Past Meetup

CANCELED - Beginner Bootcamp

This Meetup is past

38 people went

Price: $10.00 /per person
Location image of event venue


Trip canceled due to flooding in the park. Sorry!!

This is a beginner boot camp for those who are new to backpacking, or who have been out of the sport for quite some time. This will be an overnight weekend trip to Forest Glen, which is relatively close to Chicago. Beginners will become familiar with the skills and gear required to have a fun and safe experience backpacking.

We will hike approximately 11 miles over two days. The terrain at Forest Glen is far steeper than in Chicago, and it can be quite strenuous at times. This is not a "couch to backpack" excursion, and you should be reasonably fit before attending. Please contact one of the organizers if you have any doubts about your fitness level or other questions about the trip.

Note: We always limit group size for our regular backpacking trips. This better protects the natural environment and the serenity of the experience. However, this bootcamp will be quite large. Fortunately, the Forest Glen park is suited for large groups. We will also use multiple organizers to sub divide backpackers, focus on more individual instruction, and limit the numbers of backpackers on the trail at any given time.

In upcoming weeks, the organizers will send additional information to help you in gear selection, food planning, and other preparation details. This includes planning carpools and sharing driving directions. Be responsive to any emails sent through the meetup site and/or comments posted on the site.

Other Guidelines

We practice Leave No Trace, and we expect that everyone attending is also committed to these principles.
No add-ons. If your friend wants to attend, please ask him/her to sign up for the meetup site and join the trip through normal procedures. Organizers are volunteers and not tour directors. Everyone attending will be expected to carry his/her own gear, help set up camp (with necessary instruction) and prepare meals. No pets No children. Older teenagers (16-17 years old) may attend with special permission, and only if their parent/guardian also attends. The waitlist will be governed by a strict "first come, first served" policy. Please help other members and promptly update your RSVP if your plans change.

Forest Glen information

And view the map:

All participants are responsible for obtaining the necessary gear and carrying this gear for the duration of the trip. This includes:

backpack sleeping bag Lightweight tent or shelter food and water Hiking boots (preferred) or other sturdy footware. Keep in mind that you will be carring a large pack on steep (and possibly muddy) hillsides. Sleeping pad (strongly recommended) Stove (Optional - you may boil water on the organizer's stove) **You are encouraged to rent or borrow equipment.

We will send additonal information to help with gear selection. In the meantime, if you are unfamiliar with the types of gear required or have other questions about the expectations for the trip, please contact one of the organizers.

Itinerary for trip

Saturday April 20:
Carpools leave the Chicago are by ~7:00 a.m. Everyone arrives at Forest Glen by ~10:30 a.m. Organizers will provide initial instruction and depart (at intervals) with groups of backpackers. Instruction will continue along the route and in camp.

Sunday, April 21:
Complete loop, and return to cars.
Return to Chicago by late afternoon.

Details on carpool arrangements, directions and contact information will be provided at least a week before the trip.

Cost is $10.00 per person payable at the time of sign up. Cost includes campsite fee, $1 park donation per hiker, and T-shirt.


Please contact one of the organizers through the meetup site (email) or in person at one of the regular group meetings.