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Travis "BevoHi" Hildebrand
Begins: Mar 20, 2016
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Shakedown 1: Pedernales - new gear
7miles. This past weekend, I did a shakedown hike with my son (Chance) and a good friend (Steve Sanderson) to test out the new gear I have acquired in the past 45 days at Pedernales State Park in Texas. My complete starting gear list can be found here: http://lighterpack.com/r/7cb2gz. As of today, it is just a hair under 19 pounds. I expect this will get smaller when winter is over along the trail.
On Friday, we hiked in two miles to the campsite and I setup the new BIAS weight Weenie hammock and the Zpacks standard tarp. I was disappointed to see that the tarp wasn't long enough to cover the length of my hammock. On Saturday morning, I realized that I had the tarp turn 90degrees from the way it should be set up. Once that was corrected, it covered the hammock just fine.
Saturday morning, I packed all of my gear back up to hike with the 19lbs base weight (+food & water) pack all day (~7 miles). The pack felt great. I sent a couple of messages with my SPOT device to see if it would e-mail my location to loved ones. Hopefully, the location will be integrated to the PostHoler.com blog.
We hiked around the falls and had lunch at the falls. We then hiked back to the primitive campsites where I set all of my gear back up again. I cooked using my fancee feast cat stove. I tried some powdered milk (skim milk is all HEB had in stock) with some honey nut cheerios and it was pretty tasty. I can certainly do a bunch of that on the trail and won't have to cook breaksfast in the morning. (Thanks Carl (Z-man) for the tip!)
It was 28 degrees on Friday night and my gear performed great! I have a 20degree underquilt (UQ) from Little Shop of Hammocks in Canada (24 oz) that is 65" (long enough to reach from my shoulders to my ankles). This was my first time ever using a UQ. I was not cold at all overnight! No shivering, no teeth chattering. I was very impressed with the warmth of my gear. I was wearing all of my clothes (save the rain gear) in my 20degree sleeping bag and liner.
Saturday brought more warmth. It only got down to the upper 40s overnight and I was actually hot in my gear. I had to open up my sleeping bag so I wouldn't sweat. Again, I was wearing all of my clothes (save the rain gear).
Overall, I'm very happy with the gear I have for the start of my AT thru-hike. I did not test the bug-net as there weren't any bugs and I forgot about it. I have some gear on its way from dutchwaregear.com for a continuous tarp line to make that easier to rig up the tarp as well as some whoopie hooks to allow me to remove the whoopie slings from my hammock when they are wet from rain.
Unfortunately, I ripped my compression bag when I was trying to stuff my (hammock, UQ, sleeping bag, and liner) all into the stuff bag. Hopefully REI will provide an even exchange for me.
I'd like to add some pockets to my Patagonia fleece.
Life is hiking with a good friend and family on my 1st shakedown hike!
BevoHi Appalachian Trail Journal
Are we there yet?
Just a mile.... mile and a half...
You can e-mail me at BevoHi@jedi.net to send words of encouragement or with questions.
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