Sep 2, 2014 at 6:07 am #1320531
Make sure to select the "Pecos Sept '14" tab at the bottom:
This is the heaviest I've hiked in years, so you'll see some fat in the list. But then, some of the heaviness is due to a realization that when I can't get out and hike very often — this is my first trip in the mountains for more than a year — the learning curve itself of getting back into the wilderness becomes an obstacle that is exacerbated by a gear list that is too lean. In other words, if I was able to hike more often, I know I'd become accustomed to trail life and be able to trim down again without sacrificing a lot of comfort ……. but I don't.
This is just me rationalizing to myself of course :-)
Any feedback is welcome, though my trip is coming up this Saturday so I'd probably have to save any suggestions for later in the fall, when I can hopefully get out again.Sep 2, 2014 at 6:48 am #2132124Mike MBPL Member
few things that jump out :)
clothing- socks- having a dry pair is prudent, having two extra pairs…….. I just put my wet ones on in the morning, within 10 minutes they are fine; if something were to happen to that pair (has never happened) I still have a spare set in a pinch
I think while having a nice mid-layer might be nice, having a nice puffy should be sufficient especially w/ a merino ls shirt and a windshirt to layer over the puffy- it's over a 1/2 # of savings
your stake setup sounds a little on the heavy side???? my mid stake setup is 2.0 oz; as does the bear bag- mine weighs 1.4 oz w/ a mini biner, spinnaker sack and 50' of line
you're carrying a canister stove, a larger knife and saw seems like a little much; a SA Bushcrafter (Farmer minus a layer) has a nice small saw and 3.5" blade (an awl as well)- mine weighs 2.1 oz
shelter- do you need a bivy w/ the speed mid? maybe a light polycro ground cloth instead???
sleep- custom cotton cover- that sounds like ~ 1/2 # that might be able to be left behind in a pinch :)
headlamp- is the weight w/ lithium batteries? lithiums are much lighter (and better!)- it shaves a ~ 1/2 ounce on my BD AAA lamps
toiletries look like they could be trimmed, repackaged, etc for 3-4 days it takes very little bronners to do the trick, just get one of those micro squeeze vials, repackage or sample size of body glide, etc
don't get me wrong, it's a solid gear list that still is pretty light, just making suggestions to make it a little lighter :)
have fun on your trip!Sep 2, 2014 at 7:11 am #2132127
Thanks Mike, that's all great feedback! Agreed with … well with basically all of it.
A few notes on these for now … mind you these are not meant to deflect any useful feedback, but this is just a reflection of my current thinking.
- The extra pair of socks is a bit of insurance due to never having hiked in the SmartWools for a multiday trip before. Last time I tried this (with some Darn Tough that I no longer use) I was disappointed to find that they became somewhat "boardy" by the end of the trip due to sweating / snowmelt wetting / drying / stiffening. So basically, the extra pair is insurance against the SmartWools not turning out so great.
- The Melanzana grid layer is mainly intended as an action layer, for instance if I end up hiking real early in the morning, cold start etc, or perhaps if I want to rest after a long sweaty climb that suddenly turns into a stop on a windy cold summit.
This is a clothing category where I struggle to find something truly light and good — any suggestions? A puffy isn't practical for being exposed to pack weight + movement + sweat for very long, so I think an ultralight fleece is the way to go here. I'm not aware of another layer that is *much* lighter than 9.2oz that would add a little insulation and still retain acceptable moisture movement. All that make sense?
- I use somewhat beefier stakes for the corner tieouts — they're red square-shaped aluminum pegs that *might* be an old version of the MSR Groundhog, but I can't confirm. The midpoint tieouts are standard UL shepherd hooks. 3.4oz seems high, you're right, but I can't figure out why …
- I carry the Mora knife more out of tradition than anything. It has taken so much abuse and still holds a fine edge, can use it for anything, is blissfully simple and easy to clean, and was super cheap. On the other hand, the Laplander Saw is brand new and came out disappointingly heavy — I must have looked at the wrong specs and misunderstood. So yeah, good idea, I'll look into a lighter saw.
The canister stove is mostly because I wanted to experiment with more "real" cooking for the first time on this trip, but usually I take a tiny Starlyte alky stove … we'll see if I get hooked on real cooking or not. For a solo trip, the FMS + canister is a huge weight penalty.
- I chose the Speedmid as my one shelter that would be halfway reasonable on 95% of the trips I am ever likely to take. It's good for one or two, "light enough", easy to pitch, and pleasantly bombproof. At least, that's what I understand about it so far. I haven't hiked with it since I replaced my Trailstar with this last year. But, in the event that I *do* get some rain on this trip, I think I'll be glad I have this. I'm not sure there's another very affordable shelter that is much lighter, much cheaper, and not-fussy to pitch, so much that I should bother adding it into my inventory.
Meanwhile the bivy … is almost a luxury item. I use it to hold my entire bed-assembly together and move it around easily, and in the morning I deflate the pad and roll the whole thing up into a big mass to go into the bottom of my pack … like a bedroll, basically. And of course, it helps with draft control, given that I'm a quilt user.
- Headlamp battery swap — you're right, I'll look into that.
- Toiletries — yep, you're right, I may need to re-weight those as I'm not sure the numbers reflect the latest repackaging.
FWIW at least :-)Sep 2, 2014 at 8:03 am #2132137
I'd love to one day be able to just rely on my smartphone for voice notes, GPS, and photography. Has anyone had success doing all three? I know that the latest couple years of smartphones have really upped their game in terms of optics, to the point that the imaging might be passable for my (very amateur, mostly sharing-oriented) photography.
But then there's the question of battery life. In order to really make use of a phone as a main shooter on a trip, it would probably need to be always-on, since startup times are up to 15 – 45 seconds on most devices I've ever used. That makes me wonder how long an average phone would last in Airplane Mode on a hiking trip.
Anybody have any intel or first-hand experience trying to do things this way?Sep 2, 2014 at 9:11 am #2132150D MBPL Member
@farwalkerLocale: What, ME worry?
I tried using the iPhone for all that on the PCT and it works out well, but the drawback of booting up/on is a pain. You just have to pre pick and choose your photo opportunities and forget wildlife, they're gone before you can get the phone on. I carry an external battery for recharging (monoprice) . Also the app Pro HDR is really nice and better than the phones camera program.
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