When is enough, really enough? When do the “what ifs” become just too much? We have all read the how to pack books and all it says is make sure both packs weigh the same. This stops the saddle from rolling...But how much is too much? We’ve heard the statistics, horses can carry 20 to 25% of their body weight and mules 30 to 35%. I sell a lot of pack scales. weight is important, very important, but I wasn’t really talking weight! I was referring to taking everything and the kitchen sink. The “what ifs” is what I call that stuff you need/want to bring just in case. This is the list of items you want to pack when you go all boy scout on me (be prepared) This all became very real to me many, many years ago. I was flying bush in Alaska to a drop hunting camp. The bush company told me I could bring whatever I wanted, but I had a 70 pound limit. I called them back and said I’ll be there for two weeks…So, is that 70 pounds a week? Nope it was 70 pounds, period! And they weighed my supplies as they loaded the float plane. Really fast you learn everything you take needs to have 2 purposes, minimum! That was pushing thirty years ago and I’ve gotten really good at not taking much, but still living large!!! So, jumping back to the present, as many of you know I contract pack in my spare time. I pull a big string of mules around the Bob Marshall Wilderness delivering big ugly stuff that no one else wants to. I don’t outfit, I don’t deal with people, they talk too much. Give me a load of lumber or tanks of fish and let me enjoy the day on the trail. But recently in a weak moment I agreed to pack in a young lady for an organization and drop her off. So, I get a message on Facebook… “Will you pack some firewood in for me?” “Why” I asked, “You’re going into the forest there will be wood there you can cut up.” “But what if???” I said, “NO!!! It would be like taking sand to the beach,” I told her… Then today FB messenger lights up “Will you pack in my cross-country skis in??” “There is no snow,” I responded. A few cups of coffee later I see a response flashing in the corner of the monitor “It could snow!!!” Enjoy your trip, weigh your loads, no matter what you are packing.
Give me a load of plastic culvert, a big cup of coffee, and clear the trail, we’re burning daylight and I’ve got miles to cover.
See you on the trail!
PS- Friday is National Coffee Day! Make sure you join us on our Facebook page at 7:15am MST... we will be live.