Overnight in the Locals 14.2 Miles


Amber and I showing off our lightweight backpacks. Even Andy joined in our joy!

Our busy lives have kept us from from getting out together for nearly 1-1/2 years! Blame it on conflicting schedules, high school football, and other commitments that–quite frankly–are also important to us. Amber and I have both continued to backpack, but haven’t together for a long time. So, we finally got it on the calendar and headed out into the forest.

Saturday afternoon, we parked our car, hid the key and Continue reading

Overnight to Lowe — 11 Miles

Middle Sam Merrill Trail -- Rod overlooks Los Angeles, about 4 miles from the trailhead.

Middle Sam Merrill Trail — Rod overlooks Los Angeles, about 4 miles from the trailhead.

January 31-Feb. 1, 2015. First backpack of the year. I hope there will be many more to follow. Last year was a bust, mainly due to two factors: lack of rain/water and my son’s football schedule. Truth be told, I still wouldn’t trade his games for weekend trips to the hills, I just wish there was a way to add days to the weekends.

This trip was supposed to have about eight–between Scouts and Scouters. All but three of us pulled out.

We left the trailhead at Continue reading

Drought, Photography and Football

daily-photo-la-evolution-valley-john-muir-trail-1Normally, this time of year I would be tearing up the trails, putting on miles and exploring new stealth sites. Autumn is one of our favorites times of year to backpack in our local playground. This year, however, is/was a year of change. The lack of water has already put to death two trips we planned plus we have a new family activity: High school football.

I am not transitioning out of backpacking as much as our family dove head-first into our son’s first year in football.

Our normal routine for weekend overnight trips is head up on Friday after work and come home Saturday afternoon. But with football games being on Friday nights, our trips were thwarted. To make matters even more difficult, I photograph both the JV and Varsity games, taking up to 1,800 to 2,000 photos, which need to be processed, uploaded to my site, plus sent to the publisher for the next week’s school program. All this takes until Saturday afternoon–sometimes later if we have something else going on.

Okay, enough of the excuses…. Once football is over, it will be time to hit the trails again.

Why Use a Go Box?

In an effort to help Scouts and adult backpackers better prepare, I explain the importance of a Go Box.

A Case for the Go Box

Even with the aid of a checklist, I found myself still having to rummage through the house, attic, basement and garage for my equipment. That takes time and a lot of mental effort. So to remedy the problem, our family each has a personal, Continue reading