Home Up Rainsuit Pure Water Declination Boots

Backpacking & Hiking

I've been hiking and backpacking, off and on, for most of my life. I've hiked with a number of local hiking clubs in the Baltimore - Washington DC Metro area including: NVHC, Sierra Club, Mountain Club of Maryland, Center Hiking Club, Potomac Backpackers, Capitol Hiking Club, Ski Club of Washington DC (SCWDC), and Columbia Ski Club. In recent years most of my hiking has been with NVHC or private hikes.

I really prefer backpacking over day hiking. Backpackers can get to places that day hikers can only read about in magazines. Also your senses are stimulated much more: you see, hear, and feel much more when you're in the wilderness for the entire twenty four hour daily cycle. I've found that backpackers and day hikers have a very different outlook on hiking in general. Day hikers are to backpackers what snorkelers are to scuba divers - rookies. While I do quite a bit of dayhiking since its less time consuming than backpacking, I am always amazed at how poorly prepared most dayhikers are. I've done over 1000 dayhikes just in Shenandoah National Park alone.

Backpackers have to be able to solve a lot of problems. These include: initial research about the trip; planning the trip route; selecting and preparing the appropriate gear; knowing how to use the gear; physical conditioning; selecting a menu for the duration and difficulty of the trip; selecting good campsites; purifying drinking water; cooking and cleaning up after; getting your body clean; staying warm and dry for extended periods in inclement weather; staying on your route or getting back on with good map and compass skills. Other activities that make the trip more enjoyable include: photography, writing, sketching, looking for interesting plants and animals, or using an amateur radio transceiver.

Technical Hiking Information

Backpacking Boots

Magnetic Declination
Purifying Water

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