After each hike it’s time to ask some questions: What went wrong? What worked well? What did I swear about? What would I do different on future hikes? Well well let’s get to it:

 

 

Gear
  • Backpack: GoLite Pinnacle: OK, forgot to sew the belt smaller, so it was still too big but my BPW wasn’t too heavy so I was fine.
  • TerraNova tarp: Perfect for Tenerife. We used it for windprotection. No rain, no bugs, no animals except for small lizards and a few beetles.
  • Rescue blanket as groundsheet: Shitty shitty CRAP! After the first night on the snowfield it freezed on to the bottom of a sleeping pad. As we broke camp and started to deflate our sleepingpads, the rescue blanket ripped apart. Guess it’s time for a polycro or a tyvek ground sheet.
  • Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm: Love it! But I always choose my sleeping site carefully!
  • Western Mountaineering Antelope: Good thing I brought this sleeping bag, otherwise I’d have froozen my ass off on the mountain!
    O man I do look like crap but at least the bag kept me warm :cP
  • Clothes: Praise the lord I brought my Arc’teryx Phase Baselayer. We only had a tiny bit of sunscreen so the UVprotection of long leggings and a long T were more than welcome!!! Once again I loved my Dirty Girl Gaiters. And I tried out my new Montane Featherlite pants. They make a hell of a figure (NOT) but they do work and are lightweight!

  • Forgot: Sunhat! Got burned in the face big time. My skin is currently peeling off for the second time… Still looking like a lobster!
So that’s what you end up doing when you don’t bring sunscreen or a decent hat: Improvising and looking like a moron :cP
  • Could have ditched the Sawyer squeeze. I didn’t find any water along the trail (completely dry) except for the last day. We once melted snow, otherwise we refilled our water bladders in the bathroom of the cable car station, in the bathroom of a hotel and at a watertap of a closed campground.
  • Cooking system: A MESS! Alcohol gel designed for lighting a grill + cokecan stove: Doesn’t work at 3400m/11154ft!
Food

Jee girl what were you thinking? Our food plan didn’t work out the moment our cooking system failed. Plus we brought way too much (I’m still traumatised by feeling starved on the JMT hahaha). I just have to remember that the first few days I’m not all that hungry and my hiker hunger only sets in at around day 10. We made a huge pot of couscous the first evening (but couldn’t eat it because of nausea) and ended up eating it for the next three days. Even after our trip was over we still had cooked couscous left. O boy! Only when getting further down and at moderate temperatures the stove with the gel did what it was supposed to do: BOIL SOME FUCKING WATER! Imagine me without coffee in the morning? Right, there’s nothing to laugh about here! Big mistake!!!
Food choice: I think I’m starting to hate GORP. No more trail mix for me on future hikes (Am I gonna survive??? We’ll see). And I brought 4 Mars bars and didn’t eat a single one. 200g of extra weight for nothing! Well done girl well done!
What did work? Tortillas never seem to bore me, and sweets, lots of sweets!

Trying to boil water for couscous on evening one… Trying!
Lunch day 2: Couscous for lunch
Dinner day 2: Tortillas filled with? COUSCOUS! What else?
Body

My body did amaaazingly well. Yeah I did have muscle ache but my knee was doing great. Didn’t feel any pain during the trip (unfortunately afterwards it came back :c( Just went to accupuncture twice now, hope that might help.
I asked myself: How come I didn’t feel any muscle ache on the JMT? But then I realised on the JMT I’ve been taking loads of Vitamin I against my knee pain, so I guess that must have covered up any muscle ache haha. And I was thinking to myself all summer: Girl you’re in a fuckin’ good shape, no muscle ache, no nothing…. whoops!

 Cursing, swearing and other shit

Now we’re getting to the interesting part. Though I might have to disappoint you. It seems like Catwoman has calmed down since last summer. DAMNNN! What happened? The only time I cursed like hell was when we lost the trail (fucking road map, totally outdated!!!), had to climb and crawl (damn bushes) crosscountry,  and in the end still didn’t find frikkin Paisaje Lunar.
I think I need a bigger hiker trash group to get to my normal self again hahaha. Na don’t worry, I’ll be fine on the PCT. Those few days of hiking on Tenerife probably just weren’t enough to reach my full hiker trash potential! Once I’m out there for longer than a week and I’m surrounded with hiker trash I’ll be dropping Fbombs like as if there’s no tomorrow :cP

So what lessons did I learn?

1. 4 Days of hiking is not enough
2. Alcohol gel sucks
3. Listen to your parents when it comes to sunscreen!!!
4. National Park infomaterial is perfect for origami sunhats!
5. Emergency blanket + snow + -8°C is a fucking bad combination
6. Girl you’re just not hungry the first few days. Start counting that in when shopping for food!
7. I need a new gorp recipe!
8. Europe needs more hiker trash! Waaaaaaaaaaay more hiker trash!

 

Looking for more hiker trash!

2 thoughts on “Lessons learned

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