There may be more than enough water in the northeast, thank to Irene, but if you plan on trekking around Big Bend, you’ll likely need to carry your own water with you. How much water does one need to take along to stay hydrated? What’s the best way to carry water? Let’s take a look.
How much water should you take with you? Don’t listen to the conventional “8-10 glasses per day.” When it comes to hiking—especially warm weather hiking—a safe amount is about half a liter per mile on the trail. Take a moderate walk in Big Bend and calculate how much water you need, and you’ll soon find out why carrying water can be a major concern.
So what is the best container for carrying various liters of water? Most backpacks are designed with special pockets to hold 1 liter bottles, and this can be very useful. Larger bottles are not suggested because they end up being very bulky and don’t allow you to balance the weight very easily. Also, normal plastic bottles may not be the best option because the caps can come off and get everything in your pack wet. Bottles that are specially designed for hiking are usually best when it comes to size and practicality.
Another option can be the water bladders, which come in a variety of sizes. Flexible water bladders are beneficial because of the way the weight naturally balances in you pack, allowing some bladder systems to hold several liters at a time. Also, the bladder gets smaller as you use up the water, so you don’t have bulky empty bottles to carry around.
For longer hikes, water is not the only consideration, but also electrolytes, which can be found in healthy sports drinks like Gatorade. You can also by Gatorade (or a different brand, of course) power packs to mix with your water. This will give you more energy as well as variety in flavor.
The West Fest!
If you’re planning on visiting Big Bend or the area in the next couple of weeks, you may want to schedule your visit so you can see the Marathon West Fest, a festival of food and family fun in the last weekend of September. If you like cook-offs, then you’ll really enjoy the cabrita cook-off competition, where cooks battle for prizes. Add to that the live music and dance, and you’ll quickly see why the Marathon West Fest is more than worth visiting.
There are some views you just can't take in all at once. Like a dazzling sunset or breathtaking field of wildflowers—you just can't appreciate such beauty in the moment, a moment that is often over before you realize it, the forms and colors of that marvelous vista already fading in your memory. Perhaps it was with the goal of preserving such scenes that the first camera was invented, a goal that you may still share when you visit a place as beautiful as Big Bend and the surrounding area. Why not take a look through our new and improved photo galleries to see what amazing sights have been preserved by astounded visitors and appreciative locals? When you see the mountains, plains, flora, and fauna displayed in those images, you'll be glad the gallery contributors took their camera along.
Among the many activities available in Big Bend National Park that highlight the region's diversity of wildlife, birding can be enjoyable and promising. Big Bend engulfs a vast area, bounded by the the rushing Rio Grande valley to the south, containing high peaks in the Chisos Mountains, and boasting both desert and forest climates between the two. It embodies the very diversity that makes America great, providing countless opportunities to spot more than 450 birds in one area.
What are your new year's resolutions for 2012? Did you keep your resolutions for 2011? While the top resolutions each year include losing weight, learning something new, traveling, or getting out of debt, here's a new challenge you can take on this year: spot all the bird species in Big Bend National Park.
Big Bend has some of the most spectacular scenery in Texas, if not the entire US. Our big sky country rivals any other state and our night skies are as dark as anywhere for excellent star gazing. The beautiful light and great scenery make for a photographer’s paradise.
There are many things you may love to do in Big Bend National Park in the heat of summer, but running or jogging is probably not one of them. With 90+ degree temperatures, there simply is no such thing as a nice July run in West Texas. With the dry weather we've had this year, you have truly hostile workout conditions. That all changes this time of year, though, as temperatures drop and the sun gives us a break for a few months. What a great time to get out on some trails in Big Bend!