Update, please read:
With this many people we many not be able to get enough water back to the camp for everyone to have all they need. I suggest that you bring all the water you need for yourself with you to the trail head and we can let you know if we have been able to make a stash at camp. The rule of thumb is one gallon of water per person per day, but with only a quick hike Sunday a full gallon for the second day is probably too much. Plan according to your normal drinking needs for a hike this long plus cooking water and some extra. It is just best to come prepared and be able to leave some water in the car.
Tom & I are putting together a beginner's backpacking trip. This will entail hiking in with all of our camping gear, camping overnight, and hiking back out. The total mileage will be about 10 miles split over the 2 days. This will be a precursor to future backpacking treks.
4 Notch Loop is a beautiful section of the Lonestar Hiking Trail. This trip will give you the opportunity to try out backpacking without breaking your back on a high mileage hike. You will get the chance to practice carrying some weight without getting in over your head.
If you have ever considered doing any kind of extended hiking trail or backpacking, I recommend this trip. If you do not have backpacking gear, do not worry. Some of us have extra gear to loan out, and you can always rent packs from REI. REI rents backpacks to members for 3 days for $11. Nonmembers are $15 for 3 days. The packs are their Quest series. They are internal frame packs that retail for about $250. They do not include tents, pads, hydration, etc.
Please be accurate in your RSVP's for this trip because some of us will be making a water drop at the campsite ahead of time. There is no water available for us on the trail, so it will be very important that we account for this accurately.
Basic Supplies: Backpack (not the kind you take to school), sleeping bag, tent, clothing layers, plenty of water, headlamp, food & snacks, earplugs (in case of snorers), toothbrush and toiletries
These are the very basics. You can go through the complete backpacking list by REI at http://www.rei.com/learn/expert... for additional ideas. Keep your weight in mind. Collect all of your supplies and weigh them to get a realistic idea of the weight you will carry. Then go for a walk with that much weight in a backpack. You can fill the backpack with canned foods or weights to simulate the same weight you will carry while backpacking. Let me know if you have any questions! :-)
We look forward to seeing you all there! :-)