I have been attending the HVH Beginner Series hikes to get in shape and acquainted with the area and gear, and Mary F. and Timothy from HVH (Hudson Valley Hikers) recommended I sign up for this one. My medium-term goal is to be able to backpack on my own, which leads to my question: What kind of skills do I have to learn to do solo backpacking/camping, and what challenges can I expect as opposed to doing it with a group?
When heading out into the wilderness, one must always plan ahead, study the route and weather predictions, carry the correct gear, and have a back-up plan. Perhaps these rules are never more true than when winter backpacking. Knowing your the route, the weather, the abilities of your crew, how to properly use your gear and having some survival skills make a fun time out of a potentially dangerous situation. Continue reading Winter Backpacking – Backup Plan Implemented→
When I was learning to backpack, I found it helpful when others posted their gear lists. It gave me a reference point for the kinds of things I needed, what I was doing right, and what I could be doing better. That said, there is no “one size fits all” gear list. There are a number of personal factors that go into making a gear list, such as size, weight, fitness level, and need for comfort. It also matters where and when you plan to go backpacking. One must factor in temperature, precipitation, terrain, water availability and natural shelter, among other things.
Whenever venturing out into the wilderness, I have a plan. My plan details the “who, what, where, why, when, and how” of my trip. I always leave my plan with a responsible friend at home, with instructions on what to do if I don’t return. Putting together a trekking plan is an important part of any trip into the wilderness, no matter the length.
This is Part 3 in a series on my recent adventure in the Pharaoh Lakes Wilderness. In this section, I will discuss planning for the backpacking trip.
Planning for base camp is very easy compared to planning for backpacking. When you are backpacking, you rely much more on your planning and your wits than you do on your gear. It is very important to have a route mapped out and to understand the terrain, climate, and local restrictions. It is also very important to have a good understanding of the capabilities of your group, as I found out the hard way. Continue reading Adirondack Adventure 2014, Part 3: Planning for Backpacking→
If you’ve ever planned out a trip, you know that measuring trail lengths ahead of time can be tricky. I’ve gotten pretty good at it, but sometimes I make mistakes. I made such a mistake two weeks ago when planning out a route for a backpacking trip across New York’s Pharaoh Lakes Wilderness. The results were some pretty unhappy campers (pun intended!)