First let me start by saying happy New Year and I hope everyone's holidays were splendid. Mine certainly were, even though it was a little stressful with a lot of traveling and spending lots of $. But I guess that's what the holidays are all about. I got a lot of cool stuff and gave out a record amount of gifts this year... fabulous.
Anyway, so over the last year I've climbed some mountains, camped out a handful of times and hiked more miles than I'd like to discuss. I've learned a lot of things that may be useful to someone trying to get into mountaineering. I'll start by listing some items that will go a long way in order to keep you comfortable and keep your equipment protected.
1. Sunblock and Lip Gloss; Be sure to cover all nooks and crannies. You wouldn't believe where I go sunburn if I told you. (IE. Up my nose, in my ears, under my chin....)
2. Moleskin; IS A MUST!!
3. Tight pants; Weird right? I have looser pants right now and the crotch tends to dip below where my thighs touch together. Now this isn't something anyone wants to hear but holy god, the friction literally will burns holes in your thighs. I'm not even that fat... my thighs barely touch but you wouldn't believe how uncomfortable this can get. Especially if you're out on a multiple day trek. Just look at this pic of Cory... Sure he looks like sorority chick on her way home from some dudes house the next morning... but he's not suffering from diaper rash.
4. Gators; Even on those short hikes, I think they're worth it. They're easier to clean and they'll save your pants from taking a licking from your muddy boots. Plus, when your pants cost upwards of 300$ you'll want to keep em around as long as you can.
5. Baby wipes; Trust me, you'll find more than one use for them.
6. Head Lamp; You never know where you'll be when the sun sets. And it's hard to find anything at night. Let alone a small dash of paint on a tree. Hell, I have a hard time finding those during the day.
7. Chinese Buffet; I know you can't bring this with you, but always know where one is when you've been out for 7+ hours. Knowledge is power, and the hunger for unlimited General Tso's and Egg Rolls can be so powerful this knowledge can turn you into a god.
Now grab your baby wipes and tight pants and get out there. There's miles of gorgeous trails to be broken and bivouacked on. (yeah I used that word...). Time for me to order some new pants on line. Later...