Just Jeff's Hiking Page

"Going to the woods is going home, for I suppose
we came from the woods originally."

- John Muir

AT Approach Trail
Amicalola Falls State Park and Springer Mountain, GA
25-26 July 2009

Amicalola Falls

As we were visiting family in Atlanta, I decided to go on a quick overnighter to test out my new 8 lbs base weight (summer gear list) using the 7 oz Murmur pack. I started at the Amicalola SP Visitor's Center and hiked the AT Approach Trail to Springer, camped near the shelter, and walked back down to the car the next day. Nothing special happened, besides getting some time alone in the woods and spending about 2 minutes watching a butterfly drink from a flower...that was pretty cool.

DISCUSS this trip HERE

25-26 July 2009
Flowers were definitely in bloom...this is the kind that the butterfly was drinking from.

Most of my trail pics came out overexposed, but these show how much greenery was along the trail. Much different than hiking in the Colorado mountains!

Here's the bridge where I tricked the kids on our 2004 camping trip. The blurb from my TrailJournals post that I discuss on the HikingWithKids page:

"I "found" a pile of poop next to Amicalola Creek while they were playing in it. I called them over and explained how the animals come to drink, how you can find water by following game trails, etc. Then I asked what kind of poop they thought it was. Deer, rabbit...just guesses. So I said that you can tell what an animal has been eating by how the poop smells and tastes, then I picked up a piece and ate it...confirming that it was deer poop. My 8yr old screamed and ran away! Then I gave him his own pack of Raisinettes and he knew I just tricked him. The scary thing? My 4yr old actually tasted it before I showed him it was candy. Now THAT'S trust!"

Here's an interesting tree I saw on the way up...I think the left side looks like a horse's head. And the right side, right next to the horse, it looked like an old man's face. It's tough to see at this angle, but he's looking skyward...the right "corner" of the horizontal limb is his chin, and the little nub sticking up to the left of that is his nose, and he's got sunken eyebrows. It was pretty cool when I walked up to it, but the pictures from the better angle didn't turn out.

Plaque marking the Southern Terminus of the Appalachian Trail, at the peak.

Don't really remember, but this might be the southernmost white blaze.

It was a bit hazy, but the skyline from the peak of Springer was still awesome...definitely worth the hike up.

I like how the clouds add some interest to this pic.

Here's the Warbonnet Blackbird (WBBB) from the left side, showing the zippered entrance and the tie-out. The Murmur is hanging at the head end and the Blackbishop Sack is at the foot end. (This is version two, and I don't have a page for it yet.) I used the Kid's Quilts (scroll down on that page) as a half-underquilt. This is the thinner one made with 0.8" PrimaLoft...it measures 61"x36" and weighs 9 oz. It was just right for summer temps, and it's so thin that making it from down wouldn't safe too much weight.
Warbonnet from the right side, showing how the tie-out holds the shelf out of the way.
And a close-up of the shelf, containing my essentials bag...I use the small drysack from the Walmart 3-pack. I don't normally use the tie-outs, but they do help keep the shelf pulled away from you. I actually took the tie-outs off the WBBB shortly after this trip, but I still use the shelf.
Here's the Camp N.A.N.O. biner that I used to connect the strap...using the biner means I don't have to take apart the suspension to remove it from the tree each time...one clip, adjust the triangles, and it's done. I switched to Dutch Clips after this trip, though...much lighter and just as easy.
Close-up of the triangle suspension that comes stock with Warbonnet webbing.
And here is the safety knot tied right behind the triangles to prevent slipping. I just use a slipknot for my safety.

Summer Gear List - Springer Mountain Trip
Item Cost Weight (oz) Weight (g) Notes
Big 4:
Gossamer Gear Murmur Backpack
$90
7.8
222
Includes shoulder and hip pads. No shockcord installed. Weight w/o Nitelite pad (110g)
Gossamer Gear Nitelite Torso Pad
 
3.9
110
Used as backpack frame, sitpad, and foot insulation for half-underquilts.
Warbonnet Blackbird
 
20.1
570
Given to me by HF members while I was deployed overseas…thanks guys! 1.7 oz OD green.
Warbonnet Suspension
$0
7.8
220
Weight includes 2 x 107" webbing (114g each), 2 x Camp Nano Biners (30g each), 4 x Triangle Rings (8g each), 2 x attachment cords (6g each)
Half-Underquilt (.8" PrimaLoft)
$25
12.9
366
0.8" Primaloft, 61" x 36", 1.9 oz DWR. Originally made as kids' underquilt. Could also be used as elephant's foot half-top-quilt with a jacket.
Half-UQ Suspension
 
1.4
40
Includes four small JRB mini-biners and three lengths of shockcord.
Blackbishop's Sack
$1
0.7
20
Used to stuff DownHammock and No Sniveller. Cost is 1 yd of Walmart $1/yd silnylon.
OES MacCat Standard Tarp
$95
13.5
382
Weight of tarp only. See my JRB-MacCat Comparison.
JRB Ridgeline Cord
 
0.2
6
 
JRB Self-Tensioning Line (STL)
 
1.7
48
4 x STLs to keep tarp taut. Weight includes cord and tensioner.
Y-stakes (4) w/ Bag
 
1.9
54
Includes stake bag (6g) and 4 Y-stakes (10g each)
JRB Stealth
$210
16.3
462
Summer bag, lofts at 1.5-2".
Big Four Total
5.5 lbs
88.2
2500
Includes ground equivalent of Pack, Shelter, Bag and Pad.
Kitchen:
JRB Compression Sack
1.3
36
Jack says this the lightest compression sack commercially available.
Stove Set
 
2.0
58
Includes OES Pepsi Can Alcohol Stove (10g), Foster's Pot (22g), Foil Lid (5g), Ground Cover (4g), Windscreen (8g), Pot Stand (10g)
Measuring Cup
$5
1.5
42
Used for measuring cup, mug, and bowl to hold freezer bag for meals. Foster's pot nests inside for protection. Made from 32 oz soft Nalgene bottle cut down to 16 oz. I used the mouth for the gravity filter.
Lexan Spoon
$.50
0.3
8
On-sale at REI
Nalgene Soft-sided Canteen
$9
2.3
66
48 oz wide-mouth version. Used for camp water, hot water bottle at night, and pillow.
20 oz soda bottle
$0
1.2
34
Free with soda...I like the wide-mouth Aqua-Fina bottles
Katadyn Micropur Tablets (10 ct)
 
0.2
6
Consumable...weight per 10 ct.
Kitchen Total
0.6 lbs
 
8.8
250
Includes food bag, kitchen gear; no food.
Clothing:
Clothing Bag
$5
1.8
52
ThermaRest bag from REI member sale. Silnylon outside, microfleece liner for pillow.
The Packa
$30
10.9
310
Silnylon jacket and pack cover...like a poncho, only better. Weight includes seam-sealing.
DropStoppers Pants
$16
4.2
120
Cost includes jacket, but I carry the Packa instead.
Mountain Hardware Polypro Watch Cap
 
0.8
24
 
SmartWool Socks
 
2.0
56
 
Clothing Total
1.2 lbs
 
19.8
562
Includes raingear; no change of clothes.
Sundries:
Sundries
 
12.6
356
First aid kit, fire kit, toiletries, photon light (8g), compass, etc.
Small wire-gate Biner
 
0.1
4
Cheap Walmart type.
Bandana
$2
1.2
34
Used for everything!
Gerber 400 Lockblade
$20
1.3
36
2.5" blade.
Misc Total
0.9 lbs
 
15.2
430
 
Base Weight: 8.2 lbs
132.0
3742
 
Luxuries:
Canon SD300 Digital Elph Camera
$300
5.1
144
Includes batteries and 4 GB media card.
Extendable Camera Tripod
$15
3.6
102
I forgot the brand name.
Inflatable Pillow
$0
0.6
16
Small white inflatable that Ed Speer and JRB sell. Includes straw inflater.
Notebook w/ Pencil
$2
3.2
90
Used for trip notes, journaling, etc.
Luxuries Total
0.8 lbs
 
12.4
352
 
Consumables:
2L Water
$0
70.5
2000
 
Denatured Alcohol
 
4.0
112
Enough for ~6 hot meals/drinks.
Food
 
70.5
2000
About a kilo per day.
Consumables Total
9.1 lbs
 
145.0
4112
 
Overnighter Pack Weight
18.1 lbs
289.5
8206
Includes 4112 (9.1 lbs) of consumables
Worn Gear:
Nike CoolMax T-Shirt
$18
5.7
162
Short sleeves.
REI Hiking Swimtrunks
$5
4.7
134
From REI member sale. Weight includes liner so no underwear needed.
Alpaca 3/4 Length Socks
$8
2.0
58
 
Merrel Moab Ventilator Boots
$90
34.6
980
Awesome boots!
Black Diamond Contour Hiking Poles
$90
19.6
556
278g each.
Worn Gear Total
 
66.7
1890
 
From Skin Out
13.2 lbs
211.1
5984
Does not include consumables
FSO w/ consumables
22.3 lbs
356.1
10096
Includes 4112 (9.1 lbs) of consumables

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