My first hike will be the 32 mile section of the ice age trail in the Northern Kettle Moraine State Forest in Wisconsin. We will be leaving 3/27 and finishing on 3/31 if needed. We will be going from North to South. The average temp. is 40. We will be in a group of 7. Two have alot of experience. But as far as my self goes....
It sounds doable and fun, as long as you aren't a complete couch potato. Listen to the experienced members of your group for a start.
How do you take care of your body with fatigue ect.?
Mostly "common sense" - but biggest things, stay hydrated, and fed, and keep a good pace but
remember it isn't a race so don't wear yourself out. I personally take a couple of aleve along for muscle
aches at the end/start of a day.
As fars as "dealing with it" - hiking is mostly mental. it's just one foot in front of the other.
What food would reccomend?
Anything you like that's light. I take stuff that can be made by just boiling water and dumping it in for breakfast and dinner - I take "snack" type food for "lunch" - which is prolonged snacking throughout my day. if you've got the cash, I'm partial to the Natural High brand dehydrated backpacking meals for dinner, oatmeal or dehydrated omlette and mashed potatoes for breakfast. and a random assortment
of clif bars, mars/snickers bars, dry pepperoni, almonds, dry fruit, bagles, etc. during the day to munch on. If you want to look into making your own later I highly reccomend sarbar's site, look for her posts here and there is a link on it. Drink plenty of water.
Know of any moderatly priced, comfortable hiking boots?
Yes, but assuming they'd be comfortable for you is foolish. Go to a local place where you
can try on and walk around in. when you select them, wear them like mad in the weeks before
you go. You may wish to consider using trail runners if you can handle wet feet. Invest in a
good couple pair of socks and liner socks In spring conditions it may be muddy and gooey
Should I bring rain gear or a waterproof breathable jacket with water resistant pants?
You should bring something to shelter you from the elements if it's raining. Many like a waterproof
breathable jacket. Depending on conditions some take pants. I carry a large silnylon poncho and
windshirt. but remember, you need to be comfortable being out in it in nasty weather.
Most important of all. What is a good practical joke to play on someone while out there? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />
Depends on the crowd. if you're a newbie showing up prepared and enjoying yourself
without requiring a lot of care and feeding on the trail by others is often the biggest surprise
you can pull on them.