On this episode we share our 3 day, 2 night paddle in one of the most unique places in the Southeast. The Okefenokee National Refuge Area. In other words, a swamp in the wilderness.
The Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge is an impressively vast expanse of wilderness swamplands covering approximately 700 square miles, located within the southeast corner of Georgia.
The Okefenokee is crisscrossed by over 120 miles of paddle and motor boat water trails. It is a major destination for wetlands, nature lovers and paddlers alike. The swamp has a distinctive and fascinating natural history. Okefenokee means “land of the trembling earth” in Choctaw Indian language, a reference to the quivering ground of boggy areas. The Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge was officially established in 1937 to preserve one of America’s oldest freshwater systems, an important habitat for an abundance of plants and animals that live in its 400,000 acres.
Through our guiding company, Full Moon Adventures, we took our guests on a 3 day paddle in some of the most remote places on the swamp. You can view our video on our YouTube Channel.
We saw almost 300 Alligators.
On this episode we discuss what happens if you get the Flu on the Trail? We all prepare our first aid kits for cuts, burns and blisters. But are we really personalizing our first aid kit based on our needs.
You would be surprised at how many people get sick on the AT due to the spreading of germs. In fact, Appalachian Trail hikers had a 45 percent diarrhea rate, implying that poor hygiene is a major contributing factor. How to prevent getting sick is to make sure your First Aid Kit has the some basic medications and ALCOHOL WIPES to keep your hands clean.
Ariane has gotten the Flu while backpacking and she explains how hard it is to hike out when you get sick. Some basic medications, like benadryl, tylenol, Mucinex, and Diarrhea tablets can help you when you feel like you maybe getting sick on the Trail.
The best way to prevent getting sick is to make sure your hands are always clean. Bear cables are filled with germs, wipe your hands off after using them. Prevention is the key.
Have you ever gotten the flu on the Trail? What’s in your First Aid Kit. Let us know, and share your knowledge with others. We love to hear from our hiking community.
What is your favorite National Park? Our’s is Isle Royale National Park. On this episode we are going to share one of our favorite backpacking adventure trips. Where to go, and how to get there. You maybe suprised to hear it’s on an Island and in Michigan. Then give you 2 tips on the best way to travel with your backpack. Lastly we share one of our subscribers e-mail question
As guides for Full Moon Adventures, every year we get a chance to travel to Isle Royale National Park. It’s an Island that is 45 miles long and only 9 miles wide. It’s actually a part the State of Michigan.
On this episode we come to you right from the Appalachian Trail itself tucked, in our sleeping bags. Backpacking on the AT offers so much excitement and beauty. Especially hiking in the Winter. Much better views, less people, and often more stars. However, the sun goes down rather fast and quickly becomes pretty chilly. That leaves you with getting in your bag often by 8:00 pm with nothing to do. We call this, Hikers Midnight.
This episode was from our LIVE show on our Facebook page. We thought it had good value and wanted to convert it into our weekly podcast. Our Top 10 Suggestions for New Backpackers was a lot of fun.
Here they are:
Do you have any suggestions for new backpackers? Share them with us. You’re never too old to learn. 🙂
On this episode we sit down with Robin League and discuss what backpacking in South Africa is like. Most people know what “backpacking” in the US is. But in different countries around the world, the word “backpacking” is or can be a little different.
Our guest Robin League spent 2 years in the Peace Corps in Swaziland Africa. She often went backpacking from Hostel to Hostel on the Wild Coast of South Africa. How is backpacking on the Wild Coast different than backpacking in the US National Forest’s? Robin gives us the low down on what it’s like and what to expect.
We also discuss the different water treatment systems and what to expect when driving around South Africa. You would be surprised to find out what taking Public Transportation is like.
We also give you a few tips and how to’s if you ever travel to South Africa and want to go backpacking on the Wild Coast.
This podcast was a lot of fun. Robin is a good friend of ours and has gone backpacking with us in the US. Have you ever gone backpacking in another Country? Let us know where and what your experience was like.
On this episode we are going to discuss use of technology and is it useful on the trail? Do you need it, and how do you use it? We’ll also do a Throwback Thursday and look back as to what was used to communicate while on a Thru-Hike all but 15 years ago. Wow! Has it been that long?
Can you effectively use technology without it disengaging you from your outdoor experience? We find it goes both ways. Yes, it can be beneficial to bring a little tech out into the Wilderness, but it can also be aggravating as hell when you find cell service.
What’s your opinion? If you bring your cell phone on the trail, what do you use it for?
#throwbackthursday Do you remember the Pocketmail device? – Back in my day (Wow, never thought I would say that) there was no cell phones on the trail on a large extent. It was a huge debate to bring or not to bring.
Wireless mobile data is extremely expensive or entirely unavailable, high speed broadband just a dream. Pocketmail was a PDA type device which featured an acoustic coupler modem which you could slap onto a phone after dialing a number and download/upload e-mails over the phone. The PDA itself had memory internally to store e-mails awaiting transmission, and ran off two AA batteries.
We had a blast doing this podcast. Share your stories with us and let us know how you feel about technology on the trail.
Thanks for listening.
This was one of our favorite shows that we’v done. Why? We are talking tasty deserts that are easy to make on the trail. We also review Backcountry Pantry Foods, which in our opinion, makes some pretty good deserts.
Have you ever been on the trail and run into a bunch of Blueberries? Well, we always stop and pick ourselves some so we can make a Blueberry Pie desert. Yes, that is possible. Below we share our recipe.
Here are some of our favorite desert mixes we bring on the trail.
Jell-O Simply Good Banana Mix. It comes in a small 3.4 oz bag and is really good. It packs well, and if buy Carnation Instant Milk mix, you only need 2 cups of instant milk and you have a very lightweight desert. In fact, most of the deserts we mention work much better with Instant Milk. 9.6 oz of Carnation Instant Milk can make 4 cups. You normally only need 2 cups with all of these desert mixes which gives you a nice cup of Hot Chocolate with the other 2 cups.
We also really like the Backpantry Desert line. They are a bit expensive, but the bags they come in our re-usable. Our favorite is the Creme Brulee that comes with little sprinkles in a separate bag that make this desert really good.
Our Blueberry Pie Recipe:
Buy some Keebler Mini Pie Crust’s. They come in a package of 6. They are very lightwieght and have never broken while in our packs. Bring a couple sheets of tin foil with you. After you pick your Blueberries, put them in the tinfoil and put them next to your campfire. Not directly in the fire, but next. While your blueberries are cooking. (Usually 10 minutes is all you need to cook them for) Mix your Dream Whip Whipped Topping Mix. This is a bit tricky because you will have to experiment a little. We opted NOT to follow the directions and use less instant milk.
Mix whipped topping mix, and already mixed instant milk in a small Tupperware bowl. Mix for 4 minutes or until topping thickens and forms peaks. Makes 2 cups.
You should bring a small piece of Tupperware to mix all you deserts in and it makes a great piece of gear to store stuff in also.
After your blueberries are hot, put them in your mini pie crust. Then pour your Whipped Cream on your pie.
Try it! Let us know how it went? Do you have a favorite desert that you love to eat in the backcountry? Share it! Nothing like a sweet tooth craving out on the trail, right?
On this episode we reflect on 2016 and the leap into mobile living. We also share our 2017 hopes, trips and going on the road with our 1976 Airstream.
2016 was kind of a rough year. We had a lot of obstacles that through us for a loop. We never in our wildest dreams thought Lucy would come into our lives. Our 1976 Airstream Argosy that we decided to buy and renovate. Oh, boy was that a big undertaking. Not too mention 2016 just kind of sucked.
We also continued to try and grow our guiding business Full Moon Adventures which we decided to scale back and focus on a much more intimate experiences for our customers and students.
Then of course re-branding TheBackapckerTV. Since 2009 this site has been video focused specializing in other videographers content. This year however, we decided to put our years of experience and be a more of a “teaching” site with focus on learning the amazing world of the outdoors and backpacking.
So, how was your 2016? Do you have any plans or trips you are going on in 2017? Let us know and we’ll share them on our Podcast.
Have a great 2017. Get outdoors. Even better yet, come backpacking with us. Always looking to meet new friends.
Happy New Year!
On this episode we are going to share two of our favorite places to backpack to for the Holiday’s. It’s our personal trail traditions that we embark on every year. Swan Cabin and Donley Cabin are both located in foothills of the Smoky Mountains.
Both of these cabins you can Backpack to…remote! Both have no electricity or running water and both have outhouses and steeped in History as they are about 100+ years old. Which is why we love it so much.
Joyce Kilmer – acquired some fame as a journalist, serving on the staff of the New York Times from 1913 to 1918, but most people remember him as the author of the poem “Trees” (“I think that I shall never see/A poem lovely as a tree”). He died in action in World War I. The 3,800 acres of North Carolina’s Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest–perhaps the single most impressive growth of eastern virgin forest in the United States, with many trees hundreds of years old. Swan Cabin Is over 5,000 feet and was Built in 1931 by Frank Swan, this rental has absolutely no modern facilities. The cabin was the former home to district rangers for a number of years before entering service as a rustic lodge for travelers seeking solitude.
Donley Cabin – Jack Donley was trying to evade serving in the Confederate Army, so he constructed a small cabin deep in the mountains of southeast Tennessee. Like many Southern mountaineers during the 19th century, he squatted on property that suited him, built a dwelling and grew corn and other crops.
Sometime after the War, Donley moved to Montana where he met and married an Indian woman. He later moved back to the upper Tellico River area with his bride. Donley died in the 1940’s, asking in his final days to “be carried back across the river” to his old homestead. He is buried in the Coppinger Cemetery in Tellico Plains.
In 1916, 50,000 acres in the North Bald and Tellico River drainage’s were purchased by the Babcock Lumber Company and aggressively logged for several years. Seven years later, this entire acreage, including Donley’s log cabin, was purchased by the Forest Service. During most of the 20th century, a family was permitted to use the cabin as a summer residence and apiary for producing honey.
Have a special “back in time” place you backpack to? Share with us!
On episode 14 of Trust the Trail, we are going to share and explain how to overcome your fear of backpacking solo. Then give you 9 tips you can use to help overcome YOUR fear. Lastly we share one of our subscribers e-mail question.
Where does the real fear come from that stops you from going out in nature alone? It’s control of course. People are usually fearful when they can’t control their environment. The reality of course, is that none of us are in control of our environment. If you spell out FEAR it’s False Evidence Appearing Real. So, stop being afraid of Big Foot, they haven’t proven it yet. 🙂
Ariane and Scott share what their fear is
Ariane shares how she managed her fear backpacking solo on one of the toughest trails in the Country
Scott describes how not to let your fear take over your thoughts.
Do you have a fear out in the wilderness? Post in comments and let’s start the discussion.
Episode 13 is part of our BackpackerTV Facebook Live show. In this episode I share how backpacking altered my life. Backpacking found me, over and over again – though I didn’t embrace it as a lifestyle at first it finally stuck! Now addicted to the sport of backpacking, I share how the culture of that lifestyle simplifies life and encourage you to explore the benefits for yourself.
Enjoy this episode, a rare solo show without my better half! May it find you inspired and encourage you to seek your balance in life…
See you on the Trail!
In this 12th episode we share our feelings, thoughts, and prayers to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park and Gatlinburg, TN.
The wildfires that swept through Gatlinburg, TN on Monday will go down in the history books for sure. There was devastating loss, and brought tears to so many people that have visited the Park, and the neighboring town of Gatlinburg, and Pigon Forge.
As it seems so devastating, there is also hope that our hiking community will remember what has been given so freely to them for years. The true beauty of the GSMNP, the Rangers, and the town’s people of Gatlinburg. In this podcast we share how to help and where to bring clothes and supplies to those who have been displaced out of their homes.
Red Cross information give and how to donate just 10 bucks to help….the FireFighters!
Ariane shares her experience with the Fireflies and the magical Mt. LeConte experience
Scott shares his first experience in Gatlinburg as a Appalachian Thru-Hiker….”dinner is on us”.
Below is how you can help:
The Gatlinburg Relief Fund has been established at SmartBank. Donations can be dropped off at any location or mailed to:
Gatlinburg Relief Fund
P.O. Box 1910
Pigeon Forge, TN 37868
Call 865-453-2650 for more information.
The organization is accepting donations at the Pigeon Forge Fire Hall Station 1 at 3229 Rena Street in Pigeon Forge and New
Hope Church of God in Kodak:
2450 Winfield Dunn Pkwy
Open from 8 to 8
The Red Cross is not looking for untrained volunteers, but is accepting monetary donations. People can make a $10 donation by
texting “REDCROSS” to 90999.
Red Cross workers have served more than 10,000 meals and snacks to wildfire evacuees at shelters in the Galinburg and Pigeon Forge area as of 10 a.m. Tuesday. The Red Cross has served nearly 1,000 meals to firefighters battling the fires.
In this podcast we share 5 important tips on what you should know before backpacking down into the Grand Canyon. People often make mistakes when underestimating just how hard the hike will be. Especially if you are backpacking to the Colorado River.
First: Always refer to the Grand Canyon NPS site for info and permits before you go. Plan and Prepare is the key. It’s your responsibility to make sure you understand everything that there is to know about the Grand Canyon before you assume anything.
Second: Just because you are going with a guided service, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do your due diligence.
Ariane talks about how small you become when you are in the Grand Canyon
Scott & Ariane explains what caching your water means and why
1 mile per hour is about average
Surprise Valley…it’s a surprise
If you have stories about your Grand Canyon adventure or have any questions, please post them here. We would love to hear from you.
Apologies for some parts of the audio on this podcast. There are a few spots where you will hear a buzzing sound that last for a few minutes. We are working on a solution so we can bring you a quality show. However, please enjoy the content of this podcast. This podcast is all about Winter Backpacking and a look inside of our own packs. We also talk about the 3 layering system plus we add a layer of our own.
Winter backpacking is a beautiful time of the year where you can really see the mountain views. However, it’s important that you bring the right clothing and the right sleeping bag. We talk about which is right for you.
Scott & Ariane share what to look for in Winter Sleeping Bag
The 3 layering system explained
Don’t leave the house without your beanie
Scott & Ariane leave you with 2 great tips on how to stay warm at night
Thanks for listening. Have a question? Ask us in the comments below, we love hearing from you. Also, if you have particular gear that you bring on a winter backpacking trip, post it! Us backpackers love talking gear.
In Episode 9, Scott and Ariane discuss the Top 3 Letters that all who love the outdoors need to know. LNT or Leave No Trace and the 7 principals that guide all who participate in Nature and how to be good stewards of it.
Leave No Trace is probably the most overlooked set of principals that outdoor enthusiasts make. Backpackers, Day Hikers, Climbers, or anyone that loves the outdoors need to at least take the awareness course that teaches the 7 principals so we can all leave the backcountry exactly the way we find it. Why? Listen to our Podcast and find out.
There is a reason Plan and Prepare is the first principal
Scott and Ariane discuss Poop…What?
Please don’t feed the Bears
Scott get’s passionate about burning garbage in campfires
Ariane suggest reading material for your….private moments
Have a Leave No Trace story? Post it here and we will respond. We love hearing from our listeners.
In Episode 8: Scott and Ariane share why their podcast is called Trust the Trail. When things go wrong in the wilderness why trusting nature is to your benefit. More importantly, trusting that the trail will give you everything that you are looking for when backpacking and more.
Also, a huge thank to our listeners. We really appreciate all the support and e-mails. Keep them coming.
Ariane forgets tent poles, Oh Oh!
Scott ask’s the universe for a 3 Musketeer’s Bar…and get’s one
Do more with less
The Trail provides if you have a good mental attitude
Have a trail story? Leave a comment and let us know. In the meantime, Trust the Trail.
The thought of backpacking in the rain usually keeps most people home on a weekend. But on this episode, Scott and Ariane talk about the beauty and scents that only the wilderness can provide when it’s pouring outside. “The wilderness comes alive”
They discuss the difference between Breathable and Non-Breathable rain jackets, and how you can multi-purpose your rain gear. Are rain Poncho’s the best piece of rain gear?
Ariane loves to hike in the rain
“New people ask “what if it rains”?
Scott say’s “water is good, put your pot in the rain and collect rain water”
Chasing down your Poncho on the trail in a thunderstorm isn’t fun
If you are new to backpacking then this episode is a must. This Podcast is from their NEW LIVE SHOW on the BackpackerTV Facebook Page. Starting next week every Thursday at 11:00 AM EST.