Aura AG 50) on my back. As it had been raining earlier, the trail was quite damp and muddy. We managed to get passed a lot of the switchbacks and made it to the first large clearing, where we knew we would be camping for the night.
JetBoil and it comes in handy. It is meant to cook for two people, so if you have any more than that, I recommend sizing up). I had made some pre-planned meals (rice sides are great- same with mac and cheese or noodle bowls work well too) and you can bring dried meats to add. Small snack sized bag meals are perfect. I began cooking our mushroom risotto and we enjoyed a little bit of sunset we saw through the clouds. After dinner, we cleaned up, ate our dessert (i brought some dessert packs) and we went to sleep.
breakfast with coffee and began packing up our campsite to head back to the car. Next stop: Shenandoah National Park.
While this has decent views at the site we chose, the views along the trail are limited and due to the trees, you really cannot see very much. Our spot had great views of the reservoir below and does have great views, but the hike did not. We still recommend this if you are new to backpacking as it will give you an idea of what true backcountry is like (and if you find it's not for you, you can easily camp at the campsite with bathrooms and showers). As our spot was quite spacious, you can easily have more than one tent, and if you prefer the hammock option, this is a great site for that as well. WARNING: This area is bear country and they do recommend storing your food. We sealed our bags well and kept our trash in sealed containers as well. Make sure you prepare accordingly.