Monday, August 4, 2014


I don't know why I've been struggling with shoes lately.  For years--twenty five or so; maybe closer to 30--I've been consistently wearing size 10½, I've struggled with the last few pairs of shoes I've bought to get them that fit.

My plan was to hike in these Fila Trail Runners that I bought a few months ago.  But the 10½ shoes didn't fit well.  I bought some 11½, and although they're plenty long; I've got probably ¾ inch almost of toe room.  And yet, my feet still feel constricted in the shoes.  Its like they're exceptionally long and narrow compared to other shoes that I've bought before.  So, I'm thinking about buying a new pair of trail shoes with only a week to go before I start hiking well over 50 miles in less than two weeks.  Ugh.  (Luckily, I see some good New Balance, Skechers and Avia trail shoes on sale at JC Penny at a good price.  I'll probably end up picking them up, because I saved money vs. my budget on other aspects of the trip, particularly on hotel stays.  Thanks to my sister-in-law and her husband who moved just a few months ago to very near where I need to stage my hikes, so I can crash with them on either end of the excursion!)

Other than this, I've got most of my gear all piled up in a corner of my room.  I don't have my food yet, but I've got almost everything else, and over the next day or two I plan to to actually pack up my pack and then put it on the scale.  Time to see if my estimates for weight are worth anything or not!

I'll end up having two measurements, because I actually have two bags--my actual backpack, and then a "utility belt"; like a hunter's fanny pack, kind of.  Because that will naturally be on my hips, the weight of what's in that pack probably shouldn't truly be listed as part of my base pack weight, which will be shared between my hip belt and my shoulder straps.  Anyway, I'll have a true base pack weight, and then a combined base pack weight showing both weights together.  Even being pessimistic, I hope that my combined base pack weight comes in well below 20 lbs.  My estimated weight is only 16½ lbs.  Of course, true ultralighters won't look at that base weight and be thoroughly impressed, but for a "standard" backpacker, that's almost crazy light, and certainly much lighter than I did as a teenager.

I find as the date of my hike is really right on top of me that I'm both nervous and excited.  Excited for obvious reasons, but somewhat nervous too.  I haven't done this in quite a long time.  Although I'm confident in my knowledge and skills, I'm not sure how it's going to work, how in shape I'll find that I am--or rather, how out of shape I really am and how much that will end up holding me back.  I've also never done a solo excursion before, and... I dunno.  I can't put my finger on it exactly, but I do find myself just a bit nervous about the entire affair.

Naturally, once I'm home, I'll post lots of pictures and trip report type information here.

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