Therm-a-Rest has made some of the most popular sleeping pads for almost as long as anyone can remember. Their lineup covers the gamut, from super

Jul 10, 2023 : Carl Stanfield
Carl “Professor” Stanfield: Reflections on the Calendar Year Triple Crown

Carl “Professor” Stanfield: Reflections on the Calendar Year Triple Crown

In 2022, I set out to backpack more miles in a calendar year than had ever been done. My goal was to average nearly 30 miles a day over 365 days for

May 23, 2023 : Carl Stanfield
Zpacks Altaplex Tent Review

Zpacks Altaplex Tent Review

Choosing a shelter for a thru-hike is tougher than deciding on any other piece of gear: it's virtually picking a home for half a year. Zpacks tents

Mar 30, 2022 : Carl Stanfield
2022 NEMO Tensor Ultralight Insulated Sleeping Pad Review

2022 NEMO Tensor Ultralight Insulated Sleeping Pad Review

There's a strong case to be made that a backpacker's sleep setup is the most important gear they carry. They'll spend 8-10 hours of every day on

Mar 24, 2022 : Carl Stanfield
Goosefeet Gear Down Socks Review

Goosefeet Gear Down Socks Review

A backpacking Truth I've come to realize is that good sleep on the trail is extremely important. And this looks different for every hiker. It's all

Jan 7, 2022 : Carl Stanfield
Montbell Plasma 1000 Down Jacket Review

Montbell Plasma 1000 Down Jacket Review

It may not be one of backpacking's Big 3, but the down jacket is right up there as one of the most discussed pieces of gear. Who makes the warmest

Jan 3, 2022 : Carl Stanfield
Marmot Superalloy 2-Person Tent Review

Marmot Superalloy 2-Person Tent Review

The standard for a viable lightweight tent has come a long way in recent years, and the Marmot Superalloy Two-Person Tent is part of that movement.

Dec 21, 2021 : Carl Stanfield
Katabatic Gear Flex 30 Ultralight Quilt Review

Katabatic Gear Flex 30 Ultralight Quilt Review

One of backpacking's greatest achievements is the innovation of the quilt. Katabatic Gear is one of the many cottage companies specializing in this

Nov 23, 2021 : Carl Stanfield