Today was a good day. I scored an amazing deal on some new Black Diamond poles as well as some new much needed Super-feet insoles (THANKS KITTENS!) and I stumbled upon a box of 48 Pop tarts for a whopping $7. That my friends is what I call a successful shopping day!
Somehow it has become March, if February is any indication of how the next month will go, it seems as though I am running out of time to get everything done. So today I tackled some last minute shopping for gear and food supplies for my mail drops. Tomorrow I plan on packing boxes of things I will be needing and getting them ready for my good friend Lisa. I hope to get most of the planning on how much food goes in each mail drop box, as well as where they should be sent done in the next day or two. I am still dehydrating food like a crazy person, my poor housemates are getting used to the “white noise machine” in the kitchen. But even with all the rush, I am feeling confident that it will all get done.
In exciting (to probably just me) gear news: My lovely new Mountain Hardware sleeping bag finally arrived! Even though the temperatures at the hut are back to being sub-artic I refuse to bring up my new warm bag up. I have yet to jump in it, as I am trying to keep it nice and new for as long as possible. I did finish my sleeping bag liner, I am pretty happy with how it turned out. I think it is going to be a good system of warmth and cleanliness for the bag. *Plus the liner fabric is wicked awesome!
I also hit the scary purchase button on many missing items from my gear list. I ordered an umbrella that is silver on the outside to help keep the deserts harsh rays from my super pale skin. I finally got a Sawyer Squeeze Mini water filter to use in the desert along with some new Aqua Mira drops. (I have been tossing the ideas back and forth for a while of what water treatment system(s) to use.) I ordered a MSR Pocket Rocket stove to replace my cat food can stove (while my old alcohol stove definitely weighs less, I am worried about the continuous fire danger in the West. It is best to have a way to stop the flow of fuel to prevent fires.)
I also am confident that my clothing is all finally sorted. Today I purchased a second synthetic t-shirt that was on sale. I also am planning on ordering a Columbia Omni Freeze button up shirt for the desert tomorrow. I think it will be an interesting thing to try, if it works my sweat will keep me cool. If it doesn’t live up to what it says, well I will have a very expensive sun shirt that will at least lower the risk of sunburn.
I have been saving my TIPS like mad, it was nice to finally be able to spend some of that hard earned cash. I am feeling good about all my new purchases, the planning aspects, and feeling good about this whole adventure. It really is all coming together nicely, yahoo!
There is one more thing I would like to share for tonight. I was called out on a Search and Rescue (S.A.R.) while up at the hut this past week. It was a very eye opening experience. I got to use skills that I have learned through out the years from my Wilderness First Responder courses. In the past the extent of this skill set has been used on blisters, sprained ankles, one open wound requiring stitches, and various other minor ailments of kids on my trips. The fact that there are many volunteers out in the world who will drop what they are doing and head out into the woods to help a total stranger, makes me happy. I hope that I never need the help of a SAR team (knock on wood) but I am very appreciative of all that they do for others. It is this kindness for strangers in their time of need that makes the trail community strong. A huge THANK YOU to anyone who is connected to such endeavors, I can now say I understand what you do a bit better and appreciate you that much more for it.
**Also a huge THANK YOU to Mother Nature for the much needed rain in the West. Although…. I think you may have a kink in your messaging system. The rain dance requests were supposed to be spread out a bit more, not ALL the rain at once. Oh well, beggars can’t be choosers I suppose… we will take whatever we can get. **