I’m not really sure how this all started.
Maybe I’ve always been this way but have been lazy. Maybe it was just timing.
But 2017 was the year I went full in on the Hiking/Backpacking/Camping thing. I went camping in late spring solo (for the first time.) Once I got over the doing it by myself, it was quite enjoyable. The next camping happened at the end of September on the Mogollon Rim outside of Payson. It was great, except for the 13 kids and 4 screaming mothers camped about 100 ft away from me. So much for the peace and quiet in nature. I spent the entire weekend with headphones in listening to podcasts and music.
I decided that if I can help it, I wouldn’t stay at an established campgrounds if I didn’t have to. People are rude, obnoxious and all around inconsiderate of others. Besides that, the campers with all the generators are also quite annoying.
Over the past year or so I’ve also been watching a lot of outdoor shows and by the end of 2017 I was heavily engrossed in youtube videos about backpacking, hiking, camping, and bushcraft. Once I found the show “Alone” I quickly binged on all the seasons available and eagerly waited for this past season. Watching these youtubers such as Joe Robinet, Survival Lily, Darwin on the Trail, and Dixie on Homemade Wanderlust inspired me to just get out there and not wait for anyone or anything.
At the same time I had been acquiring hiking/camping gear. Some of this stuff is pretty expensive! The lightweight stuff is all expensive. 😦
So finally late in October I did my first overnight backpacking/camping trip in the Superstition Mountains and camped right off the Peralta Trail. The first time having to haul my heavy backpack was a monumental fete since I packed way too much stuff. I was taking breaks every 20-30 minutes. Ridiculous! The first time being in the complete dark was and “eye-opening” experience. How dark and alone and vulnerable you feel, but also how free you feel! It’s amazing carrying all that you need on your back and camping under the stars. At least out here in Arizona you don’t need to worry about rain too much. That’s also the reason of much sweat and pain: No rain means not much natural water out there in the desert mountains. So you end up carrying your daily recommended water (1 gallon per person per day).
Anyway, ever since there I’ve become addicted. Now, every other weekend (when I don’t have Faye) I go out and do an overnighter somewhere in the state.
Meanwhile thinking later throughout the year, I’ve been planning some amazing trips:
The big one is planning for the Grand Canyon Rim to Rim to Rim hike in February. Seth and I have reservations at Phantom Ranch and need to get permits for a few nights camping below the rims.
This year I have Mathers Campground reservations for 2 nights on the Grand Canyon South Rim. I’ll do some hiking the Bright Angel and maybe South Kaibab. We’ll see. I’d like to maybe do the South Kaibab too the crossover to the Bright Angel and take that back up to the South Rim. We’ll see. I’ll need to be up early for that long hike.
I also have a campsite reserved for 2 nights at Monument Valley up on the Utah/Arizona border. It will be amazing! Commercial car camping site next to a hotel, but the view will still be amazing.
On March 1st(isn) I’ll find out if got the requested nights at The Wave up near the Utah/Arizona border. That would be phenomenal! (fingers crossed) If I do get it, by some miracle, I’ll book a Lower Antelope Canyon tour as well. I’ve been wanting to do that one for a long time now, and I’d would be in the general area. Another commercial site with tour only access, but it would still be great to see this one and check it off the list.
So with all these outdoor trips and plans, I’ve been ramping up my production of videos. At this rate, I could have at least 2 trip videos per month. We shall see.
Since I’ve been on this hiking/camping kick I’ve done seven overnight camping trips. All but two were backpacking camping trips. I’ve been shooting video and photos of all the trips mostly for my own amusement and potential media projects later on.
So far, I’ve created three trip videos and one hike video:
More to come hopefully soon. Let’s see where I end up.