Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Advice for backpackers

The weather reports were spot-on this past weekend while we were backpacking. Isolated thunderstorms? Exactly: isolated to wherever we were hiking. Picking along the soggy trails, I came up with this handy formula we can all use on our next camping trips:
  1. Check the weather. Pay attention to the percent chance of precipitation each day.
  2. Add those percentages. In our case: 30% Saturday + 40% Sunday + 30% Monday = 100%
  3. Multiply by three. From our formula, we now know that there is a 300% chance of thunderstorms over the weekend.
  4. Pack accordingly - and with a 300% chance of rain, bring your best attitude.
When you're backpacking, it's hard to decide how much to pack. You want enough for just-in-case, but not so much that you carry extra weight all the way there and back. So you wrestle: Do you take the extra socks? The extra long sleeves, for if it rains? What about that heavy tarp? 300% chance of rain says, "Yes!"

Abe was the one who bought the duck's back covers for our packs, the one who wouldn't negotiate leaving the tarp at home, and the one who told me "you need rain pants!" and came home with a child's pair that's still too long. And he was right.

(Pictures to come.)

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