Light Packing but, ....

Posted by Dave on Jun 11, 2004

Reminds me of my wonderful scoutmaster Walt Kuenning, trained in the 10th Mountain division, who emphasized light packs (a 10 pound hike where one could take anything wanted on a winter hike in the Rockies as long it didn't total more than 10 pounds). It was said of him that the next hike would be a drop off onto the top of a 14er in the Winter in your shorts with one match. All this before goretex and titanium gizzies. Walt's training made Navy survival school seem like a walk in the park. Winter or Summer I ask myself one question: Can I survive the night if I get caught in a white out or break a necessary body part. Among the "ten essentials" I always (well almost always) take a good (not light) outer layer and wear good broken-in boots (I think low cuts and running shoes should be banned from the mountains (but can't persuade my niece)). I feel a responsibility to keep myself found and safe and to help out someone in trouble (first aid kit and warm enough gear for myself that I don't get hypothermia while standing around the casualty). I like GPS as a backup but map and compass are a necessity. I carry a light French alpine knife that's big and sharp enough to do some good if needed and have taken to carrying a strobe in my hiking gear as well as on my pfd. I seldom leave my binocs behind and often carry light fishing gear. This thread is of interest because of the bodies packed out of the Rockies and off Mount Rainier as well as out of the water. Thanks Terry and others for good ideas that also apply to life on the water. Go light but let's not stint on survival gear and knowlege. Dave

In Response to: Re: Light Packing Mag lin by FrankP on Jun 11, 2004