Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style.


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Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style. on 11/10/2010 11:02:02 MST Print View

CBC did a two part report on hiking the West Coast Trail. I've done it several times and it is an incredible adventure. My favorite part is at about 5:10.

http://vodpod.com/watch/1914324-backpacking-the-west-coast-trail

Richard Bolt
(richardbolt) - F

Locale: California
Re: Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style. on 11/10/2010 13:08:21 MST Print View

Thanks for posting that link. That was awesome! What an introduction to backpacking for him, he's kicking his huge heavy pack on day one :-)

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style on 11/11/2010 01:04:34 MST Print View

I saw that video a while back and loved it!

The amazing thing is that their packs are monsters even though they had a food drop at the half way mark!

Re-watching that video made my trip on the WCT this year even sweeter... I managed to get 8 days of food into my Burn!

wander lust
(sol)
8 days of food in a burn on 11/11/2010 02:03:44 MST Print View

how much do you eat while hiking?
can't be a lot at all.

anyways they have some really heavy packs, and that with a resupply.

Nate Powell
(powell1nj) - F

Locale: North Carolina
Whoa on 11/11/2010 06:12:33 MST Print View

What do they have in those packs?! I certainly carried my share of ridiculous loads in a pack when I first started backpacking but those things on their backs are HUGE. To look at them you'd think they weigh 50 or 60 lbs. I'm really surprised there wasn't even one person sporting a Gorilla or somethin and blazing by everyone else.

It does look like an amazing stretch of trail though. I really liked that setup they were using to cross the river with the pod and the pulley system. Looks like fun. Thanks for the heads up on the video.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
WCT on 11/11/2010 08:43:07 MST Print View

Guys - there is Part 2 and Part 3 on You Tube. The trail gets decidedly more challenging (mud, roots, rain). Brings back memories (fond?).

Andy Schill
(Aschill) - F
good video on 11/11/2010 09:04:53 MST Print View

I just checked out the rest of it on Youtube, good stuff. From the looks of it he almost has a fresh set of clothing everyday! I love the part where he questions the boat captain as to why he would live out there in the middle of nowhere...priceless

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
WCT... on 11/11/2010 22:16:19 MST Print View

>> how much do you eat while hiking?
can't be a lot at all. <<

Actually I gained a pound after my week on the WCT.

That's the fun part of the WCT... beer, burgers and snacks at Monique's (she pulled out a tray of Pecan Tarts while I was there!) and beer, crab and snacks at Nitnat Narrows.

I gave food away and still returned with some in my pack.

wander lust
(sol)
I see on 11/12/2010 01:38:58 MST Print View

Oh I see, that works of course though.

But you gained weight, that must have been an unexpected experience :)

tommy d
(vinovampire) - F
Re: Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style. on 11/12/2010 07:48:07 MST Print View

"Never in my life have I wished more for less." - Part 2 at 6:44

Ha!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
WCT on 11/12/2010 08:34:40 MST Print View

This trail is really one of the most challenging that exist. Fun in dry weather, quite distinctly dangerous in wet (which is more often that not).

You would be amazed at how many heavy pack users you see. I mean really heavy. Like pots and pans heavy. Given the over 100 ladder systems (two that are 30 stories high), one can understand why there are, on average, over 100 evacuations in a season. I suspect with lighter packing this number would fall!!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Hiking the WCT. Heavyweight style. on 11/12/2010 14:44:40 MST Print View

I always liked this trip report - funny stuff.

http://www.sentai.com/mudhounds/index.htm

Gary Ward
(coastalbliss) - F
Not so big. on 11/12/2010 15:15:46 MST Print View

Their packs are not so big. My 95 liter pack gets pretty full for the WCT. There are some bulky things, but it usually ends up between 50 and 55 pounds for 8 days of hiking. I am a guide,though. I was a sherpa on one trip (third guide to do the heavy lifting for two smaller guides-and I'm not that big). My pack was more like 70 pounds for that trip. That was too much. You wouldn't want to hear what my knees were saying to me in the tent around Carmanah Creek.

If you are reminiscing about the West Coast Trail and want another challenge that is even harder, let me take you on the North Coast Trail. No burgers, no crab, you really do have to carry it all with you. If you have a load of extra cash, you can spend a grand for a food drop, but...it's a chunk of change. Great trip, however.

But hey, why do we do this stuff? I know why I do...I LOVE IT!

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Not so big. on 11/12/2010 15:23:58 MST Print View

...deep sigh...

.....slowly turns and walks away...

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Not so big. on 11/12/2010 15:29:37 MST Print View

Gary, you're not quite getting it. I just did a 7-day trip on the Teton Crest in Wyoming, mostly off trail. Not sure how it compares to the WCT, but it certainly wasn't any walk in the park (well, we were in National parks part of the time, but I digress....). And we certainly had to 'carry it all' with us. My pack started somewhere between 25-30 pounds including food and water (not sure because I didn't weigh it after I left the house and took my share of group food and gear). And I had some stuff I didn't need (had never hiked in Wyoming or thereabouts before and was prepared for about any weather - we only had sunshine!). Our 'guide' probably was carrying around 25-30 pounds too, and he had the Sat phone and a few other incidentals. And, of course, generally the packs got lighter after each group meal was consumed (two per day).

50-55 pounds is way heavy by the standards of most BPL readers. Your pack doesn't have to be that heavy if you only stop thinking like the 'traditional' backpacker, guide or not. Because if you think 50-55 pounds is an acceptable weight for a week, not too many people on this site are interested in letting you take them anywhere....

FWIW

Edited by idester on 11/12/2010 15:31:33 MST.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
95 litres on 11/12/2010 15:30:39 MST Print View

sounds great for everest ... lol

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
Not so big?? on 11/12/2010 16:48:44 MST Print View

If a 95 litre pack was necessary, alot of us old-timers would have to pack it in!

I consider myself a light weight "traditional" backpacker as I still carry pretty standard stuff (double wall tent, propane stove... toilet paper ;). I am however, very good at packing a compact load.

Here's what eight days of food looked like for my WCT trip this past June (each bag = 1 day of food)and my fully loaded pack (MLD Burn) is 32 litres (max). This small pack made my trip really enjoyable and my backpack was never a burdon... unlike the pack shown in the video that David posted.

8 day food load

Pack fully loaded for WCT

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - M

Locale: Cascadia
WCT on 11/12/2010 18:25:34 MST Print View

I'm thinking yo-yo-ing the northern half of the WCT (Bamfield to Nitinat Narrows) during the off-season (ie. this winter) would be one heck of an adventure. No fees, no people, no costly taxi back to the start. If anyone wants to go, let me know.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: WCT on 11/12/2010 19:10:37 MST Print View

"I'm thinking yo-yo-ing the northern half of the WCT (Bamfield to Nitinat Narrows) during the off-season (ie. this winter) would be one heck of an adventure. No fees, no people, no costly taxi back to the start. If anyone wants to go, let me know."

Oh gee oh gee oh gee oh gee oh gee! How long/how many days? And when exactly?

I doubt I can make it happen, but gosh this would be fabulous!

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - M

Locale: Cascadia
WCT on 11/12/2010 19:17:57 MST Print View

I live in the area with a pretty flexible job, so I'd do it anytime. They usually don't have snow on the trail during the winter months, but they do get a lot more foul weather (storms).

Here is a video of 3 people doing it in January:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4arKRhUV8gY

They brought wet suits and swam the river in the middle, but it's a pretty dangerous river (fast currents) and wet suits are heavy, so I'd be more inclined just to yo-you the northern half.