Sep 28, 2012 at 2:54 pm #1294531
So I'm looking at my gear for a 2 night overnight in the western Catskills. With food and water I'm at about 40 pounds give or take. I was really hoping to be between 30 and 35 but I'm not sure I can get there without replacing my backpack and water filter and a few other things. I'd appreciate any comments on my current list and any ideas on gear to cut to reduce weight. I'm really trying to get the weight down and was able to get 8 pounds out already. Anything else I can cut without replacing anything?
Gregory Baltoro 75 93.000
Osprey Pocket 4.000
ENO DoubleNest 19.500
Integral Designs Siltarp 2 14.000
ENO Atlas Straps 11.500
ENO Talon Ridgeline 3.250
8 MSR Ground Hog Stakes 4.625
Guy Lines 7.375
ENO Gear Slin 7.500
Stuff Sack 2.000
Montbell UL SS #5 Long 20.875
Exped Synmat UL LW 22.125
Exped Schnozzle Bag 2.125
Thermarest Ridge Rest R 12.000
Exped UL Pillow 3.375
Camelbak with 3 L Water 90.000
Empty Nalgene 7.000
First Need Water Purifie 23.875
Water Bag 2.250
Small Shamy Style towel 1.000
Stuff Sack 0.875
Mini Dr Goldbonds 1.625
2 travel rolls TP/seat covers 2.750
Clorox Wipes 1.250
2oz Camp Soap 3.000
3 oz mouthwash 2.750
Hand Sanitizer 2.250
Zip Lock 0.125
Columbia Beanie 2.000
Light Gloves 1.625
Cotton Bandana 1.125
Poly Bandana 2.125
Work Gloves 2.500
Eddie Bauer Primaloft Jacket 15.000
Sock Liner 1.125
Smart Wool Med Wt Socks 3.875
Poly Underwear 4.750
Base Layer Pants 13.000
Base Layer Shirt 14.000
Light Fleece Pullover 11.000
Poly T Shirt 10.000
Digital Camera 5.000
4AAA Batteries 1.750
4 AA Batteries 3.125
Candle Lanternv +Candle 8.375
Black Diamond Storm and batts 4.000
2 Ziplock bags Trash 0.750
4 Lens Wipes 0.375
Body Glide 1.125
Bug Spray 1.625
Compass Pouch 1.125
Duct Tape 1.500
Fire Starting Kit 5.000
First Aid 5.500
Leatherman Juice CS4 6.500
Light My Fire striker 0.500
Mora Bushcraft Knife 7.500
Pocket Sharpener 1.000
S Biner 0.500
S Biner 0.500
S Biner 0.500
Sit Pad 2.125
Stuff Sack 0.375
Cabela's Blaze Orange Rain Cover5.750
Eddie Bauer Rain Jacket 17.500
Columbia Rain Pants 12.625
OR Seattle Sombrero 3.625
Emberlit Titanium 6.750
12 Esbit 2.875
8oz Alcohol 8.125
Olicamp HA Space Saver Pot/Lid 4.500
Sea to Summit Collapsible Cup 1.625
Reflectix Pot Cozy 1.375
1/4 Bandana 0.375
4 Dog Bush Cooker Mini
Alcohol/Esbit Burner 0.625
2 Titanium Stakes 0.375
GSI Pot Gripper 0.500
Measuring up and heat shield 0.125
GSI UL Coffee Drip 0.375
Stuff Sack 0.500
Snow Peak Dbl Wall 450 Mug 4.000
Powdered Milk 2.125
Cof Filts,Tea,Equal,Ice Tea Mix 3.750
Tuna Packet 3.000
Knorr Side 4.250
Cous Cous 4.000
Powdered Creamer 2.875
Cous Cous 4.000
3 Cliff Bars 7.375
SPAM Single 3.250
4 Instant Oatmeal 5.000
Trail Mix 9.000
4 Granola Bars 3.875
Salt and Pepper 1.750
4oz olive oil 3.750
TOTAL 711.357Sep 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm #1916483
…Sep 28, 2012 at 6:07 pm #1916531
@gregfLocale: Canadian Rockies
Camelbak with 3 L Water 90.000.
This is a lot of water. How far between water sources are you and what temp afe you hiking at. 3l for me is about 6 hours of hiking. Plot your time between water sources on your map and figure out how much you actuall need. Each cup of water you remove takes more than 1/2 a pound out of your kit
Empty Nalgene 7.000 nix
First Need Water Purifie 23.875 consider replacing with drops
Small Shamy Style towel 1.000 pick one bandana, buff, or towel you have 4
Trowel 2.000 nix, use stake
2 travel rolls TP/seat covers 2.750 reduce
Wipes 2.375 you have lens wipes, regular wipes,, clorox wipes sanitizer, soap, mouthwash, toothpaste. At most you need toothpaste, soap, and one kind of wipes. Really you only need soap
Crocs 13.375 nix, if you want camp shoes make ul pairwith duct tape and walmart blue sleeping pad
Columbia Beanie 2.000 buff and beanie duplicate functions
Work Gloves 2.500 work gloves and light gloves are listed pick one
Sock Liner 1.125
Smart Wool Med Wt Socks 3.875 do you reslly need a second pair of outer socks if you have a clean liner
Poly Underwear 4.750
Base Layer Pants 13.000. Really heavy, most peoples base layers are sub 8 oz
Base Layer Shirt 14.000. Really heavy, do you have something lighter like a running shirt, do you need a clean sleep shirt i just hike in the same poly shirt each day washing it in lakes or streams
Light Fleece Pullover 11.000. You already have primaloft jacket and base layer (how is fleece lighter than base layer) pick fleece or jacket
Poly T Shirt 10.000 you already have a base layer plus what is worn so this is completely redundant
Other than a camera i bring no electronics but that is a personal choice, can a cell phone cover all the functions, on a two day hike do you need extra batteries or a cell
Candle Lanternv +Candle 8.375. Nix, redundant only need one lightsource
Black Diamond Storm and batts 4.000
Fire Starting Kit 5.000. Seems heavy, whats in it. I bring an ounce os vasoline soaked cotton
First Aid 5.500. Seems heavy do you know how to use all of the parts
Leatherman Juice CS4 6.500. Pick this or knife or better yet replace with 1 to 2 oz knife or tool
Mora Bushcraft Knife 7.500 see leatherman
Pocket Sharpener 1.000. What for, knife will not get to dull in 2 nights
S Biner 0.500. You have lots of biners do they all have purposes
Sit Pad 2.125 nix, you have a ridge rest to sit on
Wallet 5.750 replace with ziplock bag
Cabela's Blaze Orange Rain Cover5.750
Eddie Bauer Rain Jacket 17.500
Columbia Rain Pants 12.625. Do you like rain pants? Personally i dont and just hike in shorts and change at the end of the day but this is a preferance thing
12 Esbit 2.875 why esbit when you have alcohol already
Sea to Summit Collapsible Cup 1.625 pick mug or cup
1/4 Bandana 0.375 redundant use bandana above
4 Dog Bush Cooker Mini What is this
2 titanium stakes use tent stakes
GSI Pot Gripper 0.500. Redundant use bandana
Snow Peak Dbl Wall 450 Mug 4.000 pick mug or cup
4oz olive oil 3.750 on two night hike this is uneccessary unless you like the flavor. Going into caloried deficit isnt a big deal for two days
I think if you can cut out .5 l of water i have identified 9.5 lbs of cuts to your system without cost to your wallet or comfort. One thing i would do as an excercise is go through each item and write down its purpose if any are similay like hand sanitizer and soap pick one instead. Also take a look at other gearlists on this site to compare them. You could also start a second list from the bottom up starting with your shelter and bag and backpack, you could survive with just these items then add in luxuries until you hit 30lbs. After that you dont add anything else. So instead of thinking what do i have to give up to save weight you think which out of all my luxury items will make my trip more enjoyable while limiting my pack weight to x lbsSep 28, 2012 at 6:22 pm #1916534
I'd have a good look at your sleep system. You are carrying a hammock, an inflatable mat and a Ridgerest. That's a minimum of 34 ounces you can ditch right there. Pick one and get rid of the others. If you take the Synmat (my choice) you can ditch 52 ounces without trying.
You are going to be the sparkliest hiker out there. I'd cull your grooming kit back to about 3oz max. Personally I take a toothbrush, 1.5oz sanitiser and some TP (12 sheets per day). Apart from this, water does a great job. Even if you add in the Goldbonds and 1oz of mouthwash, you're under 4oz. Another pound gone.
Clothing, you have two bandanas, a buff and a beanie. Ditch the poly bandana. I'd ditch the buff as well unless the temp during the day will go under 40, but up to you. You have a base layer shirt, a tshirt, a fleece and a puffy. Ditch the base layer. I'd ditch the fleece as well, but up to you again. Another pound gone.
Ditch the candle. half a pound.
That's a HEAVY book. Pick up a classic. The Old Man and the Sea or Grapes of Wrath or The Road will save half a pound. You have a stove and Esbits, you don't need a firestarting kit. ditch at least one knife and the sharpener. If your knife goes dull in three days you have a problem. You have a LOT of cord. NAme me one realsitic scenario where you expect to use more than you have as guylines.
Sorry I don't understand the stove section. You appear to be carrying four stoves and two types of fuel. You also have two different cups listed and a cookset, all for one person!
Honestly, I think you need to lay your gear out and pick just one of everything. This will save you around ten pounds. Leave this at home.
Then take one of your trash bags, put every thing in there that you think is kind of good still to take. Tape it up and put it at the bottom of your pack. Then take everything you need, and pack that. This will be around 20lb give or take. When you get home, take out the taped up bag, add anything from the need bag you didn't use, and this is you next base weight.
You have good, lightweight gear, you just have too much of it.Sep 28, 2012 at 7:56 pm #1916550
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
I recommend getting Ray Jadine's or Ryan Jordan's books on ultralight hiking. You should read through the gear lists and critiques here and compare them to your own.
Here are the basic concepts of ultralight hiking:
*Don't take anything that you won't use. About the only exception for me is first aid or other emergency/survival items— stuff you never want to use but would be VERY glad to have when it hits the fan. And you can still keep those items Spartan and as light as possible. If it won't keep you warm, dry, fed, or safe, it stays home.
*Take only the amounts you need for the trip. Decanting soap, insect repellent, sunscreen and the like to small containers can save many ounces at little cost. You don't need a 3oz bottle of bug juice for an overnight trip, and so on.
*Weigh everything, write it down and add it up. Doing a spreadsheet may seem bothersome, but it is the easiest, cheapest way to lighten your kit. Scrutinize everything you put on your back. You will see the heavy stuff and know what to look for in future purchases to get your kit lighter and more coordinated (read efficient).
*Seek out the lightest, highest performance items you can afford. Sometimes that saves money: two recycled drinking water bottles will save you about 8oz and $20 over a pair of 1 liter Nalgene bottles. Chlorine dioxide tablets weigh far less than a filter, etc.
*Coordinate your gear to work as a finely tuned system rather than a random accumulation of gear that you just happen to like.
*Seek out items that can have multiple uses, like the rain cape/tarp shelter I mentioned above.
*Give up some of your city life conventions. You don't need separate sleeping clothes or several spare tee shirts, etc. It is okay to be a little smelly and dirty. It's not a fashion show and I don't care if your colors aren't coordinated.
*Know that you have control over what you take and how much it weighs. It is YOUR decision– and also your responsibility to live with the outcome. Much of the excess that we pack is in response to fear of nature. Know how your body works. Understand the physics of staying warm and dry. Know how to navigate and take care of yourself. Your brain is (or should be) the best piece of equipment you have, and preparing it can make your wilderness experience safe and comfortable.
*Don't be afraid to hike your own hike. Everyone has opinions; they are free and worth every penny You will find opinions on both sides of the weight fence– "that is too heavy" and "that is too fragile" for the same equipment. At one point my base weight was about 8 pounds, but I found frameless packs to be a royal pain to load and to wear, so I upped my kit weight a pound and I'm willing to live with the compromises. Many people need more comfortable sleeping pads, or warmer bag and clothing. What works for a 20 year old male in top condition may be different that your needs. I see no gain in suffering– it is supposed to be recreation, not the Seal Team 6 training course! You may see gear lists that work for Colorado or the Sierra, but would be cold and wet in the PNW. For example, I like fleece and synthetic fills over down.
*Weight savings can snowball in your favor. A lighter kit allows you to use a lighter pack, you can wear lighter shoes, and so forth.
Of course there is a lot more to go in the pack and it adds up. If you have 20 items in your kit and can find replacements that are and average of 1oz lighter each, you saved 1.25 pounds. Cook kits tend to be too large and meal planning (or the lack of it) can tip the scales. I think clothing is the hardest for many to get their heads around and can be very expensive. Toys creep in all over, with cameras and electronics heading up the list, along with a host of "handy" trail gadgets. Books are another brick in the pack. A lot of little things can add pounds quickly. Nothing is lighter than leaving it at home.
I'm of a mind that any kit can survive *one* heavy item for the user's comfort or budget, like a thicker sleeping pad, or a DLSR camera.
And always,always, HAVE FUN!Sep 28, 2012 at 11:01 pm #1916571
You need to ask yourself some hard questions. Are you really so fussy that you can't go two nights without the utmost attention to your hygiene or appearances? I want to help but really my advice would be to throw out half of your junk and learn to cope without some modern amenities.
That's harsh, sorry but it highlights what I perceive is holding you back. You don't know WHAT you want to do. You have a bunch of bushcraft gear…are you improvising shelter? Are you camping a lot? Then why lug so much stuff on your back? Or do you want to hike and see a lot of terrain (then spend less time in camp so you don't need as much "stuff"). Does your knife really dull fast enough that you need to sharpen it on the trail (maybe sharpen at home before you leave?) and even if an "emergency" situation occurs will a slightly dulled knife get you killed or not?
For starters your sleep/shelter system is plusher than most people sleep on at home! Really? A hammock plus a RR plus a synmat! That coupled with a superlight summer sleeping bag makes me really confused. You have enough warmth below you to keep you from freezing on everest (that's not hyperbole, you literally have that much insulation) but almost nothing above your to keep you warm. Have you really looked at what types of temperatures you're LIKELY to experience during your planned trip? If weather is dodgy, then, and ONLY then carry more gear (or limit your distance so that you can hike back to the car and just have a grumbly weekend).
Do yourself a favor and peruse this website. There's lots of free and valuable information The following two links will give you a brief rundown on philosophy with some suggested gear lists (outdated, but fairly easy to adapt to today).
And this is an hour long presentation by Andrew Skurka that will help you out in thinking and planning before hand so you don't have to carry so much
I really wish you the best, but you're going to have to educate yourself a LITTLE bit about lightweight backpacking before anyone can help you out. In the process you'll see so much stuff on your list that just isn't necessary and doesn't really add any comfort at all (actually, due to weight, probably makes you less comfortable!).Sep 28, 2012 at 11:32 pm #1916574
Leave the ridgerest or the Synmat at home; you shouldn't need both.
Leave the candle lantern.
Rather than taking the book, load a reader app and a bunch of books on your phone (leave it off most of the time, use airplane mode to read), assuming it's an android or iphone (otherwise just bring a lighter book).
Those are the top 3 things that jumped out at me; lots of other good suggestions as well.Sep 29, 2012 at 5:58 am #1916604
Thanks for all the suggestions. I suppose I should have explained a little more about myself. I'm not a small skinny guy like a lot of hikers seem to be but I still do enjoy getting out into the woods, and hiking/camping/canoeing/fishing etc. As a consequence of my size my clothing tends to be larger, bulkier, weigh more and I don't end up with ultra light brands. Most of it comes from companies like Columbia, Cabela's, Duluth Trading and Eddie Bauer. I freely also admit to being a bit of a gear addict. I don't get to go out hiking/camping nearly as often as I'd like and as a consequence I find myself bringing extra gear I've accumulated to test out, futz around with or just play with. I'm not looking to go completely UL or thru hike a long trail. I understand that many of you would consider my goal of 30-35 pounds for a 2 night hike unacceptable overkill too. I'd just get some ideas to lighten my load a bit and make my time in the woods a little more enjoyable.
I had already removed the RidgeRest from the pack prior to posting this and forgot to remove it from the list. I am new to hammock camping but after having slept in one on a trip 3 weeks ago I realized, pads in the hammock tend to bow. My shoulders ended up off the mat. I was thinking of turning the RidgeRest sideways and folding it in half in a T shape with the Synmat to keep under the shoulders. In any event I will be leaving the RR home. I’ll stuff some clothing under my shoulders or try something else. I am a fairly warm sleeper and don't need a lot on top of me if my underside is insulated and I wear the base layer to sleep in. Temps are expected to be down into the low 40s or high 30s this time of year.
Many of you commented on the number of bandanas. I tend to sweat A LOT while hiking, even in cool or cold weather. I'll usually rotate between them as they get soaked and hang them from the pack to dry as I go.
I will leave the Columbia hat home and keep the buff. I can also ditch the light gloves and just keep the work gloves.
The wallet idea is very good and I'll just take the essentials in a zip lock bag. I'll also only take the car key and not the entire key chain.
The book is the second book in the Game of Thrones series and it is a bit of a monster. I have it on my Kindle Fire already. I'll see if I can add it to my phone as well and just bring the phone.
Seeing as how my Camelbak has just started leaking from the connection between the hose and the bladder I'll leave it behind. I'll see about getting 2 Gatorade bottles to carry. I'll also cut the water to 2 liters max rather than 3. As I mentioned earlier I do tent to sweat A LOT and always try to drink plenty of water while I hike.
I tried the Aquamira drops and the pills for water purification, but I find them water to be pretty distasteful when they're used so the First Need will unfortunately probably be staying.
Para Cord. I'm not sure how much I have listed here. It's just a roll of it I grabbed from my gear box. I'll measure it out and just take enough to hang my food in a tree.
I’ll also leave the Leatherman Juice behind and just take the Mora.
As for the cook kit…… I am trying to switch off from a butane stove to some sort of alcohol/Esbit/wood burning setup. The ritual of a hot dinner and hot drinks at night and in the morning are important to me so I’ll be bringing it. I will however only bring 3 Esbit tabs and but the alcohol from 8 oz to 4oz. I’ve never tried Esbit tabs before so I’d like to give them a shot and see how they work out. I’ll also leave the Sea to Summit cup behind and just take the mug. The GSI Pot Gripper will also go.
Greg F asked what the Four Dog Mini Bush Cooker is. It’s a little Alcohol/Esbit burning and windscreen using tent stakes to support the pot. It’s nicely sized for large mug sized pots. It’s from Fourdog.com or something like that.
The olive oil is really only for taste as a butter replacement in the Knorr’s and the Cous Cous. I’ll only take 2oz instead of 4oz.
Someone asked about the 5oz first aid kit. There is a small bottle of Advil, Insect bite relief, a small half empty tube of antibiotic ointment and a handful of Bandaids of various sizes.
A big issue many of you seemed to have is with the personal grooming kit. I can ditch the towel and the hand sanitizer as I have the bandanas and soap. I do have a personal issue with the latrines though. I try to use the latrine if there is one available rather than digging a hole. People around here treat these like crap though. No pun intended. I have no idea how they get sh*t and p*ss all over the seat unless it's on purpose. The Clorox wipes are for these. Maybe I’ll be able to leave the seat a little nicer for you if you happen to come along after me.
So without measuring exactly let’s see what I’ve removed.
Water Savings -26
Columbia Hat -2
Light Gloves -1.625
Para Cord -1.875
Pocket Sharpener -1
Leatherman Juice -6.5
Sea to Summit Cup -1.625
Olive Oil -1.875
Hand Sanitizer -2.25
TOTAL -83.343 or a little over 5lbs.
If I leave the Crocs and the Candle Lantern that's another -13.375 and -8.375 respectivley for about a 6.5lbs reduction.
That’s a start. Thanks for the suggestions.Sep 29, 2012 at 9:42 am #1916643
@harry-nLocale: Western US
"…. Not a tall skinny guy… " for clothes; no problem as the lighter stuff tends to wear quicker. I have a discontinued snag resistant zip Tbut why would clothing makers make more durable base layers, right?
Without buying anything new, get rid of: (*hopefully not redundant with your list above but using iPad, so it's hard to read)
Poly bandana (got a Buff)
Puffy or Light Fleece Pullover (choose one -there's almost a pound depending on your choice)
Digital Camera 5.000, Phone 5.500, and/or GPS 7.875. (that's about a pound to eliminate or reduce
4AAA Batteries 1.750 4 AA Batteries 3.125 (eliminate or reduce by putting fresh batteries in right before trip)
Mini Dr Goldbonds 1.625 (only 2 days, keep in car)
2oz Camp Soap 3.000 (reduce?)
One of the pots and one of the cups/mugs unless you have the gourmet thing going on
Sharpener (it's only 2 days, sharpen at home)
Book (almost a lb)
Seems you want to keep new purchases down but for non-snow trips, maybe replace multitool with much lighter locking single blade (some people do razor blades – meh).
(ed: adds)Sep 29, 2012 at 1:35 pm #1916691
spelt with a tParticipant
@speltLocale: SW/C PA
I feel like it's a bit futile to ask for lightening suggestions when one of your goals is "bringing extra gear I've accumulated to test out, futz around with or just play with." Not trying to be a jerk here. What do you really actually need, or, what items are you absolutely sure you'll use? That should be the gear that gets counted as baseweight. There is a ton of stuff you could eliminate to get to a more reasonable baseweight, then ADD testing/play items back in as necessary. If it were me, I would approach your gear list that way, instead of lumping it all together and trying to cut weight from the whole.Sep 29, 2012 at 2:16 pm #1916698
@detroittigerfanLocale: Ann Arbor
For a solo 2-night trip, I basically don't take any backups or spares. There's really no need and I'm someone who likes to travel comfortably. I take toilet paper, camp shoes and a book (or kindle) and can still keep it around 20lb with food and water and, for a short trip, I might throw in a steak for the first night.
I know it's easy to look at something small that only weighs an ounce and think, "it's just an ounce", but keep in mind that 16 of those little things and you've added a whole pound.
Some of what I see have already been pointed out.
Sea to Summit Collapsible Cup / Snow Peak Dbl Wall 450 Mug – don't need both
3L bladder / water bag – don't need both
Lots of bandanas, towels, lens wipes, etc. – you really only need one of these. You sweat a lot, fine, just rinse it out, wring it out and use it damp. It'll still work just fine.
You only need one light source
Light gloves / work gloves – can't imagine needing both
7+oz of guylines / paracord – sounds like enough to fly a kite!
Osprey Pocket – you have huge pack and you need an extra pocket?
Are the batteries extras? Do you really need extras for such a short trip?
Probably don't need bug stray
Your toiletry list is really impressive…Sep 30, 2012 at 7:46 am #1916828
It sounds like your getting caught in the idea of looking at possible items and thinking "that's a good idea" or "that might come in handy". A better approach is to think "can I do without this item" and if the answer is no then asking "is there a lighter alternative".
If you think more along those lines you could probably cut the gear and clothing portion of the list by half with no real loss in comfort and very little in the way of extra expenditures.Sep 30, 2012 at 3:31 pm #1916944
You've already got good advice on other things, but you can lighten the hammock suspension. Remove the standard ENO set up (particularly their 'biners). Put on whoopie slings and get some polyester straps (I got mine at harbor freight and cut off the hardware from roof straps). Take out the ENO suspension and put the whoopies through the channel. Just feed the whoopies through the dead eye and pull tight. Using a marlin spike hitch with a light weight dowel gives you an easily adjustable set up. Check out hammockforums.net for set up advice and sources to buy whoopie slings. I'm a tall big guy and it works great for me.Oct 1, 2012 at 1:52 pm #1917216
@scottbentzLocale: Southern California
"For a solo 2-night trip, I basically don't take any backups or spares."
I agree with this sentiment. In fact, I think a 2 night trip is the exact sort of trip you can really use to try and go with just the bare minimum where you feel safe but not super "comfortable". Try it out and you will find you will not really miss any of the items you thought you really needed or just wanted. If there is something you really missed just make a note of it and take it next time.
Learning to hike with less is real liberating for me. It lets me hike more miles, if I want, and it makes it real easy to set up camp and break down camp. I would look at the suggestions given above and take them into consideration. I am sure most here would have no more than 15 lbs. for an average 2 night trip food and water included.
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