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Congratulations to Gail/Gutsy and the rest of you as you
finish your thru-hikes! It is inspiring to see your examples.
It is important to me to see the journals of those traveling
the long green tunnel, how you cope with difficulty, and the
moments of triumph as well. I've heard a lot about the post-
trail letdown, and I would appreciate any descriptions of those
feelings as well.
My best wishes go out to those that were on the trail when
Hurricane Fran hit. My mom lives in Richmond, VA. The storm was
so bad where she was that she started smoking again. I went
through a few growing up there, and I can't imagine having to
ride that one out in a shelter. I hope everyone made it o.k.
I found a couple of good books about distance hiking (Walking
The Appalachian Trail - Luxenberg; The Pacific Crest Trail
Hiker's Handbook - Jardine). I have put together a training
program based on them and a couple of things I've seen on the
net. As I already spend a lot of time walking with weight on
my back (I'm majoring in Physics), I'm fortunately not at square
one. More like square 2 1/4.
I'm going to hike up to the Mt. Griffith Observatory from
Hollywood a couple of times a week. I'm going to do use a stair
climbing machine and a cross-country skiing maching for aerobic
conditioning a couple time a week. Then I'm going to do some
Nautilus Training a couple of time a week to build some muscle
bulk. That along with a daily stretching routine should cover
me. I'm also planning on doing some section hiking on the PCT
during Christmas and Summer breaks. That ought to be a good
test of my organizational skills and ability to do long
distances without much human contact at high levels of exertion.
All together, I think I've put together a good plan, but if
anyone has any other suggestions, I'd love to have them.
Now for my questions:
Both authors pointed to nutrition as being a major problem
on the trail. Has anybody ever tried using Met-RX or any of the
other mega-nutritional supplements on the trail? Did they help?
There seems to be a controversy surrounding the use of boots
versus jogging shoes. Any opinions?
Jardine suggested that feet will grow up to 2 shoe sizes
under the stress of thru-hiking. Has anyone noticed this type
of thing happen to them?
I want to go as light as possible, but not a minimalistic as
Jardine suggests. I can appreciate the necessity of doing so if
attempting to thru-hike the PCT, but that isn't what I'm preparing
for. I've got a different hike in my mind that I want to hike, I
guess. Beside, I might drop my stuff over a 1,000' cliff.
Here's what I looking at as far as major pieces of gear, so
far. I'd appreciate any input you might have.
Tent- Eureka Zepher. Are bivies/semi-bivies o.k.? Could the
rainfly be altered by a pro? Maybe attach a good nylon
tarp over the entrance for a dry place for my pack and
Filter- PUR Hiker (unless something better comes out)
Bag- clueless?? What was that about Feather Friends?? Is it down?
How can anything keep a down bag dry?
Wet Gear- Marmot Denali Jacket and Guide pants (is this overkill??)
Also heard about some Nike wet gear that was supposed to
be pretty decent
Umbrellas- Do they work as advertised in the book? Have any of you
Pack- Looking at Gregory packs, any other suggestions? also need a
contact for Gregory
Stove- I'm totally confused about this one. There seems to be 20
to 30 good ones and then there's all of the different gases
Hiking Poles- considering using them as I've had surgery on both
my knees, and they seem to be useful in dealing with
the fanged population (Snakes...It had to be snakes.)
Palmtop Computer- I want to be able to post a trail journal, but
little else. Is it even possible to keep one of
these things intact? How?
Duck Call- How else does UnderDuck announce his arrival into town!
I need a sturdy one obviously ;)
There! I realize this is a ridiculously long list of questions. I am
sorry about that. I'm just don't have a budget to make major mistakes
on gear. Thanks a lot in advance for all your help.
"Oh where, oh where has my..."
"There you are. Don't sneak up on me like that."