hiking/backpacking

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by jett, Jun 26, 2007.

  1. NorCal

    NorCal Senior member

    Messages:
    8,420
    Likes Received:
    1,039
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2007
    Ok so I did some research and I plan on going to the Laguna Canyon Wilderness Park. It has a bunch of different trails winding through the canyons. I haven't really hiked much and this is nothing like the hikes in this thread, but I figure it'd be nice to get out for the day and explore. I'm thinking I'll probably do a couple different trails and end up covering around 5-10 miles. I'm in pretty good physical shape and work out/play sports regularly so I don't think the hiking part will be that difficult. I just don't know what I'd need for a few hours worth of hiking.

    I'm thinking I'll definitely bring water and apply sunscreen. I want to pack lightly so was thinking about just a bottle of water and foregoing a backpack. As I am new to this and it's just a few hour thing, is there really anything besides water, camera, and a protein bar that I should bring with me? I'll probably just be going by myself.


    Hat, maybe a band aide for blisters, plenty of water and a snack. A cell phone and a lighter, maybe a small flashlight. Also a trail map.
    Plus common sense.
     
  2. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim In Time Out

    Messages:
    19,179
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Location:
    Where Eagles Dare!
    Guns!
     
  3. Ace Rimmer

    Ace Rimmer Senior member

    Messages:
    757
    Likes Received:
    3
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Philadelphia PA
    As I am new to this and it's just a few hour thing, is there really anything besides water, camera, and a protein bar that I should bring with me? I'll probably just be going by myself.

    Gilligan thought he was only going on a "three hour tour" ....

    If you're new to hiking, you need to overprepare for the first few times you go out. Hiking history is loaded with examples of people who get themselves into trouble due to lack of gear.

    If you want a good read that drives that point home, get a copy of "Not Without Peril", which is a selection of tales about the 155+ people that have died in the Presidential Mountain range in New Hampshire. Some were very experienced hikers. Most didn't bring the proper gear and got caught in the rapidly changing weather that is the trademark of the Mt. Washington valley. Overall, that area of New Hampshire beats Mt. Everest in absolute number of fatalities -- not becase of technical difficulty, but because people think they can beat George with a t-shirt, shorts and a bottle of water.

    You'll become seasoned enough so that you can start leaving stuff at home but if you are just starting out it behooves you to hedge your bets.

    First, you don't mention bringing a map or GPS unit; you don't want to get lost (especially hiking solo). Cell coverage is often non-existent in natural preserve areas (e.g. national parks) as no cell towers can be built there. You really should hike with a buddy but that's up to you.

    Second, you need a daypack that can hold clothing that will help you stave off hypothermia in the event you encounter rain. Wet = cold = starting down the road to hypothermia. Even if the weather is clear as a bell you don't know how it will change. A light windproof/waterproof shell is a minimum, and I will often bring rain pants as well. I would also advise bringing another thermal layer, like a lightweight fleece shirt or jacket. My boots are waterproof; if yours are not I would advise finding a way to keep your feet dry. By the way, don't wear running shoes or sneakers on hikes. They're not built for rocky trails and can cause foot fatigue much faster than you'd expect.

    Third, a first aid kit. You're going solo which means if you injure yourself there is nobody around to take care of you. There are lightweight first aid kits that will help you solve most common problems that you may encounter.

    Bring more water and food than just a water bottle and a protein bar. You will sweat out a lot of your water and you will be burning lots of calories. A good two or three liter hydration system (make sure your daypack is hydration system compatible) like a Platypus or Camelbak makes drinking on the go easy and you can carry a lot more water than a simple bottle. You should also bring some trail mix or similar food for munching on the go. I usually bring lunch as well for dayhikes.

    I will usually bring a knife and lighter along. I've had to start fires using the friction method in classes. It took me the better part of two days to whittle the fireboard and spindle out of a single chunk of wood. It took me another day to get fire started. That's why I carry a lighter. It's just too hard to start it the "old fashioned" way. [​IMG]

    I think you'll do just fine ... hiking solo is something that I've done and can be a lot of fun. Just prepare a bit more than usual for your first few times out and you'll start to learn the ropes. Best of luck!
     
  4. Johnny_5

    Johnny_5 Senior member

    Messages:
    4,325
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Location:
    In the woods
    +1 on this entire post. Whatever you do, make sure you're prepared. At the minimum have a good pack, proper clothes (wools, synthetics) and avoid cotton. A couple of months ago we were hiking Harriman State Park and the weather took a turn on us and the trail turned to a fucking river with water flowing over our boots. Although my feet were absolutely soaked the smartwool socks I was wearing kept them completely warm and when I took my boots off my feet were actually hot to the touch.

    Bring a phone with you just in case. Although it can be difficult getting service in state parks, you can still get service. Last week when I was in the Catskills I was getting service in some extremely remote areas. If you are in a pinch and need to make a call and are cant make sure you are not in a valley and get to an elevated area.
     
  5. Piobaire

    Piobaire Not left of center?

    Messages:
    50,301
    Likes Received:
    13,554
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2006
    Location:
    In My Douchemobile
    ^^ Bring a whistle. If you're heading to trails that are used on a regular basis, this can really help get you attention if you are in distress.

    Was heading out on a 5-6 mile hike today, about 1500 feet gain in elevation, through some beautiful canyons. Woke up with a stuffed nose and a mild cough, so going to pass today. Get back to this hike next weekend.

    Edit: An idea from the above posts. What does everyone hike with/what equipment do you have? List all, from tents to camp stoves knives.

    I've just recently started hiking and it's just day hikes with no plans for overnights (I think I posted how I gave up camping after a particularly cold year moose hunting).

    So, here's my current equipment:

    Gregory Z30 Pack in large (fits and larger interior than the smaller sizes)

    Camelback hydration bladder for the Z30

    Ultimate Direction Katoa Hydration Waistpack for Mrs. Piob. Gives her two water bottle spots, belt pouches for small items, small main compartment and can lash light jacket over the main compartment.

    Columbia River Mt. Shasta Knife

    Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .7 First-Aid Kit plus added a few things like QuickClot, extra moleskin, and tensor bandage.

    Kelty Noah's Tarp - 12' x 12' along with various items like plastic mallet, MSR stakes, a few 50' lengths of 3mm PMI utility cords, some Nite Iz tie offs

    An Eddie Bauer ground blanket. Thick plastic on one side, nice polyfiber blanket on the other. Rolls up and has own straps and handle.

    Casio Pathfinder PAG240B-2 Multifunction Watch

    Merrell Refuge hiking boots

    We each have a set of Leki trekking poles

    Various technical clothing. Wow, you really get what you pay for there. Kuhl and North Face really fit well, have great design and construction. Also mention, get good socks!

    Have a Space All-Weather Blanket just in case. I figure between that and the Eddie Bauer (which also stays in my pack) we will be fine.

    Whistle.

    Thinking of maybe couple of bivies when we go on longer, more remote day hikes.
     
  6. BDC2823

    BDC2823 Senior member

    Messages:
    4,475
    Likes Received:
    44
    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2007
    Location:
    Getting Dirty with XTina
    Thanks for the info guys. I did a bit more research and started digging through my stuff to see what I have. I'm starting off small which is why I picked Laguna. It's a small state park between Newport Beach and Laguna Beach so it's pretty much right in the middle of suburbia. I took a look at the trail guide online and have it ingrained in my memory. For some reason with maps, I just need to look at it for a minute and then it's stuck in my head. Always been that way to the point that if I'm getting directions somewhere, I go online and look at a map and I'm good. Don't even need to bring it with me. I'm sticking to the well marked out trails and the park is bounded by residential to the north, south, and east, and the ocean to the west. That said, first thing I'm doing is going to the nature center and picking up a trail guide and anything else that would be beneficial.

    It's a pretty well traveled area so there should be quite a few people hiking and cycling, even on a weekday which is nice for my first time out. I also talked to my brother and I'm pretty certain he will be going with me as well. I drink more water than anyone I know so I'll make sure to have more than enough as well as some food. Weather should be fine. It's supposed to be sunny all week around 75 degrees. After all, this is Southern California and weather doesn't turn turn much here like it did when I lived in New Orleans for a year. My cell phone will be on me and I will bring a day pack as has been mentioned by Ace. I've got a small fold up windjacket I use for golfing that I'll toss in there. Will also take a lighter, flashlight, first aid stuff, a multi purpose knife, and my 6" fixed blade glock knife. Have my hiking boots a friend gave me a couple years ago as well.

    A concern I do have is that although very rare, this is mountain lion territory and there's sightings and people attacked somewhere down here just about every year. I figure they are more of a concern than rattlesnakes though. I have my knife just in case, but would feel better if I packed my glock. Of course, this is California and it'd be illegal to carry it.
     
  7. Piobaire

    Piobaire Not left of center?

    Messages:
    50,301
    Likes Received:
    13,554
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2006
    Location:
    In My Douchemobile
  8. yerfdog

    yerfdog Senior member

    Messages:
    1,334
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2006
    Thanks for the info guys. ...

    A concern I do have is that although very rare, this is mountain lion territory and there's sightings and people attacked somewhere down here just about every year. I figure they are more of a concern than rattlesnakes though. I have my knife just in case, but would feel better if I packed my glock. Of course, this is California and it'd be illegal to carry it.


    I was set to write a post saying the recs up above for all kinds of safety gear are good on principle but you'll probably be ok given your location. It would be almost impossible to die of exposure there, even if you happened to break your leg and couldn't move until help came.

    But you did bring up the one thing I personally would be worried about there, the mountain lions, and for that reason I'd say it might be good to go with a buddy.
     
  9. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim In Time Out

    Messages:
    19,179
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Location:
    Where Eagles Dare!
    Guns!

    I was set to write a post saying the recs up above for all kinds of safety gear are good on principle but you'll probably be ok given your location. It would be almost impossible to die of exposure there, even if you happened to break your leg and couldn't move until help came.

    But you did bring up the one thing I personally would be worried about there, the mountain lions, and for that reason I'd say it might be good to go with a buddy.


    covered ^
     
  10. NorCal

    NorCal Senior member

    Messages:
    8,420
    Likes Received:
    1,039
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2007
    A Glock is z terrible choice for lions. A knife would serve you better. Lions attack from the back and you won't see it coming. Those who have survived attacks have generally done so by fighting like hell once the thing had its jaws on you. A gun is just not right for that situation but a knife is. A lion will run rather than risk injury. Also I would not be too concerned, lion attacks always make the news but they are very rare.

    It sounds like the trail is basically a suburban trail, I would not over pack or over think it. All these people suggesting you prepare for the fall of Rome are waaaaay over thinking it.

    But don't think you can memorize the map, print it out. Bring water, a hat, a lighter, a knife, a snack, a light jacket, and common sense.
     
  11. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim In Time Out

    Messages:
    19,179
    Likes Received:
    13
    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Location:
    Where Eagles Dare!
    A Glock is z terrible choice for lions. A knife would serve you better. Lions attack from the back and you won't see it coming. Those who have survived attacks have generally done so by fighting like hell once the thing had its jaws on you. A gun is just not right for that situation but a knife is. A lion will run rather than risk injury. Also I would not be too concerned, lion attacks always make the news but they are very rare.
    I wasn't thinking of a glock. More something like this: [​IMG] Mountain lions would shit their pants. If they wore pants.
     
  12. Night Owl

    Night Owl Senior member

    Messages:
    776
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2008
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    great pics

    bunch of brown hills

    these not so much

    canned food? [​IMG]
     
  13. Johnny_5

    Johnny_5 Senior member

    Messages:
    4,325
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Location:
    In the woods
    great pics



    these not so much

    canned food? [​IMG]


    Wasnt bragging about the pics but instead was trying to capture the 35 peaks above 3500ft altitude surrounding the area. Instead of being a prick you can get out from front of your computer and take some of your own.
     
  14. Piobaire

    Piobaire Not left of center?

    Messages:
    50,301
    Likes Received:
    13,554
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2006
    Location:
    In My Douchemobile
    Wasnt bragging about the pics but instead was trying to capture the 35 peaks above 3500ft altitude surrounding the area. Instead of being a prick you can get out from front of your computer and take some of your own.

    Pay him no attention. H8ters are gonna h8. Keep up the pics.

    Not working tomorrow. Thinking hard about going on that hike solo tomorrow that I was planning to do with Mrs. Piob today.
     
  15. Johnny_5

    Johnny_5 Senior member

    Messages:
    4,325
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Location:
    In the woods
    ^^ Bring a whistle. If you're heading to trails that are used on a regular basis, this can really help get you attention if you are in distress.

    Was heading out on a 5-6 mile hike today, about 1500 feet gain in elevation, through some beautiful canyons. Woke up with a stuffed nose and a mild cough, so going to pass today. Get back to this hike next weekend.

    Edit: An idea from the above posts. What does everyone hike with/what equipment do you have? List all, from tents to camp stoves knives.

    I've just recently started hiking and it's just day hikes with no plans for overnights (I think I posted how I gave up camping after a particularly cold year moose hunting).

    So, here's my current equipment:

    Gregory Z30 Pack in large (fits and larger interior than the smaller sizes)

    Camelback hydration bladder for the Z30

    Ultimate Direction Katoa Hydration Waistpack for Mrs. Piob. Gives her two water bottle spots, belt pouches for small items, small main compartment and can lash light jacket over the main compartment.

    Columbia River Mt. Shasta Knife

    Adventure Medical Kits UltraLight / Watertight .7 First-Aid Kit plus added a few things like QuickClot, extra moleskin, and tensor bandage.

    Kelty Noah's Tarp - 12' x 12' along with various items like plastic mallet, MSR stakes, a few 50' lengths of 3mm PMI utility cords, some Nite Iz tie offs

    An Eddie Bauer ground blanket. Thick plastic on one side, nice polyfiber blanket on the other. Rolls up and has own straps and handle.

    Casio Pathfinder PAG240B-2 Multifunction Watch

    Merrell Refuge hiking boots

    We each have a set of Leki trekking poles

    Various technical clothing. Wow, you really get what you pay for there. Kuhl and North Face really fit well, have great design and construction. Also mention, get good socks!

    Have a Space All-Weather Blanket just in case. I figure between that and the Eddie Bauer (which also stays in my pack) we will be fine.

    Whistle.

    Thinking of maybe couple of bivies when we go on longer, more remote day hikes.


    Equipment:

    Osprey Aether 60L
    Mountain Hardware lamina 20deg sleeping
    Katadyn Hiker Pro
    Platypus 3L Hydration bladder
    swiss army knife/multitool (will soon be replaced)
    Snowpeak giga stove
    GSI soloist cookware
    Random Nau ranjacket
    Adventure medical kits 1-2 person first aid kit
    Adventure medical kits emergency bivvy
    Bear spray
    Princeton remix headlamp
    Montrail Torre GTX boots
    Smartwool socks
    EMS and The North Face technical clothing
    Outdoor research UL ditty sacks


    Soon: Clark North American jungle hammock for shelter
    Closed cell sleeping pad
     

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by