Camping on the Berryman Trail...

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Camping on the Berryman Trail...

Postby Black Magic » Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:57 am

In a few weeks my Son and I plan on riding the Berryman Trail and camping about 1/2 way along for the night and riding the rest of the way out the next day. We aren't avid campers, we do Mountain bike a lot and have everything we need there. So, My question is this... What will we need for a one night stay along the trail? I can add that we have lightweight hammocks to sleep in. Other than that, anything you can recommend for our safety and needs is appreciated.
Matt
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Postby aroth87 » Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:07 am

Make sure you have something to purify some water with. Its going to be hot and your going to need lots of water. You can pick up Portable Aqua at Wal-Mart for a reasonable price. There are other options, including filters, but since you don't go camping much its not going to be very cost effective for you.
Hammocks should be great this time of year. I actually just made my own a week or so ago and can't wait to try it out. If its supposed to rain, even the slightest chance, bring along a tarp to pitch over yourselves.
Make sure you have clean clothes to change into when you get to camp. You're going to be soaked from riding all day (as I'm sure you're already aware) and dry clothes will be great. Plus you don't want to go to bed in wet clothes if the temperature happens to dip.
Bring some kind of cover for yourselves to use in the hammocks. This could be as simple as a spare sheet from home. A sleeping bag would work too, just open it up and drape it over you like a quilt.
I'm not sure if ground fires are legal on the Berryman, although I'm sure someone here will be able to chime in and tell you for sure. On the chance that fires aren't allowed you'll need to bring some kind of stove if you want warm food. The MSR Pocket Rocket is a very light and popular model. If you want to get creative you can build your own alcohol stove. The Supercat is an easy to build, cheap, and very effective design.
With just the basics of food, water, shelter, and dry clothes you'll make it through the night. If you want to bring along some extra things like books or a deck of cards it may make it more enjoyable.
Just remember that you're going to be carrying all of your gear on your bike, so more gear is going to effect your riding.
Have fun on the trail! You all are braver than I, I'd never attempt the Berryman on bike, there were too many places that weren't much fun on foot!

Adam
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Postby Black Magic » Tue Jun 19, 2007 1:06 pm

Thanks for the info. I never really thought about extra cloths. That's a good idea.

As for the fire, here is the info from the National Forest site... "Primitive camping is permitted anywhere along the trail. Practice “leave no trace” principles. Please be careful with fire and pack out non-burnable trash"

http://www.fs.fed.us/r9/forests/marktwain/recreation/sites/berryman_trail/

I have posted on a couple Mtn Bike forums and spoke with others IRL and Black Bears and Mountain Lions have came up a time or two. However, mostly followed by they will never mess with you. Those of you more familiar with the area, what do you think? Or will Ticks and Misquitos be our biggest problem?

We plan on staying close to the little Pond/Lake about 1/2 way in the trail. Does this sound wise or not?

Thanks again for any help!
Matt
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Postby ChrisS » Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:17 pm

I never worry myself with bears and lions. In all the time I have spent in southern missouri, I have yet to see either one. Not to say that they are not there, but they are rare. Add to that what you said about them perfering not to mess with you and you have such a slim chance of an encounter that it isn't worth worrying about.

Ticks will be annoying, but never bother me too much when I am biking.

Stinging nettle might be an issue as it seems to be a banner year for the crop.

Mosquitoes will be annoying at night. Bring some netting or sleep in a lightweight mummy bag with something over your face at night. 3 weeks ago while sleeping on the banks of the eleven point I woke up with a fat upper lip from a skeeter bite during the night.
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Postby John » Wed Jun 20, 2007 8:46 am

We plan on staying close to the little Pond/Lake about 1/2 way in the trail. Does this sound wise or not?


I'm trying to figure out what pond you're speaking of. Can you give me a topo section number or general description?

There are a two 'stock ponds' along/nearby the trail that I can recall, both of which are interesting to camp next to but probably not a good source for water.

Let me know which trailhead you'll be leaving from and better idea of the pond in question and I'll give you more feedback.
John
 
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Postby Black Magic » Wed Jun 20, 2007 8:58 am

Here are some pictures from my first trip to the Berryman. I don't know the name of the trailhead we started from but there are pictures of us there. As well as a picture of the pond I am speaking of.

http://stlouismtb.tripod.com/mountainbiking/berrymantrail.htm
Matt
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Postby Black Magic » Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:04 am

I believe after looking at those pictures we started at the Berryman Trail head and rode counter clockwise.
Matt
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Postby John » Wed Jun 20, 2007 10:01 am

That's a pretty reasonable spot to camp, but it's at about the 1/3 - 2/3 point on the loop from Berryman campground (about 8 miles from Berryman going clockwise). If that fits into your trip, then its a serene bad spot (although I'm not sure I would drink the water).

The area around Harmon Spring is closer to the halfway point and the water is better. However, the camping selection isn't as good, as the field is grown in and there aren't many other flat places around.

So... you could either grab water at Harmon and camp at the pond or do some hunting around Harmon for a good campsite (maybe someone will chime in with a good spot).
John
 
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