Adventure and blog written by photographer and writer, Mecca Ray-Rouse.
Grand Trunk Ultralight Starter Hammock
A dusty forest service road led us through tall Douglas firs and deep into the mountains of the Pacific Northwest. We arrived at the trailhead and opened the trunk of our Subaru Forester to grab our packs. With our three adventure pups leashed up, we started our trek as the sun was still rising. The sweet smell of a hot summer day greeted us as we made our way through some switchbacks, the sun playing peekaboo through the forest.
We could see the tall exposed peak of Sawtooth Mountain before we saw the campsites. The rugged peak, adorned with a few fir trees and slate, was a beautiful sight to see. The lake, when we arrived at camp, jutted up against the mountain and it’s reflection slowly swirled in the crystal blue water.
After cooling off in the lake, I got out my Welcome Box from Nomadik and we spent an hour resting our tired legs in our Grand Trunk tree hammock (pictured below). With its easy setup and takedown, plus its compact size, it’s the best hammock to bring backpacking. The sun was just beginning to set as we slowly rocked in the hammock, taking in the amazing views.
Once we were rested, we began to set up our camp. While getting our tent put together, I realized we had a little hole in the side! Thank goodness we had our Gear Aid patches (pictured below). With an easy peel-off back, our tent was sealed up just as new. We also almost had to use another patch when Bryn hooked himself while fly-fishing on the back of his jacket, but it thankfully didn’t pierce through! But, even if it had, we would have been covered with these durable patches.
GEAR AID Tenacious Tape Mini Patches
Another item that we loved using from the Welcome Box was the hydration mix from Skratch Labs (pictured below). After a long day of hiking, the best thing you can do is rehydrate. Plus, these were a great mix-up from regular water! Who wouldn’t want to drink a tasty strawberry lemonade drink while relaxing at camp? The best thing about these is they are so easy and lightweight to pack, which is always a plus when backpacking.
After a successful fishing trip, we got the fire ready to cook dinner (thank you, Rainbow Trout). We grabbed the Uco Hurricane Matches (pictured below) and with a little bit of kindling had a fire going in seconds. These things are no joke! They are incredibly reliable and stay lit way longer than regular matches. These are great to pack on any trip because they are windproof and waterproof, so you’ll always be able to start a fire in any weather condition!
As the sky began to turn a hazy orange, and the shadows on the mountain slowly began to expand, we sat by the crackling fire, our fur pups sleeping in the tent, and thought about how lucky we were to be able to experience such beauty. The trip flew by with ease since we were well-prepared thanks to all the great gear we got from The Nomadik Welcome Box. We can’t wait to head back to this magical place again. Until next time, Sawtooth Mountain.