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Topic: Where was your first Backpacking trip?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 7:47 am  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hello.

I just finished giving my reply to someone in the Trailhead Register about my first backpacking trip and it flooded my mind with memories of that first backpacking that I went. It was at Mt.Whitney and it was my second time attempting it. The first time, which was supposed to be my first ever BP trip, my mom got scared out of nowhere that same morning right when I was about to leave and I had to cancel it just to see 2 of my friends go tackle Whitney and hear all the tales that they brought along. Obviously, I couldn't resist and the year after I made another commitment of going and to make a long story short, I made it to the summit much faster than the average 12 hours. It was only 2 nights of backpacking, but the time I spent in planning for it and the excitement of looking at those topo maps and planning my route made it all the more special and since it was my first trip I still cherish those memories more and more as I go backpacking. I'm planning my trips for this upcoming summer and I think I might include Whitney again since this trip just reminded me of those earlier times when the outdoors seemed to be a dangerous place and I really believed bears did attack humans and ate them. What is yours? What made that first so special? Your input would be appreciated.



P.S. I would post this on the Trailhead Register, but I thought the Gear section would have been better.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 2:36 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first backpacking trip, as opposed to dayhiking, was in June,1964, when "Mucko" McDonald and I hiked into Six Mile Lakes near Nelson, B.C. This entailed using war-surplus canvas rucksacks, cheap, heavy synthetic, rectangular bags and pads from shipping the fiberglas boats sold at his dad's marina....not real lightweight gear!

I had been hiking since age 10, 1956, in these mountains, but, my parents would not allow overnight trips due to the wilderness conditions of the area, getting lost, the frequent Grizzly problems(worse now) and so on. I was "hooked" that weekend and have been ever since.

Within 4 years, I bought my first Camptrails lightweight pack, light down bag and so on and have been trekking ever since. This coming April will mark my 50th year of active hiking and the first encounter I had with a Grizzly. I hope to do a "sentimental journey" in the same area next at that time.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 3:11 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

ADK High Peaks Region. Solo. Disaster. Went back 3 weeks later. Solo. Success. I'm a stubborn SOB.

Not sure I'll ever post my trip report. very personal. Wink

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 3:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Buffalo River Arkansas, and we got lost. :O It was an interesting trip, and when we got back to town, we stuffed our faces with burgers and fries. Wink

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 3:35 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Savage Gulf, TN. My pack was way to heavy, and it was hot and humid. I was dead tired when we got done.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 3:37 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first Backpacking trip was about four years ago, and it was on Isle Royale! Great place to start, huh? It ended up as a disaster: I sprained my ankle pretty badly the 2nd day, and so we went back to the Rock Harbor sites, and just sat there for four days.

Fortunately, the experience didn't dampen my enthusiasm, and I kept backpacking. We are returning to Isle Royale this summer, and I can't wait. I'm sure it will be a much better experience.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 4:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hell I honestly cant even remember, I've been backpacking since I was a kid. I really cant even remember my first "unsupervised" trip (no adults), when I was a teen - though Im certain it was in the Anza Borrego Desert. We did SO many trips in the ABD as teens that all the trips seem to kind of melt and flow together.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 4:43 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first trip was into the Rincons in Tucson. I planned an ambitious five day trip - actually did four days when I discovered that a) just because it says "spring" doesn't necessarily mean you want to drink it, and b) even in Arizona, camping at 8000' in April is cold! I didn't even have a real jacket, much less a warm sleeping bag and I'd never heard of a sleeping pad - and there were snow patches at the campground.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 4:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first backpacking trip was into shoshone geyser basin in yellowstone in 1987. The year before the big fires.

http://www.geocities.com/skurka/backpacking/Shoshone.htm

Very memorable, and became a convert from there on out...
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 5:11 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first trip was up on the superior hiking trail with a buddy from high school 2 and half years ago. 3 days of funs that ended with a 6 mile walk down a dirt road in 95 degree heat and humidity in the sun. We attempted to hitch hike but all the yuppies and there families decided to just honk at us. Thus the 6 miles turned into the "death march", but looking back on it, I wouldnt have it any other way as I fell in love with the sport.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 7:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

A sophomore or junior in High School - many years ago -, a Catholic private school, one of the brothers there, a backpacker, decided to break the JMT into 6 easy segments with various side trips included too, and that summer, he invited whoever wanted to join to pick a week - 10 kids to a segment - plus 4 adults/ per week. I think he figured it out at $75.00 per week/per kid. I signed up; it sounded like fun and I wanted to get out of the house - too many kids/chores/etc - and I started this trip out clueless, totally green, rented and borrowed gear, new boots, tube tents too - from Happy Isles. I think that week we went as far as Tuolumne or maybe the the Postpile, before meeting the next group, passing on the backpacks, and picking up a new batch of novice hikers.
The next group arrived, and brought up the next week's food provisions, carefully divided up months beforehand, and took back home the previous week's hikers. This was the master plan, drawn up for all - you knew what week, when, etc, all paid for beforehand.
Well, plans change...(go figure), and people drop out. At the end of the first week, they announced that 3 kids had bailed out, not come, and that there were 3 spots open- paid for - totally free.
I grabbed one - WTF- and now my first backpacking adventure was to be 2 weeks long...
Well, to make a long story short, 6 weeks later I was at Whitney Portal eating a burger. I had lost 10 pounds, I could now hike all day, and I was hooked. To my parents credit, they did send up some extra money for treats at places like Florence Lake, Mineral King, Onion Valley, etc. Thus, I am lucky enough to say my first backpacking trip was the entire JMT.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 7:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Ahh. My first trip was to Great North Mountain in West Virginia. Middle of November, great hike but cold as could be. I have learned a few things since then.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 7:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Wow Markskor, that is something to really brag about! I doubt many nonhikers ever heard of the JMT but that is quite an acclomplishment for a first timer. I bet that trip was quite memorable. Any plans to do it again and relive that excitement?
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 8:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

GearGuru,
Besides that, did it twice more since - once in 20 days, IMHO much too fast, then three years ago took 29 (or was it 30) days to do it again (Lost track of time there.) Best trip of my life, have done most of Yosemite to Tahoe too, and then Shasta, Rainier, Denali, etc... Still active at 54, would go JMT again too in a heartbeat - no rush though - too many great fishing possibilities.
Mark

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 9:33 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

Appalachian Trail. Solo. Springer north and planned for two weeks. Disaster. Have been back to the AT many times but not yet back to Springer. It'll be solo when I do make it back.

No full trip report here, either.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 9:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first trip was when i was 13. It was through a Summer camp type deal by our Recreation dept. in Bend Oregon. First week we met every day and learned Map reading and made our own cook stoves (bunson burner).

Then we had a 5 day trip. My pack was probably 50lbs and i weighed maybe 75lbs. Old school pack with the crappy nylon hip belt that i had to wrap clothing around once it dug into my hips about 2 miles in. 2 day hike about 15 or so to base camp at the Base of South Sister in the Descutes Nat. forest. 2 days base camped with one of them summiting South Sister. Then we had a fairly short 5 or so miles down hill out on our 5th day.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 9:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Overnighter to Mallard Lake in Yellowstone. I was 19 and working in the Park as a maid for the summer. My roommates in the dorm came along and I seem to remember liking it, although we had to posthole through snow to get to the lake, which didn't have much of a view. It wasn't that big of a deal for me--I grew up car camping and most of my extended family backpacked with varying degrees of regularity throughout their youth. It just seemed natural and obvious that if you were in Yellowstone, you backpacked. Now I've started a new generation on it--I got my brother into backpacking last summer and I also took my cousin on her first trip. ]Smiler
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 11:00 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Done it twice more....plus most of Yosemite...Seki...through to Tahoe Desolation too - I guess most of northern PCT. Over 1500 bag nights and still counting.
I said I was hooked.
mark

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 11:06 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

AT in Virginia, 1976. Hiked in sneakers, did o.k. Later bought big heavy boots, got blisters. Hiking in sneakers again (except winter). I do o.k.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 11 2006, 11:27 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

Backpacked the C&O Canal from Little Orleans to Cumberland then canoed back with my dad, a guide, and a friend. Had to be 40 yrs ago.
http://www.mcmullans.org/canal/Downloadables/C_O_Canal%20Map.pdf
Good topic; brought back good memories.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 12:19 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My first trip exclusively backpacking was a three-day solo in the Superstition Wilderness. What I learned is that spending three days in the desert without other people is a great way to heal your soul.
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 12:46 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Cohutta Wilderness Area, North Georgia
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 12:52 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

Joshua Tree N.P. - southern California.

What was so special? Discovering that modern plumbing wasn't absolutely vital after all.

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I seriously don't remember back that far (boyscouts and hiking with mom and dad). However, I do remember when I got back into backpacking. I remember that my first "real" trip was a two day trip up to the top of a nearby ridge on the edge of the Huckleberry Wilderness area on the south side of Mt. Hood, OR. I remember planning it a month before with a couple buddies, drunk sitting at a campfire (car camping). We looked across the valley and my friend Jeff said, "Let's go there". That was my first real off-trail hike. When we finally got to the top, we were shocked at how gentle the slope looked from across the valley. It was near straight vertical the last few hundred feet. The packs felt like boulders and we were thrilled when we finally crawled to the top. Then, we looked across and up the valley. There begins my life as an off-trail backpacker. That was sixteen years ago.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 1:02 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Round Lake - Plumas National Forest south of Lake Tahoe

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 2:59 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

I will never holepost!!!!!!!

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 3:11 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My backyard! Smiler
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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 5:28 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Idaho's Snake River Range, Palisades Creek, when I was 8 years old. I was with my dad, grandma, and little sister. This was the "test trip." My sister and I carried our own bag and pad, clothes, snacks, water, a fuel bottle, and part of the tent. The deal was that if we could do this three day trip without ever crying, we would be allowed on longer trips further from home. Our second trip was to the Sawtooths, and then the Big Horn Crags in Frank Church/River of No Return wilderness.

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 5:48 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic.    QUOTE

It's called Pico De Loro (Parrot's Beak). Most of everything wrong about backpacking, I have experienced it there. I was wearing the wrong shoes, I had wrong mind-set, I was not conditioned physically, it rained so hard the moment we step on the trailhead, there was a typhoon approaching, it rain so hard the whole night, we were supposed to be camping in an island but the boats won't take us there because of high waves. I brought too much of somethings and too few of other things. I brought the wrong rain gear and was wet to the bone for the entire ascend. And being my first time, I was depending on the guide for some of my gears. Unfortunately, the guide had some emergency that day and was replaced by another. So I was left without some decent gears. But hey, I'm still backpacking. Wink

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PostIcon Posted on: Jan. 12 2006, 5:56 am Skip to the previous post in this topic.     QUOTE

I honestly don't remember my actual "first" trip... but I was definitely a little kid. I started carrying my own gear at about age 7 or 8, but we'd been hiking & camping out much earlier than that. We mostly hung around within a couple hours of home (Omaha, NE), backpacking mostly in the Souix Hills of Western Iowa and other nearby places.

My first BIG trip (an 8-day 50-miler) was at 11 years old, in the Wind River Range (WY). I still regard it as one of the best weeks of my childhood. I actually wrote a long-belated "trip report" for it awhile back here... lemme go find it!
Ahh, here it is... Wind River Trip Report

Good topic, GearGuru! Big Grin

- Mike

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