I once went on a backpacking trip with a couple who picked me up hitchhiking. The guy told me his pack weighed 90 lbs, and I believed him when I tried to pick it up. Man! Among other things, he had a small pressure cooker to cook their dry beans. And this was for a 4 day trip. But you know what, that guy hiked so fast that it killed me to keep up with him on the trail.
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Originally Posted By Glenn Roberts
Didn't we all? Was yours the little tiny one that stored inside the suction cup thingies, or the Sawyer one with the syringe and 5 or 6 little cups (the socket set of snake bite kits)? Or both?
Mine is a "Sawyer". I still have it. It's sitting on my gear shelf. I just went over and looked at it. I wrote "Snake Bite Kit" on every side of the bright yellow box. I must've been worried no one could find it while I was lying there dying.
I invented a modern snake bit kit after I learned those don't work. I test marketed the concept but never actually made one. It's pretty simple really. It's just a bag with $45,000 in it.
I do not recall bringing any "bonehead" item; I do however remember NOT bringing some essentials or doing stupid things! The flip side of the coin for "bonehead" thinking.
1. Tying my inflatable sleeping pad to the outside of my pack when I planned on bushwhacking through thorny vegetation. Not hard to guess what happened.
2. Going without a map or compass because I thought I knew the area well. Also, walking off my map coverage, getting lost.
3. Taking a tent (rain jackets too) that leaked in hopes that it would not rain. Dah! What good is a leaky tent or rain jacket?
4. Trying to use up 2-year old backpack food without checking it. Not edible - moldy and awful. A hungry trip!
5. Going the wrong place. Took my daughter on a trip that was WAY too hard for her. She now is very skeptical when I want to take her kids (my grandkids)backpacking.
6. Taking a 45-degree sleeping bag, cowboy camping, when the weather report said 30 degrees and wind.
7. Taking my poor puppy on a rough sharp rock trail. First night I looked and she had holes in each paw.
8. NOT taking my camera to save a few ounces, and kicking myself all the trip. Not taking a spare battery, and running up to a viewpoint for one of the most fantastic sunsets I have witnessed, only to have camera say "dead battery".
I guess the closest to "bonehead" gear is when my husband and I carried full on serious rock climbing gear (about 30 pounds) on a 10-day Sierra trip and never climbed one mountain. We ended up stashing the gear and picking it up at the end of the trip.
Boy can I relate to these. My first item of gear was a sheath knife for Christmas. I made a new sheath for it and treasured it for years, though I don't remember cutting anything but food and a few tent stakes. Can't imagine carrying it now. I have a little pen knife that weighs maybe an ounce.
Yeah, my second piece of purchased equipment was a snake bite kit (the interlocking suction cups with knife blade. Utterly worthless of course, but I may still have it. Haven't carried it since about 1953.
And I took my two girls to the wrong place (too far) and it was just about their "first and last".
The other thing was a three quarter Hudson's bay style axe. Carried in hand for a whole lot of miles, but rarely used. I think the last time I carried it was about 1960, and I don't know what happened to it.
Eight Canadian Stubby Glass Bottles of O'Keefes Extra Old Stock Beer:
and a pound of frozen ground moose meat for tacos - that I thought would thaw in my pack (along with the frypan and coleman peak one stove and fuel) To here:
In what was worse conditions than you see in that picture. I was 16. And my background was such that I should have known better (and did). three dorky teenagers set up in snowbowl campground on skyline with a storm howling trying to cook frozen moosemeat.. And of course by this point nobody really wanted a beer, but we drank them anyway..
Such experiences are useful to young men. That which does not kill you makes you smarter Yes, it's sexist, but I do believe that women are different and do not require as much stupidity to aquire wisdom.
I think the *empty* bottles (which yes, I did pack out) weighed more than my current tent and sleeping gear.. possibly more than my entire current big three
Oh, and my current, and favorite, bonehead move, is to leave the data card out of my camera and arrive at the trailhead with the ability to only take pictures with the stupid internal memory. Must buy a camera with no internal memory so when I check it before putting it in the pack it obviously doesn't work.
Mmmm, moose meat. Can't say I ever had the pleasure but I'll wager at the time it was darn good.
Well, eventually I recall it did the job. it was a store taco kit cheese, and moose. I definately recall three of us standing around a british army issue frypan on top of a roaring coleman peak 1 in a blizzard whacking at a hunk of frozen mooseburger and repeatedly saying we thought it would thaw in the packs.. Standing outside waiting for... forever... for the meat to thaw and cook... Couldn't wait to shovel it in, down my ice cold beer that I would have preferred warm, and strip off my wet jeans to crawl into a fortunately dry sleeping bag
So, while mooseburger is fine, I don't recall that meal being particularly memorable for any kind of taste...
That story is a classic and thank god the GoPro hadn't been invented yet...
My wife and my's first backpacking trip was to New Mexico with a long-term friend, somewhere above Sante Fe. We had in our packs a 3-liter jug of really bad Gallo wine, that eventually we drank and then carried that heavy glass container out. This was the start of my "air-camping" adventures -- flying from Miami to somewhere mountainous -- and when we arrived at the Albuquerque airport we found out that although we had a car reservation, we had no car cause it was balloon fest weekend. "So give us a van, a truck!" we demanded. "Get lost," they replied. So we found "Rent-A-Wreck" in the phone book -- remember those -- and they rented us a piece of junk that once we got up the mountain we realized had only three lug nuts on the left-front wheel. We arrived late and headed up, finally stopping to camp just off trail at dark, and pitched the tent on an absurdly steep hill and woke up in the bottom of the tent. But we had a great time and we were hooked.
We were in the Arapaho NF in CO and, after the sun went down and a bowl of strong Colorado herb was burned, we all became very paranoid of bears. There were lots of slender long pines that had fallen in this area, so we constructed crude fortresses around our tents. Haha! We even whittled some of the sticks with sharp points at the end to stab any bears trying to murder us in our sleep. lol
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
That is hilarious!!!
The boneheadedest things I've done involved bears too. No herbs were involved, so I can only blame myself. Lucky for me both times the bears were forgiving souls. One did let me know what he thought of me though by leaving me something to think about. He even pointed to it while looking at me. Bears can have a satirical sense of humor if they're not hungry.
45 years ago my brother and I went backpacking up the Kern river from Johnsondale. We took among other things cotton sleeping bags, canned bacon (man did the meat bees love that!), and a cast iron skillet. I was 14, weighted about 145, and had to of been carrying 50+ lbs. needless to say it was a long time before I went backpacking again. 11 years ago I discovered that you don't have to lug that kind of weight around and have been enjoying the backcountry ever since.
I have one of those camping propane burners that screw on top of the little propane tanks. So I was reading that the butane burners are better for 3-season because the fuel is lighter that propane. So I bought myself a butane burner and grabbed a canister of fuel. On the good side, the butane burner is much smaller and lighter that the propane burner, so in the end everything worked out well and I reduced weight. The bonehead move was grabbing a 1 lb bottle of butane to replace the heavy 1 lb bottle of propane.