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[at-l] Times are a changin' (with apologies to Bob Dylan)

>I do believe the times,,they have changed!

That they have.  One of my favorite trail stories appeals to my history
geek roots.

This past summer I was doing the LT again. Somewhere in northern Vermont,
I met a couple at the campsite. As with most backpackers, they were very
friendly, easy peope to talk with.

As we were eating our dinner, the husband was telling me about his 1920's
vintage Long Trail Guide.  This guide reccomended that two outdoorsmen
(that fact alone is much different today!) carry, for one weeks worth of
hiking, 5 lbs of sugar, so much flour, so many eggs.  These hearty
outdoorsmen no doubt cooked these scrumptious meals on a woodfire, and
slept on the previously mentioned pine boughs.

Of course, this same guidebook mentioned how  a hike should kill
porcupines on sight.

But, eighty years later, the essentials of backpacking are still there.
We hike for many different reasons. The technology and methods may
change, but why we seek the tonic of the wilderness will not change. 
Many, many, many moons from now, I suspect a certain type of person will
still seek the challenge and rewards of the outdoors. The gear they use
will be different from what we use, but the end result will be the same.

Gear really does not matter. Backpacking is a mental thing. Be respectful
of your fellow hikers (calls to the mythical Aunt Matilda might not be
appropriate. :D), but do not lose sight of what we are all out here for.


.....of course, some things will not change. Aretha Franklin's "Respect"
is in the background as I write this....damn, this song must be one of
the top 5 greatest songs of all time.

Eanie, Meanie. Jelly Beanie. The spirits are about to speak!
--Bullwinkle Moose
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