As I take some trips down memory lane I think of the days when I was in the Boy Scouts in Butler, MO Troop 321. I can remember camp outs where we would throw on our backpacks and hike from the Scout Hall to our destination. If I remember right, the hike itself would usually take us an hour so to get to our site.

Most of the time it was a venture to Devil's Hollow. At least that was the name of the area in a wooded area east of town. I don't know how many years different Scouts had trekked to this location but it was one that was talked of when the subject of camping came about.

At first it was just loading the backpack with necessary items, e.g., candy bars, my Scout Handbook, more candy bars, my mess kit, and who knows what else I could fit in the canvas bag. I imagine I had a few articles of clothing, too, for those instances when you might accidentally get thrown in the creek. (Not that this ever happened to me!)

If you'd like to find out more about hiking, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is offering a free virtual backpacking workshop from 1 to 2 p.m. on Friday, January 22.  Tips on how to pack everything needed for a multi-day backpacking trip will be presented. Registration is required for this online virtual program. To register, visit the MDC website and look for the virtual backpacking workshop.

So if you've never backpacked before and are itching to find something new to get you out of the house, here's your opportunity.

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