View Full Version : Traveling on unfamiliar terrain features

04-21-2014, 12:26 AM
I went out for a field day a couple days ago and was lucky enough to find myself on terrain features that I had not anticipated, especially with a backpack on(albeit a light load) The area was the hill region inland southern California bordering the desert area west of Palm Springs. Terrain varied from wooded stream beds to extreme cliff sides and canyons. At one point we were walking a trail for about 1/2 mile no wider than 18in on the side of a mountain with a almost vertical gradient and a 110+ foot drop. Not a place you want to have poorly fitting packs and hanging equipment. We finished the day off with some water fall descents using tied swiss climbers seats(no harness) and cams to anchor into the cracks to tie the ropes off. We traveled approx 7 miles over fairly difficult terrain and even though I was only carrying 40 lbs of gear between my ranger vest and pack I was BEAT. The increased stress of having to travel over terrain where I was not completely comfortable im sure added to my fatigue at the end of the day. Especially the narrow trail on the side of a hill. Im not afraid of heights however with the added weight and bulk of my gear I was not entirely comfortable, in fact at times I was downright nervous which added to the strain I felt in my calves and thighs. We stopped for lunch at a couple of caves in a sandstone formation which made for a nice cool resting area out of the sun. All in all it was a great day, one which I will be repeating soon.. Even the goat trail on the side of the mountain


Patriotic Sheepdog
04-21-2014, 07:43 AM
Looks and sounds like you had a great time.

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