If you've never backpacked a through-trail, there are some things you need to know before you head out.
- You have to carry everything out that you carry in. Everything. Take a minute for that to sink in. Everything. Bingo! Even your toilet paper.
- You can only carry so much water with you; which means you have to collect and purify water along the trail.
- If water is such a scarce resource, and you have to carry out everything you carry in, washing dishes is elevated to an art form.
We had some of the best meals on the trail. Two ladies had Pad Thai. My tent buddy, another woman, and I shared lasagna and a berry crumble for dessert. Dehydrated meals are not what they used to be. But they leave your mess kit covered with the sauces.
What to do? Wipe your plate/bowl down with a paper towel that you have to pack out? Or find out how Yours Truly got her trail name?
Remember when you were little and would lick the bowl of ice cream or, if you were really lucky and your mother wasn't concerned about salmonella, cake batter? Ever watched your pet lick the bowl for the very last morsel? Getting the picture yet?
I didn't realize that I was creating such a spectacle of myself by plopping down on a rock and licking my plate clean. But I didn't have much washing to do afterwards. And no traces of food particles that would attract visitors during the night.
So my trail name? If you haven't guessed it already... Kitty.