Continental Divide Trail Video – Thru-hike 2015 (rough draft. really rough)

I haven’t touched this video project in a year and a half, but who knows when I’ll get to working on it again, so here we go!

Here’s a rough cut of a rough trail.
Epic in so many ways.
CDT, I love you.

And yes, the video ends at 2:11, unless you love the Gorillaz, and then listen to the end of the song.

 

Continental Divide Trail Movie 2015, part 1 from Renee Patrick on Vimeo.

Advertisements

What is hikertrash?

When Daniel “Ratatouille” Hepokoski first contacted me because he was interested in covering the topic of “hikertrash” on his new podcast series, Trailside Radio, I was happy to oblige…trying to define hikertrash for those who aren’t hikers can sometimes be a confusing discussion. Yes, it makes sense why we self identify as dirty on a long distance trail, but Ratatouille, like others I’ve spoken to over the years, wasn’t sure he wanted to call himself trash.

Thus the podcast. What is hikertrash?

Mountain Logo for visors_whole letters

Ratatouille will be getting on his first long distance trail, the PCT, in a few weeks, and will be attempting to continue this podcast series; an ambitious but exciting proposition. When he asked me why someone would want to call themselves hikertrash, I suggested he hike for a month and then we revisit the issue.

Take a listen to the Trailside Radio podcast:

Thanks for listening!

To expand on the podcast a bit, here are some photos detailing more about my hikertrash origin story:

first screen

My first screen: a curtain stapled onto a picture frame from goodwill.

My first designs included bikes and a kayak for Kirk, ever the water lover.

The first designs included mostly bikes. Did I mention I love bikes?

Back in 2009 on Lint's second thru-hike of the PCT I printed my first "hikertrash" on his pack when he passed through Bend.

Back in 2009 on Lint‘s second thru-hike of the PCT I printed my first “hikertrash” on his pack when he passed through Bend.

10347475_636127759818905_184411361921314390_n

Kirk helped me build a screen printing press out of 95% recycled materials for 2014’s PCT Days.

Now we make a variety of products in a rainbow of colors.

Now we make a variety of products in a rainbow of colors.

11058056_743122422452771_8074886040808610357_o

and TEMPORARY tattoos! (I love temporary tattoos)

10933799_710478845717129_6015854952828847683_n

Hikertrash has had a good first year…2 trips to the OR Show and hikers wore our hats on the triple crown trails. Dude!

Brian and I continue to come up with new designs

Brian and I continue to come up with new designs (this one will be available soon!)

Screenshot_2015-03-31-14-09-04

and I’ll be gathering more design ideas on the CDT in a few short weeks

As I said, getting dirty on the trail is the big equalizer. we are all hikertrash.

The creativity of being

I spoke a bit before about the flow of hiking, and how walking long distances seems to unlock some well of creativity, but I think it might be bigger than that. I haven’t been hiking yet this year…I’ve only been in the preparation phase the past few months (heck, really, the past few years), but the ideas keep coming.

Whether it’s new designs for hikertrash:

11036074_740465132718500_8978112904127025260_o

I call it the Ode to Ridgewalking

Or making my own gear:

20150321_143453

Kirk has been gear designer for years…I enlisted his help again in my quest to get as much out of the 3 yards of cuben fiber that I ordered from Zpacks as possible. (Kirk is wearing the first design I ever screenprinted…tall bike!)

20150321_170026

We came up with some patterns…

cut pattern

And I mapped out the cuts we’ll make so we can make sure to use every inch.

IMG_20150322_164223

And screenprinted the tall bike on the new stuff sack.

So I haven’t been hiking yet, but ideas keep coming…so there has to be something else. Hiking helps with the flow of ideas, but the source is probably more in the lines of: I’m living the kind of life I want to live…and a few examples happen to be making cuben fiber gear, creating new designs for hikertrash, and planning for a long, long hike. Of course freedom plays a big roll here…I’m on the cusp of having no job for the first time in years. The absence of that tether is incredibly powerful too.

I’m excited to hike, yes. Excited to grow my business (hikertrash), heck my businesses (freelance writing, designing, hikertrash), but even more excited that they are all interrelated, and all feed into one another. But even more than that, I’m excited to be. To be, and to be doing what I love.

Maybe that is where creativity comes from.

Rucking it up

I spent last weekend at the ALDHA-West Ruck in Cascade Locks. What’s a ruck you ask? It’s on of those German words we’ve appropriated that means backpacking. Although Urban Dictionary tells me it’s a fight, a rugby term, and some other much less inspiring definitions.

Anyway, it was a blast. There were old friends, quite a few hikers who will be on the CDT this year, and I had a chance to sell a bunch of hikertrash stuff.

20150228_172948

We love our Purple Rain Adventure Skirts! Oh and Mont-bell put in a good showing among the thru-hikers too. Me, Jill, Focus & Allgood (Focus will be on the CDT too this year, I hope we get to meet up at some point!)

These guys. It was great to catch up with SoFar & Lint.

These guys. It was great to catch up with SoFar & Lint.

Hikertrash did really well…

20150228_104651

We were trying to look like hikertrash here. Focus & Justa bought our new hat. I had a lot of fun designing this one, should be available for sale in the next month or so in our store.

Six Moon Designs also unveiled their answer for the bankrupt GoLite's very popular Chrome Dome. This is the Silver Shadow (guess who designed the logo!!)

Six Moon Designs also unveiled their answer for the bankrupt GoLite’s very popular Chrome Dome. This is the Silver Shadow (guess who designed the logo!!). This too will be available in the next month or two.

Oh man, every since we worked together as metal roofers one rainy January in Portland I have missed these two. Love these guys.

Oh man, every since we worked together as metal roofers one rainy January in Portland I have missed these two. Love these guys. Metal roofing in January? I wouldn’t recommend it.

So lots of catching up with friends, bolstering my business with new sales, and above all else, getting FREAKING EXCITED to hike the CDT.

Soon.

Winter OR Show (Part 2) Getting Funky

I arrived at the airport in Salt Lake City to find a truck filled with hikers fresh from the Gossamer Gear hike in Moab. Bobcat, Swami, Snorkle and Jabba had all been together for days, and by the jokes and insults flying I could tell they had fun. It wasn’t long before I was pulled into the fold and we laughed and giggled our way through the night…but early to bed for we all had a big first day of the OR Show.

What my pack looked like. Love the rainbow of hikertrash hats we have.

Taste the rainbow. hikertrash hats in my pack, oh yeah.

We all gathered at the Woolrich booth on Wednesday to ooo and aaa at the beautiful blankets they made to support our long trails. It’s an incredibly generous gesture as 100% of the proceeds of the limited edition blankets sold during the show went to the three trail organizations: Appalachian Trail Conservancy, Pacific Crest Trail Association, and Continental Divide Trail Coalition.

20150121_091109

Beeeeutiful!

20150121_094038

I had to buy the CDT blanket of course. I’ll eventually get the others too!

20150121_121811

The attention to detail was incredible.

I was also stoked to see the t-shirt I designed for the recent CDTC Indiegogo campaign: The Next 32 Miles.

I "trashed" up Amy McCormic, from the Appalachain Trail Conservancy (see the new shirt!)

I “trashed” up Amy McCormick, from the Appalachian Trail Conservancy (see the new shirt!)

The rest of the day was a blur of color and free snack samples…and the show proper ended in a happy hour for the three trail alliances at the Woolrich booth. A well known fact about the Outdoor Retailer show: they maintain the close relationship between adventure pursuits and booze. Many many happy hours happen throughout the duration of the show (and almost all raise money for a chosen non-profit through the sale of cool mugs or some kind of schwag). The thru-hikers flocked to the booth (it may have also been the free food) and we all had a blast.

While traditionally the long distance hiking community attracts about .01% of the attention of the outdoor industry, this year seemed to be an exception; more hikers than ever attended the show, and companies actually were recognizing what an incredible thing it is to walk across the country.

It was quite thrilling to go to dinner with the executive and development directors of the AT, PCT & CTC that night, and I had fun meeting Zach, the founder of Appalachian Trials, later at the OR Industry party.

20150121_205501

Hikertrash getting funky.

An incredible first day of the show, and just a hint at the goodness to come.

 

Winter OR Show (Part 1) What a Wild Ride Its Been

It has been an amazing 6 days with the Continental Divide Trail Coalition and plenty of fellow hikertrash.

Returning from the OR Show is like returning from a trip to the moon: surreal and almost too good to be true. Something became clear to me while I was wandering the halls of dreamy gear (gear so tech-ed out and shiny as to be irresistible), that this was exactly where I was supposed to be.  Talking trail, creating partnerships, celebrating the ridiculous antics of my fellow (and very silly) thru-hiker friends, and all the while feeling (and knowing) that I’ll be hiking in a few months, that the CDT will actually happen!

Creating this photo seemed a fitting tribute to the week; and although it seemed like so much happened that I couldn’t possibly remember it all; it’s time to dig in!

Thru-hikers had a bigger presence than ever at the OR Show this year.

Thru-hikers had a bigger presence than ever at the OR Show this year. The bear, well, you had to be there.

Since meeting Teresa Martinez and Peter “Czeck” Sustr of the Continental Divide Trail Coalition (CDTC) last August at the Summer OR Show and becoming their first Trail Ambassador, it seems as if everything I’m passionate about, everything that I’ve been interested in and doing for years, has led me to this point.

“Do your thing and I will know you.” -Paul Theroux

My buddy Whitney "Allgood" LaRuffa and I represented TurboPUP. (AWESOME PRODUCT!)

My buddy Whitney “Allgood” LaRuffa and I represented TurboPUP at the Summer OR where I met Teresa. (AWESOME PRODUCT!)

Starting the brand hikertrash with Brian Frankle last April has created a lot of opportunities.

We make coozies, trucker hats, shirts, silipints and more. Stuff for hikers.

We make beer coozies, trucker hats, shirts, silipints, and more. Stuff for hikers.

I had been screen printing for 5 years (primarily bikes, but also the hikertrash screen inspired by my good friend Lint).

When he hiked through on his second PCT thru-hike I printed Lint's backpack.

When he hiked thru on his second PCT thru-hike in 2009 I printed Lint’s backpack.

I got into bikes and formed the company Bike Bend Wear to sell shirts at cyclocross races in Bend and on Etsy.

I had 10 bike designs & one play boat (for Kirk)

I had 10 bike designs & one play boat (for Kirk)

When the desk job took over and I was too busy to keep it up, I let the screen printing go for a while, but Brian and I partnered up to make some shirts for the PCT kick-off weekend last year.

My friends SOL & Smooth represented hikertrash at the kick-off last year, and took their friend Stumbling Beef to the CDT. We lost Smooth, and miss him very much.

My friends SOL & Smooth represented hikertrash at the kick-off last year, and took their friend Stumbling Beef to the CDT for his thru-hike. Smooth passed in the mountains late last year, and we miss him very much.

Starting a company was easier than I thought, and before I knew it found myself at PCT Trail Days in September with a brand hikers were recognizing.

I screen printed "hikertrash" on whatever the current PCT hikers wanted. And sold some stuff.

I did a bunch of live screen printing on whatever the current PCT hikers wanted (like this hiker’s thigh) and had a blast.

While hikertrash was gaining steam, I had started freelancing for Ron Moak, founder of Six Moon Designs, who brought me on as his media manager last summer (check out Ron and Brian’s new line of packs…two great minds in the light-weight backpacking industry collaborating together).

Here is Ron at the OR Show buying the triple crown of blankets by Wool

Here is Ron at the OR Show buying the triple crown of blankets created by Woolrich especially to support the three long trails.

The new business and partnership with the well-known gear company has quickly led me to the sweet spot of the brand/product side of the outdoor industry. After already trying to make a living from guiding, leading trail crews, working in wilderness therapy, teaching and working logistics, it seemed an incredibly natural fit to now be writing and designing for the outdoor industry.

When Teresa asked if I wanted to attend the Winter OR Show with them to represent the CDTC and help them form new partnerships and bring awareness to my hike and the incredible things happening on the trail I couldn’t say no, besides some of my best hikertrash friends would be there. Done!

Next up: the show! Stay tuned for more this week….

 

Finishing up the Ski Tour

January 2-3

The last two days of our New Year Ski tour we basked under blue skies.

20150102_073623

I watched the sunrise from our tarp for a good hour.

 

20150102_084241

Then chased the first traces sun…the snow was absolutely beautiful

 

20150102_112527

We skied around a bit.

 

20150102_112732

And enjoyed the stunning views.

 

20150102_114850

Taking a break with the best show on earth.

 

20150102_130717

How can I not kiss this man?

 

20150102_132113

The view from camp isn’t bad on the other side either.

 

20150103_082630

The hardest part of the whole trip was putting on cold ski boots.

 

20150103_092035

But all good things must come to an end.

 

20150103_092557

We skied out.

 

20150103_102413

And headed back towards Bend.