Backpacking 02-11-2023

End of trip, back at the Tower Trailhead. Trip total a modest 16 miles with 1,100 ft of elevation. +2

Gary on the Pole Hollow Trail. Hercules Glades Wilderness – I love this glade on the ridge overlooking Pole Hollow. It’s nice to get out into the open after being surrounded by trees and brush for so long.

Looking down stream. Long Creek, Hercules Glades Wilderness. I decided that this was a good place to stop for lunch, which was noodles, pre-cooked bacon, and a Snickers bar for dessert, all washed down with a cup of coffee. +1

Looking down stream. Long Creek, Hercules Glades Wilderness. I decided that this was a good place to stop for lunch.

Small falls on Long Creek, Hercules Glades Wilderness. We Camped very near here May 2011. Shoot, that’s 12 years ago!

Rock shelf over Long Creek, Hercules Glades Wilderness.

Spot the trail … (Stereo image). +1

Hiking to the Trailhead via Long Creek. Hercules Glades Wilderness, March 2023. I was a little over a mile into my five-and-a-half-mile hike back to the trailhead when I decided to make a rough video of the remainder of my hike for my family in the UK. I’ve never done this before, and may not bother again, but here’s the final three-and-a-half hours of my hike, compressed into 14 minutes.Video: 14 minutes

View from the Cedar Trail, Hercules Glades Wilderness (Stereo image). +1

Filtering water ready for the day’s hike. My revised plan is to take the Cedars Trail down to Long Creek, then the Long Creek Trail and Pole Hollow Trail back to the Pilot Trail and the trailhead. That way I can bag a few more miles from what has been a low-mileage trip so far.

Gary and hammock, ‘Twin Falls Hollow,’ February 2023. Hercules Glades Wilderness.

Morning view from my hammock.

Morning hot chocolate – I folded back my tarp so I could enjoy the view and the morning sun.

Day Three — Morning sunshine, camped at ‘Twin Falls Hollow’

Dinner time, camped at ‘Twin Falls Hollow.’ A change of plans was needed… +2

Trails snacks for the day and some exploring. +1

Hammock camping in heavy forest. Hercules Glades Wilderness, Mark Twain National Forest. Missouri.

Day Two – Camped above ‘Deep Hollow,’ in the sunshine this time — everything is pretty much as I left it when I was last here in August last year. I was late to sleep, so I slept in this morning. It’s almost noon already.

Dusk at Hercules Glades Wilderness and some Shenanigans on the trail — On the Pilot (Tower) Trail at Hercules Glades Wilderness. Definitely time to turn on my headlamp. No more pictures, because — darkness — but my night hike was not without incident, and you’ll have to read the full post to find out what happened. 10-minute read.

Sunset Glow — On the Pilot (Tower) Trail at Hercules Glades Wilderness. I’m going to have to turn on my headlamp soon.

Dusk at the Pole (Pete) Hollow Trail cairn — Right on target, 25 minutes from the trailhead.

Sunset on the trail — Five minutes into my hike and the sun has almost dropped below the horizon.

Setting off — Here I am back at the Hercules Glades Tower Trailhead about to set off on my first backpacking trip of 2023. I am planning on spending two nights in the Hercules Glades Wilderness, starting with a six-mile night hike.

Packing for my first backpacking trip of 2023 — The temperature is forecast to vary from the mid-twenties overnight Saturday to the mid-sixties on Monday, so it is a full winter load-out plus some spring additions. The whole lot including food, water, and fuel weighs in at around 26 lbs. +4

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