Trip Report: Elk Meadows & Elk Mountain

Annie - Mt. Hood View


Short backcountry trips are a fantastic way to reboot your system and cleanse weekly stress. It’s always amazing how quickly I feel my body relax when I begin a hike. It often only takes a few steps before I start to feel the peace of the wilderness wash over me.

This weekend Annie and I took a wonderful mini-adventure to Elk Meadows on the east side of Mt. Hood with some friends. The weather was gorgeous, the views were spectacular, and the forest was calming. All in all, it was the ideal weekend getaway.

Here's a quick post to share some of my favorite photos from the weekend and some notes on new gear I’m testing. Enjoy! 

New Gear:

GOSSAMER GEAR GORILLA BACKPACK – Annie and I both absolutely loved the previous model of the Gorilla pack and the new version has a very similar fit and feel, which is excellent. Our initial feelings are very positive. I’ll post a full review after we’ve completed testing. Full review posted here

ENLIGHTENED EQUIPMENT REVELATION QUILT – I’ve been looking for the perfect sleeping bag for a long time and I just may have found it. I like having the option to leave my feet untucked while I sleep. The Revelation Quilt provides the flexibility and warmth that I’m looking for. I’m a huge fan. I’ll post a full review after I’ve completed testing. Full review posted here

THERM-A-REST NEOAIR FULL LENGTH PAD – I have been using a torso-size NeoAir for a long time and I recently upgraded to a full-length pad. Using a shorter pad is a great way to reduce weight on ultralight trips, but there is a comfort tradeoff as well. I’ve been really enjoying my full-length pad and getting excellent sleep. This will be my go-to pad from now on.

ZPACKS CHALLENGER RAIN MITTS – The weather called for rain this weekend, so I was expecting to get some good use out of my new ZPacks Rain Mitts. Instead we got fantastic weather, so I’ll be doing wet-weather testing on the Rain Mitts soon.

ROCKET PURE FOOT POWDER & BALM – Rocket Pure is a company that makes natural products for athletes, like shoe deodorizing powder, foot balm, and anti-chafe balm. Annie and I tested out their products on this trip and they made our feet feel dry and clean. A very nice touch.

SAUCONY PEREGRINE 5 TRAIL RUNNING SHOES – I’ve worn the Peregrine 5 running shoes on my last few trips and I really love them. They’re light, they have a great fit, and they provide excellent traction. I think they’re the perfect blend of comfort and toughness for my backcountry trips.