Packing and repacking indecision

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I’m packing for a trip. Only the second paddle this month, but I have somehow managed to so far pack for five different trips.

I was packed and ready to head to the Adirondacks and maybe points north. Lake tripping gear for an open canoe. Changed my mind at the last already-packed minute and headed east to day paddle some of the Delmarva’s best coastal stuff. So I wanted truck camping gear and a decked boat instead. Unpack and repack.

I prepped for a coastal NC barrier island trip. Decked boat tripping gear packed. That is also a working trip, so also packing the tools and materials I will need, and packing truck camping gear for the duration of the work event. Three packs in one.

Then that trip evolved to include some coastal plain rivers in eastern NC and SC – the Black, South, Waccamaw, Lumber… An open canoe would be better everywhere except Hammocks Beach, and that is usually doable in an open boat. Changed my mind at the last already-packed minute and decided to take the Penobscot. Same gear but completely different system of packs and dry bags. Unpack and repack.

Hammocks Beach is an increasingly rare group trip, so large tarp and extra spares. The blackwater river trips will be solo or with one companion, so solo gear. If I added some hunting and fishing gear and stayed ‘til winter I’d have every possibility packed.

I think need to put everything in the truck, lock the doors and stop looking at maps and guidebooks.
 
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
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924
Location
Red Lake, Ontario
Haha. I know exactly what you mean. I am going canoeing, but I do want to do some fishing so then it is the fishing gear, and you know small game season is open so maybe I'll bring the hunting gear and maybe I'll do some hiking so I should bring that stuff too.
 
Joined
Jul 11, 2014
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4,363
Location
Ontario Canada
I almost know what you mean. When we pack for a trip and head out the door we already know exactly where, why, how and for how long we're going. Easy and organized, right? No. For the previous 11 months I've scrabbled through maps, wandered through books and perused other people's trip reports. And right on schedule, every week for those 50 or so weeks, I say to my paddling partner wife "I've changed my mind." On a good day she responds "Oh? Tell me sweet heart, where are we going now?" Usually though she responds "Hm hmm" and waits for the next scheduled dithering moment. It's not my fault. There's too many destinations calling me. Lucky for us though, the same gear will make the trip regardless of the direction we're headed...if only I can be sure which direction that is.
 
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I almost know what you mean And right on schedule, every week for those 50 or so weeks, I say to my paddling partner wife "I've changed my mind." On a good day she responds "Oh? Tell me sweet heart, where are we going now?" Usually though she responds "Hm hmm" and waits for the next scheduled dithering moment. It's not my fault.

It’s not the first time I’ve abruptly changed a destination. Although I have largely begun to disregard bad weather forecasts as a reason to cancel (it’s just weather, excepting high wind forecasts on open water venues), I have gone to plan B often enough on family or groups trips. And I always want to have a Plan B in my pocket.

Especially when planning river trips. I’ve gone to plan B when already packed and taking a last look at the weather forecast only to see an exponential flood-stage rise in river level. Same for “have a nice walk” stuff dropping towards canoe zero. Yeahhhhhh, I know some places, we can do better.

This was different. I think it was a consequence of being footloose, unscheduled and having too many possibilities.

I’m still looking for a Craigslist bargain of some lightweight open solo with rotted gunwales; I’d rack that rebuild on the truck beside the Monarch on road trips and be ready for anything.
 
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