Author: Editor

Editor March 12, 2010 3

Backpacking Big South Fork

Encompassing 250,000 acres of the Cumberland Plateau, Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area protects the free-flowing Big South Fork of the Cumberland River and its tributaries. The area boasts miles of scenic gorges and sandstone bluffs, is rich with natural and historic features

Hiking Big South Fork will not let you down as far as scenery. I was really impressed on how much there was to see. The campsites, the rock formations, were all very cool. On this hike I had the pleasure of hiking with a good friend of mine, Bryan Delay. I originally met Bryan on Hikers Journal, but now he’s a Member of TheBackpackerTV.

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We started our hike late on Thursday and immediately had to cross Laurel Creek. There was no option for rock jumping. Had to take off our shoes and put sandals on and brace for some cold water. We only hiked a mile or so before we set up camp for the night. We camped right along Laurel Creek. Then on Friday we hike to Charit Creek Lodge, which consist of some cabins and a dining hall. People can stay here with a reservation and the food is prepared for them. The only way to get to Charit Lodge is to hike to it. (or on Horseback) Then we hike to Twin Arches and then Jake’s Place, which would be a good place to camp on Friday night. Jake’s Place is an old homestead and there is plenty of space to camp. On Saturday we would hike to Slave Falls and then to Laurel Fork Creek, where we found a place to camp on Saturday night. We change our plans on hiking back to the car. We opted to hike Yellow Cliff Trail and only have to cross Laurel Fork Creek once. We found an excellent camp site along Laurel Creek. Then on Sunday we hiked out of the gorge to West Entrance TH where one of our cars would be parked.

A little about the Park Map. Don’t trust some of the Trail Heads. Most of them our accurate, but some of the places to jump into the park have been privately developed and no longer exist. We had a heck of a time starting our hike because of this, and had to change our starting point.

The Eastern/Central Time Line runs through the middle of the park. Most park offices and concessionaires operate on Eastern Time. If, however, your travels do take you across the time line, make sure you plan your time accordingly.

Bandy Creek Visitor Center is open daily, except Christmas. Center staff is available to provide visitors with information they need for a safe and enjoyable visit to the park and region. In addition to maps and park specific information, backcountry permits are available. Eastern National maintains an outlet in the Center.

Visitor Center hours May through September are 8:00 to 6:00 Sunday thru Saturday. October thru April the hours are 8:00 to 4:00 (Eastern Time). For additional information call (423) 286-7275.

Editor October 6, 2009 1

Backpacking the Badlands

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I decided to backpack in the Badlands National Park. There are no trails in the Wilderness Areas, and there’s no water. But my hike in and around the Sage Creek Wilderness Area was well worth it.

I started my research by downloading this GPS Trail Route from Trimble Outdoors. Since I didn’t have a GPS unit, I printed out the way points, packed my map, and got my compass out. The route seemed easy enough. What I didn’t expect was the 50 mph wind gust. It was windy.

The Route started at the Conata Picnic Area. There is a sign at the very end of the picnic area. The Trail starts out like a normal trail for about 200 yards and then disappears. You are on your own after that. You follow Southwest for about 2 miles then turn Northwest towards a large open grassy field. Deer Haven is way in the background. I headed right towards Deer Haven. You can’t miss it. I ducked under a Cattle Fence and I was off to climb up and over Deer Haven.

gpsroute

Climbing Deer Haven is pretty simple. Follow Deer Trails. They almost look like a regular trail, and they won’t let you down. They will take you right up to the top exactly where you need to start your decent. From there, it’s all creek bed. After a few miles into the creek bed, I noticed I had lost my GPS guide. I had no idea where to get out of the creek bed. Followed some amazing Buffalo hoof prints and saw some spectacular scenery. My hike was cut short. But I did manage to get some awesome backpacking in. I camped at Deer Haven for the night, and it was the best decision I made. What a wonderful place to camp. NO FIRES ALLOWED.

You can see my photos of my Badlands Hike on “Our Gallery“.

After battling the winds for most of the day, the night became calm. Full Moon and not a cloud in the sky. You can download this route from Trimble and follow it on a GPS.

The Badlands climate is variable and unpredictable with temperatures ranging from -40 F to 116 F. The summers are hot and dry with occasional violent thunderstorms. Winters are typically cold with 12 to 24 inches of total snowfall. Extremely high winds are common year-round. Sudden and dramatic weather changes are common. Dress in layers. Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and adequate water are recommended for hiking.

The park’s main visitor center, the Ben Reifel Visitor Center, is open daily all year, except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. During the summer months, ranger-led programs are offered throughout the day. Check at the visitor center for more information on these programs.

The Ben Reifel Visitor Center is located at Cedar Pass on the Badlands Loop Road (Hwy 240), 9 miles South of I-90, exit 131 Phone (605) 455-2878

Editor July 21, 2009 0

Backcountry Fire Building by Backpacking Light

This outstanding video by Backpacking Light featuring Sam Haraldson (A member of thebackpacker.tv) outlines some techniques in fire building.

“Fire building videos on the Internet are a dime a dozen, but each and every one of them can teach you a thing or two. However, building a fire is nothing short of an art form, so no one can teach you everything you’d need to know to perfect it in a ten-minute video.

Instead of attempting to do this (perfect your form) you’ll find that we’ve simply highlighted some of the gear and techniques used to start a fire. A short description of the fire triangle, finding fuel, and other quick tips are included as well.

Watch for a quick intro to these techniques and discuss some of your own on the Backpacking Light forums”

You can visit Sam’s blog site on other topics covering backpacking techniques

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Editor July 19, 2009 3

Top Ten Hiking Videos

There are tons of hiking/backpacking videos out there on YouTube and Vimeo. Unfortunatley, only a small percentage ever get seen by a large audience. I put together a list of what I believe are the top ten hiking/backpacking videos.

The criteria I used was, best all around production quality. Was the video informative? Exciting? Did it tell a story? Some are professional and some simply done for those who want to document their experience.

Some of these videos are in a series and I counted them as “one” since they are on a DVD.

If you have one that you think belongs on this list, please let me know, and I’ll put it on thebackpacker.tv

These are in no particular order:

(1) Tell It On the Mountain is a documentary full of tall tales and alluring lore from the Pacific Crest Trail. A string of trails running through the center of California, Oregon and Washington. You can see the other two parts on thebackpacker.tv on the Feature Channel

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(2) On April 9 2007, Andrew Skurka set out to become the first person to complete the Great Western Loop, a 6,875-mile route that passes through the most cherished and pristine wild lands remaining in the United States including 12 National Parks and over 75 wilderness areas. The route links a network of five long-distance hiking trails and a self-made segment through the Sonoran and Mojave deserts. Andy is hiking to promote the “less is more” lifestyle and to draw attention to the effects of global warming on America’s most iconic wild lands.

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(3) This is the trailer of “TREK — A Journey on the Appalachian Trail.” I purchased this film at amazon and love it. It portrays the daily life of AT thru-hikers, shows you the great people they meet, and adventures they have on their journey from Georgia to Maine. To buy the entire DVD go to www.cirquevideo.com

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(4) This 2 part series is a short film by Old Mountain Video: “Climbing Longs Peak” in the Rocky Mountain National Park. I love watching videos from these guys. They are always very good. Watch the second part on their YouTube Page:

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(5) Chris Moyles and his gang are about to leave, but a fortnight ago Trail Magazine arrived home from Kilimanjaro after six days on Africas highest mountain. You can see Part Two here on thebackpacker.tv

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(6) CBS News does a documentary on Backpacking the West Coast Trail (Currently Featured on thebackpacker.tv) this three part series is a great adventure documentary and gets you in the mood to get out there and hike this trail. Part 2 and 3 will be featured on thebackpackertv

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(7) Tales From the Trail is one of my favorite shows. This pilot TV show is directed by Paul Sheehan and presents a quality show about hiking and adventure. This show is also playing on The Hiking Channel on Boxee. You can watch part 2 and Part 3 here on thebackpacker.tv

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(8) This is one of my favorite raw nature videos. Talk about getting a feeling for Glacier National Park, Wow!

Part 1 of the recently shot Glacier DVD. This 20 min. film recently was nominated for best new nature documentary in the music category as well received an award for photography from the Wildlife Film Festival held in May of 2008. All funds for this project are being donated to the Glacier National Park Fund. This was shot by YouTube User: LiveMontana

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(9) If you want to know everything about Yosemite than you have to watch Yosemite Nature Notes: Yosemite Nature Notes is a video podcast series that tells unique stories about the natural and human history of Yosemite National Park. Produced by the National Park Service, this series features park rangers, scientists, historians and park visitors as they discuss the diverse plants and animals that make Yosemite their home, as well as the towering cliffs, giant waterfalls and mountain peaks that are known throughout the world.

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(10) This documentary is one of the best if you are a climber. Left for Dead: Miracle on Everest, is the story of Lincoln Hall. Lincoln Hall is pronounced dead on the summit of Mt. Everest after suffering from the effects of cerebral edema, but miraculously survived. With never-before-seen footage, interviews and Hall’s original video diary

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If you have any suggestions please comment below. We are always looking to add content.

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Editor May 22, 2009 14

Backpacking Red River Gorge

First, let me say that I wanted to spend a lot more time in this awesome display of nature. I feel I was cheeted by only being able to hike the short 10 – 12 mile loop I did. Having said that, Red River Gorge is now in my top 20 places I’ve ever hiked in. The Red River Gorge is part of the Daniel Boone National Forest Red River Gorge Geological Area – 29,000 acres, designated in 1974.

Rock Arches are the celebrity at this park. If you live in the Midwest and want to see Arches without traveling to Utah, this is the place to visit. With deep gorges, and caves, this is one place you need to visit if you are in Kentucky.

Many arches in the Gorge can be found or viewed from the 60 miles of backpacking trails. The number, size, and variety of natural stone arches in the Gorge contribuite to the beauty of this park. Becareful however, some the cliffs are steep and dangerous. There are over 100 arches in this park.

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There are some definate rules and regulations while backpacking in this park. Make sure you understand the camping situation. There are NO formal campgrounds but many are out there. You WILL need a permit to camp overnight. You can get permits at the Gladie Center. But you can also get permits at the Shell Gas Station located right on Hwy 15. It might save you a drive if you are going to hike and camp on th South end of the park.

The Sheltowee Trail runs through the Red River Park, but also runs Natural Bridge State Park, and the Clifty Wilderness. The trail is 278 miles long.

If you have a Kayak or Canoe, this is the place to trek down the Red River. Runs right through the Park.

Most of the Trails are easy to moderate, but there are a few sections that you will be climbing up or down hand over foot.

Backpack to Grays Arch. Worth the extra hike. It’s a nice loop hike if you take #205 trail to #221 to #203 back to your car. 10 – 12 mile loop.

The Trail Map is located HERE. For more information call the Gladie Cultural Center at (606)663-8100. They are open from 9:00 to 5:30 from Mid March to November.

Check out some photos of the Red River Gorge

See you on the Trail

Editor April 18, 2009 4

Assessing Your Backpacking Gear

I often get questions about what kind of gear is needed versus what is expendable. The expendable gear for example might be “comforts”, i.e magazines, cosmetics, extra utensils. Here is a list of gear that I absolutely feel is essential. Whether your hiking alone or with a group. The essentials stay the same. The nice thing about hiking as a group, you can share some of the load and gear. You don’t all have to carry a stove for example, just plenty of fuel.

Personal Equipment:

  • Clothing
  • Shirts, pants, boots, hats, and so on. This is seasonal clothing.

  • Travel Equipment
  • What is needed for travel – just your feet or a canoe, kayak, bike, snowshoes, etc.

  • Storage Equipment
  • What are you going to carry your equipment in? Backpack? Waterproof bag (for portaging canoe or kayak?)

  • Sleeping Equipment
  • Sleeping bag, foam pad, or thermarest

  • Miscellaneous Equipment
  • Water bottles, toiletries, medication.

  • Shelter
  • Tent, tarp, hammock. This also can be shared if you are hiking with a partner.

  • Cooking Equipment
  • Stoves, pots, pans. Stoves can be shared, but bring extra fuel.

  • Water Purification
  • Tablets, or a filter can be carried for a group. Just make sure you change your filter after heavy use.

  • First Aid
  • This is an essential piece of gear. Not to be ignored. However, when in a group, count the number of people and bring first aid to meet all needs. Sometimes it’s better for each person to carry their own first aid kit.

    ARCADIA, CA - APRIL 16:  Nalgene brand water b...
    Image by Getty Images via Daylife

    When deciding what equipment to bring, review your planned route and answer some questions:

    How long is the trip?
    How many people are going?
    Are people providing their own equipment?
    What season is it?
    Weather, weather, weather. Average temps for that area. Minimum temps, maximum temps. Is this area pron to thunderstorms, lightning, snow, (could it snow in June)?
    Is there an altitude situation?
    What are the trip activities?
    How remote will this trip actually be?
    Water, water, water. How will I get it, resupply it, drink it, bottle it. Water everything. Will there even be water? Will I need to melt snow to get it?
    Equipment failure. If something breaks, can I keep going?

    The 12 Essentials

    1. Map
    2. Compass (and some knowledge how to use it)
    3. Head Lamp
    4. Extra Food
    5. Extra Clothing. Dry socks, underwear.
    6. Pocketknife
    7. Matches (waterproof)
    8. Firestarter (I include cotton balls for kindling)
    9. First Aid Kit
    10.Water Bottle or Nalgene Bottle, Platy (at least 2 liters)
    12. Water Purification

    Other essentials that might be included are:

    13. Watch (with compass, barometer, altimeter)
    14. Ground insulation (sleeping pad)
    15. Duct Tape (I wrap some around my hiking poles)

    No matter where you are going, and whether you are out for the day or a month. Whether you are by yourself or with a group, the list above is essential. There are countless tales of hikers who have gotten into trouble, even on short day hikes, because they neglected these essentials.

    See you on the Trail.

    You can also read; Essential Tips for Reducing Weight
    Avoid Mistakes in the Backcountry

    Editor March 15, 2009 4

    Little Presque Isle and Harlow Lake

    The Little Presque Isle tract is often called the crown jewel of Lake Superior, with its beautiful sand beaches, rugged shoreline cliffs, heavily timbered forests, and unmatched public views. One of the reasons I love to hike in the U.P of Michigan is the panoramic views that often accompany a trail at any given time.

    The proposed natural area occurs north and south of Little Presque Point, around the mouth of Harlow Creek. The area is a combination of a wooded dune and swale community and bedrock lakeshore and cliff.

    This land has retained its natural character, and its location next to Lake Superior and its variable terrain and timber types provide a rare and unique setting.

    Trail to Little Presque Isle

    The terrain in and around Little Presque and Harlow Lake is a good work out for any backpacker. Sugarloaf Mountain and other small mounds offer spectacular views.

    My winter trip offered the chance for some awesome snowshoeing. Winter is a great time to go to Little Presque and Harlow Lake. Lots of snow. I was there during a snow storm and it was beautiful to hike around Harlow Lake.

    In fact, Harlow Lake has cabins that you can rent all year round. They have a small stove to cook on so leave your fuel at home, and cook right on an old pot belly stove.

    All in all, I did around 15 miles of good ol fashion hiking/snowshoeing during sub-zero wind chills….I would do it all over again. It was a great experience.

    Go to the Michigan DNR website for more information.

    Watch the video of Harlow Lake/Little Presque Isle.

    Other U.P Trail Vlogs:
    Porcupine Wilderness Area
    The Lake Shore Trail (Pictured Rock Natonal Park)

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    Editor January 17, 2009 1

    Tomales Point Trail

    Recently I hiked the Tomales Point Trail at the Point Reyes National Park, in California. This open trail offers both awesome wildlife, and coastal views. The one way 4.7 mile trail takes you to an end point that you do NOT want to miss. This breathtaking vista overlooks crashing waves and rocks. The trail is actually 9.4 miles to the point and back.

    We started this hike at the Tomales Point Trailhead located North of the Park. Since we hiked in January, we had our share of fog and mist. But the temps hovered around 45 degrees which make a great day hike. The trail is easy and light. Moderate at best. Bring a rain jacket. This is the West Coast and rain can come in very rapidly. This trail can be hiked year round.

    Point Reyes Lighthouse
    Image via Wikipedia

    Trailhead elevation is about 300 feet, and the hike has a rolling profile, climbing to 470 feet, descending to 135 feet, climbing to 250 feet, and dropping to 80 feet. You’ll face those same hills on the return leg, and all the elevation changes do add up. The middle 2 miles of the hike are mostly through loose sand. Total elevation change is about 1300 feet.

    GPS coordinates* for trailhead:
    Latitude 38°11’20.87″N
    Longitude 122°57’14.86″W
    (* based on Google Earth data, shown as degrees, minutes, seconds)

    The trail will feel a little longer than you think. Probably because you keep stopping for a photo opp. Speaking of photo opps, the Tomales Point Elk preserve is not only a great place to watch wildlife, it’s one of the quietest trails on Point. When I hiked this trail, I saw at least 40 Elk in one herd alone. If you like Elk, this is the place to view them.

    The trail almost has a mystical way about it. I hiked this trail in some pretty dense fog, and it almost seemed to exhibit an energy. With the waves crashing into the shore, and the fog rolling in, this trail was one to remember.

    Make sure you get to the Trailhead early. The parking lot is small.

    Bear Valley Visitor Center (Ranger Station) 415-464-5100 (Rangers were very helpful and will help plan your hike)
    Click here for a pdf map of the trails.

    Watch thebackpacker.tv video of the Tomales Point Trail.

    TWITTER REPORT
    I see a seal play in the ocean at the Point. Foggy, misting out, awesome. 3:26 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    Took 2.5 hours to get to the end of the trail. Watching huge waves all around me. Very beautiful. 3:24 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    At the coast, watching the waves crash into the rocky shore below me. 3:21 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    Still very foggy, but taking some great pic. 3:19 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    Lots of Elk all over this trail. 3:19 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    3 miles into the hike. I’m standing looking at a huge herd of Elk. very cool. 3:17 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    The coast is awesome. Sun is trying to come out. Still very foggy. 3:06 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    very foggy, and chilly. trail is easy hinking so far. 3:03 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from Twittelator
    Trail starts out at an old Ranch. 3:00 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from web
    Headed toward the North end of the Park to hike Tomales Point Trail. 10.4 miles 2:58 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from web
    Temp is 48 Degrees with heavy fog. High today is suppose to be 57 2:56 AM Dec 31st, 2008 from web
    I’m here at Point Reyes Natl. Park. 11:41 AM Dec 30th, 2008 from Twittelator
    Leaving today for San Francisco. 7:33 AM Dec 29th, 2008 from Twittelator

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    Editor January 17, 2009 1

    Point Reyes National Seashore

    Point Reyes National Seashore was established to preserve and protect wilderness, natural ecosystems, and cultural resources along the diminishing undeveloped coastline of the western United States.

    My visit to Point Reyes was everything I thought it would be and more. I was able to hike through a Elk Preserve and see Elk grazing right in front of me. You can’t beat walking along the West Coast and hearing the waves crash into the shore as you hike. You can even see some of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

    Located just an hour’s drive from a densely populated metropolitan area, the Seashore is a sanctuary for myriad plant and animal species and for the human spirit — for discovery, inspiration, solitude, and recreation — and exists as a reminder of the human connection to the land.

    Point Reyes National Seashore comprises over 100 square miles including 33,300 acres of coastal wilderness area. Estuaries, windswept beaches, coastal scrub grasslands, salt and freshwater marshes, and coniferous forests create a haven of 80 miles of unspoiled and undeveloped coastline.

    Abundant recreational opportunities include 150 miles of hiking trails, backcountry campgrounds, and numerous beaches. Kayaking, biking, hiking, beach combing, and wildlife viewing are just a few of the self-guided activities awaiting your visit. Please check at a visitor center when you arrive at Point Reyes for the most recent information on trail closures or other important information you may need for your visit.

    This park is a must see when visiting San Francisco. It’s not that far away and easy to get to. The views will take your breath away, and the wildlife is abundant. I hiked on the Tomales Point Trail which is a 9.5 mile trail out and back. (see our trail Vlog for more info on this trail). The trail descriptions on the nps.gov website are good and precise.

    Point Reyes National Seashore offers year-round backcountry camping along Drakes Bay and amongst the hills and valleys of the Phillip Burton Wilderness, and boat-in camping on the west shore of Tomales Bay. Because of its location near the Metropolitan San Francisco Bay Area, the campsites at Point Reyes are in great demand. Reservations are strongly suggested. YOU MUST make reservations to camp. Check out the nps.gov website for more details, and plan ahead.

    Stay in Larkspur at the Marriott Courtyard where Hwy 110 is a quick jump. Point Reyes is about a 30 minute drive from there.

    Bear Valley Visitor Center
    Open: Year round.
    Closed: December 25.

    Hours:
    Weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
    Weekends and holidays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

    Phone: (415) 464-5100

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    Editor December 10, 2008 7

    Grand Circle Trail – Red Rock Canyon

    Did you know that Las Vegas Nevada has some of the best hikes, and backpacking trails in the Southwest? The Grand Circle Trail in the Red Rock Canyon offers some of the most breathtaking views in the area, and it’s only 15 miles West of the Strip.

    Red Rock Canyon is a National Conservation Area and is a protected Wilderness. It’s over 193,000 acres of beautiful vistas and mountain scenery that will bring Mountain Climbers as well as Day Hikers to this area. The landscapes are a complex deposits of oxidized minerals that make up the “Red Rocks”.

    The Grand Circle Trail is a 11.7 loop trail that will take you approximately 5-6 hours to hike. Do not under estimate the amount of water you will need for this hike. You are still in the Mojave Desert and it gets hot and dry. I hiked this in December and it was 63 Degrees. The Grand Circle trail will take you in and around the Canyon and offers some spectacular views. In fact, this trail offers up some history. About a mile into the trail and you will see Pictographs (painted images) and Petroglyphs (images pecked into the stone) from Southern Paiute culture that thrived in the Canyon some time around 1,000 AD.

    You can check in at the Vistors Center and leave your car in the Parking Lot. From there, the Grand Circle Trail is in walking distance. Advise: Leave early. The GCT will take you longer than you expect. In the Summer time, this trail could be brutal. Be prepared. There are maps and good advise from the Rangers that are in the Vistors Center.

    The trail starts out along the scenic drive and parallels the trail for awhle. You will cross two parking lots within the first 2 miles. After that, it’s all you. There are a two more pit stops along the way. At one time during the hike, it almost seems like you will never get back to the trailhead, you will, don’t panic. When they say it’s a “Grand” circle, they are not kidding. It’s a big loop.

    This is a great trail to explore and just enjoy. Take your camera, because you are going to be very angry if you don’t. Photo opps everwhere.

    So next time you are losing at the slots. Remember, a good hike is only a few minutes away, and it’s well worth leaving the tables for it. See you on the Trail.

    at EveryTrail

    Map created by EveryTrail:GPS Geotagging

    thebackpackertv leaving trail, and the Red Rock Canyon area. Took some great pictures. 6:52 PM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv took 5.5 hours to complete trail. 6:50 PM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv very warm, 60 plus degrees. 6:17 PM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv Trail is 12 miles 6:16 PM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv beautiful scenery out here. 6:15 PM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://twitpic.com/qekf – http://piurl.com/sWd : current location arrived at canyon. temp: 60 degrees. 3 miles into my hike. 2:45 PM Dec 5th from TwitPic
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/sSR : current location headed towards canyon 10:40 AM Dec 5th from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/s5E : current location At Airport, set to arrive in Nevada in 3 hours. 1:06 PM Dec 4th from Twittelator

    go to the backpackertv twitter page to sign up for these and other live reports.

    Editor December 3, 2008 0

    Old Rag Mountain Video

    One of the more spectacular trails in the Shenandoah National Park is climbing up Old Rag Mountain. The Blue Ridge Mountains are some of the oldest Mountain ranges on earth, and the Shenadoah National Park runs right through them. Hundreds of miles of trails spread through the park and it’s 93,000 acres of wilderness.

    Old Rag Mountain in Shenandoah National Park, ...
    Image via Wikipedia

    The climb up Old Rag Mountain leads from the forest floor to very exposed granite boulders. In fact, climbing Old Rag will keep you on your toes as you combat hand over hand climbing. In some instances, there is no trail. A painted white blaze gives you and indication of where to go next. Over, through, and under huge crevises, and boulders. It can demand strenght and balance. You may even need a push, or pull up as the climb up maybe more than you can step.

    Start from the parking lot at the end of VA 600. There are two parking areas. Get there early if you don’t want to walk a mile from the overflow parking area to the trailhead. Like 7:00 AM early. This is a difficult hike. Make sure you give yourself enough to get up and then back down again.

    Distance: It’s a 8 mile loop up and back. NOT counting the 1 mile hike to the trailhead.
    Elevation Gain: 2,473 Feet.

    at EveryTrail

    Map created by EveryTrail:GPS Geotagging

    Live Trail Report as reported on November 22, 2008

    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/oPB : current location had a great hike. on my way home. 9:30 AM Nov 23rd from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/o9c : current location off mountain 1:16 PM Nov 22nd from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://twitpic.com/nbb9 – at summit 10:20 AM Nov 22nd from TwitPic
    thebackpackertv http://twitpic.com/nbaf – at summit 10:17 AM Nov 22nd from TwitPic
    thebackpackertv coverage is in and out. trace of snow on the mountain. 10:04 AM Nov 22nd from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/o6c : current location i am minutes away from the summit. temp is 30 10:03 AM Nov 22nd from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/o3U : current location On my way to the SNP. temp. 28 degrees. 5:37 AM Nov 22nd from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://piurl.com/ntI : current location I will be starting my tomorrow at 9:00 am. thanks for the question. 2:26 PM Nov 21st from Twittelator
    thebackpackertv http://twitpic.com/n2pf – http://piurl.com/nph : current location lots if snow in the mountains 9:50 AM Nov 21st from TwitPic
    thebackpackertv In Ohio. Will be driving over the Appalachian Mountains in the morning. Snowing here. 9:23 PM Nov 20th from Twittelator

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