trails + tents

#ExplOregon: We would have died. Literally.

I proudly pack ALL of my weekend adventuring gear and backpacking essentials into a 22L Columbia pack and wrangled tent poles through airport security with big plans for some backcountry backpacking in Oregon with Erin and Weez. After a day of wandering around Portland on my own it was time to explore the great outdoors. On Friday morning I carefully packed up my food and reassessed my layers. The weather was much chilly than forecasted but we had high hopes for rising temps as the world woke up. By mid morning we’d packed everything into the car and headed southeast toward the Three Fingered Jack trailhead. Our game plan was to spend the next two days/nights backpacking the 20-24ish [depending upon which website you ask] loop around Three Fingered Jack. In our diluted minds we’d spend the days hiking and exploring than camp along the trail with rainy but bearable temperatures that *might* drop below 20 degrees. The closer we got to our destination the more “uh, we might die” talk swirled around the car. The thermometer in the car kept spitting out lower temperatures…by the time we got to the trailhead, at 2pm, it was reading 11 degrees. ELEVEN DEGREES! In the afternoon…on a very sunny day. Oh, and we were surrounded by heaping piles of snow. As in the trailhead was not accessible because it was buried under 2-3 feet of fresh snow. This was not going as planned… (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

Escaping to the Mountains

After a long week with many, many moments of “gah, I wish I could just turn the internet off” I spent my weekend doing exactly that. Sure, I had my phone on me and yea, I double tapped posts on Instagram but in the grand scheme of things…the internet did not matter! It started with a friendly meet up with Chris and Marissa in Boulder. It was a freaking gorgeous day with bluebird skies and temperatures that should have left us in September. We spent some quality time frolicking around trails and making fools of ourselves before we decided we’d earned our weight in fries + beer. I guess the internet isn’t all bad if it gets you friends like these crazies… (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

Local Love: Auckland Outdoors

Disclaimer: I’m an ambassador for Auckland Outdoors, a Colorado company I am about to talk about, and while I am being reimbursed for my work with them all opinions and such are my own! I applied to be an ambassador because I love the gear sharing concept they’ve come up with and how they make it easier to get everyone outside! If you have any questions/suggestions/thoughts…send them my way! I’d love to hear them and pass them along, anything to help make Auckland Outdoors more successful! Let’s imagine a situation…one that many of you have probably been in. You have friends or family flying in from out of town with big plans to go camping, backpacking or hiking. With the astronomical baggage costs they are packing light…which means they are coming without the proper camping gear. Or, you have a friend in town that keeps saying they are jealous of your trips into the mountains…you plan out an easy adventure to get them experience the backcountry first hand but don’t have the gear needed to make their first trip comfortable and fun. Or, you’re traveling to Denver without knowing many people in the area. You want to head into the mountains to do some exploring but don’t have the gear you need…and aren’t sure where to go. You have a few options… (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

A Weekend of Cliff Hangers!

I spent my long weekend roaming the wilderness of Utah, scouting out routes down canyons, chasing down a very sneaky river, camping on cliffs and experiencing a rainy night in the desert. When Heather sent out the “whatcha doing Memorial Day Weekend” email I got excited. We’re on the same page when it comes to holiday weekends – head to the mountains but trek your way into the backcountry to avoid the crowds! When the follow up email had “CANYONLANDS” in the subject line I knew it was going to be a good weekend! (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

Exploring Geneva Basin

Like everyone else on the planet I tend to overuse the “life gets in the way” excuse. Why didn’t I change the oil in my Forester before it hit the 9K-since-last-change mark? Life got in the way. Why do I have way too many flagged emails that need my attention? Life got in the way. Why is there a 7 year gap in my dental history? Life got in the way. And I hate the dentist. Why is the teeny, tiny apartment we moved into over a month ago still not unpacked? Well, this time the mountains were calling, but you get my point. (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

{Lesson Learned} Stormy Hikes Above Treeline

Sierra Trading Post is pulling together stories of “biggest mistakes” and “lessons learned” for an upcoming Twitter chat. I’ve done some stupid things while exploring Colorado but naively hiking in the afternoon during predictable summer storms has by far been the most dangerous. Re-reading the stories I posted about these “adventures” is actually painful! Hopefully you can learn from my mistakes…

I have survived a few mishaps in the backcountry – hiking the wrong mountain on my first 14er attempt, nearly dying and desperately wanting to sell my mountain bike after misreading directions and shivering a lot on my first winter camping trip are a few of the more exciting ones. And I’m sure I’ll add to that list with time – sometimes I don’t extensively Google adventures before I pack my bags and head out. (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

Legit Backcountry Touring {Eiseman Hut}

Two weeks ago we packed up our gear with big plans for an early Saturday departure followed by a long weekend deep in the Colorado Rockies avoiding reality, cell signal and any adult responsibilities. Paula showed up at 5:30am, we loaded up the car, stopped for donuts and headed into the mountains. By 9:30am we were parked and unloaded at the Spraddle Creek Trailhead, ready to head up, up, up to the Eiseman Hut. (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
trails + tents

The Mystery of the Backcountry

The backcountry is an interesting place. If you take a second to think about it you realize that a lot of the things about the backcountry are really quite miserable. What part of skinning uphill for miles with a 40lb pack sounds fun? None of it! It doesn’t matter how beautiful the scenery is…that kind of hiking hurts, a lot. And somehow I am still always jumping at the opportunity to spend hours trudging through the snow. Why?! (more…)

By Heidi Kumm, ago
Social Oversharing
Instagram
Facebook
Pinterest