Archive for hikes

Overnight Backpack Camping Gear

Posted in Hikes, Trips, Walks with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 7, 2014 by Drogo

Hiking Two Days / Camping One Night / Warm Weather

Backpack Camping Gear for Hiking to a Camping Spot and Back

Notes: I prefer to camp during the Summer (70-90 temps). Having hiked and camped almost every year of my life, i do not wear rain gear. Since im only a leisure hiker, i prefer to hike without rain; if  it rains I stop, set up a tarp, and prepare a small fire pit under the edge of the tarp to dry any wet clothing or gear until it stops. I keep the fire small so the heat does not go high enough to burn the tarp. More gear is needed for colder weather (below 70 degrees F). This list is only for nice, warm days and nights.

(this is Drogo’s opinion based on his American hiking experiences)

I divide the backpack gear into 3 categories (they are all related though):  Shelter, Cooking, and Personal Items

Shelter:  sleeping bag, straps, long cord, 2 tarps (minimum 7’x7′), tent / hammock (lighter weight for smaller people), sheet (blanket if chilly), flashlight

Cooking:  cook-pot (durable with secure lid), food (keep safe in cook-pot), water containers (minimum 2 liters), bowl / cup (durable), utensils (spoon, knife), fire items (scrap paper, matches, lighter)

Personal:  clothes (pants, shirt, 2 underwears, 2 sock pairs, head cover), Off, odorizer (deodorant, scented oil, lotion), medicine (prescriptions, spiritual, relaxant, celebration), medical kit (anti-bacterial, bandages),  tooth-brush & paste; small musical device (ipod, harmonica, flute), cell phone / camera, small book, writing tools (paper, pencils, pens, markers), towel / washcloth, walking stick…

* Drogo’s Common Backpack (personal preference)


pack inventoryTents

* see also:  Survival Inventory List


Rocky Road Trench

Posted in Loudoun Heights Hike with tags , , , , , , on August 13, 2011 by Drogo

Civil War road, trench, and gutter

It diagonally crosses the Appalachian Trail on Loudoun Heights just up from Chestnut Hill Road. I think it is a trench that doubled as a supply road and canon trail up the mountain, and by default acts like a mountain brook gutter. Also I know there are more recent logging trails on mountains.



Harpers Ferry

Posted in Loudoun Heights Hike with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2011 by Drogo

Harpers Ferry, WV near the Appalachian Trail Headquarters

At the house, I decided the aspects were ripe for a long hike up the mountain known as Loudoun Heights again. Loudoun Heights, VA was the current setting for a book I was writing at the time in the “Harpers Faerie Magic” series. The temperature had come down from an average of 100 degrees, to 90 degrees. Putting aside chores and projects, there comes a time when one must set out on a day hike. Day hikes can be calming or an adventure, and sometimes both!

It had been years since I had hiked the entire mountain along the top ridge, but I missed it nostalgically. I had many memories from teenage years of camping and hiking all over the mountain with friends. I went through my list of walking sticks, and which ones were available at hand – I decided to go with the bronze poker that Dad and I used for the yard fire-pit. It was cane size for my height, and proved to be sturdy. It also is closer to being a sword than my wooden staves, which was good for combating over-grown foliage on the path; although tall staves have their advantages also (spider webs).

During the hike I saw many animals and insects I expected to see, because I had seen them up there on the mountain before, or at least in the yard. I saw many deer, common birds (crows, turkey-vultures, cardinals, bluejay, etc), a few rare birds (woodpecker and maybe a bird of prey), butterflies, and squirrels. I also saw spiders, gnats, mosquitoes, ticks, flies, bees, hornets, wasps, but luckily no snakes! I walked through 15-20 webs during the course of my hike up and across the mountain, and all of the webs had the same notorious spider handing in the middle. I say notorious, because I have seen them in the woods since elementary school, and because one finally bit me on this hike. I felt that these spiders were not classified properly, so I wrote my own web article on them: White-back Spiny Hermit-Crab Spider. In West Virginia this variety of the Spiny Orb Weaver (Gasteracantha cancriformis) is distinct from the Southern versions. Hermit-Crab Spiders have become the dominant woodland spider on the Appalachian Trail.

Before Noon I got my gear together. In an empty backpack I put: snack food, water bottle, knife, string, handkerchief, binoculars (light weight), and cell phone (camera + video). My cell phone was lighter weight than my digital camera and certainly my older video cameras, so it was good to have all those features in one; it just meant I had to email each of the files from the phone separately which takes time. Still, the tech is easier to carry, and more affordable to process than 10-20 years ago.

I knew that having those items would help me on my trip, as I set off; and so they did.

NEXT Chapter:  Warlock Trail

Chapters MENU

Loudoun Heights Hike

Posted in Hikes, Loudoun Heights Hike, Walks with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2011 by Drogo

Loudoun Heights Mountain, VA

Appalachian Trail Journal

Chapter Menu:

Harpers Ferry

Warlock Trail

Shenandoah River Bridge

Outpost Hill

Chestnut Hill Road

Rocky Trench

Large Level Clearing

Mountain Top Sign Post

Loudoun Ridge Trail

Megalithic Fort

Mini-bluffs, Chimney Rock, Low & High Wire Points, Mythological Ruins

Stone Tower

Loudoun Heights Cliff

* This is a menu table of contents, so click on the chapter you want to read