Backpacking MUST haves

I just completed another overnight backpacking trip here in Western Canada and once again I’ve revamped my ‘must have’ list for what I carry up the mountain. I’m not going to tell you the specific place that we hiked to as it’s sad seeing SO many people out in the back country who do not take care of the land, habitats, etc. With that being said if you are curious about doing this hike, get in touch with me and I’m happy to tell you all about where it is.ย 20170729_180245_HDR

There are so many resources about backpacking, hiking and what you need to have in your pack. My most important piece of advice is think about what YOU personally need to survive and be comfortable. For example my partner requires a flask of whiskey, whereas I really need a bar of chocolate once I make it to the top. Everyone is different and you really need to consider what makes you happy and comfortable. Besides the obvious, a tent, a way to cook food, food itself, I have compiled a list of what I pack when I go on overnight camping and hiking trips. Enjoy!

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After 15km, almost to camp!
  1. Baby wipes/toilet paper – just do it. Please. I use these magic guys for just about everything. Oh darn, I was eating and food fell down my chest. Oh man, these dehydrated meals made me need to poo, well good thing I have something to wipe with! There are no toilets in the back-country, so let’s just say you will thank me later.
  2. A chair/pad to rest your bum – I don’t need a chair, but it’s nice to have a pad of sorts to sit on especially when camp is rocky or snowy!
  3. Warm clothes! Regardless of the time of year you hike in, it gets cold in the back-country. Think about this- it was 33 degrees C when we left for the hike. By the time we got to camp it was 14 degrees and windy. For every 100m you climb, you lose 1 degree of temperature.ย 
  4. A camera -For me this is something I want as taking photos as I hike motivates me to get to the top. There’s nothing like keeping your head down, walking, climbing and finally getting to the top only to realize you have NOTHING TO SHOW FOR IT besides sore muscles. This may be OK for others but I love taking photos so this one is important for me. It can even be the camera on your phone – but I think it’s worth the weight to hike a good camera to the top. I use my Nikon D3000.

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    Sun is going down

5. A book – easy peasy, no brainer! I love to read, therefore there is nothing more lovely than reading when I arrive at camp. I usually pre download an e-book onto my phone rather than lug a full book up to the top. But again, it’s all up to personal preference.

6. A pillow – let me be clear, when you roll your sweater up into a ball it’s just not the same. I own this guy

7. SHOES! Seems like a strange idea, right? I did not bring an extra pair of shoes on my first overnight trip and regretted it. Imagine you have to go pee, but you are stuck on your tent pad, the rest of the world covered in snow and you have to put your boots back on. No. After 11+ hours of hiking, you want those boots OFF your feet and into some slippers, running shoes, sandals, you name it! Anything but boots.dsc_0013.jpg

These 7 things get me by when I’m sore, tired and cranky at the top of a mountain. Let me say it again, these 7 things will likely be different for you, but perhaps it’ll get you started on thinking about personal comforts ๐Ÿ™‚ Now I want to hear from YOU! What do you take up the mountain? Have you ever done an overnight backpacking trip? Should I answer more questions regarding my trips? I cannot wait to hear from you all! Xox

 

 

A snowy Decemberย 

Can anyone guess what mountain this is?

It’s December! Where I am in the world isn’t a wintery place- usually it rains all winter long. However, this December is different! As I sit in bed and write this post, it’s snowing outside โ„ my plan for today is to stay home ALL day, reading and eventually making chilli. I haven’t done much reading these days what with school(textbooks have taken over) but I’m currently reading Primates of Park Avenue by Wednesday Martin. And this book is BEAUTIFUL. 😚 read about it below!📚

“After marrying a man from the Upper East Side and moving to the neighborhood, Wednesday Martin struggled to fit in. Drawing on her background in anthropology and primatology, she tried looking at her new world through that lens, and suddenly things fell into place. She understood the other mothers’ snobbiness at school drop-off when she compared them to olive baboons. Her obsessional quest for a Hermes Birkin handbag made sense when she realized other females wielded them to establish dominance in their troop. And so she analyzed tribal migration patterns, display rituals, physical adornment, mutilation, mating practices, extra-pair copulation, and more. Her conclusions are smart, thought-provoking and hilariously unexpected” -Goodreads

So? What do you think? Is this a book you’d read? Let me know what YOU are reading, eating or doing. Add me on Goodreads too! Happy holidays my blog friends 🎄 

Kaoham Trainย 

OK this is a bit different than my usual post but I wanted to share an incredible experience with you all. I promise to do my September Garden update soon 😄🍅

This past weekend my partner and I traveled to Lillooet, BC in hopes of taking the Kaoham Shuttle, a 1 hour train ride, to Seton Portage. Voted “Canada’s best hidden rail trip” by BBC, we knew we had to check it out!

The train is primarily for locals that live outside Lillooet who need groceries or nessecities that their tiny villages just don’t have. The train does not take online reservations and there is very little information online about it, or places to stay in Seton Portage. We called ahead of time and talked about where to camp – which I suggest you do as well. The people of Seton Portage were extrodinarily kind and welcoming; explaining history of the area and pointing out interesting views along the ride.

The round trip is $10 (dirt cheap!!!) The views from the train are spectacular. If you’re adventurous enough to camp in the middle of no where, you can walk a short distance to a by-donation campground when you get off the train in Seton. We camped by a creek that connects Anderson Lake to Seton Lake. We collected fire wood and built a fire, ans saw 1 bear, who acknowledged us and walked off.

I’ll let the photos do the rest of the talking. All photos were taken by me, if you wish to use them please ask. If you have any questions at all about the trip, or if you’ve done it or plan to check it out…let me know! ๐Ÿ˜€

The water colour – it’s really that blue!

Taken from the train

Tomato Time!

Tomatoes! ๐Ÿ… One of the main reasons I wanted to start a garden this year. Delicious little gems that often grow bountiful yields. My mom planted three plants last year and got literally thousands of little cherry tomatoes…I was inspired.

This year I’ve chosen 5 varieties of tomatoes. Each one is a test, as I don’t have a clue what will do well in my garden.

1) Early Cascade
2) Cherry Yellow Pear
3) Red Grape
4) Money Maker(larger)
5) Sweet Million

My gardener friend gave me 2 mystery tomato plants which will no doubt produce some fruits as well. I will be spacing my planting dates apart so they don’t start producing tomatoes all at once. Thus far I’ve planted my Early Cascade and 1 mystery plant. Later this week I’ll plant the rest. I have been cutting off the lower stems and burying 2/3 of the plant, this is supposed to help the plant grow stronger.

Have you planted any of these tomato plants? Did you have success? Happy growing ๐Ÿ…๐ŸŒฑ

The first seeds of the year

It’s that time of year! My spring/summer seeds have gone into the soil about 3 weeks ago and by now have all germinated and are visibly growing. In my last post I explained that I’ve always wanted to start my own vegetable garden, and this year I’m fortunate to be able to do it!

We started by building a 12ft by 4ft raised bed (photo below), which is 8 inches deep. Next I asked my friend for some of his farms aged horse manure which should produce a good crop

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On April 17th I planted the following:
Radishes, bokchoy (aka pac choi), snow peas, snap peas, yellow onions and a variety of carrots.

Three weeks later, this is what they looked like!

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The radishes should be ready to harvest in the next 1-2 weeks, bokchoy in the next 2-3 weeks. Carrots take much longer to grow, along with onions and peas. However the pea plants have doubled in size already!

The one possible issue has been the dreaded cabbage white butterfly. I’ve seen what I think is that beast landing on my bokchoy, hopefully not laying eggs anywhere near my plants. I’ve done some reading and apparently their larvae love nibbling on leaves. No, no! Be gone! To attract happier less beast like creatures I’ve planted some flower seeds. Who knows when they’ll transform into flowers though. Come to me, bees!

Next to be planted is TOMATOES! ๐Ÿ… I’m extra excited for tomatoes because they’re my favorite veggie…fruit(?!). I’ve bought several different types of tomato plants, so tune in later this week for a tomato post. Cheers, friends! Any tips or questions are more than welcome ๐Ÿท