Rocci Backpacking Bachelor Party

From Rocci Bachelor Party

Hello All!

The crew went out on another epic backcountry adventure this past weekend, celebrating the pending nuptials for one of the cooler dudes we know, Rocci. It was a classic weekend of trekking, bodysurfing, plot twists, whiskey and truly glorious nature.

Being in the backcountry with some of the best people in my life, toasting our my man the Pontz, and returning to one of my favorite National Forests … Life does not get any better than this.

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Let’s start at the start though.

Getting packed up, organizing all of my things, love this stuff just so damn much.

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The crew rallies in Berkeley, and the stoke is at a sufficiently acceptable level.

Couldn’t ask for a better squad.

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So there we are, driving north on the 101, headed up to the lost coast.

As the best man for this excursion, I thought that I had everything covered. Coordinating the bay area rally spot, getting the bear canisters, making sure the food was all lined out, getting the trail head lined out for the dudes meeting us up north … We’ve all done this before, and I felt really solid about the weekend all around.

Okay, so we are driving along a country road, just off 101, headed to the lost coast trail head. Danch calls and Kyle answers. In like the 2 seconds before the call gets cutoff, Kyle thinks that he hears Danch say, “the lost coast is closed”. We were all like uhhhhh, he probably said “the lost coast is close” … Wishfully hoping that an entire national forest wasn’t friggin closed.

But, there wasn’t any cell reception, so all we could do was drive westward, and nervously go over the very limited message we received from Danch.

… Until he waived us down on the side of the road (at the sole spot where there was cell reception) and told us quite succinctly that indeed, the lost coast was closed because of a massive forest fire …

We immediately scrambled to find an alternative stretch of nearby back country.

Uhhhh, shit.

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I got stressed.

Of everything I thought that I could have planned for, the Lost Coast being closed was not one of them. And ya know, I totally took it on my shoulders that I’d somehow let down Rocci. He empowered me to organize this, and fuck, I totally dropped the ball.

Within one second however, everything was ok. Rocci came right up to me, and was awesome. All good. No worries. Plus … The fact that our plans had to now change, and that we were all standing on the side of this random road in the middle of nowhere, that meant that at this moment the adventure had indeed begun.

So … Plan B … Sinkyone.

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The crew rallied, donned our National Pontz Service hoodies, and the stoke began in ernest.

Seriously things started to get so cool.

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We geared up.

We hit the trail.

And everything was right in the world.

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This really gnarly fog started to descend as we hit the trail head.

The effect was just plain rad, as we charged into the backcountry, ready for the adventure.

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Charging the rest of the way with headlamps, we arrived at our camp in the dark.

Love getting in super late and setting up all the goodies at night.

Our menu was stellar, and a long drive, coupled with a night hike, created some very serious appetites.

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We ate.

We drank.

We were merry.

… A light drizzle met us that evening. So for the heck of it we built a shelter.

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Mostly because we needed an excuse to do cool stuff.

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And practice our knot tying skills.

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Had another wonderful nights sleep outdoors.

Seriously, there is something just so damned cozy about my sleeping bag. The cold air on my face, the fresh smell of the ocean breeze, the eucalyptus grove surrounding our camp, our spot was as close to perfect as it gets. Totally secluded, cool and refreshing, camping does not get much better.

The crew slept in soundly.

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We woke up with a herd of elk coming through the camp.

Dozens of massive Roosevelt elk, just cruising down the hill, right there as we get up.

Incredible.

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Oh ya.

We were also awoken from our slumber by this guy.

Kernel, rolling in like a boss.

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As we shook off the AM cobwebs, made some breakfast, and started our day, the full magnitude of this experience started to sink in.

I mean seriously ….. ROCCI’S BACHELOR PARTY … Too many cool dudes!

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We had such an epic collection of UC Santa Cruz, Carlsbad, and Bay Area friends.

Off the charts fun.

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There were hipsters, there were water polo dudes, there were surfers, there were ape-like creatures.

The full spectrum of friends abounds.

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Spent some real quality time at the stream down from our camp.

Fresh water from a National Forest … Delicious.

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The mission for the day was a beach and body surfing excursion.

We hiked down to ocean and were met with a perfect Pacific morning.

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We had a super cool expedition up and down the beach.

With no goal other than hanging out and enjoying the day.

Life is good.

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Combing the beach, we diligently gathered wood.

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And hopped right on building our beach fire.

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The crew then suited up, and embarked on my favorite part of the trip: the aquatic adventure.

This stretch of the ocean is as intimidating as it gets. Cold, scraggly, full of life … Charging it out for a body surf session in this water definitely got my heart rate cranking.

Seriously … It is gnar getting in this water.

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But the glory of the Pacific is beyond compare.

The cliffs, the sea …

And to be out with the guys … Perfection.

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We caught some waves, swam around this dope little point …

And were plain silly out there …

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Words cannot capture how much fun this is.

There is literally nothing more fun that these crazy aquatic adventures.

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The water tires you out.

For sure.

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We started partying early that day.

There was this other family who had hiked in, and we all soon became friends.

Rad.

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They taught us about smacking a bag of wine and taking big pulls from it.

No clue why, but it’s totally awesome.

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Dudes.

Words can not describe just how absurdly cool this stuff is.

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Evening descends, and we mozy back to camp.

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Kernel (as always) is chilling.

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Again … We ate. We drank. We were merry.

Another stupendous camping night of relaxing, catching up, and basking in the Sinkyone.

Roch! Hugely appreciate you bringing all of us together.

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Sunday Morning …

We gear up and hike out …

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Next up, this dude marries one of the more awesome people I have ever known!

Jane – duuuude – can’t wait til the wedding!

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So ya, how to conclude?

My core group of friends has figured out this life hack where we can rapidly escape into the wilderness, shed all of the stress and anxiety and deadlines of real life, and adventure and bond and stoke on the truly simple and beautiful things.

And Rocci – dude – I couldn’t be any happier for you and Jane. This bachelor party was the perfect start for this wedding extravaganza. You two have started something amazing, and we are so thrilled for the Pontzalanos!!!