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Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT.
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Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 12:22:55 MDT Print View

Been planning on taking the GF out for her first overnight for some time now...a B-day present to me from her. I decided on taking her to Bull's Bridge on the AT neat Kent, CT. It was only a 1:15 drive away from home, a mile hike in to the site on easy terrain, outhouses, a hand pump well and the scenic river near by.

Her EMS day pack, all in including her clothes plus & toiletries. was 12 pounds. My GG Mariposa weighed in at 22lbs all in (I had 3.5l of water on me plus my food, both sleeping bags, both sleeping pads, tent, stove.)



The water on the river was MOVIN':

The kayakers were loving it:


We eventually got down to the water and took a self portrait. Instead of saying "say cheese!" I said "say cathole!" and this was her reaction....I then told her the definition of said word. :p

We got the Tarptent Squall II up with the help of some rocks. It was great for us two, no complaints. This was Kathleen after her first experience peeing outside, a tramatic experience, but she was a trooper and repeated the ritual twice more:

Next it was time for dinner with the help of my Heiny stove in Alcohol mode. I took the Alcohol instead of Weber stsarter cubes because it was a little cleaner and it was nice to have on hand if I needed help w/ the camp fire:

Here is the Ten Mile River Shelter with two other hikers who spent the night there:

Little campfire w/ the help of some dryer lint:

Little morning walk:

There were about 20 boy scouts and their fathers at a nearby site. We caught them heading out. This guy wins the award for "biggest pack Bryce has every seen:"

Kathleen modeling my JRB Balaclava:


Heading home:

So...we're still together (:p), we did it together, and I'm very proud of her. We'll try to get out some more over time balancing her wants and mine. Maybe some paddling too.

Comments on my gear:

- JRB Sierra Stealth (rated to 40F). Well it prob is true to it's rating, I believe it hit 40F last night and I was chilly in the morning as I sleep cold. I had on my hiking pants, a long sleep EMS syn shirt, down JRB Balaclava and down JRB sleeves. (I put on the hat and sleeves in the middle of the night). (Kathleen was cozy in my Marmut Helium)

- GG 1/8 thinlight pad. I guess it worked for increasing bottom insulation, not much for padding.

- GG Nightlight Sleeping Pad . Not enjoying this at all. It's just long enough, but as a side sleeper it doesn't cut it, too uncomfy....and fragile! Sheesh, it's already ripping where they scored it into thirds. And I've only slept on it twice. I'll be taking my NeoAir Short and cutting it down instead.

- TarpTent Squall 2. It was very good. I prob need to get a little faster with pitching it, but once it was up and running it was well suited for Kathleen (5-6) and I (5-10) and we were able to store gear inside (not in the vestibule)

All photos can be found here:

Edited by bster13 on 09/18/2011 12:31:49 MDT.

todd h
(funnymoney) - MLife

Locale: SE
Re: Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 12:45:43 MDT Print View

Tell her I'm proud of her!

And I'm happy for you!

Very nice pics of a beautiful place.

William Johnson
GG LT4's on 09/18/2011 13:10:31 MDT Print View

Did you buy her GG LT4's and she doesn't even like the outdoors?

It's LOVE!

Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
Re: Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 13:14:01 MDT Print View

Bryce was VERY patient with me. I was not easy...started out grumpy and tired after a very long work week. The last thing this girly girl wanted to do this weekend was pee outside. I had a full on panic attack the first time I had to do it, complete with waterworks.

But we didn't break-up! And even enjoyed a nice campfire, beautiful rushing river and some quality time together--Bryce without his laptop and no BPL forums to consume all his time--that part I really enjoyed. ;)

Love you hun. We'll go again...someday. ;P

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Re: GG LT4's on 09/18/2011 14:17:03 MDT Print View

She used my GGLT4s and I used my heavier old ones.

Tim Zen
(asdzxc57) - F

Locale: MI
Re: Re: Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 14:22:26 MDT Print View

At least you have a real story for the office on Monday.
Your next trip will be better, so hang in there.

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
After she went outside... on 09/18/2011 14:22:39 MDT Print View

...she was relieved. Love ya hun!

Edited by bster13 on 09/18/2011 14:23:14 MDT.

Kathleen L
(kathleenl) - F
Re: After she went outside... on 09/18/2011 14:25:24 MDT Print View

punk :P

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
I'm loving this story on 09/18/2011 16:19:04 MDT Print View

Kathleen, you are such a trooper, and Bryce, you are a lucky man. This has been a great story from the start. I so enjoyed your perspective on this, Kathleen, and it has been fun to hear your side. And then, Bryce, yours. I think you both did a great job in pulling this outing off. I hope you will enjoy many more together.

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 16:36:21 MDT Print View

Wonderful story! Thank you for sharing more than just your hike.
I'm thinking that this weekend is going to be repeated in the future, if for no other reason than to get Bryce away from BPL on his laptop! LOL

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together. Bull's Bridge on the AT. on 09/18/2011 16:46:56 MDT Print View

Glad you two had a good time. I remember all the posting and planning for this trip. Glad you guys did it and happy to see the both of you survive!

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Pic of the wknd on 09/18/2011 16:57:58 MDT Print View

Can't believe I forgot this...ya see, we were faced with a huge bear growling around our tent just after we setup. 4 cans of bear spray, loud whistles, and screaming at the top of our lungs could not deter the as a last ditch effort we luckily scared him off with our faces. He turedn and ran away as fast as he could:


Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Congrats! on 09/18/2011 16:59:52 MDT Print View

Way to go, Kathleen! Now Bryce owes you a really fine date night at a great restaurant, complete with roses!

Good job, Bryce, being patient and carrying the heavy gear! But get that girl a proper internal frame pack that fits her! (After the roses!)

Kathleen, a hint on getting Bryce away from the computer and BPL: Tell him you want your next hike to be a two or three day hike in, say, Montana, and you want the two of you to drive there. All those miles, just the two of you in the car - LOTS of time for great, long conversations! ;)

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
I think she meant..... on 09/18/2011 17:59:33 MDT Print View

Love you hun. We'll go again...someday (very soon!). ;P

Sharing the outdoors with some one else is so much fun. Glad you two made some great memories.

adam spates
(adamspates) - F

Locale: southeast
thanks on 09/18/2011 19:09:27 MDT Print View

just makes me appreciate my go far, #1 or #2 anywhere, not afraid of creepy crawly, but still stylish and lady like at home, wife even more....some of us seem to forget how lucky we are sometimes!

not to say your not lucky.....

Ryan Linn

Locale: Maine!
Awesome on 09/19/2011 05:09:28 MDT Print View

I love it. Bring her on up to the Whites sometime (or VT if the National Forest ever reopens). I corrupted my girlfriend many years ago, so she's all about the backpacking now. But I have to corrupt some more and bring her over to the dark side of UL backpacking. This post gives me hope that it can be done :)

Sounds like a great time, Bryce. That shelter is my favorite in CT.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
re: girly girl on 09/19/2011 18:21:25 MDT Print View

Fantastic trip report. That pic of Kathleen in the tent had me laughing, a lot.

Before we were married, my wife and I were on a road trip, and camping above Colorado Spring in the forest. It was only while setting up the tent that she revealed that this would be her first night in a tent, ever! That just didn't make sense to me at the time. How do you become an adult without sleeping in a tent?!

Now many years later she's still terrified of bears, and doesn't like the cold as much as I do, but she's done some hardcore things (Zion canyoneering in winter, the Narrows in 7 hours, 28 mile days, etc). It's a worthwhile experience, doing trips together, though it can be rather trying.

Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
Way to Go on 09/20/2011 08:37:08 MDT Print View

I followed the original 'girly girl' thread for a bit but was too lazy to comment I guess. Way to go on working it out and completing your first trip without incident, in UL style even!

Your pack weights look a bit like mine and my wife's when we hit the trail for a few days. I end up with all the food and heavy stuff, but she's always jealous that my pack gets lighter each day. Now she makes sure to carry at least some of the food for the mental pick-me-up knowing she is shedding a little weight along the trip :)

What did Kathleen sleep in (bag)? You mentioned you used a JRB SS; did she use the same? Unfortunately my wife sleeps pretty cold and we've tried a few things but she always comes back to her 20ยบ down bag for pretty much any weather.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Girly Girl GF and SUL BF world's collide, our first overnight together on 09/20/2011 16:33:01 MDT Print View

Congratulations, Kathleen! I knew you could do it!

Bryce F.
(bster13) - MLife

Locale: Norwalk, CT
Re: Way to Go on 09/20/2011 17:36:52 MDT Print View

Kathleen slept in my Marmot Helium and was warm: