When I was researching on how to build a website, I read that the “About” page is the most important page. That seems funny, I never click About unless I am an unhappy customer trying to get a hold of someone to resolve a problem. But what the heck — here goes. I have never built a website before, so this is a learning experience.

About Me

So I was checking out some backpacking blogs and many people start out with their trail name.

My trail name is… wait a second. I don’t have a trail name.

Well it seems that a lot of backpackers have a trail name, especially those who do long hikes and interact with a lot of people on the trail. I don’t do that. I mean, I don’t interact with a lot of people on the trail, and actually I try to hike where there are no other people. But I have done many long hikes. Besides trail names like Monkeybutt and Half-a-brain don’t appeal to me.

My name is Nick Gatel. That is it. No middle name and Nick is the official name on my birth certificate. Nine letters total. I like that. Sort of like ultralight backpacking, shed anything you don’t need.

I started backpacking back in the 1960’s. Since backpacking wasn’t popular, it was difficult to get anyone to go with me. So I usually hiked alone. After a while, I figured out it was the best way to backpack.

I camped a little bit with my friends in high school. It was fun, but backpacking was more enjoyable. When my kids (Nicole and Joe) were born we started taking each of them camping when they were 6 months old. The reason I took them camping instead of backpacking was because they couldn’t walk yet. When they got older, I took both on some backpacking trips, but family camping was more fun. So we camped several times every year, to include our yearly two week vacation, and I continued my solo backpacking trips.

Mission Statement, Objective, Goal, Whatever

Don’t have any of those things. This site is for my own pleasure and a place to share with my small circle of friends and family. I have two main hobbies; camping with my wife, Joyce, and backpacking. This is what I enjoy doing and I try to spend 100 days a year doing them. I have many other interests, but these are the main ones.

Content or Theme

Probably going to be whatever I feel like writing about. Sure there will be camping and backpacking stuff, but whatever strikes me as funny, serious, outlandish, etc. will probably end up here.


Like I said earlier, my family and friends are the audience. There may be others with similar interests who might want to read this once in a while. I added an RSS thingy and a subscription doohickey, so if you are interested you can play with those. There won’t be buttons for Twitter, Facebook, Like, or similar ilk. I don’t understand the hoopla over that kind of thing. They seem like big black holes that suck up time. And time is a valuable commodity to me. I save time just like I save money, so I can spend my inventory of saved time for important things like camping and backpacking.

Also there are no comment pages, contact or feedback forms, email me page, or any other way to contact me. The reason is; I have no desire to communicate with complete strangers and could care less about the opinions of others. Seems to me that these contact media would be another thing to suck up valuable time. If you already have my email address then I probably value your thoughts.

Other Stuff

I see that others who have sites about backpacking or camping do a lot of gear and product reviews. As a matter of fact, some have so many reviews that I don’t see how those folks can find the time to go out and use them. Fortunately both my backpacking kit and tent trailer are completely dialed-in, and don’t need any tweaking. So there is not a whole lot to review and there won’t be much new stuff in the future. But I do have an accumulation of 40+ plus years of camping and hiking stuff, so I may occasionally take a trip down memory lane and share some of it.


I don’t know how often I will post here. So far this seems pretty simple to update. But if it takes much time to maintain or administer the site, I’ll take it down. Again, the time thing.

Anyway that is About it.