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Classy backpacking

From: Mike
Sent on: Tuesday, July 6, 2010 5:23 PM



I’m sorry I had to cancel our full-moon hike to Halfmoon Mountain because of the half-baked heat. I know that some of you were disappointed, so I’ve rescheduled it for Oct 23, when the temperature will be cooler and the leaves will be prettier. (They’re coming to take me away, haha, heehee.)


But what I really wanted to tell you about is that on Sunday, July 11, we start another (our fourth!) series of beginners’ backpacking classes. They are meant to get (or keep) you going in this sport, which does require a certain amount of gear, planning, and food, and quite coincidentally, each of these is a topic of one of the classes.


The classes are independent and optional – you may register for one, two, or all. (To quote Alex Dumas, “tous pour un, un pour tous” or “three for one and one for something or other.”) Students will also get the chance to practice what we teach during a backpacking trip that is just right for beginners and non alike. The trip is also optional, but students will get first dibs. (This email is optional; try the delete key.) Descriptions of each class and of the trip are below.


Class sizes and the number of trip participants are limited (like me) and you (who register) must be 16 years or older. Registration cost for each class is $20, which is much too cheap. To pay and reserve a spot, or for more info, contact Liz Guertin ([address removed]). The classes and the trip are brought to you by the Sierra Club Potomac Region Outings (SCPRO), and by the letter “B” and the number “8.”





Sun. July 11. 6-9 pm. Basic Backpacking Gear. Basic gear will include: backpack & fitting, tent, sleeping gear, footwear, tips on clothing, and tips on packing light. We will provide information on different types of gear and your options when purchasing gear. We will have gear on-hand and demonstrate hands-on techniques. We will send you home with a gear-list to plan your next trip! Location (Metro, A/C!!):

Sun. Aug. 8. 6-9 pm. Planning a Backpacking Trip. Learn about trip selection, route planning, mapping/GPS overview, Leave No Trace basics, and water planning. We will cover the First Aid Kit and emergency planning and we will have you do some interactive map reading. You will be sent home with trip-planning checklists that you can use to plan your next trip.
Location (Metro, A/C!!):


Sun. Aug. 29. 4-6:30 pm. What to Eat on a Backpacking Trip & Pre-trip Meeting for September Beginner Backpacking Trip. Learn the basics of meal planning and how to cook in the wilderness. Come hungry; we'll be eating! We'll take you through the basic meals for a multi-day trip and provide tips for making your meals delicious and fun! Bring your stove (if you have one) to class -- we will talk about different stove types and practice lighting them and cooking on them. Directly following the class, we will hold our pre-trip meeting for the Sept. 17 backpacking trip for those folks that are going. Location: DC area, park picnic pavilion (TBD).

Fri. -Sun. Sept. 17-19: Beginner Backpacking Trip -- Shenandoah National Park. This trip will include shorter mileage and a reasonable elevation profile. Trip is designed so that the beginner can practice carrying a full pack and gain experience with other backpacking skills. We will spend one night in Big Meadows Campground and one night in the backcountry, near Rose River.

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