Food & Fitness

Hiking through forests and over mountains

Two weekends ago, the boyfriend and I went on our first back-country camping trip together. Although I camped and hiked every summer with my family when I was younger, I had never experienced a full day of hiking, then setting up camp, and then hiking the following day. The boyfriend went back-country camping last year and became hooked on it, so it was definitely a good thing that one of us knew what to do at the campsite with setting up the tent and making a fire (hint: it wasn’t me)!

Check out my snazzy rain gear!

I’ve spent the past month or so gathering up supplies. Hiking boots, a backpack, base layers, rain gear, sleeping bag; the works. Luckily the boyfriend already had the tent and stove and water pump and such, so I didn’t have to worry about that.

We got soaked that first night!

We just went on a two-day hike in Riding Mountain; about 17 km (uphill) on Saturday and about 17 km (downhill, but on a different trail) on the Sunday. It took us roughly seven hours the first day and four and a half the second day (including rests and a lunch break). It’s amazing how big of a difference it makes when you’re going up or downhill!

The mosquitoes were bad, the ticks were crawling, and I got a slight sunburn. It rained all evening on Friday and then there was a short but loud storm on Saturday night. I loved every minute of it! We ate tasty homemade meals, too: burgers with potatoes wrapped in foil the first night and dehydrated corn chowder soup (my dehydrator is one of my favourite appliances) the second night (plus hot chocolate!); oatmeal with protein powder and bananas for breakfast; sandwiches with whole grain bread, cheese, and Genoa salami for lunch; and beef jerky and dried fruit for snacks. Gotta eat well to fuel up for hours of walking.

Although it was wet at night, the weather was beautiful during the day. Sunny without being too too hot. And there was no one else at the campsites or on the trail, either; there were only two day-hikers that we saw the entire time. It was nice to have all that greenery to ourselves!

We hiked through a creek…

That water was cold! But kinda refreshing at the same time.

…and rested on mountain peaks:

On Bald Hill

And then we hiked some more!

That big hill that I'm pointing to is the same hill that the boyfriend and I were sitting on in the previous picture.

It was a super fun trip and we had a great time. We’re already planning our next few trips: after that two-night, two-day camping trip, we want to try a three-day hike. Walking for hours on end is pretty much my idea of bliss.

Are you a hiker? Is there a form of exercise that you absolutely *love*? Are you outdoorsy or indoorsy? Share in the comments!


  1. Miz

    I used to back country camp and rock climb a lot.
    then I broke up with the boyfriend with whom I campedandclimbed and married a noncamper.

    I caint lie to you—-seeing those pics makes me wanna make, errr, hope the child is a camper 🙂

  2. asithi

    I tried backpacking once. But I realized that even though I like hiking, I prefer to come back to a nice hot shower at the end of the day. My husband and I do mostly day trips to nearby state parks. It is the perfect compromise – we carry a small backpack with picnic food, hike 4-6 hours, and then stop by a restaurant for a late dinner on the drive home. Sometimes when there is a bike trail, we also bring our bikes.
    When we go on out annual camping trip with a bunch of friends, we mostly sit around camp drinking beer while the kids are running around. Our friends are much less active than us.

  3. Shelly

    This post made me realize how much I miss hiking! I’ve never done an back country multi-day adventure, but it sure sounds like fun. Its amazing how wonderful even the simplest food tastes when you’re out in the woods or sitting on top of a mountain.

  4. Cammy@TippyToeDiet

    What an awesome expereience! Thanks for taking pics for us. 🙂

    I’m planning to join a local hiking group in the late fall (post-snake, mosquito and tick seasons). Even if I just go on day hikes with them, it will be something fun and different.

  5. Lori

    What a trip! I love the idea of hiking, but I’m not that hardcore. I like day hikes and adventure stuff, but have never done a trip like this. I’d be willing to try it, but apprehensive at the same time. My husband, on the other hand, would have loved it!

  6. Sagan Morrow

    Westwood- It WAS “slight”, until this past weekend 😉

    Shelly- ANY food tastes good when you’re that hungry, hehe. But yes, the scenery definitely plays a part too.

    Cammy- A local hiking group?! JEALOUS. I gotta start one of those…

    Lori- Adventures + explorations = love.

  7. Pubsgal

    My kids aren’t too into walking–they prefer scooter riding–so we do most of our “hiking” along our coastal bike trail. We have tons of trails around here, so lots of nice options for day hikes. (Although, last time I tried to go on one with my husband, we took the fire road instead of the foot path, and it was super steep. He didn’t much care for that.)

    Camping-wise, we enjoyed car camping with friends, until our camping buddies moved away. The kids have never been; they like the creature comfort of hotels. (I know, we should have camped with them all these years!) What’s crazy is how hard it is to get a weekend camping reservation in our area; it’s pretty popular for camping, so everything books up a year in advance. :-/

  8. mary

    I know you are young, but you look like a child in those pix. Too cute. And Richard, where I am from those are towering giants of mountains (below sea level Louisiana)

  9. Monica

    Sagan, I’ve been away for way way way too long. I LOVED reading this post about your trip. Backpacking/hiking is my absolute favorite kind of holiday (bicycle touring is a close second) and I loved reading your tales. And I’m so glad you had proper waterproofs for your first trip. The first time I went backpacking was in England where I foolishly didn’t bring good waterproofs. Foolish, because it rains A LOT in England. I spent most of the trip cold and soaked. But I learned a lot and was VERY prepared next time. It really is the ultimate way to see the world, IMHO and I’m so glad you got the bug (the camping bug, not the bites!). Great pics, too.

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