We are all packed for 4 nights and three days in the cold, cold rain. I've spent the week packing and planning and I even paid for expedited shipping on my daughter's pack. I think it's the first time in my life I have paid extra for rush shipping. But now I think my daughter is ill. She says she is just tired from staying up to late last night. It's almost noon and she is sleeping on a chair in the living room and she won't budge.
On the right is my daughter's new pack, (purchased with savings because she's only going to be young and sweet once) it is a ULA kid's circuit. ULA is the only light equipment company I know of that makes their packs in a kids sized, so getting the circuit for her was a no brainer. But I accidentally ordered a small instead of a child size for her and the clock was ticking for this trip.
I sent an email to ULA and within 1/2 hour Chris at ULA called me on the phone to help me set up rush shipping. Now that's good service! I opted to pay for Fed ex second day. But the pack came in just one day and said Fed Ex Overnight on it! Wow, nice! I don't know if I should thank Chris for helping with the shipping or if Fed ex made a mistake. Either way, I'll take it. So far I am quite pleased with the responsive customer support at ULA.
I'm almost wondering if I should have gotten the Catalyst for myself. My Circuit is so stuffed with just 4 days worth of food and my daughter is carrying almost half of the food. How will I ever be able to carry 6 days worth of food in it? It does not help that I am carrying a three person tarp tent. If I could just pack my equinox tarp that would give me a lot more room for food. My base pack weight is good, but bulk is an issue and I'm not quit sure what to do about it if I am hiking with my daughter.
If I was backpacking alone I could get by with a much smaller cook pot and a smaller shelter. I see now that the woman who did the PCT with her nine year old daughter had the Catalyst pack, I thought she had a Circuit. Hmmm.. I'll keep working with my circuit for now.. I really don't want a heavier pack. I'll just have to plan on resupplying every 4 days if we thru-hike Oregon this summer.
Perhaps I will only carry my Equinox tarp and just not use it unless it is raining.. but then there is the issue of bugs..