What we're about

This Meetup is for fellow backpackers and outdoor enthusiasts to meet and greet while engaging in day hikes, backpacking trips and outdoor adventures with other people in your town. Talk about locations, equipment, recipes, etc., and find people to take trips with. Trips will range from beginner to advanced to accommodate all levels of backpackers/hikers/adventurers and to encourage those who wish to grow with the sport. There is always new gear to discuss, dream about and oogle over so come on down and join in the discussion around the campfire!

We do a wide variety of trips but specialize in unique trips to very special places. Many of our trips have been copied by numerous other meetup groups such as White Oak Canyon in Winter when the Falls are Frozen, Sunrise from Old Rag, Dolly Sods (we replaced all the trail signs) and work with the National Forest Service in maintaining Dolly Sods, Roaring Plains, Seneca Creek, North Fork Mountain Wilderness/Backcountry areas and get use of a cabin or camp for our work trips that make for a fabulous weekend trip! Adventure trips such as Bridge Day (whitewater rafting and hiking on 2 of the finest river gorges in the country), or our Cross Country Ski trips just to name a few you may have seen. So why not join the group that blazes its own trail rather than copies others? From our toughest day hike series across the Catskills, Adirondacks, and Shenadoah or our Presi Traverse the hard way, easy adventure hikes such as Rickett's Glen (best waterfall hike in the Mid-Atlantic), we go from fun to as much as you can handle....and then some! Speaking of fun, Patricia enjoys doing canoe/kayak trips such as Assateague National Seashore, or Jon's Laurel Highlands Trail or Trail Days (biggest hiking festival in the U.S. along with a hike to Mt. Rogers), or Roan Mountain (best Bald trip in the East), and West Rim Trail by Steve, or Pete going backpacking wherever, whenever and as far as he can, just to name a few examples. Yep, we still do the classics, such as Old Rag and other Shenandoah National Park Circuits or local AT hikes, why not since they are close? But like to range from the Smokies to Maine and will even go out West including Alaska or anywhere we can get to! So you will find lots of great outdoor adventures here with some of the best people you will find anywhere...smart, tough, fun-loving, yet safe (we all look out for and help one another). If you need to learn, we will share our knowledge, but hey, hope to learn something from you as well, which is part of the beauty of the group, we are always learning and growing! So you will find lots of good, clean, healthy outdoor fun here, with some of the best people you will run across, all different and unique, but supportive and united in our love of fun, healthy outdoor adventures, so welcome and please join us for an adventure soon and when ready, give back which is all we are doing!

Upcoming events (4+)

Great Range Traverse - Adirondacks - 26 miles - 9000' gain plus a 3/4 Event!

Second in our 2022 Extreme Hike/Backpack Series, The Great Range Traverse in the High Peaks area of the Adirondacks is said to be one of the three toughest and most beautiful day hikes in the Eastern US. Parts of it are above the treeline with gorgeous views of the surrounding peaks. Our route will be slightly different, but similar enough to this trip report that it will give you a good idea of what to look forward to.

Great Range Traverse (http://alavigne.net/Outdoors/ImageGallery/2004/Solstice2004/)

Here is the route in Google Earth format. To view this file, first install Google Earth and then download the file.

Great Range Traverse in Google Earth (http://files.meetup.com/317560/GreatRangeTraverse.kmz)

This is an Extreme hike. You must be an experienced long distance hiker to consider participating and must have completed our Training Hike Series, especially the last 4 long events of 24 miles+. If you have not participated in our training hike series, please follow up your RSVP with an email to me that provides a summary of your provable qualifying experience, which should include several recent 25-35 mile day hikes with extreme elevation gain for the Full Event and 16-20 mile hikes with extreme elevation gain for the 3/4 event. If the group leaders are not confident you are capable of completing this hike with good cheer, you will be removed from the RSVP list.


TMax-n-Topo's Hostel
5046 Cascade Rd
Lake Placid, NY[masked]

From the south? I-87 Exit 30, turn left on Rt 9 and in 0.7 mile go straight on NY Rt 73 West 32 miles to the Hostel on the right.

Itinerary [tbd]

At 3:00am on Saturday, we will drive 15 minutes to the trailhead at Adirondack Loj. Parking is available at the trailhead for $10. That evening or Sunday morning, we will shuttle the drivers back to pick up their cars Details for the actual route are available here:




After the hike, we will enjoy a group meal (menu to be determined if at "camp" or choose a restaurant if we finish early enough) and then gather outside by the campfire to share our grand experiences of the day if you have any gas left in the tank! For Sunday there are more high peaks to bag nearby as we work on our 46'ers!

We will develop a list of activities to do on our off day (Saturday or Sunday) in the Lake Placid area. However, if the weather is bad for Saturday, we will do the GRT on Sunday instead. The Lake Placid area has many wonderful things to do so as usual with our Extreme Hikes this will be a great vacation as well! Please note we are doing this hike due to the cooler weather, but black flys can be out, so take that into consideration in your planning on camping versus staying at the hostel with friends. The hostel is located with amazing views of the high peaks, so well worth the effort!



Gear List

As always, be sure to bring plenty of water and trail food for this hike. 3 to 4 liters of water are suggested. You should also bring extra socks and dress in layers. Proper fitting footwear suitable for extreme hiking is essential.

We use Covid-19 protocols, so you must be fully vaccinated and able to prove it and make your own transportation arrangements.

ONLINE (self-paced) Wilderness First Aid available ALL DAYS NOW until May 31st

In your own home, at your own leisure (anytime -- not just the date of this event): now you can learn a ton in the online portion of Disaster + Travel + Wilderness First Aid! COURSE TOPICS VIDEOS are almost exactly as MEDIC SOLO always presents them with the latest on disaster and wilderness medical science. Intermixed at several points we guide you to practice various skills.

Choose one of two ways to learn:
A) On-line only- view our 7-hour course at home, do the self-guided practice and receive a certificate of completion. Fee: $105.
This option, more INFO and REGISTRATION / TO GET STARTED: www.solowfa.com/online-course.htm
B) Blended learning-view our 7-hour course at home NOW, and receive a 3-year credit to attend one of our in-person dtWFA classes in order to practice skills learned with one of our seasoned instructors. Upon the successful completion of the in-person class, you will receive a 2-year SOLO WFA certification. Fee: $230.
This option, more INFO and REGISTRATION / TO GET STARTED: www.solowfa.com/blended-learning.htm

Sneak peek at the course:

• "Fantastic online program."
• "The quality of teaching and the personality of each instructor was ABSOLUTELY STELLAR. There is a lot more to learning than just the textbook curriculum, especially with medical situations."
• "It was much less stressful having the opportunity to be taught on my own schedule rather than having two intensive days."
• Much appreciation for the ability to click "pause" to take notes and write down questions (which MEDIC will answer), and ability to rewind and replay demonstrations, explanations, etc. -- can't do that in a live class.
• Full transparency, all feedback surveys, unfiltered: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/18qcXYJt-CUoLW0hqLtFRmGv7H858iflrq7fguSk6zfM/edit?usp=sharing

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Let's all please do our part to maintain social distancing, and do what we can to prevent problems and treat injured people, so as to reduce demands on hospitals. Exercise outdoors, where allowed, is great to boost your immune system; however we've found many people on trails are not respecting social distancing when passing by. If you decide to go out, when you see someone you'll pass by, please proactively step off trail at least 6 feet. Try to leave no trace as best you can, stepping only on durable surfaces like bare rock when possible. Thanks!

Now is a time when your dtWFA skills may be needed most.
• Hospital beds are filling up and we need to reduce their demand. If with dtWFA skills you treat someone and they no longer need to go to the hospital, fantastic and so helpful in many ways.
• Some parks are seeing their highest-ever mid-week daytime visits. More people are outdoor adventuring and most don't have the skills you're considering learning, and may be in need especially as more first-timers go explore the outdoors.
• Hopefully the following will never happen: fewer EMTs staffing ambulances and thus a call to 911 for medical assistance is less responsive, or outbreaks occur within hospitals and those entire facilities end up being quarantined and unavailable ... leaving it up to dtWFA-trained folks to provide care.

Thank you everyone, for all that you do to strengthen our communities, making disaster and wilderness areas safer for all.

Mt. Rogers, Grayson Highlands - weekend Backpacking trip

Needs a location


Mount Rogers is the highest point in the state of Virginia, with a summit elevation of 5,729 feet (1,746 m) above sea level. It lies in Grayson County and Smyth County, Virginia, about 6.45 miles (10.38 km) WSW of Troutdale, Virginia, within the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area and Jefferson National Forest.

The summit is most easily accessed from Grayson Highlands State Park by following the Appalachian Trail southbound for 3.5 miles (5.6 km) to a blue-blazed trail leading to the summit, which is covered by trees and marked with four National Geodetic Survey triangulation station disks; a standard station disk marked with an equilateral triangle and three standard reference disks marked with arrows pointing towards the station disk. Because the Appalachian Trail passes within a half mile of the summit, the area is especially popular with hikers.

Mount Rogers is the northernmost habitat of the high-altitude Southern Appalachian spruce-fir forests, which are found in only five other locations in the United States: the Great Smoky Mountains, the Black Mountains, the Great Balsam Mountains, Grandfather Mountain, and Roan Mountain. This forest type is one of the few remaining habitats of the Fraser fir, which is only found at high elevations, typically above 5,500 feet (1,700 m), in the southern Appalachian Mountains.

Elevation: 5,729 ft (1,746 m)
Location: Grayson / Smyth counties, Virginia.
Range: Blue Ridge Mountains

For this 2 day trip we will maximize our time in the Mt. Rogers high country with some rock scrambling, so this will be a big highlight tour of the area but specifically to enjoy the blooming rhododendrons and azalea!. Please come prepared with good boots, socks, gaiters, etc. Steve and I can cover some ground and I will go lighter than normal (for me) so be ready for it. Hence, buddy up with tents so we can cut down on weight as much as possible, but be ready for wind, cold and always rain. As usual we will do a group dinner on Saturday night of Shrimp Scampi, so will need to share the food and cooking equipment as well. Due to the possibility of thunderstorms for group safety, come prepared for High Country Backpacking (meaning good rain gear with layers in case the temperature drops drastically). This trip is a long backpacking trip, so we can cover more ground with our 2 days of "fun in the sun". Be prepared to start relatively early on Saturday (maybe by 8 AM if we don't get in too late, hah!), hitting Mt. Rogers and staying along the Crest Zone until we drop back down to "pony heaven". Since we hike this area for Trail Days every year (a month before this trip), I know the trails very well, however be ready for some rock scrambling as well. If you have not backpacked with me before, please contact me so I can determine if this is the right trip for you. Details soon, but expect a strenuous trip of about 20 miles.



Massie Gap GPS Coordinates: N[masked] and W [masked]

We follow Covid-19 protocols, so you must be vaccinated and organize your own transportation.
Have a ride: Please post where you are coming from, what time, and how many spots you have.
Need a ride: Post that you need a ride and contact any offers via e-mail for those that are offering rides.

By RSVPing in this or any WB trips, you agree to Washington Backpackers waiver liability terms.

Disaster+Travel+Wilderness First Aid (In-Person) Certification Course

Hands-on learn how to save life & limb, when mired in the wilderness of an urban disaster zone, travel or rural area far from hospital, or natural area miles from an access point, during the critical minutes or hours before ambulance arrival. Blend of classroom instruction and hands-on problem-solving rescue scenario practice. Come away with actual do-it-yourself care-giving skill and confidence, and 2-year SOLO certification. Counts as WFR Recertification, too. No prerequisites.


WHO: Open to the general public, adults & teens with solid attention spans. Know your loved ones are safe wherever they are.

WHY: Mired in a disaster zone, travel or rural area far from a hospital, or natural area miles from an access point ... accidents, destructive weather, and terrorism happen, and all-too-often members of a group are not capable of dealing with the emergency. This leads to improper care of the patient, and endangers the entire group. Many recreational accidents are preventable, and improper care of trauma can compound even simple injuries. Very few first aid programs actually address the issues of providing emergency care in a setting where 911 is overwhelmed or not immediately reachable. In this course, classroom instruction and Q&A are interwoven with practical work and problem-solving exercises. Hands-on experience - a most powerful learning tool - during scenarios comprise ~50% of class.

TIMING: This is a 2-day class, Saturday and Sunday, 8:00am -7pm each day.

Fee: $225 (note: another organization in the region charges $305! You save $80!)

Past events (1,153)

Monthly Meeting and Happy Hour

Needs a location

Photos (71,383)