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Any Backpackers?
Old 09-18-2015, 03:45 PM   #1
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Any Backpackers?

Some earlier threads talking of retirement communities got me to thinking. Can't see myself in one of these as I don't think or feel like I'm old enough to qualify, especially with my high school boys. But I'm starting to look forward to getting back into activities that have fallen by the wayside due to the boy's schedules.

Twenty years ago, before boys, I was an active backpacker (and runner) and just enjoyed getting out into the forested hills for a couple of nights. Most of my experience was in southern Appalacian Mountains (Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia) with a trip to NW and another to NM. Recently have been getting back into it and while I've found my endurance is not what it once was (8-10 mile days are most enjoyable), I still enjoy the trips very much. Just wandering if their are other like minded folks hanging out here.

Recently have done some trips with an Ohio club, age range on the trips were 37 to 70 with most in their 50s.

Edit to add that I'm now 66 years old.
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Old 09-18-2015, 03:51 PM   #2
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I backpack occasionally with the local Sierra Club, usually overnighters. It is a fun excuse to buy new lightweight toys and waterproof clothing and a nice way to wake up in a beautiful place.

There are several other groups nearby that backpack, on Meetup.
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Old 09-18-2015, 03:57 PM   #3
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I enjoy it, but mainly solo. Generally Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Michigan's UP or Maine. DW is not happy about me going off into the wilderness by myself, so I carry a Delorme InReach just in case.

Have taken a couple of multi-day Sierra Club trips and they were OK. Have also taken a couple of REI trips that I enjoyed quite a lot.

Appalachian Trail has always been on my bucket list, and I'm still considering it. Too old now for a through-hike, but seriously thinking about taking about five years to do it in sections.
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Old 09-18-2015, 04:22 PM   #4
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I'm looking to get into it. I love hiking and enjoy camping enough that I think it's something I'd really enjoy. I have about 90% of what I'd need to get out there, now I just need to find some time.


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Old 09-18-2015, 06:51 PM   #5
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I used to do quite a bit of backpacking, but these days I do more canoeing/kayaking trips (1 or 2 nights, usually). It's a little easier to carry more stuff in the canoe/kayak, than you can on your back, and a lot easier on the knees, also. We also take our truck camper in the backcountry and camp for a night or two in that, usually on a lake that is off the beaten path and somewhat hard to get to (so, we often have the place to ourselves). I love to fish, also, so lakes and rivers are always a draw for me. Not the same as backpacking, I know, but still pretty nice.
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Old 09-18-2015, 07:01 PM   #6
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I backpacked a bit in my youth; solo over-nighters, possibly occasional longer treks, are one of the activities I am looking very forward to in ER.

I have been collecting gear over the last couple of years in anticipation of ER but OMY syndrome has prevented me from putting it to much use yet.
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Old 09-18-2015, 07:26 PM   #7
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I do a lot of hiking, all day hikes so far. But there's a few places that I want to get to that will have to be overnighters.
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Old 09-18-2015, 07:43 PM   #8
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http://www.mountainguides.is/multi-d...ar-thorsmoerk/

This was one of the best hiking trips I've ever done - they have basic lodging huts to stay at each night so you just need a daypack between each night - I found the price reasonable and bargain for the experience


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Old 09-18-2015, 08:41 PM   #9
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DW and I like to hike. Spent a week in Allegheny NF this summer. RE was earlier this year. In 2011 we did the Milford and Kepler Track in New Zealand. We also do a number of day hikes and others. In the past we also did 9 days in Algonquin Provincial Park canoe camping.
So... I think we still do hiking and the like. Some temporary health issues slowed us down this year.

Also need to work on modifying my pack as it causes my pacemaker to itch.
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Old 09-18-2015, 09:39 PM   #10
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Planning a PCT thru hike next year to transition into my new retirement status.

This will be a new experience for me. Plenty of day hiking but never really overnight backpacking. I'm both excited and nervous. But mostly excited.

Muir


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Old 09-19-2015, 07:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travelover View Post
I backpack occasionally with the local Sierra Club, usually overnighters.
That's how I got started, with the local chapter of the Sierra Club in northern Alabama. Had many good times, there was a core group of about 10 of us, usually six would be available to backpack every other weekend in spring and fall (way to hot in the summer). Vast majority were two nighters.
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Old 09-19-2015, 08:05 AM   #12
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I used to do quite a bit of backpacking, but these days I do more canoeing/kayaking trips (1 or 2 nights, usually). It's a little easier to carry more stuff in the canoe/kayak, than you can on your back, and a lot easier on the knees, also..
Once did a week long trip into Canada out of Ely, MN by canoe. Could travel heavier than normal......until portaging. Would love to do something like that again. When my boys were younger we did a guided 5-day canoe trip in Voyageurs National Park, canoes held about 8 people, good family trip.
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Old 09-19-2015, 08:11 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by bingybear View Post
DW and I like to hike. Spent a week in Allegheny NF this summer. .
The Alleghany NF has been my primary hiking/backpacking area since moving to PA from AL some 11 years ago. With the boys activities, haven't been inclined to travel very far for backpacking as I don't wish to miss any of their activities. Hope you got a chance to hike the only wilderness area in these parts......Hickory Creek Wilderness.

I've done bits and pieces of the North Country Trail, someday may wish to do all the NCT at least through the Alleghany NF and the NY section through Allegany State Park..
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Old 09-19-2015, 08:15 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by MuirWannabe View Post
Planning a PCT thru hike next year to transition into my new retirement status.

This will be a new experience for me. Plenty of day hiking but never really overnight backpacking. I'm both excited and nervous. But mostly excited.

Muir


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Wow, that's impressive. Had a friend start out on the PCT from the south end but bailed after a week as he wasn't careful enough and had a bad sunburn. Was suprising as he had done the AT, but the AT is mostly walking under the tree canopy. I've done bits and pieces of the AT in several southern states but haven't mad it a goal....maybe once the boys are out of the house.
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Old 09-19-2015, 09:08 AM   #15
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I grew up backpacking. My parents were leaders of Sierra Club national outings and that was our family vacations. One of the trips ended up in a coffee table book - if someone digs it up you can see a picture of me on page 74.

I backpacked some into my 20's... but eventually moved to camping light - tent camping at campgrounds I drove to. I still enjoy this.

I've discovered I like toilets and I like being able to bring fresh food (vs freeze dried.) Much easier to do if you're car camping.

I have a friend who is doing the PCT - she was inspired after successful cancer treatments (it looks like she's in remission - YAY). Last time I talked to her (late spring) she'd completed San Diego county.
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Old 09-19-2015, 10:24 AM   #16
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I grew up backpacking in the Sierras with my brother's and sister and cousins. When we had little kids we stopped going for a half dozen years or so. When our kids were old enough but not too old we would go on a 3-5 night backpack each year. Now that the kids have their own lives, DW and I do one trip a year here in Indonesia, and a 5-7 day trip in the Sierras each summer. This past July we backpacked in Yosemite for the first time. We hiked the High Sierra Camp loop. We stayed in our own tent though, not in the tent cabins. It was definitely far more social (crowded) than any other backpacking trip I've been on before.

We plan on backpacking more after retiring next year... if our bodies hold out. Gonna look into this ultralight gear they sell now. Cutting the pack down to 25-30 lbs would help me get up those passes faster!

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Old 09-19-2015, 10:52 AM   #17
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Gee... do I wish...
25 years in scouting... another twenty after that. All of New England, Upstate NY (Adirondaks 12 mountains out of 46), Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and the Minnesota Boundary Waters... Packing and canoeing...

Would love to again, but age and danger say no...

A little story about age...
My last canoe/packing trip was to Ely Minn... About 10 miles in, as we were navigating a 2 mile portage... coming the other way... carrying an 18ft wooden "Old Town" canoe and big rucksacks... An 83 year old man and an 80 year old woman...

They had to cut their two week canoe/camping/packing trip short on the third day. They had been camping at the same site we were headed for on our trip... (at the time, a campsite was a fireplace, and off into the bushes, a pit toilet... a wooden box over a hole in the ground).

Because there are bears in the area, the S.O.P. was to tie the backpacks between two trees, at least 10 feet in the air. In the middle of the night, the couple heard sounds from outside their tent. Peeking thru the door flap... a big black bear... halfway up the tree, swinging the hanging rope back and forth until the backpacks fell. An hour later, after much noise of tearing and scraping... the bear left. The packs were torn apart... the dried foods were gone, and even the canned foods had been opened by bear claws. Nothing left for the rest of their trip...

"So are you guys going back home?"
"No way... going back to town for more supplies. That bear won't spoil our vacation!"

We decided to skip that campsite, and went on to the next one.

Nice memories... Camping and backpacking beginning back in 1944... http://www.goymca.com/westwood/index.phpso yeah, some experience.
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Old 09-19-2015, 11:54 AM   #18
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Avid backpacker here. Love it. I've done pretty ugh everything available in the Southeast. If anyone needs recommendations, let me know! I've also been to some really cool places out west. I've been managing a foot issue, so it's been hard for me to get. I also turned my boyfriend into a backpacking addict. We plan to start full time RVing next year. One of the purposes is to be able to travel the country, park the trailer, and then head out for backpacking trips.
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Old 09-19-2015, 07:53 PM   #19
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Have done a lot of hiking, and a lot of camping, but not both at the same time.
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Old 09-20-2015, 07:38 AM   #20
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I've backpacked for many years and have trekked through KY, TN, VA, NC, CO, WY, MT and a ten day trip around Mt. Robson in the Canadian Rockies. Once, hiked the AT from end to end through the Smokies and were headed south while all the AT thru-hikers were heading north. Very interesting trip meeting all those long distance travelers.

I've also done numerous canoe trips in the Boundary Waters and Quetico Provincial Park. The canoe camping suits me better these days as I can afford to take a few more luxury items with me, like a full length, thick sleeping pad!

I'm looking at a rafting trip in the Gates of the Arctic as my next adventure.
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