- Feb 14, 2019 at 3:51 pm #3578432
Finally managed to get this list done. Anyone see any obvious savings to be had? I may go for a lighter pad. If I take a bear canister, I will take my new heavier pack, so all of that will add about 3 pounds total. My food tends to be lighter than most folks’ food, 1.5 pounds/day at most. For a week or less, I have plenty of extra calories worn that I don’t need to carry them in my pack! I think I’m at a comfortable weight for me, but you all will think of something!Feb 15, 2019 at 3:01 am #3578553
I’m pretty new to backpacking so understand I may not know what I’m talking about lol.
Are you going somewhere cold? Just cuz you have so much clothing. I haven’t done anything under 40F so that’s overkill for me personally.
I mean you’d have to buy new stuff to save much weight I think:
Cookset – mine is 6.25 oz (stove 2oz, pot 2.5oz, lid 0.5oz, cup 1.25oz) Prob biggest savings is the stove I have this one https://snowpeak.com/products/litemax-titanium-stove
I filter water. Maybe not as convenient. But sawyer mini + pouch + dirty water scoop is 3.25 oz
Sea to Summit 10L water bag – the flexible one I use is 0.88 oz and I don’t mind hanging it.
Do you need tweezers? The spyderco ladybug is 0.6 oz.
The petzl e lite is 1 oz, but not very bright if you like seting up camp and cooking (or hiking) in the dark (I like my camp light so much I bring a little 8 oz camp lantern).Feb 15, 2019 at 3:30 am #3578558
Thanks Aaron. All my backpacking right now is in Alaska. It can be 70 or it can be 30 and raining. I have awakened to snow in July more than once.Feb 15, 2019 at 3:45 am #3578564
Bruce TolleyBPL Member
@btolleyLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
The list looks pretty good. I myself like luxury items like a sit pad, and a thin closed cell pad under the inflatable not to mention my Exped pillow,
Smaller, lighter pack? For 3 nights, not sure you need a 60 liter pack. Do you pack the bear canister inside. Would it fit on the top of a 30 liter pack?
Looks like two handiwipes?
Ground cloth under the tent. If I am pitching my tent on mud, I often use a footprint. But most of the time I just look for a place that will not puncture the floor of my shelter. Since you plastic probably only weight a couple of ounces, leaving it behind will not help much.Feb 15, 2019 at 9:31 pm #3578698
@mhrLocale: San Juan Mtns.
Karen – I’d be interested to know what your LL Bean “antique” hiking poles weigh. Poles can be deceptively heavy (especially older models) and you have to lift them a billion times each day. That can be a big energy drain. Give a little extra scrutiny to those things that you lash to the ends of your legs and arms.Feb 15, 2019 at 11:30 pm #3578720
So, if my ciphering is correct, your still around or under 30 lbs total pack weight for 5 days (assuming you’re carrying 2L or less of water)? And that’s with a 1 lb. stove/pot setup? I would think you’re going to have to spend some serious $$$ on several lighter option items (pack, tent, pad, rain gear) and I suppose there are trade-offs to be made with any of those. You’re probably comfortable and happy with what you have so I would just stick with that.
I wouldn’t consider the phone a luxury if for no other reason than to record your hike for posterity! Same with the sit pad, especially if you have snow or its muddy. Great for kneeling on.
Agree about the poles. Made the switch to carbon (BD Carbon Z’s) a few years back and it was a night and day difference. Though, again….$$$Feb 16, 2019 at 12:19 am #3578730
Alex WallaceBPL Member
@feetfirstLocale: Sierra Nevada North
No savings, but I can add 10 ounces. A Tarptent Moment DW is 34 – 36 ounces, not 24.Feb 16, 2019 at 3:39 am #3578767
Good catch Alex. I just weighed my Tarptent and it’s actually 46 ounces including stakes and guylines.
The poles are about a pound. I really like the cork handles. But I could look at something lighter. I hadn’t really thought about those as heavy, since I have them in my hands 95% of the time, not on my back.
I might go for a lighter pad too. The current stove setup is heavier than my old pocket rocket, pot, bowl and cup, but not by much. Most importantly I can get it lit in the wind and still get dinner cooked quickly, which has been important recently. If I camp in less exposed areas I could go with my lighter setup.Feb 16, 2019 at 10:28 am #3578781
Erica RBPL Member
As others have said, the cook kit looks heavy. But, I figure 1 oz/person/day for fuel, which is more than you have… I cook lots because dry food is lighter to carry.
Yes, the purification system is heavy because of the wide-mouth nalgene at 3.9 oz.
46 oz is pretty heavy for a 1 person tent… I’m going to spring for the Dan Durston $200 26 oz Xmid on Massdrop.
You have 2 hats.
You’ve got 2 backpacks in the list. Good idea. You can get someone to carry half the stuff :)Feb 16, 2019 at 5:47 pm #3578813
I’m sure that Windburner is worth it’s weight in gold when it’s cold, blowin’ and you just want to get something hot in your belly at the end of a long day!Feb 16, 2019 at 6:07 pm #3578816
James MarcoBPL Member
@jamesdmarcoLocale: Finger Lakes
Well, looking at your gear, I would say you are safe and comfortable down to about 30F. You could “survive” much more, but it would take using your clothing in your bag. Your kit looks a LOT like my light weight gear for the ADK’s for the first 20-25 years of my hiking/camping. While you can save a few ounces here and there, at this point all you can do is start buying/replacing existing gear with lighter gear to make the leap from Lightweight to Ultra-Lightweight (UL.) And yes, I have seen snow on the Fourth of July in the ADK’s, too.
Whether you can ever hit UL weights (<10#) with your base kit without new gear replacements isn’t a question. All you can do is simply drop stuff to save significant weights. You have what I consider the basic requirement and it is all good gear. A few luxuries, that are not very heavy. It is hard to make a decision to replace an expensive, good 20degree bag/pad system to go to an equally expensive, lighter quilt/pad system to save less than half a pound of weight.
First, a little theory. Typical of many lightweight kits, there is little consolidation and integration displayed. A classic example of consolidation is using a spoon as a stake so you can drop a stake. This consolidates your kit by removal of non-essential items. A good example of integration is using a compression sack as a pillow integrating volume management into your packing kit. Volume can be as important as weight, because in your total pack, it means you need less space and therefor, a smaller/lighter pack. This leads to the notion of systems. Integration of your packing system with your camping system will lead to the lightest possible weight for your hiking system. In practice, you go back and forth between integration and consolidation depending on what you want to optimize (base camping, travel, comfort, climbing, fishing, hunting, etc.) Anyway, enough theory…
I’ll list some stuff, and you can take it from there. Of course, you don’t need to change anything, you are FIRMLY in the Lightweight range (<20pounds.) You will note, that going from a Traditional Backpacking kit to a Lightweight kit is counting pounds. You have already done that. Going from a Lightweight kit to an UL Kit means counting ounces. Going from an UL kit to a SUL kit means counting grams. I assume you are shooting for UL by showing us your Lightweight kit as the starting point and asking for lower weight. There are few items you can justify as just eliminating…most gear you need, though.
The pack is heavy. At more than 20% of an UL weight goal, it needs to be swapped. A 10%pack weight is allowable. At 10% this means an 8oz pack for SUL, a 16oz pack for UL, and a 32oz pack for Lightweight. (You also want to add some pad keepers, for your pads as part of integration.) Per item (the pack) you can save ~18oz. But, you also maintain structure with the pad keepers, they add volume (about 250-400ci) and they add cushioning against your back while maintaining comfort.
Inflatable pads weigh less: Swapping to an Xtherm won’t save weight, but will extend your temp range. Swapping to a medium durability Xlite will save 4oz. Swapping to an Uber will save 7oz.
Switch to a quilt for temps >20F. Your Egret is a good bag. But, it weighs 27ounces. A 20F quilt is lighter (around 5oz.) But, you need to consider it as part of an overall sleeping system. The pad, protective layer below it, the quilt, your hat and/or balaclava work together to save that 5 ounces. In addition to a sleep system, a hat and a CCF underlay pad enhance the use as part of the hiking system, or the CCF pad could be used as a SitLite pad. It doesn’t need to be a separate pad for each chore. (Actually, it makes a GOOD chair sitting on it and folded behind you as a back against a rock or tree.) A kind of philosophical leap…
Extra pads: Drop these and use a single fan-fold pad. This adds structure to frameless packs, and, doubles as extra padding/insulation/protection while sleeping, as a SitLite pad, and as a chair lounging at camp. A true multi-purpose item.
Use a ZPacks Plexamid at 16oz(incl stakes/lines.) Or one of the yet to be released BA Scout tents at 14oz including a good polycro ground cloth. Bugs are the bane of Alaska. Keeping them out on warm evenings is important. It becomes part of your hiking system with the hiking staff(s.) Again saving some weight.
Your cloths I will let sit as is. I don’t care for the rain pants or rain jacket, preferring a simple nylon/PVC rain jacket at 7.5oz, but, whatever makes you comfortable. (I also use my rain jacket as a ground cloth and carry a small piece of plastic at about 1oz as a ground cloth, but I use a tarp.) I never use rain pants. It is either too warm to bother with them, or, it is simply snowing. I always keep my sleeping cloths dry, along with my quilt/bag, puffy layer and socks. I put them in a small compression sack (also turned inside out and stuffed with my pack as a pillow.)
I would also leave the Ursack in your pack, in Alaska. While I normally carry a 3-4oz bear hang kit (ditty bag doubles as a rock sack, line, bag doubles as food bag) Bears can be a real problem. Pines and bear bagging can be a problem. So, the Bearikade or Ursack is fine.
You surely don’t need the Windburner, though. A small 3oz stove, a 3.5oz pot/lid and wind screen, a spoon at .5oz, and a 1.7oz cup will handle more cooking chores as well as boil water for around 9oz. In either case, a 4oz allowance for an empty canister, .5oz for a lighter, the 8oz Ursack and line, means you can save about 21oz…a significant savings.
Leaving your misc gear alone, you can save about 5 pounds, with somewhat increased comfort levels: carrying less weight, camping with everything needed, and, improved flexibility in accomplishing tasks. Still not a UL kit, though. But a 5 pound savings is significant and places you within range of even lighter weights as you move forward. As it is, your weights for your existing gear impose limits on you. From this point on, I could suggest some simple gear replacements and/or mods that will let you get your base weight for three to five days lower and still maintain your comfort at 25F+. But, this post is long enough.Feb 17, 2019 at 11:34 am #3578927
Erica RBPL Member
I am sure you have good reasons for carrying heavy rain gear during the rainy season in Alaska, but what about when you don’t expect rain? Frogg Toggs come in at about 12 oz for both the jacket and pants. I am ok with my 5 oz poncho.
I don’t take fleece if I don’t expect rain… between the tent and the poncho I figure I can keep the down dry.Feb 17, 2019 at 6:15 pm #3578974
I can’t imagine not having rain pants, or being warm hiking in shorts in rain and 40 degrees F. for 8 hours. I’d be shivering nonstop! There is no real dry season in summer here. Slightly less likely to have rain in May and June, but last summer in early June we were in a major downpour for an afternoon, not forecasted. That one was short enough that we would have been able to dry out. A week later I was in major wind and rain for an entire weekend, just didn’t let up ever. I also can’t imagine being warm enough in shorts and rain here. I hardly ever hike in shorts anyway; it is just really, really cold. Cold wet skin – I suppose if I needed to hike out I could have kept warm enough to survive, but staying three more days out in the drizzle, fog, wind with wet skin…I really needed to stay dry. We just have really different conditions here. I also can’t imagine not taking a fleece layer to hike in. Cold pelting rain, snow, fog and wind will wet through just about any waterproof layer so that the underlayer is at least damp if not soaking. Down would not stay dry and there’s often no sun to dry it out.
I guess what people do elsewhere is just hike out and go home if it rains, but that isn’t what we do or we’d never go out. It will almost always rain at some point on a backpack trip. I guess I’d rather have the fleece and luck out with sunny weather than be in 35 and pouring, 25mph wind, and no layers, 2 days from the trailhead. On a trip a couple years ago I used every single bit of clothing in my pack, even the balaclava. Nothing was really dry. I also ate everything I brought and wished I’d brought more food! I watched three teenagers on that trip eat an entire pound brick of cheddar cheese in under ten minutes. Wish I’d caught that on video!
The Frogg Toggs appears to be heavier than my current rain gear. I’ve never found good rain gear that doesn’t wet through at some point, except really heavy Helly Hansen fishing gear. Can’t hike very well in that!
i usually camp above treeline, and even if not, the trees are not big enough to hang anything from, so if I want my food protected from bears, it’s either the Ursack or canister. Many people don’t bother, but with increased use of backcountry everywhere, that will eventually be a really bad practice.
i do have two backpacks in the list, but only one is weighed. Ditto with canister and Ursack. I would take one pack with the canister and the other with the ursack. I am bummed that the new pack is heavier and not lighter, but the darned bear canister is so unwieldy. I feel like I need the support from a more structured pack.
i might look at tents down the road, to see if I can lighten that up a bit. I like the ease of pitching the Moment. But that seems like the next obvious thing to try, other than the pad.
Thanks for all the suggestions! I don’t feel too bad with this setup, but it’s also easy to overlook something, or start adding back things and getting heavier again. I definitely want to avoid that!Feb 17, 2019 at 8:53 pm #3579005
+1 on starting with the XMid. At $200 for a 1+ lb weight savings I don’t think you could go wrong. Looks like excellent coverage and volume and easy to pitch. Next drop???Feb 17, 2019 at 10:28 pm #3579028
jeffrey armbrusterBPL Member
@bookLocale: Northern California
Bearikade Scout for three to five days should work. This canister may fit in your ursack pack. And if not it’s still a treat to carry compared to a normal sized canister. Lighter too. Pricey but it will outlast your hiking career.Feb 17, 2019 at 10:32 pm #3579030
James MarcoBPL Member
@jamesdmarcoLocale: Finger Lakes
“I can’t imagine not having rain pants, or being warm hiking in shorts in rain and 40 degrees F. for 8 hours. I’d be shivering nonstop!”
I cannot wear shorts in the ADK’s either… Mornings are too cold (~40F) and too much scrub. I tore hell out’a my legs the few times I tried it besides getting cold legs and cold feet with water running down my legs and into my shoes. No fun…
I understand about the fleece. Under your rain jacket it stays dry enough to keep you warm even if temps get down to 35-40F. If it does start wetting out, just stop and wring it out on occasion. Even if it is heavy it is worth carrying.
As far as your bear ball goes, You don’t need to worry much about it with pad keepers. Using a 5 layer pad, it really cushions the can. Should be good for 15-20mi/day.
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