Upcoming Trips

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Upcoming Trips & Events
2024

  •  Backpack in Channel Islands National Park, CA - also hiking, kayaking, & scuba diving
  •  Backpack on the Sunshine Coast Trail, BC
  •  Lancaster Covered Bridge Metric Century Bike Ride, Lancaster County, PA 

Other Outdoor Experience
Wilderness First Aid Certified 5 or 6 Times
Taught a weekend Backpacking Course at REI for 5 Years
Took sailing & scuba diving courses at Penn State, and was active in Nittany Divers
Was active in the Cal Sailing Club at the University of California at Berkeley
I've been hiking, backpacking, and canoeing since I was in Boy Scouts & Explorers

Backpacking & Backcountry Skiing Trip Fitness Preparation
These week long trips are physically difficult and require quite a bit of physical conditioning to get ready for them. This is what I do in a typical year:
Ride 1500 -2500 miles on my road bike
Hike 500 miles
Backpack 100 miles
Backcountry ski 50 miles
Swim 75 miles
Gym weight machines 150 times

Participants do not have to do this much, but you will have to work out a minimum of 4x per week for 3-4 months to get ready for these week long multi-day wilderness trips. Backpacking, backcountry skiing, or mountain climbing - all day, is calorically equivalent to running a marathon.

Multiday Wilderness Trip Technical Complexity & Physical Difficulty
These week long (or longer) wilderness trips are exponentially more technically complex, and physically difficult than dayhikes. For the trip leader, or solo participants, they represent a huge amount of research and logistical planning for: the larger trip location region; detailed daily navigation planning, buying or creating maps (usually both); selecting, checking, and preparing gear; determining a menu, and preparing/packing food, protecting food from animals - are bear canisters required; to name a few things to be done. You have to consider hazards such as: river crossings, permanent snow field crossings, high & low tide at headlands on coastal backpacks, crossing or skirting bogs, quicksand, difficulty of trail treadway, any class 3 trails, and avalanche terrain just to name a few. Through hikes on longer trails are usually broken down into week long segments as 7-8 days of food is usually the maximum that people want to carry. How and where do you resupply on longer trips? Because this does represent a considerable investment of time, I leave the details on my website so it can be helpful to others - at least as a good starting point for your own trip planning.

See Previous Trips link below for details on some of my previous trips.

Wilderness Navigation Tools
I have been creating my own custom topographic maps for well over 20 years, and always carry the following navigation tools on these trips:

  •  Large scale paper topographic map of the region, like Trails Illustrated, which show the big picture for unexpected, but now necessary route changes, and road access
  •  Small scale (1:24000) custom created and printed paper topographic maps for daily detailed navigation
  •  A real compass with baseplate and mirror, readable to 2, estimate to 1
  •  Altimeter watch to track daily elevation gain & loss, must set sample rate sufficiently high to not skip ups and downs
  •  iPhone (or Android) replaces a dedicated GPS receiver as it is lighter and can hold numerous apps & related information
  •  iPhone apps: GaiaGPS + map, AllTrails + map, Compass, Theodolite
  •  iPhone maps: must download any required maps at home in advance with internet connection - won't have access in the wilderness
  •  Mapping software: Topo CD's, AllTrails, CalTopo, GaiaGPS - all great tools, use these to plan the detailed route and print (store) small scale maps

Annual Bike Rides
See www.LancasterFarmlandTrust.org for Pedal to Preserve bike ride details (no longer run)
See www.LancasterBikeClub.org for Covered Bridge Metric Century bike ride details
See Annapolis Bicycle Racing Team | 2007 Bay Country Century for Bay Country Century bike ride details (no longer run)
See Baltimore Bicycling Club for Civil War Century bike ride details

See Sea Gull Century for Sea Gull Century bike ride details

Previous Trips

See Previous Trips descriptions for my multiday wilderness trips.
 

Required Dayhiking Gear
For dayhikes wear hiking boots or hiking shoes and bring lunch, energy snacks, two quarts of water (more if hot), raingear, extra clothes, sun block, sunglasses, insect repellent, map, compass, pocket knife, and a small flashlight.
These are the ten essentials - you don't carry them for the 95% of the time you never use them, you carry them for the 5% of the time you need them desperately.

It's also important to bring a positive attitude and a sense of humor - they will still work after everything else has failed.
You carry plans B, C, and D in your pack.
It's only a dayhike if you make it back at the end of the day.

"Working on  the 'Tudes"
Latitude, Longitude, Altitude, & Attitude
Get the first three right, and the last one takes care of itself!
 


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