Friday, January 13, 2012

Nom, Nom, Nom ...

The door bell rang, and there was a big ol' box on the stoop - With Clif Bar logos all over it!


Inside were several boxes of Cliff Bar goodness.  My winnings from their 12 Days of #Clifmas contest on Twitter. All different types and flavors, chosen for their fat content!

Just in time too, as I'm getting antsy to put drop boxes together, and these will feature prominently in them.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Best AT Hiking Resource Ever

Mountain Squid, a moderator on WhiteBlaze, wrote a humorous piece that links to definitive forum posts on probably every question hikers contemplating hiking the AT might be asking themselves.

If you have any interest in hiking any of the long trails, whether it would be thru, or section hiking, you owe it to yourself to join Whiteblaze, and to participate regularly in the forums.

Direct link to the article:

Monday, January 9, 2012

Going Solo

For a variety of reasons, some of health, some of family, Mary has elected to stay home... So, I'm hiking solo. Which is ... ok. I get to hike when I want to hike, take a break when I wanna break, camp where I wanna camp. If I want to go off trail to bag a peak, I won't have to negotiate with anyone but myself.

I'm going to miss hiking with her.

It certainly simplifies logistics. We don't have to close the house, find someone to take care of the cats, someone to mail the drop boxes, forward the mail, pay the bills, mow the lawn ... Mary will be my support crew.

Why does writing that make me think I'm gonna owe her big?

Saturday, January 7, 2012

MYOG - A Cozy for my Kettle

I like the concept of freezer bag cooking, but multiplying two baggies per day, by 170+ days equals a whole lot of plastic in landfill. I'll still use the basic concept, but I'll do it in my MSR Kettle. That means bringing food to a boil, taking it off the heat, and putting it in a cozy. I needed a cozy.

I envisioned a simple, insulated pouch, with a drawstring top, that would serve as both a cozy, and as a bag to carry the pot in.

I went to my local fabric store where I found some light rip-stop cotton duck which won't melt when I drop a hot pot in it. To keep the heat in, I found some Insul-Bright which is hollow polyester fiber with a metallized film backing. The backing resists radiant heat loss, the fiber resists conduction.

Now all I had to do was put it together ...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Mail Drops

Different Strokes - There are many options for resupplying along the Appalachian Trail. Towns are generally spaced such that hikers can hit them every 3-5 days, and many rely solely upon buying from grocery stores, convenience marts and gas stations along the way. Some use a box they bounce up the trail, from post office to post office, with items they use frequently such as medications, maps, spare batteries, and extra food. Others employ drop boxes mailed to them along the way by a trusted soul back home. Still others employ one or more of these options in a hybrid approach.

I'm gonna do the latter.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Manna from Heaven!

I'm on the Twitter. You can follow me @LaughingDawg. I follow Clif Bars, and they held a holiday contest/clever marketing event called the Twelve Days of #Clifmas. They posted a different task every day, and contestants tweeted their best efforts with the hashtag #Clifmas.  And all those posts went out to all their followers... Brilliant.

One contestant was selected every day to win a box of their various products. And, everyone who posted was automatically entered to win the grand prize - a one year supply of Clif Bars!

I was motivated. I managed to write such instant classics as:

"I'm dreaming of a White Macadamia Nut #Clifmas, just like the ones I used to know ..."