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  1. #61
    Registered User SunnyWalker's Avatar
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    Well, I am 56 and my goal is to thru hike AT when I'm 60. I have done a lot of hiking and climbing over the years. All my efforts priorities right now when I hike are with the AT in mind. I am slowly replacing heavier stuff with lightweight stuff. I am dropping off stuff and re-thinking my hiking philosophy about the weight I carry. I don't want to wait until Harpers Ferry or somewhere to do this. I want to start out as light (AND prepared) as possible and MAKE IT ALL THE WAY TO MAINE!!!!! :-)
    "Something hidden. Go and find it. Go, and look behind the Ranges. Something lost behind the Ranges. Lost and waiting for you . . . Go!" (Rudyard Kipling)
    From SunnyWalker, SOBO CDT hiker starting June 2014.
    Please visit: SunnyWalker.Net

  2. #62
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    Tipi Walter,
    "It's not the attempts to lighten our loads that rankles and disturbs, it's the heavy handed born-again ultralighters who keep attempting to lead us into a future of flimsy nothingness and a preoccupation with grams.".

    Does it not strike you as odd that you are saying that in the Ultralite section ?
    Are you not the one that implies that anyone not using your "expedition " gear is going to die or is just plain stupid ?
    Who is really preaching here ?


    Seems to me that many don't hike because of not been able or willing to carry heavy loads. On the converse , most of the light weight hikers I met recently in WA were older folk that can and do hike (and have fun, look that word up...) because they have lighter loads. And yes I met many with huge packs, none of them appeared to be enjoying themselves (enjoy :look that up too)

    One guy (57 year old) did 3-5 days at a time, covering 20-30 miles a day with a 30 L or so pack. He eats just bars (from Walmart as he told us several times). Not my cup of tea but HIS cup of tea. And that is fine with me ....
    No , he would not survive Denali , but he was not doing Denali
    Me, I had a total load of 30lbs for 7 days including 1.5 L of water . (about 27 for the next 5) . Not light, not heavy . What I had is irrelevant because it was what I wanted to have and still have a good time.
    And BTW, your very much maligned Neo Air worked very well for me, saved me some weight and space too...
    (no I was not doing Denali)
    Franco

  3. #63
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    Default Can we have fun ???

    This is a video of our last trip, just to give you an idea of what I mean by fun and my kind of hiking..
    http://www.yart.com.au/pa/page.aspx?ID=131
    Needs subtitles for my bits..
    Franco

  4. #64

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    Quote Originally Posted by Franco View Post
    Tipi Walter,
    "It's not the attempts to lighten our loads that rankles and disturbs, it's the heavy handed born-again ultralighters who keep attempting to lead us into a future of flimsy nothingness and a preoccupation with grams.".

    Does it not strike you as odd that you are saying that in the Ultralite section ?
    Are you not the one that implies that anyone not using your "expedition " gear is going to die or is just plain stupid ?
    Who is really preaching here ?


    Seems to me that many don't hike because of not been able or willing to carry heavy loads. On the converse , most of the light weight hikers I met recently in WA were older folk that can and do hike (and have fun, look that word up...) because they have lighter loads. And yes I met many with huge packs, none of them appeared to be enjoying themselves (enjoy :look that up too)

    One guy (57 year old) did 3-5 days at a time, covering 20-30 miles a day with a 30 L or so pack. He eats just bars (from Walmart as he told us several times). Not my cup of tea but HIS cup of tea. And that is fine with me ....
    No , he would not survive Denali , but he was not doing Denali
    Me, I had a total load of 30lbs for 7 days including 1.5 L of water . (about 27 for the next 5) . Not light, not heavy . What I had is irrelevant because it was what I wanted to have and still have a good time.
    And BTW, your very much maligned Neo Air worked very well for me, saved me some weight and space too...
    (no I was not doing Denali)
    Franco
    Just leave Tipi alone.

  5. #65

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    I think information at this forum is excellent.

    I say the little stuff adds up: those small things in pockets.

    Look at that.

    I really enjoy the ultralightweight and lightweight gear quest. I examine gear and clothing and shelter and sleep systems and food and food preparation in view of minimalist ideals for materials and design along with utility and convenience so I can get maximum enjoyment of the beauty and rugged raw weather I get outdoors in the natural places out in the world.

    I do not believe plodding along a prepared trail carrying a heavy pack will ever approach that experience out-of-doors.

  6. #66
    Registered User crazyonelost's Avatar
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    I am so guilty of going heavy about 40-50 lbs. I tend to bring extra stuff I don't need. I have to seriously think about changing my ways.

    Ever since I dislocated my shoulder in a house fire a few years back( vol fire fighter)I have to live with this constant pain and while on a hike after 2-3 days I am so ready to get off the trail. But, beside of going lighter. I really have to work on tuning my load. One thing learned is all those little pockets don't need filled up.

    I think I bought a size bigger pack (Kelty) starter pack and need to get a smaller pack since when I put my sleeping bag in the bottom pocket it tends to rub against my tail bone. I tried adjusting the shoulder straps up and still have that prob.

    I am not exactly a newbie and have a few miles under my belt,but wb has helped in more in the last few weeks then I ever picked up on my experiences and now I have someplace to look up info

  7. #67
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazyonelost View Post
    Ever since I dislocated my shoulder in a house fire a few years back( vol fire fighter)I have to live with this constant pain and while on a hike after 2-3 days I am so ready to get off the trail. But, beside of going lighter. I really have to work on tuning my load. One thing learned is all those little pockets don't need filled up.

    If you're carrying 40-50 pounds for three-season trips, you'll feel it. A bad shoulder makes it worse. The good news is that it's possible to be happy and comfortable on the trail and in camp with 25-30 pounds of total pack weight, or even a little less on a weekend hike. The two key points are (1) don't bring as many things, and (2) find lighter versions of the things you do bring. (I know, easier said than done.)

    I have a bad shoulder, and in addition to cutting my pack weight, choosing a pack that does a good job of transferring that weight to my hips helps a lot. Many ultralight packs don't have much suspension (on the theory that a <20 pound total load doesn't need much), so be careful with that. There are some great lightweight 2-3 pound packs with decent suspensions that can handle a 20-30 pound load very well.

    Packing is also important. My lovely wife, Dragonfly, was griping this weekend about her day pack, a Gregory Jade 35. Nice pack, but it was pulling away from her shoulders and it hurt, and all this with only 15 pounds or so in the pack. During a break, I repacked and tightened up, making the load taller and tighter -- this made a big difference in the comfort of the pack.

    Good luck.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  8. #68
    Registered User crazyonelost's Avatar
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    I agree with ya bigcranky. The only place near me is the cabelas store and they don't really have much selection of different choices. I know there a REI in Pittsburgh,Pa and haven't gotten there yet.

    I really don't know of any outfitters in my immediate area and the closest one I might know of is almost 2 hrs drive south for me. I wonder what kind of return policy on packs the alot of companies have? I hate not knowing what I need until I try the packs on and if it don't work then hopefully won't get stuck with a purchase I don't want or need.

  9. #69
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    I've got a pretty light pack but I still have to carry food and water. I'm looking forward to when the privatize the AT and each shelter is wheel chair accessable with a McDonalds.

  10. #70

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chaplain View Post
    Well, I am 56 and my goal is to thru hike AT when I'm 60. I have done a lot of hiking and climbing over the years. All my efforts priorities right now when I hike are with the AT in mind. I am slowly replacing heavier stuff with lightweight stuff. I am dropping off stuff and re-thinking my hiking philosophy about the weight I carry. I don't want to wait until Harpers Ferry or somewhere to do this. I want to start out as light (AND prepared) as possible and MAKE IT ALL THE WAY TO MAINE!!!!! :-)
    Looks like we'll be hiking around the same time I figure, I have multiple years to do some dayhikes, overnighters, 72 hour hikes, etc. In all kinds of weather to get ready, so there is no reason to not be a bit ready in 3 years ya know.

  11. #71
    Hiker bigcranky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazyonelost View Post
    I agree with ya bigcranky. The only place near me is the cabelas store and they don't really have much selection of different choices. I know there a REI in Pittsburgh,Pa and haven't gotten there yet.

    I really don't know of any outfitters in my immediate area and the closest one I might know of is almost 2 hrs drive south for me. I wonder what kind of return policy on packs the alot of companies have? I hate not knowing what I need until I try the packs on and if it don't work then hopefully won't get stuck with a purchase I don't want or need.
    We've been to the REI in Pittsburgh, it's a decent store. Note that you can order from REI online to try stuff, and they'll take it back if it doesn't work. You're out the shipping costs, but that may be cheaper than gas.

    Most of the smaller cottage gear makers have good trial policies -- you can try the pack/tent/whatever, and return it for a full refund if it doesn't work. Again, you are out shipping charges.

    You could decide to go for a weekend hike in Southwestern Virginia, and stop in at Mt Rogers Outfitters in Damascus, but that's a six hour drive from Wheeling. There is a good outfitter in Harper's Ferry, which is closer. You could go do some hiking on the AT and check out some hiking-specific gear.
    Ken B
    'Big Cranky'
    Our Long Trail journal

  12. #72

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    With the smaller makers, generally you can try stuff if you don't actually use it. You know, wear the pack around the house or block, that sort of thing. You wouldn't be taking it on a trip and getting it all dirty and sweaty and then getting a refund.
    Some knew me as Piper, others as just Diane.
    I hiked the PCT: Mexico to Mt. Shasta, 2008. Santa Barbara to Canada, 2009.

  13. #73
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    Been reading a lot of different viewpoints on this site and on others. I agree with UL gear but that is only so that I can bring other gear to make my thru hike more enjoyable, not necessarily to lighten my pack. I will be heading out with a 35 lb pack with food/water but I am also taking a thicker bed mat, a full tent with a bottom, a 1.4 pound chair, a fair amount of electronics -gopro, iphone, solar charger, and a gps my wife wont let me out of the house with for her peace of mind . I know I will be hating life some days due to not scaling down but will also enjoy things the way I want.

    I am not going to be in a race to complete and if I don't complete that is fine too. There is always 2020 to wrap it up. I am taking this trip to enjoy the walk, the people, and the culture.

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