Going Lightweight and Pooping First Class!

Journal entries from August and September 2014

August 18, 2014

Mel just ordered our ultra light tent and a new lightweight trowel, and my new purple Buff just arrived. It’s a tube of stretchy material that has several uses (12 according to the enclosed packaging) with neck band and head band being the main uses. I will mostly be wearing mine on my head. When it’s hot out, I can dip it in a stream and put it back on my head to keep it–cool, or to keep the bugs off. If it’s cold out, I’ll wear it over my head and ears to stay warm. It also can be worn around the neck and then pulled up over the mouth and nose for warmth, or over the head to keep both the neck and head warm–very useful!

'Cartwheel' 2014 AT thru-hiker who was small enough to wear a buff as a tank top or skirt!

‘Cartwheel’ 2014 AT thru-hiker who was small enough to wear a buff as a tank top or skirt!

Or, if you’re a very tiny 8 year old girl, like Cartwheel, (A Family Adventure of the 2,185 mile hike from Georgia to Maine – 2014) you can wear it as a tank top and/or a skirt!

With all this new stuff coming in,  I’m constantly reminded of the enormity of this undertaking. I think about how long six months will be. That’s probably going to be the hardest part. Day after day after day for six long months. I like to hike and I like to camp and I like to test my mettle, but six months will really, really test me. I’ll be without my dogs and  without my creature comforts and comforting routines. It will be hard, but I’m looking forward to finding out how well I will  survive the challenge and what I learn along the way.

August 22, 2014

I’ve been thinking about what I might name my hiking blog if I write one. One of the blogs we’ve been following is called ‘Walking with Wired’. Wired is the writer’s trail name. She earned the name because she carries a fair amount of technology–so that she can blog and so she can watch her favorite show in her tent at night: Orange is the New Black!!  I cannot imagine that! Watching TV is the last thing I’d want to do!! The other blog we’ve been enjoying is called A Family Adventure of the 2,185 mile hike from Georgia to Maine – 2014. That one is kind of long. At first we thought we’d call it Old Farts on Foot. The alliteration is good, but I don’t think it’s quite what I want.

Spider and Backfire off-trail!

Spider and Backfire off-trail!


Recently, I thought of calling our blog The Spider Diaries. My trail name, from our 100 mile AT hike in 2007, was Spider. Mel gave me the name after I’d unknowingly walked all day with a spider in my shoe. There was also a caterpillar, both squished. They must have been alive in the morning when I put my shoes on, but I never noticed them. In retrospect, this is hard for me to believe–that I walked all day and didn’t feel a lump! Mel thought Spider made a better trail name than caterpillar–plus I have spidery fingers and spidery legs. So I kept the name. Mel’s trail name is Backfire. I don’t think that would make a good blog name, just sayin’.

 September 9, 2014

Our new ultralight tent (Double Rainbow by Tarptent, 41 ounces) arrived the other day. Mel took a 100 mile bike trip this weekend and got to try it out. It’s big enough for two people so he had plenty of room all by himself. It  sets up quickly (2 minutes), is free standing (with trekking poles) and has two roomy vestibules for our packs.

Ultra light (41 ounces) Double Rainbow tent by Tarptent.

Ultra light (41 ounces) Double Rainbow tent by Tarptent.

Room for two plus two vestibules for packs.

Room for two plus two vestibules for packs.

 September 29, 2014

The Little Deuce Scoop (3/4 ounce)

The Little Deuce Scoop (3/4 ounce)


Our $15, lightweight (3/4 oz) titanium, excrement hole digger called The Little Deuce Scoop  (Lawson Equipment) arrived in the mail today and will be added to the bag of “toiletries”. We’re going light and we’re going to poop First Class!


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