Backpacking – Backcountry Sights https://backcountrysights.com Photos and stories from the outdoors Sat, 16 Dec 2017 13:00:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.1 https://backcountrysights.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/cropped-favicon-1-200x200.png Backpacking – Backcountry Sights https://backcountrysights.com 32 32 123251974 Mark O. Hatfield Wilderness Loop https://backcountrysights.com/2017/10/24/mark-o-hatfield-wilderness-loop/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/10/24/mark-o-hatfield-wilderness-loop/#respond Wed, 25 Oct 2017 02:02:45 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=6040 It's a warm, sunny morning in Cascade Locks on the banks of the Columbia River. Diane and I pull our packs from the trunk of the rental car in a small parking lot beneath the Bridge of the Gods. The Columbia River is not swift, but it is massive. Its serpentine form disappears into the hazy morning air far to the east and west of the bridge. On our side of the river, pine-covered slopes rise steeply toward the sky, forming one side of the Columbia River Gorge. We're both eager to get going, so we shoulder our packs, cross a busy street and stride up a grassy slope toward the trailhead.

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John Muir Trail – At Altitude https://backcountrysights.com/2017/10/09/john-muir-trail-altitude/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/10/09/john-muir-trail-altitude/#respond Mon, 09 Oct 2017 13:00:15 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=5875 As I navigate the switchbacks, I leave the lakes, trees, and then vegetation in general behind. The climb is hard work, but I'm rewarded with incredible views and a sense of adventure; there's something inherently gratifying about trekking through this barren alpine landscape. Even though the trail is clearly defined, it feels as though nobody else has ever been here.

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John Muir Trail – Rainy Days https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/28/john-muir-trail-rainy-days/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/28/john-muir-trail-rainy-days/#respond Thu, 28 Sep 2017 12:00:19 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=5869 To read about earlier or later segments of my John Muir Trail thru-hike, use the navigation links below. Beginning Resupplies Rain Altitude Ascent to Evolution Lake August 3, 2017 | 17.1 mi | +4100′ / -1100′ | View On Map My watch alarm beeps annoyingly at 5:30, alerting me that it’s time to get up. […]

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John Muir Trail – Between Resupplies https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/18/john-muir-trail-resupplies/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/18/john-muir-trail-resupplies/#comments Mon, 18 Sep 2017 13:00:13 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=5798 I hike the John Muir Trail from Red's Meadow to Muir Trail Ranch, crossing Silver Pass and Selden pass along the way. Part 2 of 4 of my JMT thru-hike.

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John Muir Trail – An Alternate Beginning https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/07/john-muir-trail-alternate-beginning/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/09/07/john-muir-trail-alternate-beginning/#comments Thu, 07 Sep 2017 12:00:06 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=5706 Unable to acquire a permit to begin the John Muir Trail at the usual trailhead, Dad and I begin at an alternate location and trek to the famous route.

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Snow-Ready 2017 JMT Gear List https://backcountrysights.com/2017/07/18/jmt-gear-list-2017/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/07/18/jmt-gear-list-2017/#comments Tue, 18 Jul 2017 12:00:47 +0000 http://www.backcountrysights.com/?p=5230 To prepare for a thru-hike of the John Muir Trail (JMT) this summer, I've been examining my backpacking gear and identifying ways to cut weight where I can. My setup is not as light as it could be, but I've made a lot of progress since last year. I've had to adjust a few items to accommodate the heavy snowfall the Sierra Nevada received this winter, but this list is generally applicable for any backpacking trip.

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Dolly Sods Wilderness Loop https://backcountrysights.com/2017/06/30/dolly-sods-wilderness-loop/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/06/30/dolly-sods-wilderness-loop/#comments Sat, 01 Jul 2017 01:17:29 +0000 http://backcountrysights.com/?p=5361 The Dolly Sods Wilderness, located in West Virginia, is an incredible area and is the best backpacking location I've encountered in the mid-Atlantic so far. Dolly Sods offers sweeping vistas, meadows of tall grass, forests of both deciduous and evergreen trees, and most importantly, a sense of wilderness that is difficult to find on the AT.

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Shenandoah Piney Ridge Loop https://backcountrysights.com/2017/06/17/shenandoah-piney-ridge-loop/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/06/17/shenandoah-piney-ridge-loop/#respond Sat, 17 Jun 2017 20:42:10 +0000 http://www.backcountrysights.com/?p=5343 I returned to Shenandoah National Park this weekend for a short 2-day, 1-night trip to Piney Ridge. In contrast to my visit in March, the temperatures were warm and comfortable, and my water remained in a liquid state at all times during the trip. I loved seeing the park in a different season, and particularly enjoyed revisiting a few spots from the March trip.

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Sierra High Route Interactive Map https://backcountrysights.com/2017/05/29/sierra-high-route-interactive-map/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/05/29/sierra-high-route-interactive-map/#respond Mon, 29 May 2017 19:02:08 +0000 http://www.backcountrysights.com/?p=5182 The Sierra High Route (SHR), a trek designed by Steve Roper to traverse the High Sierra, is near the top of my list of hikes to complete. Spanning the same distance as the John Muir Trail (JMT),  the SHR stays high where the JMT dips low. In fact, the High Route doesn’t dip below 9,000 […]

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AT: Weverton Cliffs to Crampton Gap https://backcountrysights.com/2017/05/24/appalachian-trail-weverton-cliffs-crampton-gap/ https://backcountrysights.com/2017/05/24/appalachian-trail-weverton-cliffs-crampton-gap/#comments Wed, 24 May 2017 23:46:17 +0000 http://www.backcountrysights.com/?p=5158 I recently moved to the Washington DC area for the summer. Although I live in one of the most crowded metropolitan areas in the US, there are a surprising number of outdoor activities available! I joined a few hiking and backpacking MeetUp groups to find other like-minded people to share weekend trips with. As luck […]

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