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Physical Demands

Courses and group trips are full on Wilderness immersion trips that may be book-ended with the comforts and privileges of indoor living and fun camp activities. But when you are “on trail,” all you have is the support of your team and the life you carry on your back. Prepare to “rough it” – no shampoo or deodorant, no mirrors or plumbing; just sleeping in the mountain air and doing business in the dirt. Trail life is a beautiful thing and a once in a lifetime experience for some. We want to prepare you mentally for the awesome experiences that lie out in the wilderness so you have adequate opportunity to enjoy your trip.

People feel the physiological effects of altitude in various ways, including headache and increased respiration and difficulty “catching your breath.” In most cases, it will just feel like you are a bit out of shape. We combat the effects of altitude by asking participants to start hydrating before you arrive, and continue to hydrate well during your stay. We also recommend that you prepare physically for your trip by keeping active at home. It is a good idea to do extra running or walking in preparation for your wilderness trip.

Pack weight, depending on the type of trip and length of stay, can be 30-50 lbs., or up to about a third of your body weight. We provide much of the backpacking gear, so we can provide the optimum comfort for your trek. However, as much as we can work to make the pack fit your frame and show you how to distribute weight properly, backpacking is an inherently challenging activity. You may be hiking multiple miles and gaining 1,000’ to 4,000’ in elevation during a day’s hike, all while carrying your home on your back. Backpacking exemplifies simplicity and caring for your community to a T, and those tasks are not easy and do not always come naturally to our society of class and comfort.

To really be comfortable in the wilderness, you must prepare physically, mentally, and spiritually ahead of time! Expect to endure some minor hardship. Plans may change, food may change, the weather will change, tentmates may change, equipment may break or be lost, and accidents may happen. All you can do is try to plan ahead and prepare. Keep a good attitude. Be flexible and ready for any circumstance. By planning ahead, preparing for your trip, and thinking through what you bring you can make sure your trip is an enjoyable experience.

Challenge will be complemented and contrasted with fun activities, relaxing conversation by the fire and stargazing in the vast wonder of the nature we call our home for the night. There is nothing better than being challenged personally, growing as a group and being worn down physically during the day, then peeling off your socks and kicking back while eating the tastiest trail meal, prepared by your friends.

**Be sure to inform Glorieta Wilderness of any health concerns, including medical conditions and food allergies/intolerances