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The Epic November Backpacking Overnight Trip - Devil's Den State Park

  • Nov 24, 2012 · 7:00 AM
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The temperatures are dropping and it's time for the crazy, adventurous overnight-backpacking trip. So pack your gear and nip the turkey fatigue in the butt...This one will be a 15 mile loop, and we'll be camping in the back country of the rugged and stunning Butterfield Trail. The trail is rated as strenuous (but not as hard as the ERL)and total elevation change will be 2000 feet. There'll be scambling and slick rocks involved, possibly wet creek crossings.

I doubt that I'll be hiking in with 24 eggs and fresh herbs to prepare a gourmet breakfast this year, but count on spiked hot chocolate, smores and on spontaneous entertainment being provided at night. Maybe Irene will even take a icy bath under the waterfall. Or maybe Mike's roar will finally attract the puma lady he's been wishing for. But remember: What happens on the trail, stays on the trail. And I am not talking about waste. :)

Needles to say (you'd think), cold weather sleeping bag, mat, hiking boots and food & water supplies will be a minimal requirement. If you want to go but don't have all the gear get with us and we'll try to help. On trips like this, there's no "winging" it. Further, participation is, as always, at your own risk.

I am looking forward to it! If you are proud owner of an GPS, I recommend you get that route programmed, that would help us navigating as the trails branch off a lot and are often interpretive.

May the adventure begin...

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Fun. Scenic. Cold. All of the above. I only wish I could have stayed up longer Saturday night. Man, was I pooped-I usually sleep during the day. I'll have to push myself to stay awake and be more social next time.

    November 27, 2012

  • Mandy

    I posted a few more pics on here, and also a bunch more on FB (Take a Hike).

    1 · November 27, 2012

  • Nick C.

    great

    November 26, 2012

  • Tracey H.

    Hey guys. Sorry, I had to drop out...had a crazy past few days and couldn't get everything together in time to pack up and be prepared. Didn't want to delay you all from what I'm sure will be an awesome trip. Hope to catch you all in some future event. Enjoy your weekend in Devils Den!!

    November 24, 2012

    • Jason C.

      Sorry you couldn't make it!

      November 25, 2012

  • Jason C.

    That was an awesome trip! Loved it. Great group of people!

    1 · November 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Another EPIC trip! I had a great time with a great group of folks. The campfire is lays the best.

    November 25, 2012

  • Mandy

    See ya all there! It will be fun! Fill up on calories, lunch will be at least couple hours into the trail.

    November 24, 2012

  • Nick C.

    I will be at the Kum'nGo in Holliser at the Hwy. 165 exit at 7 am tomorrow, thanks.

    November 23, 2012

    • Nick C.

      sounds good, thanks

      November 23, 2012

  • Mandy

    Guys, be sure to prep for the cold. And the crazy hunters!
    Also recommend carrying extra a large mouth Nalgene bottle, cause tubes of hydro bladders might freeze up on you.

    November 23, 2012

  • Mandy

    Jason, leaving your car at the service station is just fine. They are used to us! :-)

    November 23, 2012

  • Mandy

    Sure! Glad to have you! Many are carpooling from Sgf.
    Make sure you bring the right gear for the cold.

    November 23, 2012

  • Brad

    The rsvp status states their are 2 spots open, is this true. If so i will rsvp. I will meet at the trail head at 10. Will this be ok?

    November 23, 2012

  • Mike B.

    And I thought you were a hardcore backpacking kinda group! Lol. My perspective is so damaged:)

    1 · November 23, 2012

  • Mandy

    We are not...too cold. :-)

    November 23, 2012

  • Mike B.

    So is anyone coming down on Friday night now?

    November 23, 2012

  • Mandy

    If you leave Saturday, reply to this and say if you want to car pool.

    November 21, 2012

    • Jason C.

      I'm planning on leaving Saturday. I would like to ride with someone if possible.

      November 22, 2012

  • Mandy

    Stay warm Mike!!! Looking forward to it!

    November 22, 2012

  • Mike B.

    I'm headed up there tomorrow pm no matter what. I guess I'll just be camped in the campground near the trailhead somewhere. My number is[masked] for anyone coming down tomorrow night.

    November 22, 2012

  • Mike B.

    Do they have any cabins available this weekend? Might be something some could go in on to avoid the cold

    November 22, 2012

    • Ian Q.

      Good idea....I will have to call and check tomorrow. Worst case...we'll just drive down sat morning with everyone else .

      November 22, 2012

  • Ian Q.

    Just checked weather for Winslow AR (devils den park area)....down to 21 degrees Friday night. Not sure we are going to try to camp in that kind of cold or not. For those of you that are camping Friday night ..... Make sure you have a warm bag. Saturday night is mid/high 30s, so that's better.

    November 22, 2012

  • Mandy

    Also, some of us may drive down Friday night, using I-44. Anybody interested?
    The other group leaving Saturday morning will have to take US65 to pick up Nick. I changed the time to 7am so that you should be at the trail head by 10am, so we can make it to camp before sunset.

    November 19, 2012

    • Nick C.

      Jason Cardoza are you leaving on Friday and if so do you have room for one?

      November 22, 2012

    • Jason C.

      Nick, I'm planning on either riding my motorcycle or catching a ride with someone. The weather Friday looks a little chilly. Trying to decide if Friday or Saturday would be better...

      November 22, 2012

  • Mandy

    Everybody remember to wear hunters orange! Happy thanksgiving!

    1 · November 22, 2012

    • Jason M.

      Don't have any, I'll just hide behind Irene. :-)

      November 22, 2012

  • Mandy

    Is anybody friends with Michelle and can contact her to find out if she's still on wither her guests?

    November 20, 2012

    • Mandy

      I haven't heard from her. I put her on the waiting list for now and put Jackson on.

      November 21, 2012

  • Mandy

    If you leave Friday, replay to this and say if you want to car pool and when you'd like to leave.

    November 21, 2012

    • Jason M.

      I called Ian to ask him about Friday. Anyway, I was going to camp Sunday night and mountain bike either Slaughter Pen, or Devil's Den, but I think I'll do that Friday afternoon and meet/camp with you all Friday night instead. So, I will be meeting Friday camping folks that evening. I'm guessing you're camping at the trailhead Friday night/

      November 21, 2012

  • Nick C.

    Anybody going on Friday and has room for me let me know, I would like to tag along, I can meet you in Springfield or wherever is good for you on Friday. Everybody have a Happy Thanksgiving and eat as much as you want because we will be burning it off days later.

    November 21, 2012

  • Ian Q.

    There is a parking area on the south end of the park....you can see a foot bridge going across the river from where you park. There is a trail head there. Let's all meet there no later than 10am. Remember, everyone needs to swing by the ranger station first and sign in. Tell them you are doing the Butterfield Trail Loop. the trail starts after you cross the bridge.

    November 20, 2012

  • Ian Q.

    There is a parking area on the south end of the park....you can see a foot bridge going across the river from where you park. There is a trail head there. Let's all meet there no later than 10am. Remember, everyone needs to swing by the ranger station first and sign in. Tell them you are doing the Butterfield Trail Loop. the trail starts after you cross the bridge.

    November 20, 2012

  • Mandy

    Okay, I fixed the time. The Saturday group must LEAVE at 7am. So you'll want to meet around 6:30.
    We'll need you at the Trailhead at 10am, so that we'll have enough daylight to get at least half the loop done. I'll leave it up to everbody where they want to meet, what route they want to take (I44 or US65)...or when they want to come down, if they come down on Friday.

    November 20, 2012

  • Jason C.

    I'm pretty excited about this trip! Still need to pull all the gear together. It's been a while since I've done this long of a trip. I haven't done anything quite this serious. I run half marathons once or twice a year and do a lot of hiking, so I should be ready for it. I'm a bit nervous because I won't have time to do a practice hike with gear. I've been working in Topeka lately and just moved besides, so my schedule has been full.

    November 11, 2012

    • Mandy

      Jason, might wanna check craig's list...or post on our Take a hike Facebook page...

      November 19, 2012

    • Jason C.

      Got one! Thanks!

      1 · November 19, 2012

  • Mandy

    Alright, I am missing confirmation from: Jeff (+1), Tracey, Michelle (+2). Please let us know if you're going or not and whith or without guests. Thanks!

    November 19, 2012

    • Mandy

      Never mind about Tracey...I got her checked. sorry.

      November 19, 2012

  • Ian Q.

    Or....another option is to head west on I-44 to Joplin...then take 71 south to 540 south ...pretty much a straight shot. Might be faster than all of those country roads around Cassville.

    November 19, 2012

  • Kevin

    I've hiked this recently, so I'll back out and let Tracey check it out. If someone else backs out I might jump back in.

    November 18, 2012

    • Mandy

      Kevin, you're in and so is Tracey, period. :)

      November 19, 2012

    • Tracey H.

      Thanks Mandy! Looking forward to the trip, and to meeting you all, too!!

      November 19, 2012

  • Ian Q.

    As far as the fastest way to get down there....google is saying take sunshine (hwy 14) west to Aurora then take 39 south to Jenkins, then 248 then mo-37 all the way to Rogers AR. Then head south some more to Fayetteville, then 540 to devils den park. Is there a better way?? For camping...I figured that we will probably want to camp at Rock hole camp or Junction camp. They are at the 7-9 mile markers. Of if everyone is feeling up to it we could hike to the spring at mile 10. All "camps" are close to water.

    November 19, 2012

  • Irene

    Tommow is 40/60 temp, anyone intersected to do a PACKtice hike at Busiek?

    November 17, 2012

    • Craig R.

      i was going to camp and hike at Busiek this weekend, but the dept of conservation people told me that i couldn't camp and probably shouldn't hike because of hunting season (wear orange if you do!). My friend Erin and I are going to hike the White River Valley trail at Table Rock State Park instead if you'd like to join us.

      November 17, 2012

    • Jason C.

      Tomorrow as in Sunday? I might be up for it.

      November 18, 2012

  • Derek and Summer R.

    Derek and Summer are still a GO! Looking forward to it.

    November 16, 2012

  • Jason M.

    Just to re-affirm, I am attending!

    November 16, 2012

  • Nick C.

    There is a McDonalds beside Kum & Go in Hollister at the College of the Ozarks exit (also Hwy 165 exit), if there is room, would be great, I could be there shortly after 8am to meet the convoy

    November 16, 2012

  • Irene

    Kelly, Brad & I are going.

    November 15, 2012

  • Mandy

    Nick, if you are gonna be at a service station by US65, I am sure the convoy can stop to pick you up. :-)

    November 15, 2012

  • Nick C.

    Anybody have room and able to pick me up in Branson/Hollister?

    November 15, 2012

  • Mike B.

    I'm in!! Looking forward to it! I'm headed to NC this weekend for a mtn. Bike trip:)

    November 15, 2012

  • Kevin

    Also, since I will be coming from Fayetteville where can I meet you? I'm guessing the visitors center at around 10:30 since you will need to get permits. My # is[masked]

    November 14, 2012

    • Mandy

      Sounds good for now.

      November 15, 2012

  • Kelly W.

    Does each person need a permit, if so do you know the cost?

    November 14, 2012

    • Kevin

      There is no charge, and usually you just need one for each vehicle. You fill out a form naming everyone in the party and include when you expect to return. If you don't return after a certain period of time, then they send out a search party.

      November 14, 2012

  • Kevin

    I am ready to backpack. The last time I did this loop it was really too warm. The forecast right now is for 60 during the day and 40 at night. Has it been decided which direction and where camp will be?

    November 14, 2012

  • Kelly W.

    Mandy, is that a pactise hike or a packtice hike Ha.

    November 10, 2012

    • Mandy

      No practise, definitely a 40+ pound PACKtrice hike.

      November 14, 2012

  • Mike B.

    Irene those are your trekking poles and yes I want you to bring them for you!

    November 11, 2012

  • Kelly W.

    If my boss will let me have Saturday the 24th off I'am in.

    November 10, 2012

  • Mandy

    For those who have never backpacked before...this is not a real good beginner's trip.
    Your pack should weigh about 38-45 pounds. That might not sounds like much, but after a couple of hours of trekking you may think different about that.
    If you have never dayhiked with a complete load of gear, I recommend that you carefully evaluate your abilities. I don't want you to be miserable or to cause part of the group turn around. There are some more day trips offered the next weekends, I STRONGLY URGE you to pack your full gear and do a pactise hike.

    1 · November 1, 2012

    • Mandy

      Irene, you're hilarious!

      November 2, 2012

    • Craig R.

      Mandy, I am signed up for the Hawksbill hike as well as the Goat Trail hike next weekend.

      Irene, Busiek is where I was thinking too. There's enough trail there to get in a full day's worth of hiking. I'm thinking probably next Sunday, 11/11. Would that work for you?

      November 2, 2012

  • Irene

    Yes, if you can "skinny dip" in icy water under the moonlight this trip what you're looking for!!!

    1 · November 2, 2012

  • Mike B.

    I'd also add some trekking poles!!!! They help take some of the pressure off the knees! That's how I strained my knee when we did the Eagle Rock Loop.

    November 1, 2012

    • Irene

      This is where I lost two-toe nails! =) Awesome place!

      November 2, 2012

    • Irene

      Mike, still have you trekking poles. Do you want me to bring it on the 24th?

      November 2, 2012

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