Sunday we hike into Havasupai Falls. It’s a 20 mile round trip backpacking trip.
I have always wanted to be one of those women who straps everything they will need for several days and heads off into the woods. I am now one of those women.
It didn’t take long to become her. She was in there the whole time just hiding behind the bottle and fear. England set her free and there is no going back now.
I’ve learned a lot of the last few trips into the backcountry. You must be diligent about weight. If you want to enjoy your trek. If you are not careful you will carry so much extra that you are miserable. No one wants to be miserable walking in such beautiful country! So take care.
I’ve learned that I don’t like cooking over a camp stove. I’d rather just open whatever food I brought and eat it. It’s not that I don’t like cooking, it’s just that I don’t like cooking. I have moments of loving the kitchen. Though those moments seem to be coming less and less lately.
I have so many other things I would rather be doing. So as everyone in camp warms up whatever crappy backpacking food they brought, I make a wrap with tuna and cheese. Coffee is the one thing I’ll cook.
I’ve learned that clothing is important. More precisely the right clothes for the weather. There is nothing worse that being cold overnight or getting rained on without rain gear. Checking the weather and knowing how to layer is essential to your happiness.
Training for what you are doing is my last tip. I made the mistake of assuming that because I run 6 miles a day I can hike 17 miles a day. It is not the same. If you are going to be hiking, train for hiking. If you are going to be running, train for running. Don’t make assumptions about your fitness level if you have never strapped on a 40 pound pack and hiked 10 miles. Train! Put weight on your back and hike before you hit the trail. You will be happy you did.
I’m sure I’ll come out of this trip with more lessons. I seem to learn something new every time I strap on my pack.