This was my first hike with a group and I wasn’t sure what to expect going into it. I’ve always hiked by myself and done my own thing (what else is new, right?!). So, I wasn’t sure how other people go about the various aspects of trail life. Do they wash up at night or just accumulate the funk? It could get pretty tricky trying to find an isolated spot to strip down and wash but then again, you start smelling pretty rotten after the first day. Do they always hike together making the faster hikers impatient and pressuring the slower hikers? Or does everyone hike their own pace and meet up at the end of the day? These were some of my questions going into it.

It turned out to be a really great weekend with an awesome bunch of people…one of the best backpacking trips I’ve ever gone on. There was the perfect mix of company and isolation. If you wanted to chat while hiking there was always someone to hold the other end of a conversation. If you wanted to be on your own and think, you could do that too.

We did about 20 miles of the Black Forest Trail…covering some of the miles that I didn’t do on this BFT trip plus 5 or so miles on a couple linking trails.

Some highlights of the trip were:

Really great vistas

Tom’s kitchen pot he brought along for cooking….he was SERIOUS about his Mac & Cheese!

Craig’s fire-dousing pasta

Blueberry patch after blueberry patch. I don’t know how many handfuls of blueberries I ate but they were good!

Forgetting my tent stakes…not a smart thing to do on a non-freestanding tent.

Trying to guess what Mike was eating for supper at night.

Trying to guess Ellen’s age all weekend.

Comparing backpacking gear and seeing some cool items I didn’t know existed.

Theresa’s sound advice

And just general chatting with some really nice people

I’m really looking forward to the next two trips scheduled in August.

Pictures of the trip:

Vistas

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Blueberries galore!

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Tired puppies!
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Pasta dousing fire

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Tentville

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Craig, Betty, and Duncan

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Around the campfire

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Rest break at a road we crossed

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John gathering wood for the fire

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Ken

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Olive oil drenched bag waiting for bear to climb up tree

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