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I am in the process of deciding where I am going to spend my first whole summer in many years backpacking and day hiking all summer, from June to September. I am considering the Gros Ventre Wilderness area of northwestern Wyoming east of Jackson Hole. I am tired of paying fees to hike on permits, even at $5 a night it gets expense when I live on a tight budget. This summer I plan to have about $2000 to live on from mid May to Mid September, part of which is going to pay rent of $350 a month in the town of Jackson. Just that alone will cost me just over $1000, leaving me the other $1000 for food and other expenses.
My only problem with that part of the world is "bears". I plan to leave my gear in base camp style, where I leave my tent and other camping gear behind in area's while I roam the high country surrounding it. I will hang my food. I don't plan to take canisters into the backcountry because of the extra weigh and bulk in my small 50 liter pack. I plan to hang it in tree's with rope lines. A practice I am used to in bear country.
But even still I have had one too many bear encounters in places like Alaska,California,Montana and in Wyoming, where even though I did hang my food or used bear resistant food containers. The encounters were mild on my part aside from the fact that the bears raided my tent looking for food. I have never kept food in my tent but some un-experienced backpackers do and the bears learn that tents can mean food.
While on a hike in the very same area I plan to make my summer wilderness home a young grizzly bear raided the camp that a friend and I had made at a area around Goodwin Lake at near 9000'. We had properly hung our food bags up and away from anything and went on a day hike. When we returned in the afternoon my dome tent was torn apart from something. The tent had the door zipper torn away and the roof was ripped and a hole made in the back of the tent like a new door.
Turned out to have been by a young grizzly bear. We found this out the next morning when while still in the tent awake but just laying there and my friend half asleep, I was laying with my head propped up reading when all of a sudden the small bear walked into camp, sniffed at the camp fire, looked around then started for the open door of the tent. I remember thinking surely this is the animal that was here yesterday. It walked right up to the tent and would have come in without knocking (how rude!), had I not said something to it. Upon hearing my voice it ran away and down into the wilderness the same way we had found some of our gear strewn the afternoon before when we first discovered the raided campsite.
My friend and I got up immediately and went down the way the bear had gone looking to see if it was still around. It was long gone. But we chose to break camp and head back to Jackson. I had a tent to repair or replace and we didn't want to encounter this bear again. That was in 1996 during June or July.
So anyway my plan is to find high country places in the wilderness of the Gros Ventre Range to make base camps and do lots of everyday day hikes, moving my camp every few days to a week to new areas and returning to Jackson to resupply and load my pictures from my camera to my laptop and come to www.Trailspace.com and post trip reports, and email other friend and relatives about the same.
I plan to leave southwest Utah in mid May where I have been since April last spring and go by my bicycle to St George Utah the other side of Zion Nat Park and take a couple different shuttles to Wyoming. I will get my bike broken down and boxed to take with me.
I will move back into the place I have lived at a old friends house in Jackson over the years, paying him the $350 a month rent. I plan to hang out in town for a couple weeks perhaps till early June, then one day heading into the wilderness and spending the summer in the peace and quiet of nature.
In mid September I may seek work in Jackson for the winter or most likely head south to southern Arizona for a warm winter or further hiking.
The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.