first multi day trip

3:57 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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I am new to the multi day camping and have a used 2 person tent was going to take on a 2 day trip (i have done 9 mile day hikes and now getting ready for a 2 day and then a multi day).I have heard there should be no food smells in tent for bear safety.I am not sure if my purchased used tent ever had food eaten or cooked in for that matter.should i purchase a new tent or since i live where there are hardly any bear sightings and if there are it is black bear country the used one will suffice? (there are no smells i can tell but from what i hear bears have acute smellers)thank you in advance for your help and any other advice is welcome.for my day hikes i carry a 15 pound pack so am quessing 2 day trip should be around 20 to 22 pound pack as i will only need to add tent sleeping bag.

4:04 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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Just sweep out the tent.  Unless it has obvious food and grease stains, you should not have a problem.


5:23 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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I gave my tent its annual rinse (lukewarm water in the bathtub) last night. The smell of wood smoke and sweat was getting just a bit too strong after a season. Tents are made to handle water, and as long as you don't use soap and make sure it's completely dry before re-packing it you should be fine.

That being said, Ed's probably right. Unless the previous owners dumped a plateful of food inside, you shouldn't have a problem.

Not quite sure how you figure your pack will be only an extra 5-7 lbs, though, if you add the tent and a sleeping bag. How much does each of them weigh? But more importantly, what else will you need/want to bring? How about a thermarest to sleep on? What about a fleece or sweater for cool evenings? How about your rain gear?

My daypack runs around 10-15 lbs, but for a 2-3 day backpack trip I'm up to 35-40 lbs. It's curious how quickly all those little, insignificant items add up into a pretty monstrous pack weight. Remember even dehydrated food adds up if you're carrying a few meals, and trailmix and granola bars are pretty heavy when you've got a dozen of them! Unless you're an ultralight hiker, I think you'll be carrying a bit more than 22 lbs!

Lots of good advice on this site, though. Feel free to ask, and we'll get you rigged up quickly and on your way safely.

PS: Welcome to Trailspace!

7:43 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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give the tent a hose down, make sure it is dry before you repack and it should be fine. bears are drawn to tents more out of curiosity than smell, imo. where are you camping?

7:47 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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thank you both for easing my mind of the tent.i am probably underestimating the weight of my pack.counting on 3 pounds tent 3 pounds sleeping bag and one more day of food (and larger pack) im sure will add up.since I am solo hiking and its first longer trip I am traveling along roads for 8 miles to trails and setting up camp and then the 8 miles back the following day altho in todays world probably safer in the woods :) when i decide to do a multi day trip of over 4 days I am interested in guided hikes for the first one but I am actually quite content trekking around on my own and hubby as rescue standby as he is not into the outdoors.took me later in life to find the joy of hiking but absolutely love it.any tips for guided hikes or solo hiking please add.

7:48 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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and loving this site especially as a new hiker and appreciate the responses


8:04 p.m. on September 5, 2012 (EDT)
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trailjester I am doing a state park here in good old ohio so hoping no bears at all. for some reason the thoughts of one has always gave me nightmares even when camped with the kids growing up in well traveled areas that we drove too.not gonna let that deter me from this new found love of hiking to trails an camp.been reading up on balck bears and arming myself with knowledge.

10:53 a.m. on September 6, 2012 (EDT)
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hikergammy said:

any tips for guided hikes or solo hiking please add.

If you want a guided hike in the Canadian Rockies, give me a call. Past that, I can't help you too much. :-)

Nice things about guided hikes include:

  • You don't have to worry about getting lost.
  • You'll probably make it to your destination and back on time.
  • If something goes wrong, from blisters to losing your food or gear, there's someone there who knows what to do.
  • Helpful hints on what to bring and what NOT to bring.
  • Someone to help with the load if you find out your pack is too heavy.
  • You won't have to worry about bears - that's the guide's problem.

Unless you want to go with just yourself and the guide, those hikes are usually group trips, so:

  • You will usually be sharing a tent with someone. They might snore or fart. (This is true on single guided trips, too).
  • Having to go at the pace of the slowest person in the group.
  • Having to stick to a plan - less opportunity to wander off and explore.
  • Finding a guide who is willing to walk at your speed.
  • Having to stick together, and hike as part of a team.

That's for later, but you DID ask. In the meantime, just try to have fun!

11:34 a.m. on September 6, 2012 (EDT)
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Wash your tent in the bathtub or horse trough with some mild detergent and don't worry about the smell.

9:23 p.m. on September 6, 2012 (EDT)
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don't know anything about the bear situation in ohio, but its probably blackies territory. it's good that you are reading up and probably not a bad idea to invest in some bear spray. your local outdoor store should have it, and maybe some info on bear activity in the area you plan to visit. the rangers are also a good info source. have fun!

June 20, 2018
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