I've got to get this report out before MuseJr gets a chance to ruin my reputation

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Well, we did it! The weather cooperated and we missed the rain and snow (the threat of precipitation forced us to move to a less-than-picturesque location) but we endured some cold temperatures. We'll just have to plan a little better to get to a location that works for more people! Sorry we missed so many hopefuls. We'll do better next time.

In attendance this year included MuseJr (all the way from Utah!), Swingblade, and dejoha.

Since we opted for the high country in Arizona, I completely re-worked my kit and brought a hodge-podge collection of warm-weather gear, including a new insulated hood I sewed up hours before leaving on Thursday. My pack weight, including 5 L of water, 12 oz of Heet fuel, and food for Thu-Sat, was 23 lbs. My kit was heavy and clunky since I brought along my bear canister and a huge IX hammock sock.

I was solo Thursday night and backpacked into the bottom of the canyon. The weather was calm but cold, dipping to around 23F/-5C. To conserve water, I melted snow for meals over a fire. Once the fire burned down to coals, I thought it would be a brilliant idea to dry out my shoes. After a few minutes I smelled plastic melting and pulled my shoes off only to discover I had melted one of my shoes past repair. Nice.











I packed up Friday morning and set up on a bluff above the canyon in preparation to meet Swingblade and MuseJr. Both hangers arrived before noon and we had a great time checkout out each others setup.

I was testing out the new Kammok Roo with Python Straps and a parachute silk single from Planet Hammock. Swingblade sported a beautiful Jacks "R" Better bridge hammock, and MuseJr displayed his Warbonnet Blackbird. MuseJr impressed us all with his kit, including a Mac Gear Hammock.

We kept MuseJr up as long as possible, but after being awake for 30+ hours, we called it a day at about 7:30 PM (MuseJr was asleep by 7:32 PM).

According to MuseJr, the overnight low was between 15 and 18F/-10 and -8C.

Inside my IX sock, the temperature stayed around 35F/2C and dropped to 23F/-5C by morning.

We all had a pretty good night, although Swingblade is ready to upgrade to a full-coverage underquilt. I think we're ready for the upcoming Arizona Deep Winter hang.

















Click to see a larger panorama: