Friday, March 22, 2013

First backpacking trip of the season

I'm going backpacking with my 9 year old and my dog. My pack is 23 pounds and hers is 8 pounds. 

This includes food (dog and human)  and stove fuel. It does not include the 3 pounds of camera gear and the moss book that I intend to bring.

My daughter is only carrying her sleeping bag and pad, an extra pair of shoes  a hat and her rain gear.  That is the stuff she would need to stay warm and dry if we got separated.  She will also have an emergency whistle around her neck.

I will carry a Shires tarp tent.  A silnylon tarp to sit under during the day if it rains, my sleeping bag and pad, my clothes, most of my daughter's clothes, all the food, the cook pot and stove a GPS a SPOT and the first aid kit.   Hmm actually I might leave the GPS behind...

Neither of us will carry water as it will be everywhere on the trail.  We will be very lucky if we keep our feet dry!   I expect that we will only go one mile and then be sitting around in camp so I will want my camera and a moss book to keep me entertained and some extra warm clothes.  I'd like to go further but I want my little one to have a good time too.  Maybe a little vodka will keep me entertained too.  Hmmm I wonder if Vodka and orange flavored emergen C powder would taste good together?  Well there is only one way to find out!

My pack will be a highly modified REI morning star. I cut a few pounds off the weight of the pack by cutting off and tossing out the top zipper pocket and the two side zipper pockets.  In place of the two side zipper pockets I sewed on mesh pockets.  I also added a mesh pocket to the back of it. All the extra straps have been cut off this pack too.  I have to be careful not to gain weigh or the hip belt will not fit me anymore!

 My daughter will carry a beat up golight dawn.  I used that pack for a few seasons of day hiking and then the collar ripped off!  I sewed the collar back  so  my daughter could use it  for day hiking.  Now when I day hike I exclusively use my Gossmer gear Gorilla pack.  I like the support of an internal frame when I am lugging snowshoes and other winter gear.

  I wish the Gorilla had enough room to hold all my overnight gear, but for now it does not.   If I was only packing for myself it would all fit, but would be a little uncomfortable.   Perhaps when I get one in my size it will fit well enough to carry all my overnight gear comfortably.

I really want to get a lighter sleeping bag for myself and then I can hand down my light sleeping bag to my daughter.  We will both be carrying Campmor brand down bags.  Mine is rated 20 degrees, hers is rated for 30 degrees.  I sleep very cold, so I  also packed my mountaineering gloves a down coat and a super warm hat.  I expect there will be some snow on the ground where we are camping.

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