https://www.youtube.com/c/JimBairdTheAdventurerMy wife Tori and I trekked 160km in eight days through the Canadian Rockies during the summer of 2017 and we brought our dog Buck along for the journey. We began in Jasper National Park at the Celestine Trailhead and completed the journey in Grand Cache, Alberta. Our route started on The North Boundary Trail, passed Snake Indian Falls and veered north through Glacier and Desolation Pass’ where we crossed into the Sulpher River watershed leaving Jasper NP behind and began traveling through Wilmore Wilderness on Mountain Trail.
Here is a direct link to the two-part film series on this trip called “Canadian Rockies Backpacking Adventure” enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBN1gL53USM&list=PLdWkde9gml_9moZTmJBdL4cJgXRwIDn_9
The route was very challenging by any standards and every day, during the last 3km we thought we weren’t going to make it, but every time we made it to camp we were rejuvenated. Every day was like a smaller goal leading up to the larger goal of completing the adventure. We bumped into Metis horse packers on the way who told us the story of the nine generations-old trail, and how the route we were following was the same route their grandparents had to take after their forced exodus from Jasper when it became a national park, all the way to where they relocated in the Grande Cache area. We saw moose and huge mountain lion prints, we caught trout and crossed deep, swift rivers, dealt with freexing rain and drank in the sheer beauty and magnitude of the Rocky Mountains. When we finished we almost felt like crying and every time we think about the trip we still feel like crying a little. It was amazing.
In this video, I share a few of the skills I used along the way. Here is a short breakdown on each one.
1. Fishing Tackle To Bring on a Backpacking Trek
– Small Mepps spinners, small Williams spoon, small Rapala minnow lure, small bob, and wet flies, small jig heads and small curly tail Mr. Twister plastic grubs. Carry it all in a small Tupperware with a clamp-down lid.
2. Identifying Wild Edibles
– In this one, I cover Yarro, Plantain, Clover, and Dandylion greens, and I speak a little bit about their edible and medicinal qualities. For example, Yarrow can be made into a tea that draws out infection when a wound is soaked in it. This could come in handy out there, and knowing some healthy wild greens could spruce up any meal or prevent you from going without if things go south.
3. Managing Parachute Cord
– P-cord is a great thing to bring because it’s light, strong and has many uses. I use it on backpacking trips to hang up my food, but when it’s all tangled up it can be a pain as it tangles a lot easier than thicker rope. I wind the cord in a figure-eight shape between my thumb and pinky finger and then tie it together in the middle. This ensures it will always be quickly at the ready If I need to rig up my tarp in the rain or hang a food bag after a long, tough day on the trail.
4. Hanging Your Food
– Sometimes, you can’t find the perfect spot to hang your food, so you need to make due. In this video, I cover how I get the cord over the high branch, tie it off to the bag, hoist it up and secure it, and why this will help keep bears away.
5. Training Your Mind
– Because mental toughness wins every time. You can’t train your body without training your mind.
6. Drying The Toe of Your Boot
– Leather backpacking boots can be tough to dry, but they’re needed for long, tough treks. Walking with wet feet all day softens your skin and makes you more susceptible to blisters. So, knowing a good trick to get those boots dry is a big deal. Most people have figured out that it speeds things up if you pull out your insole and prop it up beside the fire with your boot, but how do you dry out the toe? The secret is hot rocks! Watch how I do it in the video.
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