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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2015 9:07 pm 
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Also, I'm able to get about 5 days of food into the small Bearikade, so that helps a ton. I'm able to carry the full-size Bearikade as far as the weight goes, but my pack is more efficiently packed with the smaller one.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 1:45 am 
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Thanks, sz! Just bought some Kathmandu curry to take with us on our next backpacking trip!

Speaking of which, we are planning an 8-day trip to Torres del Paine in Feb. It's going to be pretty cold and windy so I bought a 0 degree bag and tested it in the high desert this weekend. In 15 degree weather my legs were still cold (even with thermals and a bag liner!) so I want to buy some nanopuff pants for sleeping. Problem is, I can't seem to find synthetic down quilted pants for women, something that's comfy enough to wear asleep so no ski pants and preferably elastic waist band (like this: http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/men ... ?p=82140-0). They exist aplenty for men and I can find synthetic down skirts (what the fizzle!?) but no women's pants. I'd love a lead on brands to check out. I could order men's pants but I worry about sizing around the hips and I'd probably have to tailor them. Or, I could try to buy a quilt and sew myself pants. Thoughts? Anyone with experience buying something like this?

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2015 6:58 pm 
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couroupita wrote:
no ski pants and preferably elastic waist band (like this: http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/men ... ?p=82140-0).

Whoa. Nano puff pants. Those look amazing!

They do, when you click the sizing chart, have a conversion for women’s sizes so I think that is what I would do.

On the other hand, I got these from Uniqlo http://www.uniqlo.com/us/product/women/ ... tml#68-003 and even though they have a fly there is elastic at the waist. At a fraction of the Patagonia pants they may be worth a try?

Oh— wait. Do you have rain pants? I wear my rainpants over my leggings when it is cold. It helps a ton.

And, I use two sleeping pads, the closed cell z-rest, which I use every time I sit, practically, and a small thermarest. The combo makes for a good insulation factor.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:46 pm 
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I ended up dithering enough that i didnt buy the nanopuff pants. I'm actually so glad I didn't! Torres del Paine was fricking hot! Days in the 70s, nights in the 50s. I was basically fine sleeping in my jacket, long johns, and using my sleeping bag as a blanket. I heard we caught great weather, as it is frequently rainy and windy but all we experienced was intense sunny days.

Our trip was soooo cool! We couldn't do the full circuit because my husband caught a cold on the plane and couldn't handle the exertion, but basically it's the first part of the hike that is most famous anyway. It was pretty tough despite the low elevation, but would have been easier if we'd trained a bit. I loved the scenery but absolutely hated how crowded it was. In January the park saw 48,000 people and it's only a 60-mile circuit! It's pretty accessible because there are these refugios along the way that offer dormitory style accomorations with fully catered meals, so lots of yahoos do it. If you camp, you have to camp at the refugio and use their facilities and it's just so packed and dirty. I probably wouldn't go back but I'd still recommend it as a beautiful intro to Patagonia. I have an Instagram account where I've been posting photos: https://www.instagram.com/couroupita/

Having the lightweight pack really helped. Our weight, excluding water, was 28 lb for 9 days. Our friend way overpacked and was dying with his 40 pounder.

We're trying to decide our next big non-US backpacking trip. Our traveling companion has his heart set on Kilimanjaro in summer of 2017 so I think we'll go with him. I'm really looking for some remote places though. Maybe Cordillera Huayhuash (Peru) or somewhere in the Himalayas? It's got to be non-touristy though. I nearly lost my mind on this trip! Any suggestions are appreciated!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2016 11:33 pm 
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Just in case anyone has a tax refund burning a hole in your bank account - Patagonia is having their big sale right now. I shouldn't even be looking, but I can't resist such cozy overpriced fleece.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:58 am 
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Dangerous information!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2016 1:15 pm 
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couroupita: Did you post a packing list anywhere? I'd be really curious to see it - or whatever edited version you'd be willing to share.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2016 7:10 pm 
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lutin wrote:
couroupita: Did you post a packing list anywhere? I'd be really curious to see it - or whatever edited version you'd be willing to share.

I'm working on a post, actually, about what we brought. Right now I only have a list of some of our gear on my travel blog, but I'll update here when the post is completed.
http://ajtrips.wordpress.com

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2016 4:48 am 
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Backpacking friends, at what point did you decide to replace your packs? I've had mine since 2003 and it's still in good condition except for one shoulder strap, which is a bit wonky. I'm a little jealous of the current trend to have streamlined pack designs (long/narrow ish vs. short/wide ish) but it seems .. like it would be an aesthetic upgrade instead of a necessary one? fwiw I have a Gregory Acadia (S frame) from 2003.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:36 am 
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Next question: We went backpacking in Norway (woo!) and had not anticipated that our poop scooper would not work, because massive rock + thin soil everywhere. What do the rest of you do when you can't dig holes for your poop? I covered mine with rocks and branches when possible (not always possible!) and felt weird about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:43 am 
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lutin wrote:
Backpacking friends, at what point did you decide to replace your packs? I've had mine since 2003 and it's still in good condition except for one shoulder strap, which is a bit wonky. I'm a little jealous of the current trend to have streamlined pack designs (long/narrow ish vs. short/wide ish) but it seems .. like it would be an aesthetic upgrade instead of a necessary one? fwiw I have a Gregory Acadia (S frame) from 2003.

Sorry I missed this!

I replaced my pack when it became too uncomfortable/heavy. I had a cheapo Jansport with no padding for 5 years, then I upgraded to a super padded Gregory Deva, but that thing is 5 lb so when I went ultralight I upgraded to Mountain Hardwear 2 lb pack. I keep the Deva around for trips that require > 30 lb and I keep the Jansport as a loaner to friends. It feels a bit wasteful but I wanted to be comfortable.

lutin wrote:
Next question: We went backpacking in Norway (woo!) and had not anticipated that our poop scooper would not work, because massive rock + thin soil everywhere. What do the rest of you do when you can't dig holes for your poop? I covered mine with rocks and branches when possible (not always possible!) and felt weird about it.

Yeah, I make a little rock pile on top. Usually I try to pry out a big rock from the ground so there's a little hole, then poop in it and replace the rock, piling other rocks around. At least that way no one will step in it! You could also doggie bag it out (yuck). I think that's what we'll have to do on our glacier trip. Pretty sure it's not cool to bury poop in a glacier.

Where did you backpack in Norway? We are going next July!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2016 11:52 am 
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Now I'm reading all about poop tubes. Seems like a good option!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:38 am 
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couroupita wrote:
Where did you backpack in Norway? We are going next July!


Jotunheimen National Park and Aurlandsdalen. I would love to spend a week or more in Jotunheimen, especially in the higher mountains. Aurlandsdalen was long enough at 3 (cool, rainy) days, because it is Norway's most famous walking route and there are more trekkers and day hikers than camping spots.

Do you know where you're going?


re: poop tubes. Ha! Amazing. I like the sound of paper bags and dry bags better, I guess.
re: packs. My Gregory is also about 5lbs. My boyfriend's new Osprey pack is larger and lighter. I want to be lighter, too!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:43 am 
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courou, I sent you a PM with Norway info.

In case other people are considering trips to Norway, these websites are helpful:
http://www.your.no/ for weather info (includes altitude, current and projected snowpack, etc etc)
http://www.ut.no/ for detailed hiking routes for ALL of Norway, including changes in altitude over the hike

Hiking shelter-to-shelter is easy, but you need to bring all your food because their options are NOT vegan! If you're carrying a tent, bear in mind that most shelters forbid camping within 1-2 sq km of the shelter (usually shown in red on local area maps around the shelters) unless you pay for it. Which is kind of funny, because Norwegians are otherwise very serious about every person's rights to the land (link: https://www.visitnorway.com/plan-your-t ... of-access/).

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:12 pm 
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lutin wrote:
couroupita wrote:
Where did you backpack in Norway? We are going next July!


re: packs. My Gregory is also about 5lbs. My boyfriend's new Osprey pack is larger and lighter. I want to be lighter, too!


I had a 20-year-old Gregory. The cushioning was all compressed and deteriorated and it didn’t have a hyydration sleeve.

I upgraded to an Osprey Viva and love it. It is one of those narrow packs (I can still fit a full size bear canister). I love it.
2.5 pounds or so.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:40 pm 
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I'm going to go backpacking for the first time ever in a few weeks! The friend I'm going with insists it will be an easy thing, around 3-5 miles a day I believe she said. Does that seem like an easy backpacking trip to y'all? I don't really have a frame of reference. I have this big pack from, like... 1999 - but I worry that the pack itself will be fairly heavy. My sleeping bag +pad are both super light though so that's good I guess. My main concern is lugging around water & books.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:13 pm 
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Awesome, Mars! 3-5 miles a day is totally do-able. You could schlep along at 1 mph and most it would take you is 3-5 hours!

Will there be any water sources? You can get a great, easy to use water filter for around $25 — the Sawyer Mini https://www.amazon.com/Sawyer-Products- ... B00FHRADQ2 . This way, if you are near a lake you can just filter your water and not have to carry as much.

Books? No. Maybe sections of paperback that you rip out of the book and then burn in the campfire.

Truly, embrace your smart phone and Kindle app. This way you don’t need an additional light source. Download podcasts. Sing songs! Get extra sleep.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2016 6:04 pm 
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Sz beat me to it but I'll go ahead and post what I wrote anyway!

That seems like an easy beginner distance especially if you're at low altitudes. I'd skip the books. Weight is your greatest enemy. Your back will thank you for a lighter load! If it's a trail guide just take pics of the relevant pages in your phone, if it's a normal book to read at the camp go for an ebook instead. I'd also see if you can rent or borrow a water purifier. I try not to carry more than 2 liters at a time and purify from a creek or lake as needed. You should weigh your pack and throw out stuff if it's more than 30 lb, IMO.

I second Sawyer mini. It's the purifier we take on nearly all our trips.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2016 4:32 pm 
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Oh good reminder - I do have a water purifier I bought years ago and never used. Hopefully I can find it.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:36 pm 
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Mars wrote:
Oh good reminder - I do have a water purifier I bought years ago and never used. Hopefully I can find it.


Be sure to test it before you hit the trail. Some of the parts may be dried, cracked, deteriorated.
Old heavy filters are great to have at home in case of earthquake, armageddon, etc., but in backpacking, ounces count!

My favorite thing about the sawyer is scooping up unfiltered water and carrying it till camp or rest or whatever and then filtering it. Many other filters have to be operated at the source which is sometimes a damp creekside or sometimes mosquito filled.

The sawyer is so light I have a spare I take as part of my "10 essentials” https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice ... tials.html and I even carry it with me on longer bike rides.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:20 pm 
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I need some water filter advice! As I mentioned above, we've been using the Sawyer mini water filter for a while now and we haven't had any problems. We noticed the flow was slower on a trip last weekend so we purged it with the syringe barrel they provide for a super long time until the water ran clear. It was working *great* until this weekend, when we ended up with a funky marshy pond as our only water source in a high Sierra meadow. The filter clogged so badly that only a trickle was coming out after about 1 liter. We back-purged with a little freshly purified water, which helped, but it just clogged right back up again when we continued to purify. Actually, there was so much back pressure that our source water bag burst at the seam the next day! Thankfully we only had 5 miles of downhill left and were able to manage with 0.5 L apiece but it was still scary.

So, is there a pre-filter someone has DIYed or should we start carrying two of the filters since they're so light? I am having a hard time finding anything online about this particular problem! Even our friend who did the entire PCT with a Sawyer filter didn't seem to have the issue we are experiencing.

ETA: Sawyer recommends pre-filtering through some cloth. Now I have to figure out how to make that an easy process!

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:46 pm 
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couroupita wrote:

So, is there a pre-filter someone has DIYed
Not sure about this.

Quote:
ETA: Sawyer recommends pre-filtering through some cloth. Now I have to figure out how to make that an easy process!


I used a bandana. Here’s the work flow:
1. Use a scooper to get water out of source.
2. Put bandana over “dirty” water container.
3. Make a little valley with the bandana in the mouth of container. Carefully pour water through bandana, slowly.
4. Filter with Sawyer as usual.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:48 pm 
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Also, I purge my Sawyer super well after every trip but also during the trip also. I have a little baggie that I put filtered water into and use that as the source for my backwash. This is a preventative thing, I haven’t had any issues with the Sawyer.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 4:34 pm 
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Thanks, Sz! We are going to try the bandana thing.

My husband is trying to adapt a faucet aerator to go on the dirty water bag. So far we can't find a male-to-female adapter with the right threads but if we figure it out I will post our solution.

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 Post subject: Re: Backpacking! Thru-Hiking! Let's talk about it here!
PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 4:46 pm 
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Here is a picture from our most recent trip! We did a 5-day glacier mountaineering clinic on the north face of Mt. Shasta. Here we are on the first day making our way from the trailhead to base camp. We got super close to the summit on the last day of the trip but didn't quite make it because my husband had some respiratory distress due to altitude (maybe HAPE? We are not sure). It was a really great trip even though I was scared out of my gourd for a lot of it. Turns out I super puffy heart love glaciers.

Image

There are more pics from the trip here: https://www.instagram.com/tetrahydrofuryl/

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