Back 2 Back with Cesar: Thoughts on Section Hiking vs Thru Hiking

P1050797For the last few years now Cesar, from Cesar and the Woods, and I have been talking back and forth via email mostly, but also through comments on each of our blogs, or on our YouTube channels. Cesar is an ultra lightweight backpacker located in Sweden, so between our passion for the same activity (UL backpacking), yet the totally different locations, we have a lot to talk about and share. Some time ago, Cesar began doing some “Back 2 Back” YouTube videos in which he picked a topic to discuss, made a video with his thoughts, then asked another blogger/YouTuber to follow-up… He asked me about doing a series with him some time back, and we have finally gotten around to it! Continue reading

Posted in Blogs, Section Hiking, Thru Hiking | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

AT Section Hike: Iron Mtn Gap to Erwin, TN

I have been working on connecting the random sections of the Appalachian Trail that I have already hiked, and I almost have it all completed up to Dennis Cove Rd (mile 416.5)! So, last week my son and I loaded up and headed to Gizmo Joe’s house, and then made our way to Erwin, TN. We had made reservations at the Erwin Mountain Inn & Suites for the night, which was only 1.1 miles from the Appalachian Trail, offers a pretty decent continental breakfast, has clean rooms (at a “hiker rate” might I add) and also allows folks to leave their cars parked in their lot (just fill out some paperwork) if Miss Janet is providing a shuttle.

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Posted in Backpacking, The Trail, Trip Report | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

First Look @ the MLD Duomid & Solo Inner Net Tent

image1For the last few years I have really wanted the Mountain Laurel Designs (MLD) Duomid and the Solo Inner Net tent. And let’s be real, while my BPW does vary from trip to trip, overall I would classify myself as an “Ultralight” weight backpacker. For this reason, as well as others (discussed later), I wanted these pieces in cuben fiber was opposed to silnylon. But, due to the large price tag, I put off actually buying this set-up for quite some time… Then earlier this year I decided that this would be the year, and I finally hit “submit”…  Continue reading

Posted in Gear, Gear Reviews, Mountain Laurel Designs, Tarp, Tarps, Tent, ZPacks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Pack Cover, Pack Liner, Both, Neither, Something Else…?

P1030768Pack covers, pack liners, neither, both, or something else all together? Being that I am a firm believer in all of the above (plus some), I tend to get emails, or questions/comments on my blog or a YouTube video, about using them rather often. As well, this is a pretty common topic on most any other online backpacking venue, whether it’s a public forum, another backpacker’s blog, YouTube videos, or any other place. So, I figured I would add to those discussions by sharing what, and why, I use what I use… Continue reading

Posted in Arc Blast, Backpacks, Dry Bags/Stuff Sacks/ Pack Liners, Gear, Gear Reviews, Gear Talk, Pack Liner, Rain Gear, Umbrella | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Post Hike Gear Talk: March 2015 – Carver’s Gap to Kincora Hostel (Dennis Cove Rd)

P1050686I recently met up with a few friends to hike a 40 mile section of the AT (for those that don’t know, that’s the “Appalachian Trail”) from Carver’s Gap to Dennis Cove Rd (or more accurately, to Kincora Hostel on Dennis Cove Rd). We hiked in rain, snow, sleet, and sunshiny heat. On ice, in mud, wet leaves, and some almost dry ground. We stayed in shelters 2 nights, and set up our own shelter on 1 night (and technically, 1 other night inside the Overmountain Shelter). The temps ranged from 32 F to mid 50’s, and for 2 solid days I hiked in my rain gear. On another day, I shed most of my clothing, rolled up the sleeves on my base layer shirt, and opened the “vents” on my convertible pants, because it was kinda warm… Continue reading

Posted in Arc Blast, Backpacking, Backpacks, Bear Canister, Cook Kits, Food, Gear, Gear List, Gear Reviews, Gear Talk, Hexamid, Hexanet, Jackets, Pillows, Rain Gear, Sleeping Bags, Sleeping Pads, Stoves, Tarp, Thoughts, Trowels, Umbrella, Wind Shirt, ZPacks | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

AT Section Hike: Carver’s Gap to Dennis Cove Rd (Kincora Hostel)

P1050680I wish I could say that this hike was filled with sunshiny days and views as far as the eyes can see, in which we posed in front of for group shots (it was the Roan Highlands, after all…), but it wasn’t. The first day was only a short 6 mile hike in, but in the on-the-line freezing temps, rain, sleet, snow, and winds that howled around us, flipping our umbrella’s inside out and nearly knocking us on our butts if we didn’t watch our footings, it made for the longest day of our hike… But, don’t get me wrong, this didn’t necessarily make the hike a bad hike either… just had a few obstacles to overcome… Continue reading

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