The Weather Sucks, Let's Go Backpacking!
The balmy days of summer are over, and for those of us in the PNW and other northern latitudes, this means the best days of hiking and backpacking are upon us. Seriously. The trails will be a little less crowded and we get to break out our foul-weather
gear and find out just how good our knowledge, experience, and gear really are. We'll be hiking in mud, over wet rocks and roots. Starting a fire will be difficult. Setting up our tents and hammocks will be more challenging. Keeping our feet warm and dry becomes a high-priority issue. Most of all, our resolve will be tested. We are lucky here in the Pacific Northwest in that we get to enjoy a climate that is cold and damp from November through to April or even May. Hikers in the southern regions are denied this blessing.
As you plan your backpacking and hiking adventures this fall and winter, take the extra time to research the area you are going. Read recent reviews about the trail and location. Keep in mind the weather predictions don't always take into account what the weather will be like in the mountains. Accept the fact that you'll be taking some extra gear, and won't be moving as fast as you did in the summer. If you have the opportunity to bring along one of our fellow outdoor lovers from the warmer states, give them the first crack at starting a fire. :)