Sunday, May 12, 2013

First night with my DIY Top Quilt

Wasn't feeling well, so did a quick overnight on the Bartram Trail north from Warwoman Dell up past Martin Creek Falls.  I know it probably sounds crazy to go backpacking while sick, but I'd rather laze around in my hammock in the sweet-smelling woods than be cooped up at home.

I was eager to get out because it was finally warm enough, with the forecasted low in the 50's, to try out the DIY Karo Top Quilt that I made back in February.  I'd tested it out in my backyard, but this was its first trip out on the trail. 

Third weekend in a row with rain.  Thankfully, dark clouds warned of the approaching storm.  I managed to get my tarp pitched, hammock hung, and bear bag rope thrown in record time, all before the first drops began to fall.  It rained half then night and then the wind picked up and temps dropped, providing a good first test for my quilt.
Stealth site halfway up the hillside and sheltered from the wind.  Sun came out in the morning so I could take a photo.
When I started to settle in for the night, the first thing I really liked about my quilt was how easy it was to get comfortable in it.  I could just tuck it around me.  In contrast to a sleeping bag, which either has too much material if I spread it out, or require lots of squirming to get ziped up into.

The second thing I learned about my quilt is that it proved to be wide enough, at least so far.  Even though I made it only 40 inches wide at the top.  Guess it really is true that I didn't need more because the hammock and underquilt wrap around me.

The only thing I think I need to work on is the footbox, since I haven't decided how to make that yet.  I will either add more snaps to make the footbox extend up to my knees, or sew it together.  But overall, I really loved by quilt and was surprised that it kept me so toasty.
So happy after my first night in my DIY top quilt.
Of course I have to add photos of some flowers from the trip.  Also saw tons of trillium, but I figure you are probably tired of seeing so many of those.  Here are the new flowers that are out.
Wild geranium
Sweet shrub, with wild azalea in the background.
Solomon's seal, still wet with rain.
When I got back to the trailhead, I also checked out the Warwoman Dell Nature trail, where many more flowers were blooming including solomon's plume, dwarf iris, foamflower, jack-in-the-pulpit, and indian cucumber root.
Third week in a row my car has been by herself at the trailhead-- I think she's getting pretty lonely.


  1. glad to hear you like the new quilt, I've always liked mine. Lonely little need a truck. :-)

  2. I surely do need a truck! Then we'd get out to even more desolate trailheads. If only...

  3. Nice work on the gear making, I'm super impressed! I have a friend who made himself a sleeping bag a few years back for a PCT through hike and I have been insanely jealous of it ever since! Comfortable sleeping is key when you are camping.

  4. Aww, thanks, Megan. Using gear I've made makes me very proud.