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TimeOutside

a.k.a. Andrew
Joined
Apr 16, 2019
Messages
14
I'm 63 and haven't seriously backpacked in decades. Long ago I was an avid hiker and backpacker. Before I left Scouting at 18 my 500 mile hiking award was (for a kid) a distant memory. These last several years I've been heavily involved in Obstacle Course Racing. I've also done a bit of trail running and general running, with a few triathlons thrown in. I'm still fit, but I've lost the desire to train at the level I need to be near the top of my age group. Quite honestly, I'm getting old, I'm more tired, and I just want to slow it down. While hunting this year I did quite a bit more backpacking deeper into the woods. When hunting season was over I found myself taking several backpacking trips into the woods camping and scouting, instead of just car camping and branching out from there. I remembered just how much love I had for hiking and backpacking as a kid. So I started checking into getting some lighter gear (my packs for a 5 day excursion were easily topping 65 pounds), so I could head out on some longer treks more comfortably. I was blown away by the all the gear, resources, trails, training, YouTube channels, and the like dedicated to backpacking, plus this whole ultralight thing. I've spent the last month or two just browsing around. This is now the first forum I've joined. I'm looking forward to reading, learning more, and having the opportunity to ask some specific questions related to my personal backpacking objectives. We're in the process of moving now, but once we're settled in then I want to get out in the field again.
- Andrew
 

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Miya

Because I am able.
.
Joined
Dec 31, 2017
Messages
873
I am so excited to have you! I think the most I struggled with is a 40ish lb pack and thought life was miserable.
Hopefully you find new, lighter gear to help you feel happy and comfortable back on the trail!
 

TimeOutside

a.k.a. Andrew
Joined
Apr 16, 2019
Messages
14
Thanks for the welcome messages and the likes.

I'm in Allen, Texas, which is just north of Dallas. To be sure, I'll soon be asking about trails in this area of the country to check out. (Meaning within a 5 or 6 hour drive. I don't want it to be 15 hours away and then someone say, "It was within Texas." :) ). But that will be a separate post.

As to the weight, I now have my base weight down to just under 30 pounds and I know I can cut it down another 8 to 10 pounds without breaking the bank. Right now, the heaviest item is my pack and frame that comes in at 8.6 pounds. I'll be picking up a sub-3 pound pack at some point. I won't be buying a Zpacks pack, but something more like an older model Granite Gear at 2.2 pounds might do the trick and stay in budget, and I need to check out used gear. I'll need to keep the heavy pack and frame for toting my deer stand and field supplies into the woods, but I don't need to take it on pure backpacking trips.
 

Jon Carbaugh

Member
Joined
Jul 8, 2015
Messages
134
Welcome Sir! I am originally from Texas as well, Grapevine/Euless/Irving. Moved to Atlanta Georgia at 21 though and I never did any backpacking in Texas so I look forward to seeing what is available to you out there. I have seen some really cool reports on the Big Bend area, and there is some a little closer in Arkansas that I've seen. We moved to SLC almost 3 years and as I'm sure you will see roaming around this site, the options here are amazing!
Cheers!
 

TimeOutside

a.k.a. Andrew
Joined
Apr 16, 2019
Messages
14
Thanks Jon. Yeah, I've seen stuff on Big Bend. Unfortunately, it's a good 9 or more hours away. It's even further for the Guadalupe Mountains, which look to be amazing. I'm hoping to find something where I'm not spending two days of my excursion driving.
 

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,200
Welcome ...
I've used granite gear vapor trails since 2008. A lot of week plus trips. Found them comfortable and tough. I added clipon conpartments when needed to carry more stuff, made from silnylon.

havent done much done there but have north west into NM and S Col
 

LarryBoy

Hiker Trash
.
Joined
Jan 4, 2015
Messages
1,780
There looks to be backpacking opportunities in both Cap Rock Canyons and Palo Duro state parks. Do your homework as it likely involves off trail travel, but the areas are wonderful oases and just gorgeous. And welcome!
 

TimeOutside

a.k.a. Andrew
Joined
Apr 16, 2019
Messages
14
Thanks LarryBoy. Both are within my desired driving range, although near the limits. I'll be checking them out.

Thanks again,
Andrew
 

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DrNed

The mountains are calling and I must go
.
Joined
Mar 31, 2013
Messages
989
@TimeOutside Welcome!

I lived in Allen about 30 years ago.
Whenever I go back I'm amazed at
how different Allen, McKinney &
Frisco areas are.

I never did any camping or backpacking
during my time in Texas but I'm sure
east Texas and its' rolling hills have
some options for you.
 

TimeOutside

a.k.a. Andrew
Joined
Apr 16, 2019
Messages
14
For a backpack, you might check out the Granite Gear pack on Massdrop, it is $120 and looks to be an improvement on the earlier Crown 60 pack
@wsp_scott , thanks. I looked at Massdrop yesterday evening, but somehow missed that offer. But I would probably have passed anyway, as it won't ship until July. But yes, it does look to be a nice improvement. I did find a Granite Gear Crown2 60L offer for $108 and I ordered it. I expect it will serve me well.

@DrNed , this is our 17th year in Allen and even in that time it has changed remarkably. Yes, I'm certainly going to be checking out more of what's around me. I can often get away for a long three or four day weekend. Usually, I use that time to go and scout places I'll want to hunt. But now that I can get away more often (semi-retired), I have the option to spend some of those weekends doing nothing but backpacking.
 

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