Carter Caves State Park, Kentucky
Backpacking Workshop and Overnight Trip
Backpacking Workshop and Overnight Trip
Skill: Level I
March 24 - 25, 2018
Carter Caves State Resort Park, Kentucky
Meets at 10:00am.
Fee: $95 - Includes Saturday dinner.
Ready to learn about backpacking? This is a perfect opportunity!
This is a one night, backpacking trip for first time backpackers and beginning backpackers. It includes seven workshops on backpacking essentials that every backpacker should know. This trip is designed for those with little or no backpacking experience who have always wanted to try backpacking under the guidance of highly experienced backpackers. Experienced backpackers are welcome too! Share your tips and hints!
Limit 14 participants.
WORKSHOP FULL. Join the waiting list.
Want to be added the waiting list?
About Carter Caves:
The beautiful setting of Carter Caves State Resort Park is the ideal setting for this backpacking adventure. Nestled in the hills of Eastern Kentucky, Carter Caves is 2,000 acres of wooded hills rich in plants, animals and geologic formations both above and below ground. Carter Caves is home to over 30 miles of hiking trails and over a dozen caves. We have special permission from Carter Caves State Resort Park management to conduct this workshop and this is the only backpacking workshop held at Caves State Resort Park. Park Web Site
On Saturday we will hike 4-5 miles at a slow to moderate pace over varied terrain which includes some steep hills and rugged trail to our campsite where we will spend the night. On Sunday morning we will hike ~2 miles back to our cars arriving before noon.
During this backpacking trip we will conduct seven short workshops and cover these topics:
What Is Included?
- Proper Backpack Fitting and Trekking Pole Adjustment.
- Bear Bagging - Hanging Your Food In A Tree
- Backcountry Sanitation & Hygiene In The Woods
- Fire Building
- Backpacking Stoves & Cooking
- Leave No Trace Principles
- Packing Your Backpack & Gear Organization
Your registration fee includes professional guides, all workshops, course material, any shuttle, camping, parking or permit fees, Saturday dinner and dessert around the campfire. Dinner will consist of sampling various backpacking food entrees. This is a great chance to check out different backpacking food choices and decide which you like best!
Gear, meals, (except for Saturday dinner), snacks, transportation and optional guide gratuity.
- Sleeping Bag & Pad
- Headlamp or Flashlight
- Sitting Pad. Foam or Inflatable
- Warm Clothes (warm hat, gloves & long underwear)
- Rain Gear
- Food: Saturday Lunch, Sunday Breakfast.
- Personal medications: Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Antacids, Pepto-Bismol, Prescriptions (as needed).
A pair of trekking poles, hiking stick or staff is highly recommended!
Don't Have Backpacking Gear? Rent It For A Low Cost!
For only $35 you can rent a backpack, tent, sleeping bag and sleeping pad for the night. We have both two-person and one-person tents. People renting a two-person tent will be paired with someone who is renting gear also. Let us know your preference for a two-person or one-person tent and if you already have a tent mate selected. The gear will be distributed at start of the hike for you to carry. The rental gear is first come-first served and must be paid for in advance. Rental gear quantities are limited. Choose the rental gear option from the PayPal drop down box below.
Andy "Captain Blue" Niekamp.
Andy Niekamp is the Chief Adventure Officer for Outdoor Adventure Connection, which specializes in backcountry adventures. Andy has backpacked over 14,000 miles including four end to end hikes of the Appalachian Trail and thru hikes of the Buckeye Trail, Ohio To Erie Trail, Sheltowee Trace, Long Trail, Ozark Highlands Trail, Colorado Trail, Superior Hiking Trail, John Muir Trail and the Bartram Trail. Andy is founder and leader of the Dayton Hikers group, the largest outdoor recreation group in Dayton, Ohio, and a Leave No Trace Master Educator. Andy Niekamp grew up and lives in Dayton and has a passion for long distance hiking which he shares with others. Andy brings his wealth of backpacking experience and his passion for hiking to this program. He has two rules for his backpacking trips. Number 1: Be safe. Number 2: Have fun!
Glenn has been backpacking for 30 years, and still hasn't figured out whether he has 30 years of experience, or 1 year of experience 30 times. All of his backpacking has been in the eastern U.S., mostly in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana, with the occasional trip to the Appalachian Trail in Virginia and to Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior. Many of Glenn's trips nowadays are long weekends, with the occasional week-long trip. He is a recreational backpacker; He goes out there to have fun, not to prove anything to anyone. Glenn has led youth trips, was a Scoutmaster and a volunteer for a troubled teens program. Glenn is a gearhead, so don’t be afraid to ask him about gear and equipment. Glenn, who is in his mid-60s, provides insight and perspective for older hikers, whether they are just taking up backpacking or looking for ways to continue to participate. In his other life, Glenn is a CPA with Clark Schaefer Hackett. Glenn is a happily married, a proud grandfather, and a chess player. Glenn is the author of two popular articles: How I Got This Way
and Where Can I Backpack?
Shauna "Mola" Sergent.
Shauna is a co-organizer for the group Columbus Outdoor Adventures and began backpacking with the group in 2012. Since then, she has backpacked extensively in the area, including trips to Zaleski State Forest, Dolly Sods, Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail, Manistee River Trail, and Shawnee Backpack Trail. In 2016, she prepared for a longer backpacking trip and thru hiked all 2189.1 miles solo of the Appalachian Trail. Outside of the US, Shauna has backpacked through the Japanese Alps, Patagonia (Chile and Argentina), Inca Trail (Peru), and Emei Shan (China). In addition to backpacking, she has a passion for good nutrition and can provide tips on staying healthy on the trails with a vegan, gluten free diet.
Here Is What They Say About Our Level 1 Workshops:
Amazing program, amazing experience! I will definitely backpack with OAC again
– Ellen S.
I was super impressed with the workshops. The Ethics of the "Leave No Trace" principles are very important to me, and I was so pleased that they were stressed and practiced through out the weekend.
– Shelly M.
The guides were enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and friendly! Honestly I can't think of any improvements!
– Mary Beth A.
It was fun, exciting, challenging, informative and the guides were the best.
– Bettina H.
It was just a fantastic experience and I now have new memories and new friends for life!
– Rupa F.
The trip was very informative and answered many questions that I had about backpacking. The park was lovely and had great terrain. The guides were friendly and knowledgeable. I would do this trip again and recommend it to others who were interested in backpacking. Thank you!
– Robbin C.
This workshop was fun, informative, and a great experience. Andy and his staff were very helpful and supportive. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone. I thoroughly enjoyed it!
– Leigh L.
I just completed a 3 day solo hike on the AT. When my friend decided not to go, I relied on the experience gained from your backpacking course to do it solo. I want to thank you for course!
– Carl R.
This was my first backpacking experience and I feel like I learned so much. All of the workshops were informative.
– Robin T.
I enjoyed everything I learned over the weekend.
– Denise K.
Operated on Kentucky State Park lands in Carter Caves State Resort Park with special permission.
Your workshop fee is fully refundable if you cancel 14 days in advance or if this event is cancelled or rescheduled.
All participants must complete an adventure application and sign a liability waiver. Adventure Application PDF with fill-able form fields or Adventure Application PDF to download/print.
Application must be returned for your registration to be confirmed. Note: If you've attended one of our trips in the last 12 months we have an application on file for you.
Minimum age is 14. Adult family member must accompany minor children. Inquire about children younger than 14. No pets permitted. All of our trips are non-smoking. A recommended gear list, meeting location and trip details will be sent via email to registered participants.
I wouldn't change a thing! This was an absolutely wonderful experience! Every detail was planned and well thought out by our guide. I wouldn't have any hestitation in recommending this trip to a someone who has never backpacked, a beginning backpacker or someone who want to brush up on their skills. I am really looking forward to attending OAC trips in the future. Thanks so much for an excellent experience! – Amanda R.