Make a list for your outdoor adventures

Unlike Santa, who makes a list each year and then checks it twice, I make a list once and then check it once or twice every year, every two or three years or maybe never again. I keep the lists in a file called “trip lists.” 

A week away from my annual fishing trip to Ludington, I pulled out my “Ludington List” to scan to see if there’s anything I need to add to the list or do before it’s time to leave. 

The original list took a couple weeks to build. First, I sat down and tried to think of everything not already in my boat or in my vehicle, I need to pack. That part is pretty simple: a spool of 20-pound-test line; gallon ZipLock bags; Shimano hat, etc. etc.

Then I made sure I had a pen and note pad with me and jotted down other items, not yet listed, as they popped into my head while I went through my daily routine. 

“Don’t forget the blue cooler,” materializes in my brain.  “Don’t forget some extra camera batteries.” Each time a thought like that occurs, I jot it down and eventually the notepad gets filled with mind messages. My Ludington List has 42 items on it, not counting changes of underwear and the like. 

Some I’d probably never forget. Others, my pre-trip list proved, I would. 

I once forgot changes of underwear on a ski trip to Colorado. J.C. Penny was the winner. 

Regardless, it’s very rare these days for me to be halfway to where ever and have a thought such as, “Crap, I should have brought my extra duck call, spinning rod or whatever.” If it was on the list, I’ve got it. 

Now it’s time to tweak the list and make it better. During the trip, if there’s something you realize you forgot or realized you should have included, make note of it. Add it to the master list when you get home. If the trip you are listing is a first time adventure, there were probably things included that once there weren’t needed and would never be needed. Scratch those from the master list, then file the list away until next time. 

Each time you use the list it will make planning easier and in the long run, will make your trip more enjoyable. 

Just thought of something. Are extra camera batteries on the list?  Yes they are, and they were tucked into my duffle when I headed for Ludington for a week on the water. I know, because they were on the list. 

Categories: Blog Content, MicBlogs, Michigan – Mike Schoonveld

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