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How I Am Preparing to Hike 2,650 Miles

​The most commonly asked question I get regarding my upcoming Pacific Crest Trail thru-hike is, “How are you physically preparing?” To answer, I always stare deeply into their eyes, let a few moments of silence pass us by, maybe even grab their hand, then respond ever-so-passionately, “Binge eating.”  And then I wink while blowing a kiss. Ok, maybe I don’t answer that dramatically, but the truth is that I am not really…

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How To Start Backpacking (And Why You Should Try It)

Female travel blogger backpack - Jennifer Mabus

Backpacking is such a weird concept if you think about it.  You spend a bunch of money to basically become homeless for a chunk of time.  You don’t (typically) get to shower, use a toilet, or sometimes even eat hot food.  You sleep on the ground, you exert yourself to the point of exhaustion each day, you have no contact with “the outside world”, you have all sorts of bugs and insects…

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Severe Dehydration on the Trail and a Trip to the ER

The Whimsical Woman Jennifer Mabus - a travel and lifestyle influencer site

Well, I did it again friends! That’s right.  Another disastrous trip, back-to-back.  I would like to note that none of this is made up.  My life may seem like a joke, but it’s not.  It’s all definitely real. Some friends and I were backpacking Tuck and Robin Lakes.  Now what can go wrong in a place as beautiful as this? This trip was one of my friend’s first backpacking trips…

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When Backpacking (and Life) Goes Wrong

Jennifer Mabus funny female travel blog

I have done my fair share of backpacking over this past year and have learned A LOT since my very first overnight trip.  Every experience has been an absolute blast, that I just can’t seem to get enough. That is, until this past weekend at Ancient Lakes in Eastern Washington. Now, Ancient Lakes is a very easy trail, which is what makes this whole situation even more ironic.  There’s hardly…

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  • Thankful for this human who is my best friend and biggest supporter and high fives me when I fart. 🤣🤣 #love
  • It won’t stop dumping in Washington. So the common sense thing to do is put on bikinis with your roommate @aerogt35 and go play in the snow. ❄️ ❄️ ❄️
  • The first picture is me on my very first day of my very first long distance hike! I was SO excited and nervous and high on energy and disbelief that I was actually there. The second picture is me as a more seasoned thru-hiker who had already walked about 2,000 miles, who was more confident, but still just as happy as ever. And the final picture is me at the Northern Terminus. 
One obvious difference from the first picture to the rest is my pack size. (Is that construction paper in my side pocket? 🤔) Although I am an engineer, I am a complete free spirit who loves the adventure of the unknown and adapting to unfamiliar circumstances. The amount of research I did before starting my thru-hike was quite minimal. I was carrying close to 10 days of food, but thinking that was enough for 4 days, too many extra clothing items, and random misc items. I heard later on that several people were making fun of me and saying “I didn’t belong out there”. • But guess what? I did it. I made it from Mexico to Canada. But I did it because I adapted and as I became more experienced and confident, I trusted myself more and more and was able to rid my pack of unnecessary items that were like security blankets to me. A lot of people ask me what my base weight is and that information can be useful!! But to be honest, I don’t know. And I didn’t care. I gauged my pack weight by what felt good on my back and that first day and the days after were killer!! I had TOO much stuff and it was so hard on my body. But I didn’t quit like many thought I would. I adapted. And I made the necessary changes to be successful. 
If you are planning your very first thru-hike, please remember this. As long as you are ok with being uncomfortable and adapting, YOU WILL MAKE IT. People will doubt you and question you and criticize you but DO NOT listen to them. Focus on yourself and what feels good to you! I improved because I went from being clueless to becoming knowledgeable all through experience. No amount of blog posts or videos can prepare you for the actual experience of being on trail. 
Tell me, what has helped YOU successfully complete something that others or even yourself thought you couldn’t do?
  • Hiker trash over 13,000ft.
  • June 19, 2018 🌱 Forester Pass
  • ONE DAY left to order this hoodie and my other designs! Click on the link in my bio to get yours before the time runs out. RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOU WANT ADVENTURE!? 🙋🏼‍♀️🙋🏼‍♀️

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