I was 13 when I went trekking through the Salmon River Valley, Idaho for a month and went on my first backpacking trip. NOLS course. My family wasn’t particularly outdoors (a conservative expression!), So this trip was my first time camping and spending a lot of time outdoors. From the moment I put the 40-pound pack on my shoulder, I loved everything from unimaginable star density, self-sufficiency, and the joy / fear of being completely vulnerable to elements. Since then, I’ve been on many backpacking trips that took me to some of the most beautiful places I can imagine, but recent trekking along the 41-mile Timberline Trail surrounding Mount Hood is me. It was one of my favorites and the most challenging. When I posted about my trip to Instagram, I got so many questions that I couldn’t avoid posting! Below are my tips for assistance.
1. Prepare your trip carefully.
Well, here are 10 tips that are actually put together, but in reality, true When you are there, it is important because you are yourself. Mother Nature can confuse you, even on popular trails that appear to be relatively low risk (see below). Before you leave, create all items, follow them, and double-check against the complete packing list *. my..and It’s worth checking out All Trails before you goA list of useful tips for hikers who went before you, from bugs to the difficulty of crossing rivers, weather, and tips for specific campsites. The night before you leave Send an email to family and friends every night telling you where you plan to camp.. If something really goes wrong, they will know where to send help.
* The Timberline Trail intersects the PCT, so stuffed packs feel overkill and cheerful. We met “Rhapsody” and “Three Amigo Neddies” (PCT-ers use the trail name) hiking without a stove or tent … Repeat: No stove or tent !!
2. Nature is powerful — trust your instincts and always be prepared to bail.
The Timberline Trail has many challenging river crossings, but the one we were particularly worried about was the Elliott Branch. When we were a few miles away, we started asking hikers to come our way on the best points to cross their experience. Many have reported the same: crossing at a rope line and expecting it to be difficult, but not higher than your hips. Two hours after we arrived, the river became much higher and stronger as the glacier river rose later in the day when the sun melted more water from the glacier. We saw a group of 6 people crossing very difficultly, up to the neck, in the following situations, at the time we were recommended. far From safety. We found a higher point upstream, crossed the other three, tied our arms and leaned our weight into the river. It’s no exaggeration to say that our crossroads are extremely dangerous and life-threatening, but thanks to the power and leadership of the people we were with, we crossed the crossroads. A few hours later, we came across two women who were scheduled to cross later that day. We gave them the answers they didn’t want to hear: don’t cross.
The decision to prioritize safety is often inconvenient — it may mean camping an extra night on Monday to miss a job, or adding a few miles already on a long day — but nature is better than you. It’s strong.There was a river Any At higher heights, I had to return two miles to a safe place to camp before crossing it the next day. It’s far from ideal, but it can save lives.
3. Be kind to other hikers — you can go down the road and rely on them.
A few hours after crossing the river, we hiked to the highest point of the Timberline Trail. This is a barren ridge on the eastern side, then gradually descends along a treeless ridge. completely Open to the element. When I got to the ridge, I experienced a strong wind that made it difficult to take a step forward. It was one of my absolute favorite parts of the trip, it was really great in every way, but it was also incredibly scary. Our group of four walked closely alongside two other women on the trail, but didn’t know the woman’s name until a few miles later. Things happen even on relatively “easy” hikes, where trafficking is high. You have to rely on strangers (as we were in the river) or be prepared to rely on them (as we were on the ridge).
4. Follow Leave no trace (LNT) Guidelines.
There’s nothing worse than arriving at a campsite abandoned in the trash. Have a better experience for everyone by leaving a better place than you have found!
5. Wear sunscreen.
It doesn’t sound like Baz Luhrmann here, but wear sunscreen. Especially At altitude. While the skin is fried, you may be freezing cold.
6. Test your gear a few days ago.
A few days before the trip (that is, if you have enough time to perform the REI), set up a tent, blow up the therm-a-rest, turn on the headlamps, and test your gear. The night before I went on a trip, I realized that the elasticity of the big event had disappeared overnight. It wouldn’t have been fun to discover on the way.
7. Always buy backpacking food for 2 servings.
800 calories for dinner sound It sounds like a lot, but when you cross the river and jump over the fallen trees for 13 miles, you’ll find it feels like a treat. Therefore, I personally recommend that you always buy a backpacking meal for 2 servings. (Good To-Go makes some of my favorites, and I think rice-based meals are often the most delicious!)
8. Pack the sandwich for the first night’s supper.
The first day can feel as hard as the first mile of a 10-mile run can be the most difficult. Your body is getting used to physical challenges. I highly recommend packing yourself something like a great Italian submarine on the first night. That way, you don’t even have to turn on the burner or JetBoil.
9. Bring a variety of snack foods.
When backpacking, I prefer jerky, nuts, and a handful of other salty snack-style lunches. Be sure to pack the variety so that you don’t get tired of one flavor. Switch things between barbecue sunflower seeds, lime psyllium chips, and lunch-flavored cashew nuts. You get the photo!
Also important: Don’t forget to pack your treats. We have a tradition of visiting national parks each year with Jonah’s mom, who combines all kinds of M & M, from crispy to dark, peanuts, pretzels and peanut butter.These mixes number one It doesn’t melt, so it’s a backpacking dessert.
10. Bring a hiking pole for river crossings and hikes.
The Timberline Trail was the first time I brought a hiking pole. Game changer.. I can’t imagine crossing the river without them. It makes it easier to balance on rocks and find stability when walking in rushing water. It is also very useful for redistributing the weight of the pack when hiking.
11. Enjoy the unplugged time!
Immersing yourself completely in nature feels like a brain massage. Have fun using your phone sparingly for photos!