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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by swjohnsey View Post
    I did it for a living for about 20 years.
    I gotta hear more about this! How does one make a living by hiking in the dark?

  2. #22
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    Default Hiking in the dark

    the closest I came was spending 3 days wandering around in a huge cave in Guntersville AL. I don't think it can get any darker than it was in there, and I've never been so glad to see and feel the sunlight as I was when we finally crawled out of that place!

  3. #23
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    We night hike quite often, even in mid summer, generally because we climb peaks that involve wee-hour starts.

    One little trick I learned many years ago, is to hold your headlamp in your hand down fairly low, this casts nice big shadows on rocks/roots and such, making them much easier to see and avoid tripping on. A headlamp, being very near your eyes, doesn't cast shadows on things, no matter how bright it is. Try this little trick sometime.

    I love night hiking, I think the miles flow by quickly, it's a beautiful, kinda ethereal time. And you run across different kinds of wildlife. I walked right by a bobcat one night, just sitting on a trailside rock, checking me out.

  4. #24
    Registered User StubbleJumper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorado_rob View Post
    One little trick I learned many years ago, is to hold your headlamp in your hand down fairly low, this casts nice big shadows on rocks/roots and such, making them much easier to see and avoid tripping on. A headlamp, being very near your eyes, doesn't cast shadows on things, no matter how bright it is. Try this little trick sometime.

    So we need one of the cottage gear manufacturers to invent a belt lamp? It would be somehow mounted on your belt buckle, so it would be lower than your forehead, and it would be reasonably steady because the core of your body doesn't move that much. I can just see it now: The "Colorado-Jumper belt-light!" Available at REI for $15......

  5. #25
    Registered User Sandy of PA's Avatar
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    Just run the cord on your Petzel E lite thru your sternum strap, works fine.

  6. #26
    Registered User -Rush-'s Avatar
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    I've night hiked several times. It's a whole different experience, and I recommend doing it from time to time. For me it seemed like the trail was easier because I couldn't see what was immediately ahead of me. I've never been scared, but it did amp up my senses and awareness. A few notable ones I recall were.. 1) Amicalola Falls to Black Gap shelter in the dark and 2) Rock Gap to Siler Bald summit in the dark. My son's first time hiking on the AT ended up having some night hiking which I thought was cool as we did not plan it.
    "Though I have lost the intimacy with the seasons since my hike, I retain the sense of perfect order, of graceful succession and surrender, and of the bold brilliance of fall leaves as they yield to death." - David Brill

  7. #27
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    Your not having fun night hiking until you spook a moose....all you can hear is trees and brush crashing not knowing what direction to go....happened in Co few months back....literally had to change my shorts!!!!


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  8. #28
    In the shadows AfterParty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jefals View Post
    I gotta hear more about this! How does one make a living by hiking in the dark?
    In the infantry how else.
    Hiking the AT is “pointless.” What life is not “pointless”? Is it not pointless to work paycheck to paycheck just to conform?.....I want to make my life less ordinary. AWOL

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorado_rob View Post
    One little trick I learned many years ago, is to hold your headlamp in your hand down fairly low...
    This is particularly effective in rainy/misty/cloudy/foggy conditions. With a lamp on the head, light reflects back off of every single particle of moisture. Billions and billions of them. It's like jumping to lightspeed.

    Some of you '06ers may recall the NOBO hiker, Trouble. Although far behind the pack, this man was definitely nocturnal. He loved hiking at night. Came upon him several times during the day time, crashed in his tent or in a shelter.

    I can't believe that was over 10 years ago... Talk about lightspeed!
    When you get to those unexpected situations in life where it’s difficult to figure something out, just ask yourself, “What would MacGyver do?”
    See ya!
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  10. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by saltysack View Post
    Your not having fun night hiking until you spook a moose....all you can hear is trees and brush crashing not knowing what direction to go....happened in Co few months back....literally had to change my shorts!!!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    When moose are very startled at night feeling deadly threatened and decide to make a dash for it sounds like a big scared elephant rampaging away through the understory.

    Ever startle a roosting wild turkey in a tree at night and they decide to fly away into thick woods? Sounds like a T Rex crashing through the canopy.

    Whitetail deer do more stomping of hooves and snorting at night to intimidate. Freaky when you first see their glowing eyes and experience that night time behavior before you have learned what animal is doing this.

    Or, the growls of a mountain lion as the growls get closer and closer and you're all alone with bad footing all around and far from any big tree. Then you suddenly make out the eyes and in the headlamp the pearly white fangs from a position higher in elevation than yourself.

    Or, you suddenly realize that branch you stepped on is a large slithering away Copperhead.

    Or, all those glowing eyes in the pond next to the campsite are alligators not frogs. And you say "hey those are really big red eyes on that one." Not cowboy camping tonight.

    Or, right after dusk in dark forest as you're Zip-A-Dee-Do-Dahing along intending to go until at least 10 p.m. you suddenly are struck with that inexplicable uneasy feeling something is watching. Then a slight almost silent whoosh. You question yourself. You stop. Was that real? You look around in the now darkness but nothing. After checking for fresh batteries you put on your headlamp. You go another five paces and again the feeling a stealthy winged vampire from above is playing head games with you. Again, you try to explain to yourself it wasn't real. It was the imagined psychological consequences of a misspent college life and too many Dead concerts. Another slow still questioning three paces. Then, no mistaking it, something just touched the back of your head in silent ghost like fashion from behind. Your hat almost falls off. You know it's real this time. What the f was that? Am I being punked by some of my hiker friends? But, there's nothing there. Then, in unchoreographed but graceful unison a pair of stealthy territorial Northern Goshawks start bombarding you like Tippy Hedren in the scene from Hitchcock's The Birds. They give chase dive bombing repeatedly in the darkness occasionally swooshing down touching shoulders and head as you're running down the trail trying to avoid The Birds. Finally, you're out of their territory but not without some last victorious screeching letting you know this is their domain. No problem.

    Ever get in that gotta go go gotta make my miles mindset on a dark moonless night not giving enough heed to your footing and you in a sudden jarring instant step deeply into a hole in the ground up to your crotch? You pull your jarred dirty leg out of the hole and realize it's not dirt but countless sets of glowing shiny spider eyes staring back at you on your leg, a few centipedes, and a salamander. Later you realize your leg experienced the equivalent of flying the Millennium Falcon into a space worm thinking it was a cave.

  11. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by McPick View Post
    ...Some of you '06ers may recall the NOBO hiker, Trouble. Although far behind the pack, this man was definitely nocturnal. He loved hiking at night. Came upon him several times during the day time, crashed in his tent or in a shelter.

    I can't believe that was over 10 years ago... Talk about lightspeed!
    I only met him a few times usually at night hiking as you say. I night hiked with him a couple of nights on and off for several hours each night as we kept leap frogging. One other night I suddenly came across him sitting silently in the middle of the trail eating completely silently, what he said was his lunch at 2:30 a.m.

  12. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by jefals View Post
    the closest I came was spending 3 days wandering around in a huge cave in Guntersville AL. I don't think it can get any darker than it was in there, and I've never been so glad to see and feel the sunlight as I was when we finally crawled out of that place!
    I only spent two nights in a cave past the point where any light exists. It was disorienting to the degree that my equilibrium didn't fully return until five days after exiting the cave. I think I know what a sensory deprivation tank or solitary confinement experience is somewhat like now.

  13. #33
    Registered User jjozgrunt's Avatar
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    I love walking in the bush at night especially in summer when the temperatures reach anywhere from 85 - 100 during the day and very humid. I also rise early and have been know to knock off a few miles before others even contemplate getting out of bed. Only thing I hate is running into a web in the dark, nothing worse than feeling the web and then something big crawling on your head. Good headlamp required, even on a night with a full moon as I hate joe blakes which tend to hunt at night, I use a rechargeable Petzl Tikka.

    Photo is of a Golden Orb Spider, quite common where I am, but not very dangerous. If it's big it's a female which are about 3 times the size of the male.spider.png
    Last edited by jjozgrunt; 11-15-2016 at 02:43.
    "He was a wise man who invented beer." Plato

  14. #34
    Registered User jjozgrunt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jefals View Post
    I gotta hear more about this! How does one make a living by hiking in the dark?
    In my case it was Infantry. Lovely night "Hikes", with lots of gear and no lights.
    "He was a wise man who invented beer." Plato

  15. #35
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    So everybody took the chance to do a nighthike in the recent Supermoon?
    Did a short one last night and it was amazing.

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