Eastern Great Lakes "Gearing up for Winter" - Jan 7, 2012: Valens : Trip Report
The first EGL hang of 2012 is now in the books and despite temperatures around freezing and a full six and half minutes of snow (freezing rain?), everyone managed to have a good time.
Staying overnight was [o]TTer, Tom, Dant8tro, Brantwing, BrianWillan, Mongrel, Dimeotane, Jayson and the BOSS, Crash and myself Chard.
We also had the pleasure of daytrippers Ryver, Jayesh, Jodster, Wintertrekking.com'ers Mike and Mike (who happened to also be overnighting in Valens), and finally Chris and Marisa of the Canadian Outdoor Equipment Company who came out to enjoy some good company, a roaring fire, great food, and a lot of laughs.
My big takeaways from Valen's this weekend were all about the momentum hammocking is developing and the number of people genuinely interested in learning about and even trying our take on traditional camping. Amother thing was the commitment of those already converted, like Crash and his much appreciated drive all the way from Western New Jersey to be with us. Mongrel's titanium woodstove was a thing of beauty and when matched with a more traditional "hot-tent", is a formidable kit for winter camping. Getting a chance to talk to our Wintertrekking guests was also very helpful, particularly as Valens was a jumping off point for a more traditional wnter hang in the upcoming month or two. It was good to see Chris and Marisa getting out to tour around the various hammock setups, we had a good sampling of the main themes, and hope that they'll be hanging around more. Of course, the roaring fire, courtesy of Jason, the BOSS and Dan8tro, made a great focus for over a dozen people to chat, swap stories, share food and just have a good old time. I think the ELG's are fimrly in the camp of "Having a fire"!!!
Anyway, if this was the "Gearing Up for Winter" hang, be sure to check out the EGL Winter in Algonquin hang late February 2012.
the EGL Canadians do it right!
"I have confirmation from the Mike's that the overnight low for Saturday night was -6C." thats 21 degrees in Fahrenheit!! Ok thats the coldest I have been camping in.
I had a great time camping at Valens with the Canadians. They know how to make a great winter camping trip. I want to thank each and every one of you for making me feel welcome. Sorry I didn't get to meet you Bubba.
They come prepared! They brought a lot of wood for the campfire, Joe had a titanium stove, there was a cool homemade stove in a walled tent, brownies (what was in them brownies - eh?) & hot chili.
I learned to say -eh? and por-taaage.
Valens was a great place to crash for the night - heated bathrooms, laundry room and HOT SHOWERS. There were enough evenly spaced trees to hang a 100+ hammocks and that was just at our site.
I can't wait to go again next year!