Having arrived at World’s End State Park, I began my final preparations for my first backpacking trip. If you’ve been following the Backpacking Project posts, you’ve seen me get a pack and boots, train, read, plan, and dream. As I sat in my camp Monday night, I thought about the three days I would spend on the Loyalsock Trail, and made the final decisions on what I would bring.

First, food. The following load looks bigger than many backpackers would bring, but I have higher caloric needs than, say, a 150 pound man, and I didn’t want to run out.

Then clothing, both on my body and in my pack. The only change was at the last minute I left behind one of the two compression shirts.

And finally on my feet. BTW note the bright orange Crocs. I got this color since they were clearance priced and because I can see them easily in the dark. Also, if I group camp, I don’t have to worry about any other person having the same shoes.



Ian, the friend leading this hike, was loaning me a hammock and cookset, so I don’t have photos of those.

The following day, while waiting for the sun to come out at an overlook north of the park, I treated my clothes, pack, and boots with pyrethrin to keep the deer tick and its kin at bay. The product needs to air dry for a couple of hours, so I put the bike rack on the back of the car to good use.

Tuesday night I settled into my tent, confident I’d done all I could do, and that Wednesday I’d find out if I could backpack. The question posed by the Backpacker Project – can a formerly sedentary man become a backpacker? was going to be answered the next morning…..