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.
Sorry I didn't get to say goodbye! I had a great time and we were warm despite the reported freezing temperatures.
I had a quick cruise through the "Canadian Outdoor Equipment" website and have a definite feeling that Chris and Marissa will be making me all the poorer in the very near future.
Your list seems accurate, though I didn't see the addition of the winter trekking forums boys who popped in and out.
Grabbing food and waiting on the report!
Agreed...can't call it a winter hang without at least 10 mins of snow but...a good time was had by all!
it was another successful trip for the EGL Group and great to meet new hangers. As always, the food and campfire chats were very enjoyable, I had an awesome time and thank you for it! :D
A big "Thanks!" to the Valens Staff for accommodating our little (but getting bigger all the time) get-together!
As requested, here's the Dehydrated Chili Recipe
It didn’t happen if there's no pics...so here are some pics!
And a couple more...
I believe we forgot to mention the one whole traveled the greatest distance to attend this hang. Crash from New Jersey showed up on Saturday afternoon to hang with the EGL hang group.
I have confirmation from the Mike's that the overnight low for Saturday night was -6C.
The highlight of the weekend for me was the Four Dog Titanium woodstove belonging to Mongrel. Light as a feather for it's size. Bulging eye balls at the price, however, it should see a lifetime of service. Then there were the 2 noobie winter campers (in the camp ground) who came with a summer tent, a 6" air mattress and sleeping bags rated at +5C. Despite us giving them tips on how to improve their situation, they choose to be young and foolish and experience needless suffering. Those 2 seem to epitomize the tagline I saw recently. "Good judgement come from experience, which comes from bad judgement."
It seems our winter hangs at Valens are growing all the time. We had a dozen in our group plus a plethora of visitors mentioned by Chard.
We had a good time. Was great meeting all you guys, just need to get better at putting names to faces...always been a weakness of mine.
And [O]tter thanks again for the loan of those bags sure made our first hang much more enjoyable!
You can count us in on many more future hangs, with wood in tow.
So bummed I missed it. I'm glad everyone had a good time. Looking forward to future hangs to meet the new people!
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!
There will probably be a winter back country trip planned somewhere like Algonquin Provincial Park. I know it would be an additional 3 or 4 hour drive for you but I'm sure you'd be welcome!
The winter trip up to Algonquin may be too far to do over a weekend
but a summer trip up to Algonquin? I may be able to make that.
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