32 years ago:
My freshman year in college I attended Danville Community College in Danville, Va. The fall quarter I signed up to take an Outdoor Environmental Class, which counted for 3 credits. This class's purpose was to teach us how to survive in the wilderness with minimal equipment. We spent our class periods learning about the outdoors, the elements. We learned how to tie ropes, put on our rappelling seats, about carabiners...We practice rappelling and rock climbing techniques. We learned how to read a compass and so forth.
Finally the day came for our trip. We were going to Mount Rogers, VA for a couple of days and then on further up into the mountains to an isolated Gap. Our equipment consisted of little propane stoves, food (dried fruit, tuna, cheese, bread, oatmeal, hot chocolate, water...) matches, flashlights, clothes, hiking boots, belay equipment and more. We ended up with about 40 lb packs, including our sleeping bags. We arrived at the base of Mt. Rogers late that evening. It was growing dark, it had begun to rain a little and we had about a 2 hour hike before we could camp for the night.
(to be continued)