Welcome to Breakfast in America

My photo journal is an eclectic mix of things; there’s no guiding theme or topic. It is whatever happens to catch my attention, what I’ve been thinking, doing, and whatever my current obsessions are. At the moment, they are clearing some of the backlog on my ‘honey-do’ list, backpacking and hammock camping.

Recent posts

  • Breakfast in my hammock. Irish Wilderness, Missouri

    Breakfast in my hammock. Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.
  • All this bushwhacking is taking its toll on my feet and legs

    All this bushwhacking is taking its toll on my feet and legs. Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.
  • Morning tea in my hammock — Irish Wilderness, Missouri

    Morning tea in my hammock — Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.
  • Day Four — View from my hammock, February 2, 2024

    View from my hammock, February 2, 2024 — I grabbed two liters of water at Bliss Spring, and that had to last the eight-mile hike out, including the last evening and the final day. The spring on Whites Creek I had hoped to get water from was dry. Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

    I survived the night 🙂 (at my age I sometimes wonder!), but my heart was still in AFIB. I had enough water for breakfast (12oz), a cup of something hot (10oz), and about 4oz for the trail.

    I decided to take a slow morning and another pill. Hopefully my AFIB would clear up before I started hiking again. It’s not a lot of fun hiking with AFIB. I know, I’ve done it before.

  • Day Three – Camped above the Eleven Point River to the Whites Creek crossing on the North Loop

    I stopped at Bliss Spring to top up my water, I carried out two liters, my one-liter pouch and one liter of unfiltered water in my dirty water pouch. I was banking on getting water for the night from Whites Creek, near the crossing.

    Water sorted, I had some snacks and headed off on the North Loop. I missed the trail almost immediately. I Realized my mistake and was soon back on the trail on the long climb up from the spring to the ridge on the south of the hollow. Near the top of the ridge I lost the trail, and that was the story for the rest of the hike. The trail was difficult to spot and mostly buried in leaves.

    Around four, I arrived at the steep descent down to Whites Creek. Peering over the drop-off, it didn’t look good. I couldn’t see any water in the creek. The pool I thought was fed by a spring was dry. I’d just have to make the two liters of water I had last the night and the hike back to the car.

    I set up camp where I camped in March last year. In March 2023 I had the opposite problem, too much water. Following a series of storms, Whites Creek was running too high for me to safely cross!

    2023: I’ll wait this one out, Whites Creek Crossing. Irish Wilderness, on the trail to Bliss Spring — I estimated the water to be four feet deep, but actually it was only around three feet. Having decided not to attempt the crossing, it was time to find a place to stop for the night. I should have taken some video to show how fast the creek was running. Copyright © 2023 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

    I felt very tired after the hike, my back wasn’t too bad, but my feet were sore in places (new, not broken in huaraches, on this trip). I was obviously nowhere near as fit as I thought I was, and the climbs were hard. The continual bushwhacking wasn’t helping either.

    My pack had been misbehaving, the left shoulder strap was continually slipping off my shoulder, no matter what adjustments I made to the various straps. I’ll admit I was getting pretty annoyed with it. The slipping strap was another reason why I didn’t fill up fully with water.

    As I sat in my hammock it slowly dawned on me that my heart was playing up (AFIB). Time to take some pills and rest up. The good news was I only had three-and-a-half miles to go in the morning. I regretted not taking on a full load of water, as dehydration is one of the things that (I think) causes my heart to play up.

    Apart from my watch’s heart monitor alarm going off a couple of times it was a quiet night.

  • Eleven Point River, Scenic Overlook — Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024

    This is the only scenic overlook on the Whites Creek Trail. The trail along the top of the bluff is a tad sketchy in places, but it is fine at this point, though you will need a head for heights to step out on the overlook.

  • Eleven Point River, scenic overlook

    Eleven Point River, Scenic Overlook — Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

    And the only scenic overlook on the Whites Creek Trail. You had better enjoy it! The trail along the top of the bluff is a tad sketchy in places, but it is fine at this point, though you need a head for heights to step out on the overlook.

  • Irish Wilderness Whites Creek Trail, trail conditions along the Eleven Point River bluff

    It’s a rugged and knurly hike. Not a trail for anyone who’s not sure footed or has problems with heights!

  • Gear all packed

    Gear all packed — Irish Wilderness, Missouri. February 2024. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.
  • My winter backpacking gear ready to be packed away

    My gear ready to be packed away. Copyright © 2024 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

    Well, I already had a lot of my stuff laid out on my ground sheet while I was playing “Hunt the glasses,” providing an oportunity for a gear photo.