Nov 18, 2015 at 11:04 am #1334305
Planning a 2017 Trek to Philmont. Assuming we get a slot, I'll be visiting with the parents about minimizing gear and gear weight. Money is pretty tight for a number of families, so will have to balance the cost/weight tradeoff. I would like to keep packs 4lbs or less, Seeping bags at 3 lbs or less, Tent at 2.5 lbs (shared 5 lb tent), and then a simple CCF sleeping pad. Keeping this gear at 10 lbs or less would be a great start for the boys. Add in DriDucks for raingear and it is pretty easy to manage the rest of the gear. What is the latest equipment advice on hitting these weight limits? We obviously have some time to shop Sierra Trading Post and other sites… Thanks for the help. TerryNov 18, 2015 at 11:25 am #2238889Rick AdamsBPL Member
Went for the 1st time this summer. You're on the right track. I would probably try to minimize weight a little more aggressively on everything but the backpack. We had some boys who were quite uncomfortable with 35-40lb loads. If anything I'd be steering them towards external frame packs with well fitting hip belts and encouraging them to spend money saved on lighter sleeping bags etc. The water load is unlike anything they are used to. The hardest thing for our boys was just leaving extras (like a clean shirt and pants) at base camp. Be very demanding about training hikes and backpacking trips. We had a couple boys who were way behind the group and it created consequences for all.Nov 18, 2015 at 1:03 pm #2238903
Thanks for the feedback. If we are granted our two treks, I believe the older boys will select a more difficult trek closer to 100 miles, while the younger group will lean toward something in the 60 mile range. We are planning a pretty difficult shakedown fairly early in the process to see where everyone stands…worried about one of the adults and a couple of the boys. They will be required to carry their base gear plus crew gear plus 20 lbs (to replicate 10 for food and 10 for water). Does anyone have a baseline for the weight of Philfood? I understand the bulk but haven't found the weights. Would 2 lbs/day/person work, or does the packaging push it higher? Any specific gear recommendations? TerryNov 18, 2015 at 2:07 pm #2238918Rick AdamsBPL Member
2lbs a day will work and some people in our group were lighter than that. Between loss of appetite at altitude and what Philmont considers "food", we discarded 10-20% of allotment. This is very person specific. Nobody in our crew of 11 left base camp with more than 42lbs including food and 2 liters of water. We kept an eye on weight but didn't purchase high end stuff outside of some sleeping gear we already owned. Each person also had a 96oz Nalgene canteen for heavier water needs. Some of the packs were 30 years old. 10lbs of food may be heavy as you will almost never be carrying 5 days supply, check your itinerary. Our crew was truly boy led. As a consequence mornings were a struggle. The boys helped with that problem by ditching the 2 cooked breakfast meals. Morning food was on the go or during breaks. You will need a tremendous amount of patience. Between Philmont rules and teenagers in general you will spend an awful lot of non productive time, I found it challenging. We saw many crews that were adult led, not good.Nov 18, 2015 at 7:46 pm #2238976Matt DirksenBPL Member
@namelesswayLocale: Mid Atlantic
The big issue we experienced was the "size" of the Philmont food. Your packs will need to have enough expansion space to deal with how bulky the food comes. That's almost as big an issue as the weight concern. One thing that helped our crew out was all of us looking at a spreadsheet with our respective weights on it, as well as our primary gear. That way the boys could better figure out how to distribute the gear. Personally, I enjoyed my Rainshadow II. My son took a 4.5lb tent, and the rest of the crew used PhilTents. Our scoutmaster was rather "old skool" about backpacking, so he wasn't very supportive about UL methodology. Whatever gear you end up with, make sure the boys (and their parents) test drive everything. One of our boys ended up with a new pack on our second shakedown trip which didn't fit, And didn't get a new pack until a day before we flew out. Risky.Dec 1, 2015 at 12:48 pm #3368075Walter UnderwoodBPL Member
@wunderLocale: San Francisco Bay AreaDec 6, 2015 at 6:59 am #3368901
- @Walter. Did Philmont require you to use the bug tent under the tarp so you had a fully enclosed shelter or were you just able to use ground cloths?
TerryDec 8, 2015 at 6:59 am #3369361
My tent recommendation is the Six Moon Designs Lunar Duo Outfitter (57 oz not including stakes and trekking poles and currently on sale for $124 + shipping).
Pack would be the resurrected GoLite Jam 70 that My Trail Company should be bringing out shortly since they met their initial fundraising goal to release 15 GoLite products. They had been around 34 oz I think. I would reinforce the foam “frame” with a piece of corrugated plastic (eg, election signs)
My son used both of those this past summer and I highly doubt you’ll find better deals. If you don’t want to wait for a Jam (or whatever it will now be called), maybe an old Fusion 65 from SMD for $110 on sale. You could also go used, including the Golite Pinnacle (what I use) that the Jam 70 replaced.
The bag will be the most expensive. My son had outgrown the REI Sub Kilo I had gotten for $125 on sale a few years ago so I got a lightly used Montbell Super Spiral Down Hugger #3 from a member here for $150 last year. Heavier options like Kelty Cosmic Down 20 may be had for less on sale.Dec 8, 2015 at 5:29 pm #3369466Jim ColtenSpectator
@Walter. Did Philmont require you to use the bug tent under the tarp so you had a fully enclosed shelter or were you just able to use ground cloths?
Not Walter here …. but our troop was allowed to use a 10 Golite SL-5 with an MYOG silnylon bathtub floor two different years, 2010 and 2012.Jan 27, 2016 at 3:45 pm #3378509
SMD Lunar Duo Explorer (41 oz and $310 – will hopefully put on sale Val Day again, or may be able to wait until Christmas…) vs. the Tarptent Squall 2 (34 oz – $259). This would be for my two boys going. Personally, I might try a TT Rainshadow 2, which is larger than the Squall. Pros and cons? I know one is side entry and the other front entry. Will be taking to Philmont but also general weekend camping/backpacking with scouts.Jan 27, 2016 at 4:07 pm #3378517
Unless your boys are pretty careful with their gear (or money is not a concern), I’d still get the Outfitter version of the LD – weighs a pound more for nearly half the price and it’s able to handle more abuse. Regardless, I doubt they will care what you get them.Jan 29, 2016 at 7:08 am #3378844
Thanks Michael. Probably good advice. My boys are somewhat careful with their gear…same can’t be said for their friends. Plus, my third son is crossing over from Cubs to Boy Scouts in a month, so the longer their gear can last, the more I can pass down.
As an aside, I’m 6’3″. The three boys are shaping up to be tall…probably range from 6″ to 6″4″. Daughter following may push 6′ as well (wife is 6′).
Thanks for the recommendation.
TerryJan 29, 2016 at 7:32 am #3378848
At those heights the packs may need to be left in the vestibules. I normally have it at my feet (our’s are frameless so very easy to have inside the shelter). Doesn’t matter at Philmont, of course, since they’re all under the dining fly.
I got real lucky in picking up a couple Outfitters from the “lemons to lemonade” sale before the prior Christmas for only $60 each. Think they are $110-120 during normal sales.
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