Exercise Challenge Serpent


Just wanted to know if anybody else was going to be going on this, and if you are, do you have any more information about it yet, as the last thing I got was confirmation I was on it, and am waiting for anything else to arrive, i.e. Where, when and what we need.

Ta muchly

A couple of weeks high altitude trekking...nothing interesting...apart from its in Arizona and we get a couple of days in Vagas! :-D
went on the last one, if it's the 2Med Bde one. Physically hardwork but great fun at the same time. For the first phase, Mt. Whitney, you'll discover that Lone Pine is something like 105 degrees in the daytime but as soon as you get to 10,000ft the temp at night drops significantly. Don't be tempted to take a lightweight Softie 3, (unless you plan on wearing all your clothes at night) it won't be warm enough at 12,000 ft. Temp up there can drop to below freezing overnight. A lot of your kit that you don't need to get up and down the mountain (depending on route three days in, one day up/down, three days out again) can be left with the drivers in Lone Pine.

The most important piece of kit is boots. If you don't have some proper fitting 3+ season walking boots then go get some and get them broken in. They need to be good as well, £30 from Millets won't cut it. I would stay away from Goretex lined ones as you'll have very hot feet and there's not much water around to get them wet externally. Having said that a waterproof (I took a Berghaus Paclite) or Pertex Buffalo without the fibre pile is useful, mainly for windproofing.

They should send you a kit list, but think lightweight. Technical wicking type t-shirts are essential. I took 2 t-shirts, 3prs socks and 3 sets underwear on the one wk Whitney phase. We still ended up carrying 22kgs each, more or less, including a bear barrel which is a sod to pack! Most of the time you'll camp by water and you can wash stuff as you need to, it dries quickly. If you have any lightweight walking sandals (cheap stuff fine) take them. There was a river crossing that we had to do and in bare feet it was horrendous. It'll also give you something to wear when you get your boots off! If you have a down jacket that packs small (RAB/ME etc) then take it, it's great for the evenings at altitude.

For the Grand Canyon phase it was ridiculously hot when we were there, 55 degrees or so in the canyon itself and the rangers wouldn't allow walking between 08.00-16.00. Camelbak or similar is a good idea. They take water filters but I found it much easier to get used to the taste of iodine! We had MREs and porrige oats which were just about adequate, but a few people took extra supplies, jerky etc to add to this.

I bought some non walking kit when we got to Vegas as a) it's very cheap for clothes and b) it meant I wasn't lugging it around for two weeks beforehand. Duelling pianos bar in New York, New York is a fabulous night out!

PM me if you want any more info, but I had a brilliant three weeks or so, and the views from the top of Whitney are something else!

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