Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Backpacking Light - Wilderness Trekking School - WS1-LWB

This past weekend, June 12th - 14th, our six member team consisting of four students and two instructors set out into the Gallatin Mountain Range of SW Montana to learn the principles of Lightweight Backpacking during Backpacking Light's Wilderness Trekking School course, "Wilderness Skills I, Lightweight Backpacking".

BPL's course was taught by Mike Clelland! and Sam Haraldson. The four students were BPL members, Bruce, Gregg, Dave, and June. Level of experience ranged from 30 years backpacking to some without much experience, but with lots of ambition.

The course focused on teaching more than trekking and involved one day in the classroom followed by two days of hiking and outdoor learning sessions. Over the course of the two half-day and one full-day of hiking we only covered about a dozen miles but interspersed that with lessons in ultralight backpacking gear, bear bag hanging, proper shelter pitching, hygiene, hiking tempo, foot care, water treatment, cooking gear, and much more.

Clelland and Haraldson, as well as a half-dozen other guide/educators will be offering more courses throughout the summer if you find this interesting check out BPL's offerings at:


Photos from the trip are as follows:

Post-trip gear and food weighingSam - self portraitMike Clelland! and Sam HaraldsonRequisite ultralight backpacking group photo
Bridger Mountain Range from Chestnut RidgePCT method of bear baggingPCT method of bear baggingGregg sets up his Backpacking Light spin tarp
Sam - self portrait with StickPicSam - self portrait eating spring beautiesGreggGregg and Mike
BruceJune and DaveOrchidSam and Bruce
Lion's Ridge shuttle busJune writes down her initial gear weightsOur group food ready for weighingMike makes coffee

The route we chose:
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  1. Looks like everyone had a good time Sam. What are the little 'sauce' bottles in the photo of the trip food laid out on the table?

  2. Mike Clelland! makes a couple great sauces. The most-favorite seeming to be his Thai Peanut Sauce.