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Backpacking for the girly girl
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Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 18:44:41 MDT Print View

Hello BPLers.
My boyfriend (Bryce F) would love nothing more than for me to join him on an overnight backpacking trip for his bday in September. I am not a backpacker...a nice weekend for me involves a trip to an art museum and a pedicure. My purse weighs more than Bryce's pack. I hate and really fear bugs and rodents. I have never peed outside--ever--I'm 31. Needless to say I have some concerns about his wish. I'm willing to try new things, but I fear I will turn into whining, complaining, crazy woman. But I think if he can make a few compromises/considerations for our first trip out together we could do this relatively painlessly.

1. I need a tent that has a bottom. He camps with a tarp and even with bug netting and a ground cloth, the thought that a creepy crawly something would crawl in there really skeeves me out. I will NOT be able to sleep. Period. That will make for even crankier girlfriend, so we need a recommendation for an ultralight tent that that is a normal tent with a bottom like our Coleman we use for car camping. Suggestions?

2. I want to hike to a campsite that has a bathroom. We live in Connecticut. Any suggestions for a good beginner day hike where we might end at a campsite that has bathrooms?

I love Bryce. We have a great life together...he just didn't pick an outdoorsy girl, so any help/insights you can provide that are something beyond "grow a pair" would be much appreciated. Unfortunately, I don't believe at 31 I'm going to experience any sort of drastic attitude adjustment when it comes to the outdoors, but I want to do what I can for Bryce without making myself wildly uncomfortable. So if you're a BPL guy with a girly significant other and you've tackled these issues I'd love to hear from you.


Chris Lucas
(ChemE) - F

Locale: SC
SMD Haven Tarp/Net Tent on 07/11/2011 18:56:13 MDT Print View

For us the answer to #1 is the Six Moon Designs Haven tarp and net tent. A two person shelter with his and hers doors for under two pounds.

Gabe Joyes
(gabe_joyes) - F

Locale: Lander, WY
a few tips on 07/11/2011 19:01:35 MDT Print View

Keep an open mind- you will be amazed what you can get used to. My wife used think the idea of a floorless shelter was insane, but she gave it a shot and now she kind of digs it. Also, I promise going to the bathroom in the woods is way less gross than a nasty out house. Good luck, and just go for it!

Tim Marshall
(MarshLaw303) - MLife

Locale: Minnesota
Re: Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 19:03:03 MDT Print View

Good for you giving it a shot!

pretty much any tent from REI's ultralight tent section would work. (my wife needs a real tent too so i understand and am willing to carry a little more weight if it means she will come with me)

also worth consideration are options from LightHeart, Six Moon Design, Gossamer Gear or TarpTent. A good compromise might be a pyramid with bug tent insert, then he can use just the mid for times you stay home. Mountain Laurel Designs, Black Diamond and i believe BearPaw tents have offerings worth a look, as does Golite for both the mid or a "standard" tent.

you guys could always give hammocking a try, I will never sleep on the ground again (ok maybe)


Chris Morgan
(ChrisMorgan) - F

Locale: Southern Oregon
. on 07/11/2011 19:06:11 MDT Print View

Spoke too soon...

Also, didn't read the post :)

Edited by ChrisMorgan on 07/11/2011 19:13:05 MDT.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Re: Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 19:08:39 MDT Print View

+1 on the troll

K ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Re: Re: Re: Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 19:08:58 MDT Print View

Who's first post uses the term 'BPLers'?

Someone who has a boyfriend already on BPL. She even wrote his name.

Edited by Kat_P on 07/11/2011 19:09:59 MDT.

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 19:09:30 MDT Print View

1.) Several good choices out there. The Tarptent Double Rainbow is probably most like the Coleman you use for car camping, but the SMD Lunar Duo or Haven would work, as well as the Gossamer Gear Squall, MLD Duomid (with inner), or a plethora of similar shelters.

2.) If you are in Connecticut, you might look at the Appalachian Trail. I haven't made it that far north but many of the shelters on the AT have privy's which are about as close to a bathroom as you are going to get.

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Please be easy on ~ME~ (Hi Dear) on 07/11/2011 19:09:48 MDT Print View

For reference here is out wonderful car-camping tent:

It is certainly bomber and spacious. But please don't even ask how heavy it is. haha.

I couldn't be farther on the the other end of the spectrum from my wonderfully cute GF.

I am a sub-6 backpacking, soon to be sub-5:

We're both dying in our respective corners here where I loath the day I carry more weight, and she would rather die than sleep on the ground w/ no floor.

I was thinking a Hexamid Twin or BearPaw Wilderness Designs Cub Den 2. (I bet I could get Bear Paw to sew in a full bug floor w/ ultralight no-see-um neeting)

Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
I'm familiar because... on 07/11/2011 19:11:51 MDT Print View

my boyfriend is on this website 24/7. I'm often sitting next to him on the couch as he reads and posts for hours on I'm not even there!
Recognize Bryce F?Us at an art museum :)

Thanks for the input so far. This is great :)

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: I'm familiar because... on 07/11/2011 19:13:26 MDT Print View

Hey Bryce and Kathleen, accept my apologies.

Big Agnes makes a lot of tents that are comfortable and lightweight. My wife will not do the tarp thing and when we do trips we bring our Big Agnes SL3

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: I'm familiar because... on 07/11/2011 19:18:40 MDT Print View

Tarptent Scarp 2. My wife and I used this prior to her trying tarping. It's very close to a traditional tent. If you want to PM me I can give you her email address so you can get a female perspective one on one. She's not much of a girly girl in the traditional sense, but she'd be happy to talk with you.

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
REI on 07/11/2011 19:19:08 MDT Print View

Tim, much respect to your quilts, but my town just got an REI and I walked in for the first time the other day and was soooo dissappointed. I used to go to stores like REI/EMS and buy tons of stuff! Now I just meander through the isles with a blank stare on my face. I bought Tenacious Tape when I left for $4, that's it, haha. And it took everything for me not to speak to a prospective customer who was being talked into a "light" pack by a salesperson. :o Please don't lead her to REI!!!!! :p


(Gee honey, I wish we had some HIKING photos to show. :p Love ya.)

Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
I love REI. on 07/11/2011 19:22:02 MDT Print View

That's all. Thanks Tim! ;)

Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
Big Agnes on 07/11/2011 19:23:40 MDT Print View

Hey Ken.
I will definitely look at the Big Agnes tents. Convincing Bryce we should carry a tent that weights 5 lbs will be a challenge, but we have a Big Agnes 2-person sleeping bag we use car camping that I like a lot.

Chris, The Scarp 2 is only 3.75 lbs...Bryce? What do you think dear? ;) Will PM you. Thanks!

Edited by kathleenl on 07/11/2011 19:29:07 MDT.

Mark Ries
(mtmnmark) - M

Locale: IOWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
I want to help on 07/11/2011 19:24:51 MDT Print View

Try attending mt mn marks school of UL backpacking for girly girls..... Ok sorry about that one and give my appologies to bryce also. Its all a mind set if you think you are going to have a bad time you will So look at all the things that you will not like and try to overcome them b4 you go. There is a book out by Kathlene meyers How to $hit in the woods it really does not do much for me but a past gal I dated and my Ex wife both thought it comical and useful and gave at least one of them some confidence so I guess it was useful. Ive brought a gal out who was very scared of the whole idea but at times the wonders of nature really shine through Like a herd of big horn sheep going by our camp. There is a lot of really cool stuff out in the wilds and there are a lot less dangers than in town. He loves you right? right? After all thats why he waxes his chest hairs plucks his eye brows and watches chick flicks with you all night right?...right? Hope this helps

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Benadryl on 07/11/2011 19:27:53 MDT Print View

Can't I just have her 50mg of Benadryl and they she'd sleep in anything? That's certainly be ultralight, heck SUL.

3.75 lbs for the Scarp is ~2/3rds of my pack weight! :o :p

In all seriousness, Kathleen is a twig and I'm a cripple (major motorcycle accident in 2007, decimated right side of my body). I really don't want to carry a lot of weight, and even though she'd appreciate the full shelter, she'd appreciate the light weight over a nice long hike as well.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Backpacking for the girly girl on 07/11/2011 19:31:39 MDT Print View

Hi Kathleen,

I listed a few things below that really help my wife be more comfortable while we're hiking/camping. Hopefully they will help you be more comfortable too.

1) Bugspray
2) Bugspray
3) Bugspray
4) Smores


Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
how about on 07/11/2011 19:31:54 MDT Print View

Hun, how about I carry the tent, you carry everything else? :)

Mark, I will look for that book! Thanks.

Chris Lucas
(ChemE) - F

Locale: SC
2 lbs is the lower limit on 07/11/2011 19:34:09 MDT Print View

As far as I know there isn't a two person tent out there with a bathtub floor lighter than two pounds. If lightheart gear offered the duo in cuben that might be a possibility. Joe at ZPacks will usually build whatever so you may work with him on a hexamid twin with a cuben floor.