Sat, Sep 15 2012 - Intro to Backpacking (View Original Event Details)|
I don't think we could have picked a better weekend to be outside. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, and the hikers were merry. We made our way along the Appalachian Trail to the Ed Garvey Shelter, covering the four miles in about 90 minutes. We had our pick of campsites but opted for the one furthest from the privy. The Ed Garvey shelter is often described as the Taj Mahal of AT shelters. We all agreed that it was very nice, and enjoyed some lunch before setting off (sans tents) to check out Weverton Cliffs.
After enjoying the views at Weverton, we felt that we didn't have enough hiking and decided to head down the trail to check out the C&O Canal. There are 18 switchbacks that lead you down the mountain -- and yes, we knew we had to head back up them to get back to our tents. We made it to the towpath and found a campsite along the river that made us wish we had brought our tents further down the trail. It was a popular place to skip rocks, but we decided to turn around and make our way back to the shelter.
When we returned, we were greeted by a well-behaved group of Boy Scouts. Lisa and I headed down the trail to get water. The write-ups were correct. The trail is steep. Let's just say that we weren't eager to run back down and get more water, so conservation was the theme of the evening. in our absence, James got a great fire roaring -- perfect as we enjoyed our dinner and a well-deserved rest.
The next morning, Nils demonstrated his backpacking cooking skills as he flipped pancakes for breakfast. Once everyone was fueled up with coffee and food, we zipped along the trail to head back to our cars. In total, we did about 16 miles (12 the first day, and 4 the second). All in all, a successful Intro to Backpacking weekend.
Thanks to everyone for joining, including new MOC member James Crawford!