To continue from the last post, the next place you will be spending a majority of your time is on the block. If you scroll down, you will see a post written by a crew mate of mine Robin who very nicely summarized the average planting day. I am going to elaborate on that synopsis a little with the gear used in mind.
Your day will start with an alarm of some kind. If you’re like me, you will probably slap the snooze a few times. It will take about 1-2 weeks to calculate exactly how long you can sleep and still get all your chow in and gear prep’d for the day ahead. (TIP: Fill your water and lay out all your clothes etc. the night before)
After wake up, it’s get dressed and pee time, not always in that order. If you have laid out all your clothing the night before, this part will be easy. (TIP: putting clothing in the bottom of your sleeping bag will keep it warm. No one likes putting on cold clothing in the morning.) Clothing is again a very personal comfort related decision. Keep in mind that Prince George has one of the best Value Village’s (VV) I’ve ever seen, and anything you wear-out can be replenished for a few bucks. My daily attire consists of:
Cheap cotton T-shirt
VV rugby shirt
Polypro underwear (Keeps the swamp ass at bay)
MEC climbing pants (Pricey, but they dry super fast and are light and durable)
Gators (personal preference, but work well with shorts and keep your boots in better shape for longer.<-always a plus!)
Smart wool socks, or a polypro + wool layer combo
Bombproof hiking boots (Mine were Zamberlan’s and were amazing<-more on boots later)
Keep in mind that this is the system that worked for me. You will have your own preferences on materials and warmth. I liked my set up because it allowed me to regulate for temperature very easily by shedding layers.
Your next move in the morning is to grab your day bag and head to the lunch or breakfast line. Your day bag should be as waterproof as possible and more importantly, animal proof. Ravens and foxes in the north are very crafty, especially when your lunch is involved. Also remember that this bag will be tossed in and out of dirty trucks constantly and will take a beating. My weapon of choice is a heavy-duty dry bag (the type you’d take canoeing) with backpack straps for the dreaded walk-ins. Your day bag should include, but is no limited to the following:
TOILET PAPER in a ziplock bag (This stuff is worth more than gold in the bush, and TP left unattended is fair game. Guard it with your life)
Bug dope (Watkins cream is king)
Duct tape (Note: All duct tapes are not created equal. As a rule of thumb, you pay for what you get. The pro stuff is better)
Hat for the sun
In the lunch trailer, you pack you fuel for the day, again it’s up to you, but remember you are what you eat (long live the PB & J). I bring a big tupperwear container to store my lunch. Some people just use the empty bread bags, but if you’d like your artfully crafted PB & J to still resemble a sandwich when it comes time to eat it, I’d suggest bringing a hard container of some sort.
Your next move is to breakfast where you load a jail tray with as much food as you can stomach. A luxury item here is a good travel mug for hot coffee, tea, hot chocolate, etc. Nice to have for the longer drives to the block.
With your stomach full, your lunch packed, and 8-10L of water in your jugs (usually old milk or juice jugs, though some people bring the insulated versions as well), you jump in the truck and head to the block.
Planting gear consists of:
Silvicool inserts (x2)
Hand covering (Duct tape, gloves, nothing… it’s up to you.)
And that about sums up the planting part of your day as far as gear goes. Again, follow the lists provided in the previous post, and you should be good to go.