Solo Trek Down South, Advice?

CaptnKidd

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Dec 31, 2014
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I have been planning a trip down to the very North end of Lake Powell. For various reasons all the friends that normally tag along aren't able to make it. It my only chamce for the next two months so I dont want to wast the opertunity. I have gone on a few shorter hike down in the Swell and other areas but never longer hike and for multiple days. I am camping and just exploring the area so I won't be too deep in anywhere, not back packing.

Just wondering about others experiences on a solo Trek. I have all the basics down, wife has GPS of the camp site and a way pointed topo map of where I am heading and I have been hiking canyons down south for about ten years so I am not overly worried about that. Just wondering if you enjoyed the experience or not.

Thanks!
 

Nick

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Opi

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Backpacking always feels better solo than car camping for me.
Yes
I've done a few solo car camping trips also the past couple years and it just doesn't feel right. Maybe just too boring. Now backpacking solo I find more enjoyable than with others. I'm always busy doing something.
 

Jimmy

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I did a lot of solo trekking in my early 20s. The freedom of it is very rewarding; being able to change plans on a dime, and catering every minute of a trek to your personal appetite is great. It's critical to let others know where you will be, when to expect you, and at what point they should call help. That said, I've never been more than a day's hike from some sort of road/ranger station/civilization - there are some here that have spent weeks solo backpacking in remote areas that can provide much better advice. I'd probably invest in some sort of GPS/satellite device if I were to do some of my former trips again, just as a precaution in case things got hairy.

As I've gotten older (and now married with 3 kids), I find that I prefer to share my adventures/experiences with someone. It always makes for good conversation with that person(s) over the years. That said, when I bring friends or family, I tend to be the most experienced person, and therefore become a benevolent dictator with planning, routes, safety measures, etc.- and I always pack extra gear for the inevitability that a friend doesn't follow my explicit packing list (including, not bringing rain gear to Needles in April because "it's the desert, it doesn't rain!" The extra $1 ponchos I brought were used for 3/5 days on the trail!).
 

gnwatts

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If it is not noted in the above link, I would add ,where you are parking (very important), and when you are expected home.
I personally would dispense with the GPS. Get a compass, a good map, and learn how to use them first, then use a GPS if you feel the need. Part of the fun for me is the experience of not being "connected". If you feel the need to have the GPS for safety reasons, maybe keep it turned off until you need it. What would happen if for some reason your GPS was inoperable?
 

CaptnKidd

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Dec 31, 2014
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Jimmy, that's pretty much exactly me. I am usually the one to do all the planning and trip prep and this summer will be the first time I take my kids into the slot canyons with me. They are eight now and I feel that is a good age where they can have fun and know enough about their surroundings (that and they have been hiking since they could walk).

Gnwatts, yes, GPS is a backup. I left printed TOPO maps as well and I am very experienced with a compass and TOPO. I bring the GPS more to record my treks in case I want to repeat the trip.

I did end up heading out this weekend and am getting the trip report written right now. Jimmy was right on, it was very nice to wake up and just head out, no waiting around until 10 for everyone to get ready :)
 

CaptnKidd

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Dec 31, 2014
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Nick/Opi, having down the solo trip now I can agree. When I was out in the canyons hiking around it was awesome. Back at camp it was a bit odd being the only person there at a developed campsite with about 15 sites. It was kind of creepy like the place had been abandoned.
 

CaptnKidd

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