I have an entirely new appreciation for good equipment when backpacking. This past week I went with some youths from a couple of the local highschools backpacking in the Manistee National Forest. Most of the people that we talked to before leaving thought we were(are) nuts because it was some of the worst weather we have ever had in MI this time of year. We knew there was a fairly big storm coming and that it would be very cold. Well, the weatherman was right. We got there and it was COLD! We got to set up our tents after dark in the rain. Shortly after setting up camp the rain turned to freezing rain and then in the night snow. We woke up and it was cold enough that tent was covered in ice and the condensation inside the tent turned to ice moments after we got out for pancakes in the snow.
One of the kids; an Eagle Scout, was very vocal in telling everyone how to set up camp and sleep and all sorts of info. Well, by the middle of the night his tent was under water and his sleeping bag was dripping wet. We found him in the morning curled up in the van with chattering teeth and a mild fever. HA! I must say he lowered the status of eagle scout in my eyes considerably.
That day we hiked through many squalls while the snow accumulated. It was the perfect hiking weather! I didn't have to change cloths the entire trip!:) We set up camp again that evening in the rain/snow.
It was nice and cozy in my tent with two other chaperones. We had considerable snow that night and a couple of the other tents fell in. And most of the kids got wet.
Well, I guess they probably won't ever forget the trip!:) I hope I won't either, it was fun, except for the half dollar sized blister on the back of my ankle from my new boots.