It's never too late to learn. I’m pretty new to backpacking.  In fact I went on my first backpacking adventure during the Pandemic when many of us were feeling cooped up or constrained.  I knew nothing, but I had a great friend and teacher who showed me the ropes.  That’s what makes going with Blue Ridge Hiking Company so great...we provide gear (backpack, poles, sleeping bag, tent) so there is no anxiety about spending a bunch of money on technical gear before you know anything about technical gear! 

So, if the top must-haves are provided, what DO you take?  Maybe it’s better to start with what you leave behind, which is the real tip.  Leave behind all the products we’re told we need to be feminine or clean.  My top 5 things not to pack?  Deodorant, make-up of any kind, scented ANYthing, jewelry (are you willing to lose it?), and lastly....leave behind expectations of perfection.  Embrace the imperfect, the unexpected, the sweat and the funk that is your beautiful Beloved self.  She will love the freedom! 

DO bring:  simple comfort basics.  A small pillow, a cooling sleeping bag liner (especially if you’re menopausing), a quick-dry washcloth for a sponge off,  your favorite herbal tea for the campfire (and you could use the bag on those eyelids if you’re concerned about, wicking underwear (or don’t wear a bra if you don’t want to!), a journal or drawing pencils because you will find your creativity loves the freedom, too. 

There are lists that abound with what to pack on a more detailed level and those are excellent sources.  Just remember the more you pack, the heavier you’ll walk.  So embrace the less is more, wear the same pants 3 days in a row freedom you might have felt as a kid playing in the woods. 

Take the pressure off yourself (and your back), enjoy nature and all its beautiful changing moods (we as 50+ gals know a thing or two about changing moods, am I right?) and you’ll wonder why you haven’t done this before now? 

And Here is some upcoming 50+ and 60+ programming with Blue Ridge Hiking Company:

Welcome Spring 50+ Day Hike Weekend

Spring Wildflowers 60+ Backpacking Trip

Great Smoky Mountains Women's 60+ Backpacking Trip

Happy Trails,