My husband and I are backpacking old guys. Once a year we dust off the packs, sort through our mountain of gear and divide up the weight. I keep giving him a bit more each year. As I age, I don't stand on that absolute equality platform as often. (Long rant for another time here).
So our backpacking is a solitude thing. We get away from the kids, cars, dogs, boom boxes, smoky fires, and drunk adults. You can only carry so much beer up that mountain with all the other stuff.
And our backpacking is an independence thing. We can carry it all, make it all, and do without some. Do we shop for special lightweight gear at expensive sporting goods stores? Sometimes. And we shop at Walmart, too. Our tent was from Target. Our cooking pots from Walmart. Our clothes are from our closet, whatever we usually wear. Our sleeping bags and mats and cooking stove are from REI, the expensive store. But we don't ever buy that prepackaged food stuff. This is Fluffysgarden after all. We make our own. We grow our own. And we sometimes buy it at the grocery store.
I have made beef jerky, chicken jerky, apple leather, yogurt leather, and dehydrated vegetables for our stew dinners. I also make granola and granola bars, but this time I bought them.
We often indulge ourselves with brewed coffee and Kahlua. We mostly lay around and listen to... nothing. San Jacinto is a dry place. There are not very many birds and almost no other animals. There is a water source about a quarter mile from our camp area and the stream flows through a meadow. In the evening you might catch sight of a deer at the watering hole, but we usually don't. No bears, mountain lions or snakes, either.
To be dreadfully honest, we lay around for two days because we are so tired from the hike that we can't do anything else. Then we have to carry it all back down the hill and drive home.
I love this trip and look forward to it every year. This year we bought a new fangled water purifying unit at the expensive store. I have no idea how it works and we leave in two days. This is what adventure is all about.