Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.
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bobby49
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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by bobby49 » Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:37 am

I got into the outdoors as a fresh U.S. Army draftee. We ran around in Basic Training, slept out in the woods, and got started outdoors. Then in Advanced Infantry Training, the outdoors experience became more natural, especially during Escape and Evasion practice. Overseas, we had to spend a lot of time out there. Once I finished my Army years, I didn't want anything to do with the outdoors. Then it came back, and I started seeking outdoor experiences of all kinds.








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rightstar76
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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by rightstar76 » Wed Mar 20, 2019 2:35 pm

AlmostThere wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:18 am
One of the better things my family did for me, though they didn't think about it that way, was spend our summers out there - created a norm that included a feeling of "home" for us that connected us to the outdoors. You need to go and KEEP GOING to have that feeling. You have to train the part of the brain that keeps us on edge while we are in a new place that this is a safe place, it's ok, to have the full measure of peace.
AlmostThere, wow! You outdid yourself. This is so amazing. So candid. Vivid. Real.
You developed a sense of home in your mind so being outside in the wilderness felt safe and peaceful. That is incredible!

Thanks so much for sharing this with us. :)
"A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."

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AlmostThere
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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by AlmostThere » Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:00 pm

rightstar76 wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 2:35 pm
AlmostThere wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:18 am
One of the better things my family did for me, though they didn't think about it that way, was spend our summers out there - created a norm that included a feeling of "home" for us that connected us to the outdoors. You need to go and KEEP GOING to have that feeling. You have to train the part of the brain that keeps us on edge while we are in a new place that this is a safe place, it's ok, to have the full measure of peace.
AlmostThere, wow! You outdid yourself. This is so amazing. So candid. Vivid. Real.
You developed a sense of home in your mind so being outside in the wilderness felt safe and peaceful. That is incredible!

Thanks so much for sharing this with us. :)
People do this all the time. I am not at all unique in this... we all do this. It's why we have soldiers, EMTs and police, pilots and big wall climbers. The human brain is trainable. No surprise there.

Also, the wilderness often does not contain the triggers for trauma that society inflicts. That is another path to peace. So being cold and uncomfortable but free from the demons that chase you is another piece of a bigger puzzle for many. Have had clients who are on edge all their lives, until they are outdoors in the trees, far from ... people.

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by limpingcrab » Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:04 pm

For instagram!

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Jimr
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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by Jimr » Fri Mar 22, 2019 9:18 am

AlmostThere wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:18 am
There is, as I explain ad infinitum to clients, a difference between the healthy sort of concern one should generally have in certain situations, and FEAR. Fear is a BAD thing to have in a complex sort of situation and a good thing to have when it's very straightforward, ie a predator is chasing you. If you are sitting there with someone having some sort of medical crisis, OTOH, you need the opposite, you need calm and rational. The chemistry of fear shuts down calm and rational and leads to mistakes.
This is the difference between reasonable fear and bare fear. Reasonable fear is the body's response to the realization that something either is about to happen or is, in fact, happening. Bare fear is the body's response to "Oh my God, what if...." and has no basis in reality. One can save your life and one can end your life.
“Posterity! You will never know, how much it cost the present generation, to preserve your Freedom! I hope you will make a good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven, that I ever took half the pains to preserve it.”

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by creekfeet » Fri Mar 22, 2019 4:25 pm

My two biggest hobbies are surfing and backpacking. If someone had been living under a rock and saw someone surfing for the first the time, I don't see how they could think it looked liked anything less than the most fun thing in the world. If that same person saw someone backpacking, I don't see how they could think it looked like anything less than a living hell.

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by mrphil » Mon Apr 22, 2019 8:40 am

We just got out there because it was the best and only way to see more. It soothes my soul, and I really need that. My "bucket list" does not include thousands of others around me jockeying for advantage or position, and if strapping on a pack is how I can make that happen, so be it. I just want my own little slice of the world for a little while.

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by rightstar76 » Tue Apr 23, 2019 10:55 pm

Nice article about why some people thru-hike the JMT. But could also be why some people go backpacking anyplace and regardless of length. A religious and/or spiritual experience:

Thru-hiking the John Muir Trail as a modern pilgrimage: implications for natural resource management
https://www.srs.fs.usda.gov/pubs/ja/201 ... as_002.pdf

This passage from Jeffrey Schaffer's Hiking the Big Sur Country: The Ventana Wilderness (Page 19) came to my mind when thinking about this:
...walking through a stand of these lofty pines was a pleasant, almost religious, experience.

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by balzaccom » Wed Apr 24, 2019 10:05 am

I'm a bit like AT on this one. My dad was a schoolteacher who loved the outdoors. And when I was little he (and we) were spending each summer up in the mountains at a state park, where he worked as a ranger. It was heaven. Took my first long hike on my mother's hip when I was less than one year old. Took my first backpacking trip with my older sister and a friend of hers when I was 12 and she was 16. We grew up thinking that the rest of the year was what we did so that we could spend summers in the mountains. I still think that way--but I'm retired, so I get to go there any time I want.

BTW--I loved creekfeet's comment about surfing and backpacking---although since I grew up in Northern California, surfing has always seemed like a really fun way to go hypothermic really fast...
Balzaccom

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Re: Why Do You Want To Backpack Then?

Post by oldranger » Fri Apr 26, 2019 12:32 pm

because that is when I am most comfortable.
Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!

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