In this video, I walk through my gear during a 9-day summer trek in the high mountains of the western US. This was a trip with friends and family – 3 other adults and four children ages 7-11. We moved camps every day but one, and spent 70% of our miles off-trail, with camps up to about 11,600 feet. Scroll down for gear notes and trip photos!
Notes from the Field
Narratives that expand on the trip report format by including a discussion of pre-trip rationale for choices made, during-trip experiences (e.g., an annotated photo essay), a post-trip summary and analysis (including gear notes). More room for subjective author commentary and communication of personal experience than in the Expedition / Trip Report format.
My Fryatt Valley Hike trip report – photos, gear notes, planning and prep.
Unseasonably cold May temperatures and a winter storm warning were too much to pass up, so we set out for an overnighter in SE Wyoming.
On the leading edge of the last bomb cyclone storm cycle that hit the Rockies and Midwest this spring (April 2019), I was hoping to get in a quick 24-hour trip up in the high country of Wyoming’s Snowy Range.
Ryan and Stephanie Jordan venture into Idaho’s Sawtooth range for a couples backpacking trip.
Lightweight backpacking in winter: field notes from SE Wyoming – tarp camping, firebuilding, wood stove cooking, and more (VIDEO).
When Donald Trump took office he appointed as his Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, a former member of Congress with a 4% lifetime score from the League of Conservation voters. Like Trump’s other cabinet members, much ink has been spilled concerning Zinke’s qualifications, the “fox guarding the henhouse” nature of his appointment, the various scandals that have surfaced during his time at Interior. Perhaps less well known to the general public is that Secretary Zinke, under orders from President Trump, recommended major changes to ten of the nation’s National Monuments. The most famous and contentious of these Monuments are Bears Ears and Grand Staircase – Escalante. But Organ Mountain – Desert Peaks, tucked away in a quiet corner of New Mexico, made the list as well.
The Canadian Rockies are full of backpacking opportunities which are well-traveled but secluded. One scenic route is the Skyline Trail in Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada. I have had the benefit of backpacking many of the trails in the Canadian Rockies. However, I have never managed to make it out to the Skyline Trail. Also, the limited number of backpackers permitted on the trail at one time ensures a relatively private trip, and the elevation of the trail provides unparalleled views.
The Rancherias Loop Trail in Big Bend State Park is one of the last wild places in West Texas. With few visitors and stunning scenery, it is not to be missed.
Luke Schmidt tests his wilderness skills with a Glacier National Park packrafting trip over Ptarmigan Pass and down the Belly River. He shares photos from the trip and the gear he used.