Ames Adventure Outfitters is a Manufacturers' Representative for top quality indoor & outdoor clothing and equipment, water proofing supplies, packs, tents, solar and monitoring devices, trail running, approach, and mountaineering shoes/boots, socks, and other accessories. The manufacturing firms that we represent consistently offer merchandise that leads the industry in new technology and are regularly awarded accordingly. It is our belief that outstanding customer service and integrity in all business transactions are essential for long term success in this industry. Spend some time at the site getting to know us and our product lines.  We look forward to working with you!

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The Total Package: The TX Pro brings NTN Virtues to Life

Even at a glance it’s easy to notice the free heel TX Pro is not messing around. The four buckle NTN (New Telemark Norm) system boot is built for maximum power and finesse, boasting all of SCARPA’s tricks and materials, including tech fitting compatibility. By design, the system’s dual connection creates a stronger interface between [...]

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Hiking The John Muir Trail

Osprey Athlete Payge McMahon is an adventure athlete, ‘rockin’ yogi’ and journalist who travels the world inspiring others to get outdoors, try new things and start checking off that bucket list.


2015 U.S.A. Adventure Recommendation

…and which Osprey Pack you should take!

Payge Osprey Packs John Muir Trail

I’ve backpacked all over the world and the JMT is my all time favorite!

Located in Northern California, this breathtaking trek takes you 221-miles, up and over 11 mountain passes, ranging from 9,703 ft. (Cathedral) to 14,496 (Mt. Whitney), for a total of 84,000 feet of elevation gains and losses.

If you’ve ever wanted to trek the Pacific Crest Trail, but thought the 2,650 miles was just a bit much, do the John Muir Trail instead! A 170 of the 221 miles are on the PCT and you will trek through the most beautiful national parks in the United States. From Yosemite Valley, the John Muir and Ansel Adams Wildernesses, Kings Canyon, Sequoia National Parks and up and over Mt. Whitney to Lone Pine, CA. Enjoy remote the wilderness from; rivers, blue lakes, waterfalls, forests, mountains, deer, marmots to the occasional bear – you will see it all.

The best time to go is from June – August.   The trek is traditionally done in 14-21 days, and if preferred, can also be section hiked.  Most start in Yosemite and go south, but if you want to get the hard elevation out of the way first, start in Lone Pine/Mt. Whitney and go north.  Get your permits early, pack clothes for hot to freezing weather and plan your food wisely.

Payge Osprey John Muir Trail Ariel 65

My hiking partner and I packed food for 10 days and each of our packs weighed about 45 lbs. we when started.

There are a few places along the trail to resupply. You can buy food and mail provisions ahead of time to the general stores. Or you can opt to ‘scavenge,’ like we did. Many hikers mail themselves too much food and ‘donate’ what they don’t want to carry, in big barrels outside the resupply locations.  These barrels are great! ‘Scavenge’ through the donated dehydrated meals, peanut butter, beef jerky etc., take what you want for free and save yourself money!

Best guidebook:The John Muir Trail: Through the Californian Sierra Nevada (Cicerone Guide),” by Alan Castle.

Best place for stop and resupply: Vermillion Valley Resort

While the term, ‘resort’ is being used loosely; this place is a backpackers’ oasis, located in the forest, on the west end of Lake Edison, at about the half-way point on the JMT.  The VVR has a general store and rustic restaurant, where you have got to try the barbeque bacon cheeseburger.  You’ll swear it is the best thing you’ve ever eaten!

Jim, the owner is helpful, friendly and so are the folks who work there.   Showers and a washer are available to do laundry, and you can camp on the grounds or splurge a little and stay in one of the basic hotel rooms or even more nostalgic, one of the musty, trailers on-site.  Cell phone reception is unlikely and electricity comes from a generator.  At 9pm its lights out until 7 am the next day.

Best pack: Osprey Aura 65 or Ariel 65

What I packed: The following supplies were divided between 2 backpacks

1 – Bear Vault

2 – Sleeping Bag +15F

2 – Silk Sleep Liner

2- Thermarest Neo-Air Sleeping Pad

1 – Tent

2 – Poncho

2 – Sarong (towel)

1 – Camera & Cell Phone with chargers

1 – SteriPEN

1 – Esbit Stove (+12 Fuel Cells)

1 – BHK Knife & Ferro Rod

1 – Lighter

2 – Spork

1 – Titanium Cup w/ Tin Foil

2 – Wet wipes

1 – Paracord

2 – 1.5L Camelback Hydration Bladder

2 – Liter Bottle

2 – Sets of Trekking Poles

1 – Journal

1 – JMT Trail Book w/ Maps

2- Convertible pants, tank or short sleeve top, long-sleeve shirt & fleece

2 – Base layer (top/bottoms)

6 – Pairs of socks & Handkerchiefs

1- Sports Bra

2 – Soft Shell Jacket, Fleece Gloves, Hat & Visor

2 – Flip Flops

2 – Hiking shoes

10 – Mountain House Dehydrated Meals

2 – Packs of Tortillas

1 – Jar of Goobers (Peanut butter/Jelly mix)

20 – Clif Bars & Granola Bars

20 – Fruit Wraps

1 – Bag of Trail Mix

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Going Deeper: A Free-Heel History

It used to be for stability – dropping one knee provided better fore and aft stability than the parallel position, especially when wearing soft, leather lace-up boots. With good telemark technique, the backcountry became a ski playground long before AT gear became as reliable and lightweight as it is today. Only recently, with the invention [...]

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Behind the Scenes: A SCARPA Ski Boot is Born

Over the last 35 years, SCARPA has contributed immensely to the development of alpine touring equipment. In that time, SCARPA has designed boots that meet the needs of skiers heading into the snowy mountains with their eye on untracked powder. SCARPA’s alpine touring boots are designed for skiers, by skiers. It all began with the [...]

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SCARPA First Friday Film Fest: December

It’s officially December 5th, which means the First Friday Film Fest is back! Scroll through this month’s collection of videos featuring our athletes pushing their limits on rock, snow and ice. Working for the Weekend SCARPA’s newest ski athlete (and full time lawyer in Portland, ME) Ben Leoni is featured in a web series about [...]

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