Re: EDIT: LTR - A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike (amytys)
- View SourceNo edits that I can see Andy. Good job, very thorough.
BTW, Nice picture...you should have been holding the book or
Upload when ready.
--- In email@example.com, "Andy Mytys" <amytys@h...>
> A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike
> Long Term Report
> Date Published: January 31, 2006
> Tester's Biographical Information:
> Reviewer: Andrew Mytys
> Email: amytys@g...
> Homepage: Andy's Lightweight Backpacking Site
> Location: Michigan
> Age: 33
> Height: 6'1" (183 cm)
> Weight: 185 lbs (84 kg)
> Backpacking Background:
> I live in Michigan and have been hiking seriously for 15 years,
> although I've camped since I was 6 years old. I consider myself a
> lightweight hiker. I carry the lightest gear I can get my hands on
> which will provide a comfortable wilderness experience and adequately
> support the goals of my trip. Unless my goals are time/distance
> oriented, my pace is always slow. I rarely exceed 1.5 miles (2.4
> km)/hour. I rest frequently, hike long days, and enjoy whatever
> nature throws my way.
> Product Information:
> Publisher: Wayah Press (http://www.wayahpress.com)
> Title: A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike
> Author: Rick Allnutt, MD
> Year of Publication: 2005, 1st Edition
> ISBN: 0-9767227-0-4
> MSRP: $11.95 + 2.50 shipping and handling (U.S. only),
> + 7% state sales tax to Ohio-based destinations
> Weight as delivered: 6.6 oz (187 g)
> Size: 8.5 x 5.5 x .4 inches or 215 x 140 x 10 mm (H x W x D)
> 116 pages, + copyright, dedication, table of contents, index, and
> ordering info
> The information in this Field Report of "A Wildly Successful 200-Mile
> Hike" is to be taken in addition to my Initial and Field reports.
> Product Description:
> "A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike" is a short book filled with
> lessons on how to overcome some of hiking's most common physical and
> mental challenges. The lessons are described by Dr. Rick Allnutt, the
> author, based on what he learned while tackling multi-day hikes and
> preparing for and hiking a 200-mile (322 km) segment of the
> Appalachian Trail (AT). While the book's lessons came about primarily
> while hiking the AT, what's proposed is valid, and indeed much of it
> can be applied, on any trail and for hikes of any distance. The sole
> picture in the book is on the cover - a color photo of the author
> relaxing along the AT near Cold Mountain, Virginia.
> What This Book is About - Who is it For?:
> "A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike" is about the challenges - both
> physical and mental - that the author experienced while preparing for
> and hiking a 200-mile (322 km) segment of the Appalachian Trail (AT).
> The lessons learned by the author are broken up into chapters
> dedicated to "the three biggest problems facing the 200-mile (322 km)
> hiker" - blisters and chaffing, knee pain, and losing the will to
> hike - and the advantages of "near-ultralight" hiking. The book uses
> the author's personal experiences and those of others hiking the
> Appalachian Trail as a basis for the examples and solutions given.
> The book is short, and my take on it is that it is most useful to
> those readers who have actually hiked before. This is not a how-to
> book, nor does the text go into any great detail in explaining terms
> and general hiking concepts. Readers who's feet have some hiking
> experience should find themselves nodding along at the ailments that
> the author chooses to focus on, if not based on personal experience
> then based on recognition - how many of us have never encountered a
> hiker with a bad case of blisters before, or a pack that weighs in at
> over 50 pounds (20 kg)?
> In the book's introduction, the author writes a segment that he
> titles "Worthwillity," which summarizes his reasons for writing the
> book, his background and perspective, and his hope that readers will
> find his book, even a little, useful.
> I must admit that some of the book's lessons did indeed stick with me
> while hiking on the trail, and I found myself analyzing the
> challenges I was experiencing and thinking back to the author's
> The book delivers a very good primer on blisters, chafing, and knee
> pain. The author uses his background as a physician, an engineer, and
> researcher to analyze the causes and anatomy of these three common
> trail injuries, as well the effect they can have on the hiker. While
> on the trail, I could reflect back on what the author had written,
> visualize what was happening in my shoes and in my shorts, and start
> to orchestrate a plan on how to fix the problem.
> Just as in the author's case, I found my issues with blisters,
> chafing, and knee pain becoming the overwhelming center of my thought
> process during my hikes.
> The author provides a few words of wisdom in terms of treatment,
> highlighting potential solutions by using his own hiking experiences
> as examples.
> I was able to use the information given in the book to decide on a
> course of action. In some cases, I followed the author's lead. In
> others, I worked out "personal answers," just as the author
> In the case of blisters, I didn't exactly encounter problems in the
> traditional sense as much as awakening and exercising the trail born
> calluses I already had. However, a pair of shoes I'm currently
> testing for backpackgeartest rub my feet persistently, just below
> each anklebone. This results in blisters that quickly progress into
> open, and bloody lesions.
> In between on-trail testing, I typically gave my feet a week to ten
> days of rest before using the shoes on uneven surfaces again.
> However, I was offered a 50 km (31 mile) dayhike challenge that I
> just couldn't refuse, and I found myself donning the test shoes,
> intentionally leaving my backup footwear at home, and hitting the
> trail. After about three miles (5 km), I could feel a sharp pain that
> I knew was due to the thin layer of new skin under each ankle being
> ripped off. In another few miles, I could see a bloodstain poking out
> through my thick hiking socks. "It's only a flesh wound," I exclaimed
> in my best British accent. The pace of the hike was fast - 50 km (31
> miles) in ten hours, including breaks - and there simply wasn't the
> time to properly tend to my wounds. What to do? One of the author's
> solutions is "layers, and more layers," meaning the presence of a
> thick defensive wall of padding over the blister that allow the
> layers to rub against one another without rubbing the skin. I already
> had two pairs of socks on, so I simply installed a cotton ball over
> the wounds, duct taped that in place, then put both pairs of socks
> on, and wrapped each ankle in a short section of elastic bandage. I
> then hobbled off in an effort to catch up with the rest of the group.
> Four miles (6 km) later, sweat in my "nether region" got the best of
> me, and I started to feel the type of chafing that the author
> calls "fire in the groin." This was hardly the first time I had
> chafing in this area, but I usually experienced it after longer
> distance (15 mile or 24 km) hikes in conditions characterized by heat
> and humidity, not at the ten-mile (16 km) mark during a cool, fall
> morning. I suspect that, due to the 3 MPH (5 KPH) pace I had to
> maintain, I sweated more than usual and chafing simply occurred
> earlier than expected. The author puts a lot of faith in a product
> called "Bodyglide," - a roll-on lubricant that seals the skin from
> further wetness. I had nothing to lose, no better ideas, and little
> time to invest in any solution. I had packed a stick of Bodyglide
> along in anticipation, and simply jumped into the bushes, shoved the
> Bodyglide in by pants, and proceeded with application at the first
> signs of chafing. After about 15 seconds, I was back on the trail. I
> caught the problem early on, and the Bodyglide worked wonders. No
> more chafing and no more "fire in the groin" for the remainder of the
> hike - an additional seven hours of hiking!
> At about the 18-mile (29 km) mark, my shoe kicked a root. I felt my
> foot inside my right shoe slide forward along the insole, and a
> burning sensation ensued - I literally felt the skin along the balls
> of my feet separating from my toes! The author states that the key
> ingredients to blisters are moisture, friction, and heat. Well, my
> feet were sweaty after so many miles without any attention, I had
> just provided a substantial amount of friction, and I could literally
> see steam rising off of my foot as I removed it from my shoe. I
> quickly changed into a fresh pair of both liner and hiking socks that
> I had in my pack, and my feet immediately felt refreshed, ready to
> tackle the remaining 13 miles (21 km) of the hike.
> In terms of knee pain, one of the author's points in his formula for
> healthy knees is to relieve stress to the knee. I typically get knee
> pain on the trail after about 18 miles (29 km) of hiking. Just as
> with my chafing concerns, I would need a quick remedy on my long
> hike, with no time for experimentation or solutions that didn't work.
> The author didn't offer any sure-fire shortcuts, so I went into my
> outfitter and asked for a pair of after-market insoles for my shoes
> that offered maximum cushioning, and added that I could care less
> about support. GIVE ME CUSHIONING!!! The salesman returned with an
> insole made of gel that, according to the manufacturer,
> provided "superior cushioning and 44% energy return." The insoles
> were THICK and SPONGY - I was sold. Given all the warnings, lessons,
> and self-reflection that the book inspired, I was able to come up
> with personal system that got me through 50 km (31 miles) of trail in
> ten hours, and free from pain to boot.
> My Final Thoughts:
> The book begins with subjects that are physical in nature and
> therefore easily lend themselves to dissection. The author's training
> as a physician, engineer, and researcher serve to produce a very
> thorough primer on the subjects of blisters, chafing and knee pain.
> Some of the text leaves me scratching my head. For example, in the
> chapter on chafing the author states:
> "I have successfully hiked in nylon swimming trunks. These are boxer-
> like trunks with a polyester brief sewn in. They can be rinsed in
> stream water, and put back on to dry. In very humid weather, I have
> even put them back on inside out to dry more quickly. I almost always
> carry a pair because they make great town clothes and can be
> important when dealing with chafing during the first few days of a
> hike. There is a tendency, especially in hot weather, for salt to
> become encrusted in the material of the brief, making it like
> sandpaper, and for that to wear away at the skin of each upper leg."
> Huh? I don't get it? Are they good or bad? The first half of the
> paragraph has me writing them on a shopping list, and then I read
> that they are like "sandpaper" and think the author is recommending
> against them. What gives?
> As I wrote in my Field Report, I was less than thrilled with the
> second half of the book. As someone who loves to sleep, finds himself
> in awe when bad weather moves in, and tells his wife to "go back to
> sleep," after being woken up in the Sierras and told that a bear that
> just brushed up against the tent (yes, it was a bear), I had little
> patience, and found no value, in the author's philosophies on
> combating loneliness, fear of the dark, nightmares, and other
> psychological issues (losing the will to hike). I was also less than
> enthusiastic about the scant level of detail that was given to the
> topic of lightweight backpacking, especially after seeing the
> author's thorough work in discussing blisters, chafing, and knee
> pain. Between the book's introduction, the chapter on losing the will
> to hike, the chapter on lightweight backpacking, and a summary
> chapter offering no new information, I found only about 45% of the
> book to be of interest. That said, I did gain some value from that
> 45%, as indicated at the beginning of this report.
> There's also the lack of overall perspective given in terms of the
> field conditions that the author encountered. The book details
> experiences from hiking a 200-mile (322 km) segment of the
> Appalachian Trail in mid-May. It reflects the culmination of
> experiences gained from hiking anywhere from weekend excursions to
> that single, two week, 200-mile (322 km) hike. Overall, I got the
> feeling that most of the lessons had their origins on the author's
> 200-mile (322 km) hike, taken at a specific point in time and under
> specific weather conditions, meaning that the author's own
> experiences were limited. I found myself wishing the author had hiked
> in mid-July instead of mid-May, hoping that after experiencing
> intense heat and humidity, drought, and other, more serious
> challenges, the book would have been directed more towards the sort
> of concrete issues found in the first half of the book, with less
> attention paid to psychological or philosophical matters.
> The author makes no promises that the book is anything more than a
> description of his discoveries, his failures, and his ideas. In the
> end, the book's best advice can be summed up by what the author
> writes in his introduction:
> "If what I am doing in my hike is working, I keep doing it. If it is
> not working, then I take on the responsibility to find a better way,
> and then a better way after that."
> I found reading "A Wildly Successful 200-Mile Hike" to be insightful
> and thought provoking in many areas, and the book proved to be a bit
> of an inspiration in making me analyze my own issues and in trying to
> come up with solutions, rather than taking the attitude that any
> problems encountered on the trail are simply "all part of a good
> day's hike." The book has given me an excuse to, once again, re-
> evaluate what I carry and try to lessen the weight in my pack.
> Finally, the author states that "if a reader of this book finds one
> of my experiences useful, then I will rejoice." Well, the author can
> rejoice in that I have found one, even many, of the experiences he
> shared to be useful. At the same time, I would have liked to hear
> more. I wish that the author had tried hiking that 200-miles (322 km)
> across at least a few different seasons, just to give readers a set
> of more well rounded opinions.
- View SourceAndy and Chuck
One edit I noted
Readers who's feet have some hiking
> experience should find themselves nodding along at the ailments thatReaders whose feet....
> the author chooses to focus on,
- View SourceYep... good catch Ted. Thanks!
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "edwardripleyduggan"
> Andy and Chuck
> One edit I noted
> Readers who's feet have some hiking
> > experience should find themselves nodding along at the ailments that
> > the author chooses to focus on,
> Readers whose feet....