This is a great article about a perfect solution if you’re into Freezer Bag Cooking (FBC). It’s a good way to make your own freeze dried meals for the trail. You can buy bulk freeze dried foods and make your own recipes if that’s your thing.
I built a box and the first thing that my wife said to me is “Well that’s dumb.” The problem is that I don’t 100% disagree with her. Sometimes an idea will grab my attention and I don’t think it all the way through before execution.
The box that I ended up constructing is a 20″ X 24″ X 30″ Pylometric (Pylo) box. These boxes are typically used to do big explosive exercises that are a bit overkill for what I’m trying to accomplish. The intention is to use this for stretching and strengthening my knees. Depending on the orientation of the box you get different heights for various workouts. It seemed like a cheap and easy solution for exercise.
I was excited to build one and so that’s exactly what I did. After doing so I told my wife about it and the conversation went something like this.
“Hey wife I made an exercise box, want to come see?” I said.
“Well why’d you do that?” She responded.
“I don’t know, it seemed like a good way to workout.”
“How big is it?”
“Well you see, it’s bigger than I imagined, it’s huge.” I hemmed and hawed.
She replied with a great amount of hostility, “Where are we going to put that?”
I cannot fault her for that, this thing is massive. And it hurts to admit it but she is right, there is no place to put it.
High routes look like a beautiful way to take in epic scenery while avoiding the crowds. The only problem is that it comes with a much higher level of difficulty and challenge than I would probably be inclined to do.
Here is a well documented journey from Dan Stenziao on the Sierra High Route through Yosemite.
Sometimes we fall into slumps. We get depressed, lazy, and complacent about our lives. And by we, I mean in particular myself. Things get rough sometimes and you just have to step back and realize what went wrong, where you want to go and course correct.
This is me trying to get on the right path again. I’ll be working on getting back into shape, backpacking, hiking, kayaking, writing, photography, and hopefully podcasting again. Getting back into what I love in life again.
January is for planning, at least it has been for me as this is the time to book campsites and permits before they all get filled up for the entire year. More and more places have gone to reservation systems. These are understandable to limit the damage to natural resources but the limits means that your desired dates can fill up quickly if you’re not careful. I find it best to plan far enough in advance that you can book the moment that permitting is available for your planned destinations.
As a quick warm-up backpacking trip for the year I have elected to go to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore with a couple close friends and complete this 42 mile trail. This is actually a section of the much longer North Country Trail. A few years back I completed a small section of this trail in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area affectionately named the Border Route Trail. That trail ended up being a wet slog for me. It was early on in my hiking abilities gear affordability and I ended up with some pretty gnarly feet from not being able to keep dry during the week long adventure. It was still an amazing experience that I wouldn’t want to give up for anything.
The section at Pictured Rocks looks to be a lot flatter and will hopefully be a much more relaxing trek. “Pictured Rocks offers towering multicolored sandstone cliffs, miles of sparkling beaches, dashing waterfalls, huge sand dunes, inland lakes and streams, deep green forests” (NPS) The trail has been described by others as being relatively flat and a beautiful hike through the woods. My wife has offered to chauffer us around up there and drop us off at the start of the trail and pick us up at the end so we will not have to worry about the logistics of getting to the trail head and stowing a car at the end. There are bear boxes at all the designated campsites so there is no need to carry a bear vault like we all had to on the last trek on the Four Pass Loop in Colorado. We have tentative plans for the spring for this upcoming trip, mostly to avoid the crowds, bugs, and crowds of bugs.
We are taking the whole family to a trip to the Grand Canyon this year. The road trip from Nebraska to Arizona will offer a lot of opportunities for small side adventures along the way. We will be traveling with my sister and her two children. Hopefully I can convince them all to do a little hiking along the way. We haven’t pegged down any details for this trip yet but we are open to suggestions if you have any.
Podcasts and Pictures
I have let things go when it comes to this podcast and even photography which were two passion projects of mine. I have had to let them lapse to finish up my degree and work on my career change. Now I should be able to do what I love again, but I am not so fool-hearty to go making promises I don’t know if I will be able to keep.
Continuing with the JMT trend for the month of November, I bring you this one:
Hiking Nerd – John Muir Trail – A 13 Day Documentary
It’s a high snow year in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Two brothers, Jimmy & Michael, attempt the entire length of the John Muir Trail starting from Whitney Portal and ending in Happy Isles Yosemite Valley. How will they fare?
The Golden Ticket: Backpacking the John Muir Trail
From the Happy Isles Trailhead in Yosemite Valley to the windswept summit of Mt. Whitney is America’s premier middle distance hiking trail. Come along with us as we backpack the 221 mile John Muir Trail, including the most famous hike in Yosemite, the Cables Route on Half Dome.
Filmed on location during the summer of 2016.