Top 10 Tips for Your First Backpacking Trip

img_1970This summer, I developed a strong desire to spend some time in the wilderness.  Real adventure that gets me out of my comfort zone.   (For the record, I had done one real, adventurous, very legit camping trip in Alaska when I was in high school, but I was along for the ride with some camping experts and didn’t do any of the planning, so it didn’t feel like that counted.)  So bought a bunch of stuff at REI, researched online, and planned a short, beginner backpacking trip for my husband and our dog in Shenandoah National Park.  Of course it rained on the planned weekend and we had to cancel our adventure.  A few weeks later, I did some camping in Wyoming at formal campsites and really loved sleeping outdoors, but I didn’t want winter to arrive without having done a real backpacking trip.  So I somehow persuaded my wonderful husband to head out in much colder weather than originally anticipated (it was now October instead of August!) for a backpacking trip.  We survived!  Even with just one little weekend trip, I’ve already learned a ton, and I wanted to share it with other aspiring adventurers.  Without further ado:

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