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  1. #41
    Registered User SunnyWalker's Avatar
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    Dear Salad Days: Thank you for this very entertaining and fun video. Congrats on your hike. Thanks for the equipment lists and so forth. Way to go!
    "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. #42
    Son Driven
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    I agree with all you shared here. Early in my hike I carried to much food, not only did the weight slow me down, but I found myself hiking to my food bag. Getting low on food served as a motivator, to get on to the next re supply point. I used potato flakes, and NIDO as my emergency food, I grew tired of them, and when I was down to just potato flakes I became very motivated. Potato flakes weigh very little, so I would buy them by the box, and re package them in zip locks. NIDO powdered cream is fantastic, I added it to almost everything. When NIDO was hard to find I would buy powdered buttermilk or milk instead. Every morning I would mix up NIDO, instant coffee, coco mix, honey, or real maple syrup in New England, shook it up real good in a one quart bottle, got my caffeine fix this way, without using my stove. I am still loving this off trail.
    Last edited by Son Driven; 12-11-2013 at 01:22.
    03/07/13 - 10/07/13 Flip flop AT thru hike "It is well with my soul"

  3. #43
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    Cro-mag,
    I saw from your blog that you were shopping for aluminum poles for the eureka solitaire...did you ever find them? I have been looking myself.
    thanks
    nick

  4. #44
    Rain Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cro-Mag View Post
    I just completed a thru hike on August 26th, 2013. I used Whiteblaze so much when researching for the hike. It was a site that I visited daily. I remember a successful 2012 thru hiker posting a review of his gear and strategies for his hike. I found that very helpful, so I decided to do the same thing for any future thru hikers.
    Very nice and great to read. Thanks for taking the time to share!

    RainMan

    .
    ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are: ... Defile not therefore the land which ye shall inhabit..... Numbers 35

    www.MeetUp.com/NashvilleBackpacker

    .

  5. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick P View Post
    Cro-mag,
    I saw from your blog that you were shopping for aluminum poles for the eureka solitaire...did you ever find them? I have been looking myself.
    thanks
    nick
    It's a shame Eureka stopped making the Gossamer years ago. Almost identical to the Solitaire but $10 or so more and it came with Easton poles.

  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick P View Post
    Cro-mag,
    I saw from your blog that you were shopping for aluminum poles for the eureka solitaire...did you ever find them? I have been looking myself.
    thanks
    nick
    Hi Nick,

    I actually ordered some from Easton, had them cut to size, but when I went to go bend them, I damaged the poles. I tried using a spring inside, I tried filling them with sand, but both still snapped the pole when trying to bend them. It was just too much of a severe curve.

    I purchased some back up poles from Eureka before the hike and had them ready at home if I needed them. I went the entire hike without needing to replace them.
    Out of step with the world...

    My trail blog:
    http://saladdaysonthetrail.wordpress.com/

  7. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rain Man View Post
    Very nice and great to read. Thanks for taking the time to share!

    RainMan

    .
    You're welcome!
    Out of step with the world...

    My trail blog:
    http://saladdaysonthetrail.wordpress.com/

  8. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Son Driven View Post
    I agree with all you shared here. Early in my hike I carried to much food, not only did the weight slow me down, but I found myself hiking to my food bag. Getting low on food served as a motivator, to get on to the next re supply point. I used potato flakes, and NIDO as my emergency food, I grew tired of them, and when I was down to just potato flakes I became very motivated. Potato flakes weigh very little, so I would buy them by the box, and re package them in zip locks. NIDO powdered cream is fantastic, I added it to almost everything. When NIDO was hard to find I would buy powdered buttermilk or milk instead. Every morning I would mix up NIDO, instant coffee, coco mix, honey, or real maple syrup in New England, shook it up real good in a one quart bottle, got my caffeine fix this way, without using my stove. I am still loving this off trail.
    Hey Son Driven!

    I met you right after the Smokies and then ran into you in Maine when you were hiking SOBO. So glad that you completed your hike. Much respect sir!!

    All the best,
    Salad Days
    Out of step with the world...

    My trail blog:
    http://saladdaysonthetrail.wordpress.com/

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cro-Mag View Post
    Hi Nick,

    I actually ordered some from Easton, had them cut to size, but when I went to go bend them, I damaged the poles. I tried using a spring inside, I tried filling them with sand, but both still snapped the pole when trying to bend them. It was just too much of a severe curve.

    I purchased some back up poles from Eureka before the hike and had them ready at home if I needed them. I went the entire hike without needing to replace them.
    GTK ("good to know"), as the cool kids say.
    My poles are fraying, so a backup set is the way I'll go.
    Thanks again.
    nick

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
    Thanks for taking time to "give back" to next years class hiking the AT.
    Agreed! This was super helpful!

  11. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by Austin 2014 View Post
    Agreed! This was super helpful!
    Good luck!!
    Out of step with the world...

    My trail blog:
    http://saladdaysonthetrail.wordpress.com/

  12. #52
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    Nice video, brings back a lot of memories. Glad to see you had fun along the way. It amazes me how many people are out there and are not taking any time to goof off. It cracks me up how ridiculous one would look in the "real world" playing in a playground or using a stick as a javelin, yet this is part of life on the trail. Also it's always cool to see pictures of hikers pre hike and post hike. Beard and worn clothes aside something about them always looks different. The other day I was discussing beards with a few coworkers so I showed them my summit picture. They couldn't tell it was me and it took me a minute to convince them. Good stuff, well done.

  13. #53
    Registered User theinfamousj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pony View Post
    It cracks me up how ridiculous one would look in the "real world" playing in a playground or using a stick as a javelin, yet this is part of life on the trail.
    I don't like your concept of the real world. I totally play on playgrounds, slide down slides, and jump on trampolines in my normal life.

    Anyone looking at me with a judgy expression is trying to keep my fun away so they can justify their own lack of it or cowardice in letting themselves have any.

    Don't let acts if fun, joy, and imagination be limited just to the trail!

    Sent from my SGH-I777 using Tapatalk

  14. #54
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    I just read three pages of positive encouraging posts, and then this. Wow. Cro-Mag, Loved the video, loved the posts and advice! Keep it going, and congratulations on your thru!

  15. #55
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    Hey Salad Days-I think I met you while having lunch at the Abol Campground at the end of the 100 mile wilderness back in late August. You had mentioned that you have lived in Cape Elizabeth for while. Congrats on finishing your thru-hike.

    Best,
    Finn Melanson

  16. #56
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    *had lived

  17. #57
    Registered User BuckeyeBill's Avatar
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    Excellent post and video. You could easily turn your post into an article for newbies. Your video shows that one can have fun on the trail. The only thing I would change is picking up the big black snake.......... LOL
    Blackheart

  18. #58

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    This post deserves to be an article !

  19. #59
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    "Most of all, enjoy every day, even the days that suck. You remember the amazing days and the crappy days the most."

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    I learned two important lessons during my hike. I learned that I can put up with discomfort more than I thought I would be able to. The other lesson I learned is how simply I can live my life off the trail. I do not feel the need to have security in material objects.

    I will also never complain about having to walk somewhere or how many stairs I need to go up. I'll always take the stairs now.

    Do you see how counter culture this is? Do you see it took 5 1/2 months largely abstaining from the influences of society and societal norms to gain these perspectives? Can you now see the VAST extent of those that try to influence on a daily, on a min to min, basis? Let me ask, HOW AWARE DO YOU NOW FEEL?

    In a real sense you got sober from the "self serving influences" of modern American society after decades of them having a POWERFUL control over you. You have the choice NOW what path you will continue on. Thru-hiking(long distance hiking) is one of the most self actualizing things you can do! NOTICE the awareness you have gained! That's greater power over your own life. That's taking your life back!
    +1111111!

    Salad Days,
    Thanks for your wonderful insight. It's posts like this that make this forum truly worthwhile, IMHO. Thanks for giving back. I absolutely loved your video; great balance of the macro and micro. I'm a herp geek, lol. I loved your choice of music as well.

  20. #60
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    hey saladdays - this was a great WB post, thanks for taking the time to write about your experiences with us, you shared some great advice to future AT hikers, both thru hikers and section hikers. I will definitely get to watching your video and trail blog. Spring-2013 in the southern Appalachians brought many weather surprises to hikers, not to mention all the rain, mud and bugs through most of the year into New England also. Each year will bring different weather challenges to AT hikers. I really enjoyed reading how your clothing and gear choices evolved over your hike, can relate to many of your selections. I have used the Osprey Atmos 50 my last two section hikes, and absolutely love the Osprey Atmos series packs. If I was doing an entire thru hike, I'd also pick the Atmos 65. Oh boy you mentioned pillows. I also used a clothes bag for years as a pillow, to varying degrees of comfort or discomfort. This past fall, I picked up an Exped pillow, and now love it, never slept better on the trail. (thanks to another 2013 AT thru hiker, "Lady Grey", for that recommendation over on Trail Journals). The Neoaire X-lite pad is the best pad I've ever used also, good choice. For water treatment, I gave up any pump filters or the Sawyer Squeeze, too many problems, they get clogged, the SS bags break, etc. Have used Aqua Mira on every hike the last 3 years, always worked great. I was especially impressed that you used an inexpensive tent like the Eureka Spitfire and was pleased with it. Shows you don't have to buy a $300 shelter to have a good hike. Again, it's to each his own on gear, clothing and shoes. What works for one, might not work for another. Which Mountain Hardwear Zip Up (middle layer) did you use? Was this a midweight fleece? Food was an area I liked reading, this is the biggest phase of hiking I am constantly changing. Great post, good tips, good luck in your future endeavors, maybe meet you on the trail some day. I'll be heading up to Glasgow, VA in mid April to do another AT section heading north, and maybe heading back to Vermont in September for another LT e2e hike. Happy trails! "Florida Mike"

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