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  1. #1
    Rhody Seth's Avatar
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    VIDEO: Overnight in the White Mountains on summit of Mt. Carrigain

    A few weeks ago I backpacked up in the White Mountains to the summit of Mt. Carrigain. I went in through the Nancy Pond Trail which has some great waterfalls on the climb up and then some pristine mountain ponds up high. It was gorgeous in the sun but it was very hot and humid in the woods.

    The final miles up to Carrigain are very steep and rocky and it was slow going for me. I downed one water bottle on the way up and had to portion out the other so that I had enough for cooking. Beautiful views on top of Carrigain but quite windy in the evening! I used my 30 degree UQ and a synthetic blanket as a top quilt. After I rejiggered my tarp the wind wasn't much of an issue. My insulation kept me fairly warm throughout the night. I met a nice woman named Lauren who completed her NH48 and was also camping at the top. We were greeted to a beautiful sunrise but while we were enjoying it I suddenly had terrible lower back pain. It just came out of nowhere and sent me hobbling back to my hammock.

    Eventually I was able to pack up and descend but it was a hard effort for a while. Thankfully I caught up with Lauren and she gave me a ride back to my car. The car ride home was uneventful but over the next night I suffered from terrible abdominal cramps. I'm pretty sure the pain I experienced on the summit were muscle spasms related to dehydration, as was the constipation that plagued me the following days. Be sure to keep up with your hydration and electrolytes, folks! I thought I was drinking plenty but it turns out that I should have upped my intake. And probably supplemented with tailwind or another electrolyte replenisher. I still had a fine time and valuable lessons were learned. I hope you enjoy the video!


  2. #2
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    Beautiful area and video Seth. Sounds like an intense bout you had there, definitely a good reminder to stay hydrated. Did your sack/ridgeline bag hold strong throughout the night? Smart multi-use of an item that would always be in pack.

  3. #3
    ObdewlaX's Avatar
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    Great video & a beautiful area. Especially liked the waterfalls & nice work with the aerial shots. I'm gonna have to give that a try I think. I've had similar bouts with dehydration waking up during the night with leg cramps. I carry little packs of powdered electrolytes for the trail & try to stay hydrated, but sometimes it just happens.

    Thanks for posting.

  4. #4
    Rhody Seth's Avatar
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    Thanks guys!

    Quote Originally Posted by Layne View Post
    Did your sack/ridgeline bag hold strong throughout the night? Smart multi-use of an item that would always be in pack.
    My janky ridgeline bag worked pretty well! I made a slight cut in the corner of the bag and the stitching kept it from tearing further. With a couple items in there it was heavy enough to not blow around and I finally had good storage for my electronics and such.

    Quote Originally Posted by ObdewlaX View Post
    I've had similar bouts with dehydration waking up during the night with leg cramps. I carry little packs of powdered electrolytes for the trail & try to stay hydrated, but sometimes it just happens.
    I felt like a rube because I even brought some of those powdered things as an afterthought but didn't even have the presence of mind to use them. D'oh!

  5. #5
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Beautiful video, and the drone footage is stunning! Makes me think of the Aerial America shows on Smithsonian channel... I really appreciate how stable it was in those obviously high winds! There's nothing better than camping on a mountain top.

    Those cramps and other probable dehydration issues are a real bummer. On a recent trip I had what I think were dehydration/electrolyte problems that I haven't experienced for more than 2 decades, which shows that no matter how experienced we might be we can still make a basic error. In my case it was also moderately warm (which feels hot when hiking steep terrain!) and extremely humid. I was sweating buckets and not peeing a lot, which should've been a clue!
    Five Basic Principles of Going Lighter (not me... the great Cam Honan of OZ) Instagram (me!)

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  6. #6

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    Great video!

  7. #7
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Also a question... you mentioned something about the BeFree filter and I'm not sure if you meant you couldn't find it for the trip or if it quit working for some reason. Is yours still working OK or has it clogged or failed somehow?

    I ask because after resisting filters for a long time (using ClO2 drops or tabs) I recently started using a BeFree because my friend MikekiM has had good luck with his, and I've read elsewhere that they now work a lot better than the first-gen model. So far mine works fine but I haven't used it a ton.
    Five Basic Principles of Going Lighter (not me... the great Cam Honan of OZ) Instagram (me!)

    “To equip a pedestrian with shelter, bedding, utensils, food, and other necessities, in a pack so light and small that he can carry it without overstrain, is really a fine art.” ~ Horace Kephart, 1906

  8. #8
    cougarmeat's Avatar
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    For electrolytes, I use Vitalyte. In the mid 70’s there was a drink called GookinAide. It was created by Bill Gookin, a track coach, who gave it to his long distance runners. This was way before Gatoraide and all the other sugary drinks. I drank a quart a day (4 scoops of power to a quart of water) on the Oregon PCT. No cramping problem ever. A while back, GookinAide was rebranded at Vitalyte. I’ve had friends get leg cramps, especially at night after a long hike. The first problem was they weren’t drinking enough water (I found out some women don’t like to drink too much because they don’t want to have to pee.) Once we got the water intake up, I found they were using all these “health” products and "impulse buy” vials that the check out counter. I told them I didn’t think Vitamin C was the answer; they needed a combination of salts - Vitalyte has that. One fun characteristic is, it is absorbed so quickly, once it goes down my throat, it disappears! If I drink as much water, I can feel/hear it slosh around inside. Not so with Vitalyte.

    They started using it an no more cramps - as long as they keep their water intake up.

    Note that I am not affiliated with Vitalyte in any way. It’s just that ObdewlaX mentioned leg cramps and I’ve found the product works for me and has worked for others. YMMV
    In order to see what few have seen, you must go where few have gone. And DO what few have done.

  9. #9
    Rhody Seth's Avatar
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    Thanks for the comments and electrolyte suggestions all!

    Quote Originally Posted by cmoulder View Post
    Also a question... you mentioned something about the BeFree filter and I'm not sure if you meant you couldn't find it for the trip or if it quit working for some reason. Is yours still working OK or has it clogged or failed somehow?
    No, I couldn't find it before the trip. I'm afraid maybe I left it on the trail on a previous trail run. Up until that point it had been working great for me.

  10. #10
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhody Seth View Post
    No, I couldn't find it before the trip. I'm afraid maybe I left it on the trail on a previous trail run. Up until that point it had been working great for me.
    Grrr... leaving it on the trail — double bummer! Well maybe somebody else is enjoying it.

    So far it's the only filter that has earned a permanent spot on my gear list.
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    “To equip a pedestrian with shelter, bedding, utensils, food, and other necessities, in a pack so light and small that he can carry it without overstrain, is really a fine art.” ~ Horace Kephart, 1906

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