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RE: [pct-l] big pack or little pack

>From: "Reynolds, WT" <reynolds@ilan.com>

>Ray's solution is to go ultra-light and forsake comfort [and some say
>safety] for distance. You enjoyment is reaching your goal -- Canada!

I have never forsaken less comfort, nor enjoyed each day of hiking more, 
than when carrying an ultra light pack on the PCT last summer. Nor was I 
alone. Ask anyone who has completed an extended hike in both styles (light 
vs. heavy). It matters not the goal, the physical act of walking is simply 
far easier with a lightweight load. Ah, but at what cost in camp? None, in 
my experience. Loss of comfort? No, mental shift entirely. What about 
feeling rushed in order to avoid having to carry much food? Hike at your own 
pace, the lightweight load of gear will actually better accommodate an 
additional food load. The alternative to all this? To pretend that a heavy 
load is not heavy, energy-sapping, or uncomfortable to carry. Publish these 
ideas on carrying heavy loads while buying your way into far-off trail towns 
for continuous reprieves from the wilderness, and I will listen. That said, 
we should all strive to hike our own hike, and all that good stuff.

- Blisterfree

>From: "Reynolds, WT" <reynolds@ilan.com>
>To: Pct-L <pct-l@backcountry.net>
>Subject: RE: [pct-l] big pack orlittle pack
>Date: Fri, 28 Jan 2000 17:40:51 -0800
>Ray Jardine makes two (2) assumptions, neither of which is necessarily 
>The first assumption is that one wishes to reach Canada. The second is that
>resupply points are relatively fixed.
>However, assuming that these assumptions are true for you, then Jardine's
>conclusions are relatively correct. Every pound you add to your pack 
>the miles that you can walk in a day. This requires you to carry more food
>between resupply points, which add more weight, which slows you down even
>more, which requires you to carry more food between resupply points, which
>add more weight, which slows you down even more, which . . . {repeat ad
>Ray's solution is to go ultra-light and forsake comfort [and some say
>safety] for distance. You enjoyment is reaching your goal -- Canada!
>Needless to say, this is not a trade that many backpackers would make. Most
>backpackers enjoy "being out there" as opposed to "reaching there". [It is
>true that most backpackers have goals and most thruhikers enjoy the 
>The difference is emphasis] Most arguments on this forum about "light"
>versus "heavy" packs are really arguments about philosophy. [Forget stories
>from Greg and Monte about hiking the entire trail with 100 pound packs.
>Continents have shifted since the Neolithic age. The trail is much longer
>and harder now] "Ray Jardine" types are saying 'this is the best way to 
>the entire trail' and "heavyweights' are saying 'this way is the best way 
>enjoy the trail [safely]'
>To refute Ray's arguments you must:
>1-Be one of those Neolithic supermen [these are special order. they do not
>come stock]
>2-Endure pain, hardship [and some say risk your health]
>3-Decide that making Canada this year is not all that a big deal
>4-Spend money to change the resupply points.
>Note : Option 4 may be new to some of you. I will illustrate this approach
>in Section A and thru the Sierra. The Sierra is probably the hardest. For
>most of the trail carrying 2-3 days food is enough.
>Section A-You need not carry anything but a day pack EXCEPT thru the San
>Felipe Hills. You can sleep in a 4WD every other night. Your pack weight
>[sans food and water] can be a pound and you can still sleep in a bed.
>The Sierra-
>From Kennedy Meadows you can be resupplied at Cottonwood, Vidette Meadows,
>Woods Creek, Le Conte Canyon, Muir Trail Ranch, VVR, Mammoth and Tolumne.
>North of Tuolumne you can resupply at Benson Lake, Sonora Pass, Clark
>Campground, Lake Alpine, Carson Pass, Echo Lake, Meeks Bay and I-80
>You can carry only 4-5 days of food MAXIMUM saving 8-12 pounds of pack
>weight. Other variations are possible. This was off the top of my head. All
>it takes is money.
>Funny how a Option A lifestyle solution can solve an Option B problem.
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