Your Favorite Trip Report of all Time?
Mar 23, 2021 at 7:04 pm #3706000Tom KBPL Member
Thanks for getting back to me, Ryan. It’s good to know they’ll still be available.
TomMar 23, 2021 at 11:22 pm #3706026Michael BBPL Member
I would love to give trip reports, but I am a poor photographer and an even poorer writer. A lot more talent and effort goes into that work. I do love reading them though.Mar 23, 2021 at 11:28 pm #3706027Ryan JordanAdmin
@ryanLocale: Central Rockies
No one here has ever criticized the photography or writing on a trip report.
For most of us, I think that the opportunity to see nature through other peoples eyes ultimately enriches our lives in a positive way. I can never, ever, remember reading a trip report ever written by anybody and thinking that it was a waste of time. I love reading about other peoples experiences and seeing their photography through their eyes, regardless of the quality of the photos.
I’ve learned so much by reading how other people view their backpacking experiences. I think trip reports have probably broadened my appreciation for our members more than any other form of their writing.Mar 24, 2021 at 12:24 pm #3706089Michael BBPL Member
Oh, I totally get that. I wasn’t saying that people here looked down on any other members’ content – I was just saying that writing about trips and sharing photography (for me, at least :) ) is more difficult content to produce. Similar to a well-written tutorial on how one makes their own homemade gear. I think we subject ourselves to our own possibly too-high standards, and some content never makes it past the trash. I was definitely not commenting on how trip report authors are received here. On the whole, this forum has been one of the more supportive, encouraging, and thoughtful areas on the internet I have come across. I think that could reasonably be stated about the backpacking community in general. We all know how hard it is to walk up big hills and across large expanses.Mar 26, 2021 at 11:01 am #3706370Erik GBPL Member
@fox212Locale: Central Coast
Don’t think I could choose a single favorite, but the trip reports posted by @awhite4777 are always enjoyable and inspiring. Great photography and commentary, and a style of trips that I find myself taking more and more often.
Great thread, btw.Mar 26, 2021 at 11:21 am #3706371
It would be nice if folks would provide links to the trip reports they are reminiscing over. I would be happy to share in the appreciation but don’t know how to find the posts in question.
CheersApr 8, 2021 at 11:29 am #3708233
I can’t claim this is my favorite of all time, but it was a fantastic read and the pics are amazing.Apr 18, 2021 at 2:45 pm #3709378Adam WhiteBPL Member
@awhite4777Locale: On the switchbacks
I don’t think I can distill it down to a favorite, but there are some traits that I find particularly intriguing. I should caveat this by saying that although there are exceptions, I’m particularly drawn to trip reports from the Sierra. I have nothing against the rest of the world, but I’m not CA-born, and I find the Sierra to be utterly fascinating and astoundingly aesthetic.
In no particular order, here’s a smattering of what comes to mind:
- I enjoy reading trip reports from new backpackers, or backpackers who are pushing their individual comfort envelopes, on formative trips. There is only a brief window of experience in which we can write these, because we are only inexperienced for a brief time. Reading about nervousness, anxiety or stress for those things that now come so naturally to many of us (backpacking solo, hiking in bad weather, being temporarily unsure of our location, etc.)–I enjoy this; I reminisce, as I’m reminded of being in that stage myself. An example that comes to mind is Diane’s first solo trip on the Timberline Trail: https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/105855/ (though Diane was an experienced backpacker, “solo” was new!)
- I enjoy reading trip reports that motivate me to visit new places. This doesn’t happen so much any more (now, I just go wherever I haven’t been!), but years ago, when I felt glued to the Rae Lakes Loops and JMTs of the world, Andrew Farhland’s trip reports helped nudge me towards more remote, lesser-known places. His knowledge of the flora, fauna and history were also inspiring. A great example was his visit to the Middle Fork King’s: https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/93358/. In recent years, Andy Duncan and Cameron M have likewise nudged me.
- I enjoy reading Craig Wisner’s trip reports. Somehow he is able to convey more meaning than I can using 1/1000th of the words.
- Tom K’s trip reports inspire me. To be blunt, one way they inspire me is to make realize that I may be doing this many years from now, if I’m lucky. His knowledge, humility and general sagacity are equally inspiring. Here is an example that I enjoyed: https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/gardner-basin-9-27-10-3-2016/
- I enjoy reading trip reports of trips that follow a route that I’ve done before. Again, I think it is about reminiscing about common experiences (or uncommon experiences, on the exact same ground!). JMT trip reports come to mind.
- Trip reports with great photography. This is all very subjective, of course. There was one trip report from several years ago–I think it was a Rae Lakes loop hike–that had photography that really drew me into how wonderful backcountry photography could be. I can’t remember the author, but there was a black and white picture of Fin Dome that I still can picture. Also, Jacob Dinardi’s photography also come to mind. He doesn’t post trip reports on BPL very often any more, but does on his own blog. I enjoy his writing as well. And his company. Here’s one of his TR’s I enjoyed: http://hikeitlikeit.com/2016/crumbing-places-of-seki/. And this one was particularly interesting, since it was a trip we took together–comparing his take to mine was not something I’ve been able to do after a trip before: http://hikeitlikeit.com/2019/problem-solving-in-the-high-country/
- I enjoy reading trip reports that document interactions with others on the trail. It is a strange thing, since we often go to the wilderness to experience the wild, not the human interaction we can get at Starbucks. But for some reason, I enjoy reading even banal interactions on the trail.
- Paul Wagner’s are always interesting
I could probably keep going, and I’ve sure I’ve missed some, but I’m running out of steam!
AdamMay 30, 2021 at 12:22 pm #3716372
Mike Curiak has long been known for his winter fatbike accomplishments including many IditaBikes, but he has branched out into packrafting and more recently skiing. He’s a humble and soft spoken person, and is an excellent photographer.
300 miles across Idaho:
The Saw-Sal-WayMay 30, 2021 at 2:57 pm #3716395Tipi WalterBPL Member
There are two types of Trip Reports—Photographic Essays and Journals with alot of text.
I have written exhaustive Trip Reports over the years detailing my backpacking jaunts into the mountains of TN and NC and Georgia etc. I am reluctant to post them here on BPL due to the inevitable Fat Shaming that will occur when my pack weight is assessed.
Another problem from my experience is trip reports get scant attention or interest from fellow backpackers—with 2 or 3 responses as someone here mentions. I posted this detailed account of my last trip on Whiteblaze and got few replies—
Here’s an example of a trip report with thousands of words—
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