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Subject: Backpacking and Camping rss

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George Buss
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So after 7 years of having hung up the cowl, I broke into my storage unit and dusted off the backpacking gear. It's not in bad shape after all this time. Mostly because I've kept it all hidden from the kids.

I'm going to try it out again. Headed for a 3-day 17 mile hike at the end of the month. Packed the gear up and it's weighing in around 45 pounds with food and about 1.5 gallons of water included.

Took a 2 mile warmup hike with the kids this weekend to break in my back and legs. Felt really good.

Anyone else into some backcountry backpacking?
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Re: Backpacking
ThatFedoraGuy wrote:
So after 7 years of having hung up the cowl, I broke into my storage unit and dusted off the backpacking gear. It's not in bad shape after all this time. Mostly because I've kept it all hidden from the kids.

I'm going to try it out again. Headed for a 3-day 17 mile hike at the end of the month. Packed the gear up and it's weighing in around 45 pounds with food and about 1.5 gallons of water included.

Took a 2 mile warmup hike with the kids this weekend to break in my back and legs. Felt really good.

Anyone else into some backcountry backpacking?


Geniesse does some pretty massive backpacking trips.

I'm a day hiker(walker) at most. Always back in the hotel room at night.
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Goo
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Re: Backpacking
Yeah, Geniesse is our local backpacker.

I used to backpack all the time. I much preferred the minimalism of it over tent or trailer camping. Now with all these kids, though, the amenities need is too high. Before, I didn't need much at all.

The joy of backpacking is getting to those places where you just can't get to by car. I can think of a few locations in Mammoth where a long walk is the only way in.

I did hike Whitney once and learned I'm not much for peaks just to say you did it. It was a boring, grueling hike just to say you made it to the tallest in the contiguous states. Also, the low oxygen, high-altitude just made for headaches and weirdness. There is a sign-in book at the top of Whitney and everyone's signature is just a bunch of scribbles since you're so trashed from the low oxygen. In the end, I'd much rather hike some place beautiful instead of someplace monumental.

I also used to rock climb a little. Mostly bouldering and top roping. I wasn't too excited about lead climbing (it needs a lot more equipment and it's way scarier). I wasn't very good. 5.6 was fun and just right. 5.7 was getting a little hard. And 5.8 was no fun even if I was able to do it somehow.

Anyway, I miss climbing and backpacking.
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George Buss
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Re: Backpacking
I miss it too. I think that's why my wife told me I had to get out and onto the trail.

Last summer we took the kids camping 1x a month and it was awesome. There really is more needed in terms of ammenities to pull it off though.

My wife and I hiked the Delaware Water Gap before kids. I loved being places you couldn't get to without the pack. Beautiful places.
 
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George Buss
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Changed the title to include camping in general.

So any non-backpackers? Car Campers? RV folks?

(truth is, car camping is what we find ourselves doing the most now with the little ones.)
 
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Re: Backpacking
Gelatinous Goo wrote:

I did hike Whitney once and learned I'm not much for peaks just to say you did it. It was a boring, grueling hike just to say you made it to the tallest in the contiguous states. Also, the low oxygen, high-altitude just made for headaches and weirdness. There is a sign-in book at the top of Whitney and everyone's signature is just a bunch of scribbles since you're so trashed from the low oxygen. In the end, I'd much rather hike some place beautiful instead of someplace monumental.


Whitney is actually really pleasant when approached from the west (via the High Sierra Trail). And then you can giggle at all the people who just came up for the day from the east.

Quote:

I also used to rock climb a little. Mostly bouldering and top roping. I wasn't too excited about lead climbing (it needs a lot more equipment and it's way scarier). I wasn't very good. 5.6 was fun and just right. 5.7 was getting a little hard. And 5.8 was no fun even if Iwas able to do it somehow.


I was sad when my climbing partner moved away, and never got another one. OTOH, it's a crapton of money that I'm not spending on that any more.
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Barry
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Re: Backpacking
After our last anniversary, Mrs. Chicken and I have taken a liking to hiking. Not sure I'm ready to take the plunge into backpacking just yet.

Went to Acadia and Hocking Hills last year. Gonna hit up something on the way home from Savannah next month.

Also, our dog LOVES hiking.
 
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George Buss
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ChickenSedan wrote:
After our last anniversary, Mrs. Chicken and I have taken a liking to hiking. Not sure I'm ready to take the plunge into backpacking just yet.

Went to Acadia and Hocking Hills last year. Gonna hit up something on the way home from Savannah next month.

Also, our dog LOVES hiking.


We honeymooned in Acadia. I want to go back so badly.

Shenandoah was our staple for a few years.
 
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I can't wait until son of mine is old enough to go camping. I haven't done anything serious in a while, and even then "serious" was "canoeing through the Saranacs with scouts."
 
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Sean Tompkins
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We love car camping - I've never been a fan of the "hike all your gear/food/water for miles" type camping, but we love heading to the state park. All of our kids took their first camping trip before they were six months old, and really love it. Because we're in Texas we camp in the spring and fall - summer with 95-105F temps isn't much fun. We love to day hike, and most of our geocaching finds happen when we're camping and hiking.

We do stare confusedly at the RV campers who roll up, spend 30 minutes setting out chairs, awnings, lights, etc, and then go in the RV and aren't seen again all weekend. You could have done that in your driveway for the same experience.
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I proposed about 3 miles from any kind of civilization. You can't say no then.

But we haven't really done much backpacking with the kids, for all of Goo's reasons. We did go by boat in the Adirondack mountains in NY once though, which worked out really well. All the fun of backpacking, with a handy floating helper to carry the things.

We have done a few smaller car-camping, or (borrowed) RV camping trips though.
 
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How bad is it that I've moved on from backpacking, to car camping, to not camping, to just wondering if I can get a cabin?

I have a need for the mountains, but lately it just feels like all work. I have not been having Thoreau experiences.

I used to be the Camping Services Director for a YMCA so I directed sleep-away camp 4-5 times a year. So, I was in the mountains all the time, but I got really spoiled with the mess hall, swimming pool, and plumbing.

Two summers ago, some friends had a cabin for the weekend in Arrowhead and we went. Slept in a bed, kayaked on the lake, ran on trails, walked into town for pizza and beer, played some boardgames at a proper table.

That's been more my speed lately.
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Here is where we frequented: http://www.nps.gov/maca/planyourvisit/backctrycamping.htm
 
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
How bad is it that I've moved on from backpacking, to car camping, to not camping, to just wondering if I can get a cabin?


Not bad at all, really. HYOH (or camp, or lodge, or whatever).
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PeteVasi wrote:


NPS does a really fine job for routes that are within its boundries, which is amazing for a division of government that's almost always facing millions of dollars per unit in "deferred" maintenance.
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Goo
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Anyone else having that dad experience? Not just with camping, but any recreational thing just ends up being all work. Get everyone's crap together, all the food (it's like everyone needs to eat all the time), settle in, try to keep it all organized the whole time, then pack up and go home only to store it all away.

I think it's just us. I see families that can up and go, all sit around and take naps and read books and do fun stuff. For us, for some reason, there is never any downtime; it's all prep and work.

My kids are 9, 6, and under 1 and the middle one is a little extra work. I'm hoping it's just a stage. Soon, they'll all be more self-sufficient and daddy can nap.
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George Buss
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Not just you at all. 6,3, (and 0). The fun factor and exploring is replaced by responsibility and facilitating others experience.

We have a hammock we take camping. I used to sit and read. Now I spend my time putting kids in and out of it my wife says I'll get to sit in the hammock someday... But for now, I think that's mostly gone.

Then again, giving my kids a baseline in nature and camping is pretty high on my good dad list... Well that and learning how to play WW.
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
Anyone else having that dad experience? Not just with camping, but any recreational thing just ends up being all work. Get everyone's crap together, all the food (it's like everyone needs to eat all the time), settle in, try to keep it all organized the whole time, then pack up and go home only to store it all away.

I think it's just us. I see families that can up and go, all sit around and take naps and read books and do fun stuff. For us, for some reason, there is never any downtime; it's all prep and work.

My kids are 9, 6, and under 1 and the middle one is a little extra work. I'm hoping it's just a stage. Soon, they'll all be more self-sufficient and daddy can nap.

Perhaps you need to manage your expectations? Plan a more Spartan trip, and roll with the punches.
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When I was a kid we did "truck camping" for 2-3 weeks every summer. We had a cap on the back of the truck and would just take off. My dad built benches that fit the bed of the truck and my mom made cushions for them. they were raised off the bed so we stored all camping gear under them. My brother and I rode on them during the driving parts(yes, i know, this wouldn't be legal today) and at night my brother slept in a tent and my parents and i slept on the benches(they were more confortable than i'm making them sound)

when we were at places where my brother couldn't sleep in a tent due to wildlife he would get the bench an i would sleep on the seat of the truck in the front. me being 10 years younger then my brother an hence shorter

and thats how i visited almost every state in the US. In the back of a pickup truck.
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
Anyone else having that dad experience? Not just with camping, but any recreational thing just ends up being all work.

You mean every activity, every day? Lunch today was Noah (2) spilling his juice while I get some noodles for Ethan (5), Noah decides to get more juice while I clean up the original mess. Now there's juice spilled in the fridge, so I go clean that one up while Ethan decides that he needs garlic salt on his noodles. ALL of the garlic salt. shake

Camping sounds pretty good right now because we'd be far enough from civilization that I can tie one to a tree and no one has to know.
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Camping...out in the woods...with the werewolves?

No one the village has to keep lynching people.
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I wish we could all go camping together and hang out and play ww and drink

I am going to set up WW CampCon
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jageroxorz wrote:
I wish we could all go camping together and hang out and play ww and drink

I am going to set up WW CampCon


And leave my stuff? Pass. Maybe I'll skype for the WW game.
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Dispaminite wrote:
jageroxorz wrote:
I wish we could all go camping together and hang out and play ww and drink

I am going to set up WW CampCon


And leave my stuff? Pass. Maybe I'll skype for the WW game.


you're stuff will sruvive!
 
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Gelatinous Goo wrote:
Anyone else having that dad experience? Not just with camping, but any recreational thing just ends up being all work. Get everyone's crap together, all the food (it's like everyone needs to eat all the time), settle in, try to keep it all organized the whole time, then pack up and go home only to store it all away.

I think it's just us. I see families that can up and go, all sit around and take naps and read books and do fun stuff. For us, for some reason, there is never any downtime; it's all prep and work.

My kids are 9, 6, and under 1 and the middle one is a little extra work. I'm hoping it's just a stage. Soon, they'll all be more self-sufficient and daddy can nap.


It's a lot of work, no doubt. It's almost not worth just a weekend where you set up on Friday, and pack up on Sunday. I try to take a Friday off to get that extra day. We have all of our "camping stuff" in one place, in a few specific bags so that part is much easier now with experience. Now it's food (and we've almost got a set meal and snack plan prepared...) and loading the car... setting up camp we can do in 1 hr. But we camp five times a year, and have for over ten years, so we've got a good system down.

Camping with kids means no naps... or short naps in shifts. Luckily my wife loves camping more than I do, and so it's a group effort.
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