Backpacking Anxiety: Addressing Fear

I’m afraid of: Getting hurt. Animals. My gear not working properly. Discovering that I don’t know how to work my gear properly. Forgetting something. Getting lost. Creepy people. Being cold. And the list goes on–people’s fears of what might happen on a backpacking trip are numerous and varied, especially when you’re new to this hobby. Continue reading “Backpacking Anxiety: Addressing Fear”

Hiker Heaven in Ohio

I’ve been hearing about, and seeing gorgeous pictures from Hocking Hills, Ohio on Facebook and Instagram for the last few years, and over this year’s spring break, finally got to see what all the fuss was about.  I talked my husband into a hiking vacation, and reserved an Airbnb in Athens, Ohio for a fewContinue reading “Hiker Heaven in Ohio”

The Joys and Challenges of Winter Hiking and Camping

There is a certain magic to hearing the absolute stillness of a snowy forest, seeing the snow-draped boughs of the evergreen trees, and finding tracks from deer, bobcat, bear, turkeys, and other creatures in the snowy path. Lying in my hammock at night, listening to the hoot of owls, yips of coyotes, and gentle fallingContinue reading “The Joys and Challenges of Winter Hiking and Camping”

What to wear when you’re winter hiking?

I’ve been seeing this question coming up a lot in the various Michigan hiking Facebook groups that I follow. Dressing for cardio when you’re out in the cold is a lot different from bundling up for just sitting around, but you might end up needing to plan for both when hiking. A lot of the thingsContinue reading “What to wear when you’re winter hiking?”

Dioramas and Rhododendrons: Gettysburg

Chapter 10: Becoming a Backpacker After spending several days in Shenandoah National Park, and nearing our 100 mile goal, my hiking buddy, Robin, and I decided to indulge our inner history nerds and get in our last 10 miles of Appalachian Trail near Gettysburg, so that we could spend some time exploring the national historicContinue reading “Dioramas and Rhododendrons: Gettysburg”

Staying Safe When It’s Cold

Over the last year, a couple of tragic stories in the news, and the book Lost in the Wild: Danger and Survival in the North Woods by Cary Griffith have gotten me thinking more about safety. What’s been striking to me is that it’s not an epic voyage or dangerous animals or terrain that oftenContinue reading “Staying Safe When It’s Cold”

Backpacking in the Rain

Forecasts for the weekend varied from 40-60 percent chance of scattered showers, with a chance of isolated thunderstorms. Week three of my new school year was wrapping up, and a getaway seemed like the best thing ever, in spite of the dismal forecast. The hiking route that I had planned was not a great distance,Continue reading “Backpacking in the Rain”