Sunday, November 29, 2015

Winter 2015 Updates, and Long Term Future Plans

Salutations and happy holidays to anyone that may be reading this.  Been a while since I wrote an update, so here we go.  

As I expressed in other posts and vlogs previously, how often I make content is going to change due to a variety of factors.  Some of which I will spare you, but the most relevant factor is that I've accomplished a lot of my hiking goals in and around where I live.  I really wanted to explore and take advantage of the great network of trails here in south-west Sweden, and after starting on Sweden's E1 trails almost two years ago, I've managed to section hike all the way into a more isolated part of central Sweden.  I only have about 120-150km left of the E1 trails for me to complete, which I plan on doing in spring or summer 2016, and hopefully with some friends and family.  Most of my hiking adventures are solo, so it will be a nice change of pace, though I do get out on my fair share of weekend trips with friends closer to home.

So in between my more involved trips--which in the future are beginning to resemble proper adventures again rather than more leisurely backpacking trips close to home--what I've done to scratch my outdoors itch is to return to familiar trails and woods nearby.  I've not documented them on my blog because, well, I thought it would not really be of interest to my readers.  I've already documented a lot of these trails anyhow.  Most of the trips since my last E1 hike have been more appropriate to document on my private Facebook page for friends and family than here.  So I have been getting out there, I am just waiting to document more relevant and interesting adventures and reviews.

So what is in the works, then?

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Return to Bohusleden: Section Hike of Parts of Stages 9-7 Plus Side Trails

There I lay in bed daydreaming in the middle of the week of what to do with the coming free weekend, as I often do.  Various brainstorms cross my mind, all of them having to do in one way or another getting outside into the woods.  I'm leaning towards a more bushwhacking type trip that is more focused on picking wild edible mushrooms, seeing that it's supposed to be high season for a lot of yummy mushrooms (though this year has been rather so-so thus far).  But then again, there are several stages on trails that are not too far away from where I live that have been beckoning me to return.  I couldn't make up my mind, but I did decide to call my good friend Tomas, who is one of my more reliable friends when it comes to getting out into the wild.

I go back to thinking about other things I have to do during the week, when several minutes later, what do you know--Tomas calls me.  And he immediately suggests we go backpacking this weekend without me having to say anything.  I love moments like this.  So we debate the various options, until we reach a complication: hunting season.  Moose season began recently, and that kind of killed (no pun intended) the idea of going on any type of bushwhacking or off-trail type trip in the woods where there is hunting going on.  One does not want to get shot picking mushrooms, after all.  Tomas has an insightful observation, however: no hunting allowed on nature reserves.  This pretty much made up my mind of where to go, and I told Tomas to trust me, I know a great place to go then.

Monday, September 28, 2015

My Top 5 Favorite Newer Pieces of Gear: Follow-up Reviews and Reflections

Usual disclaimer: I am still not sponsored or get free gear.  Just some gear I love that I bought myself.

Another high season of wilderness backpacking is coming to a close for me.  Sure I get out every month of the year, if anything on day trips and the occasional overnighter, but I tend to get out more from generally May to September.  This time of year is also when I tend to take my longer section hikes.  Not that I don't like getting out during those other months!  A lot of it has to do with convenient vacation periods over the summer, and I find it's also easier to take last minute type trips when the weather is warmer.  

Give me about 10 minutes to change into my hiking outfit and throw my gear into my pack, and I can be ready to hit the trail on a sunny summer weekend.  Speaking of sunny, here's a few random pictures from my most recent section hike, which was last week.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Dealing With Hard Times While Backpacking

As I have mentioned before, and often tell new/younger backpackers: it's not all sunny days, great views, and smelling wild flowers while out in nature.  Like any challenging hobby/lifestyle, the rewards come with a price, and sometimes this means enduring some hard times out there so that you can enjoy nature overall.  However if you are a new or less experienced backpacker, don't let any of the hard times get you down!  They are part of the experience, and you become a better person for dealing with hard times and the challenges they present.

The mountain ahead of you may look intimidating, but not when you take it one step at a time.  And while you're hiking up the mountain, yeah it's probably going to be tough.  You're probably going to sweat, your legs will get sore, you might even slip and skin your shin.  And it might even rain or snow while you are going up that damn mountain, and even with good rain gear, at the very least your shoes and socks are going to get soaked, and the rest of you will be a bit soggy from sweat if anything.

But then you get to the top of that damn mountain, and it will be worth it. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

My Summer 2015 Full Skin Out Gear (Base Pack + Clothing Worn) Breakdown

I recently uploaded a video where I discuss and show off all my gear and clothing for the rest of the summer (and perhaps early fall).  I have a few section hikes coming up that I am looking forward to, and this will be the set up I will take on them, but of course nothing is set in stone and things can change based on any given circumstances.  But I have a feeling that I won't change anything, as the weather has been pretty consistent as of late, and this set up is pretty flexible and can handle a wide range of conditions and temperatures.  As I said in the video, I could push it down to perhaps lows of 8-9C / 46-48F and be just fine, and from lows of 11C / 52F and up I'm very comfortable.

So first off, if you haven't seen the video yet, here it is: