Monday, December 14, 2009

The Packing List

I've been doing some research online about what to pack.  I found the following list, among others:

The Basics:
Backpack (3,000 to 5,000 cubic inches)  Ordered online
Sleeping bag (rated to 20 to 50F)  Ordered online...layered with a lightweight liner and outer shell will be good to is a very rare day in Houston that even gets below freezing.
Sleeping pad  I have two: an ultra lightweight 1 inch foam pad, and a self-inflating pad that doesn't weigh much more.  I'll try both and see which I like best.
Two-person tent/tarp  Ordered online

Eating and Drinking:
2 one-liter water bottles  Or one bladder that holds 1.5 liters?  They sell 3 liter bags, too, but that's a lot of water...
Water purification (filter, iodine, or bleach)  I think I want a filter system.  The thought of drinking water treated with iodine doesn't thrill me...eeew...
Stove and fuel  Have one, but looking for something lighter.
Wind screen (to protect the stove flame, constructed out of aluminum foil)  I don't know how to make a windscreen, but I've got foil.
Pot/pan with lid  Check.
Waterproof matches and lighter  Added to shopping list.
Cup or mug  Added to shopping list.
Lightweight bowl and spoon  Check.
Multi-tool or utility knife  Added to shopping list.
Scraper for cleaning pot  Do I really need this? 

Trail-running shoes or hiking boots (broken in and waterproofed)  Need to do some research on hiking boots. 
Sandals and fleece socks or lightweight camp shoes I really need this?  Will a pair of $1.99 flipflops work?
Wool socks  Allergic to wool.  Not gonna happen.
Sock liners*  What are sock liners?
Synthetic long-underwear bottoms and tops  I'll skip these.  I'll layer my running clothes like I do for distance runs.
Synthetic shorts or convertible pants  Check.
Underwear  Don't wear 'em with my running clothes.  They just get damp and stay damp.  Smelly and uncomfortable.  Most runners and bikers I know don't wear them. (TMI?)
Synthetic/wicking t-shirt  Check.
Rain/wind jacket and pants  Both are added to my shopping list.
Wool or fleece jacket (or vest if warmer)  My running long sleeve shirts / jackets are very warm.  Under Armour rocks!
Wool or fleece hat*  Check.
Wool/fleece gloves or mittens*  Check.
Bandanna  Why?
Gaiters*  What are gaiters? 

Directions, trail map, or guidebook  If I can't find a map online, I'll visit the information center before the hike.
Headlamp  Check.
Toilet paper in Ziploc bag  I wouldn't have thought of the Ziploc bag.  Good idea!  If I get the biodegradable kind I don't have to pack it out, right?
Plastic potty trowel  Added to shopping list.  What does poison ivy look like again?  I've never had it in spite of spending lots of time in the woods so people tell me I'm probably not allergic.  I'd rather not take any chances. 
Extra Ziploc/trash bags  Check.
Lip balm  Check.
Sunscreen  Check.
Hand sanitizer  Check.
Toothbrush and toothpaste  Check.
First-aid kit (Band-Aids/bandages, Aspirin, antiseptic wipes, poison ivy treatment such as CORTAID® Treatment Kit, moleskin, tweezers)  Check.
Pack rain cover or garbage bag  Check.
Bear-bagging cord  We don't have bears here, but we do have other critters like raccoons.  Do I still need to hang my food?  I'll get it and do what the others do.

Optional Items:
Trekking poles  I think I want one.  Added to shopping list.
Sun/rain hat  This is not optional. 
Sunglasses  Neither are these.
Journal and pen  Check.
Camera, extra memory cards  And batteries.  Check.
Ground cloth  Check.
Duct tape  Check.
Watch  I'll wear my GPS watch.
Whistle  Check.
Small strainer (for filtering food particles while cleaning dishes)  I'll skip at least for now.

Special Considerations:
Women: bring a few tampons even if you don't expect to need them; backpacking can do weird things to your cycle.  I think most women do this without being told.
Contact lens wearers: bring solution and back-up glasses  How about extra lenses?  Ok, ok, I'll pack my ugly glasses.  Wouldn't want to accidentally crawl into the wrong tent one night...

*Indicates optional/depending on climate and geography

Anything else?


Rachel Cotterill said...

Gaiters are little waterproof things that go around your ankles to keep your trousers dry - they clip on to your boots. Also, filter bottles rock because iodine is yucky.

Vince said...

Dear heavens, Bush invaded Iraq and Afghanistan with less crap.

Surely your finger will do as a toothbrush. Why matches and lighters. And unless the ground is as hard as the hob of hell or you intend to inter your waste just slightly under New Zeeland what on earth are you bringing a trowel. You have a hunting knife. Sock-liners are a bit like glove liners, they tend to be silk and do two things for your feet. They wick the damp away from your skin and put another layer to the boot sock skin for when two stick you get blisters.
If you need poles get two, while you will not look Kool for the first hour or two they dissipate about 20% of the impact, if you have them in each hand. One handed and you develop this sort of torsion twist from the top of your head to the tip of your toes.
And a fist full of sand will scrape your pot better than anything.
Now, being from Texas and a
delicate Yellow Rose, will you have a sidearm.

Poppy said...

- I think a pair of 1,99$ will definitely work.
- Trekking poles are very useful. :)
- You are one organised person! :)

sage said...

It sounds like Vince also knows a bit about hiking... If you are hiking in TX, I don't think you need gaiters--if you are in the mountains with snow and stuff, yes. I wearn them mostly cross-country skiing, or when I have crampons or snowshoes attached to the back of my pack, things I'm sure you won't need.

I like water bottles verses a bag. I have carried a lightweight bag if I was going to be camping away from springs--but bottles are more durable and you can add things to them like drink mix. They now have neutralizers for iodine, it's a lot lighter than a filter. Add iodine, let it disolve and sit for 20 minutes, then add the neutralizer. I also have a water bottle with a filter--it's great, you just fill it up with water and squeeze the water through the filter (this has become a must have on canoe trips)

Teva type sandals are great if you have to do a lot of water wading--like crossing streams. If you don't mind wet boots, you can forget them, but I wouldn't try to cross a fast stream in flipflops.

Liner socks are a thing of the past--I use to wear them when I wore wool socks, but don't with the newer mixed wool and synthetic socks.

I've never carried a poop scoop, always used a rock or the back of my boot to dig a hole.

Rebecca S. said...

Do you have Whisperlite stoves down there? They are extremely light.

Jen said...

@Rachel: Thanks for the info. I don't think I'll need the Gaitors for this hike. Sage also mentioned the filter bottles. That's two votes, so I'll try one and see how it works for me.

@Vince: I would have been the idiot with one pole. I will not be carrying a sidearm, but I do know how to use one.

@Poppy: Not always, but I think this is one area I have to be organized. I would not want to get 10 miles into a trail and discover I'm missing something I need.

@sage: I won't need snow gear here. I will probably take at least one bottle in addition to the water bag. I was going to get waterproof boots. Will they keep me dry enough if I have to cross a stream?

@Rebecca S.: I think sage mentioned Whisperlite. I can see if they have them on Amazon. I need to order another item to get free shipping on the water bladder I want.

gayle said...

Omg that seems like tons of stuff!! You must be in great shape to carry all that!!

otin said...

Wow! That is a lot of stuff! I loved your comments on my story! I was waiting for someone to be mad at the adults! LOL!

Jen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jen said...

@gayle: I'm in ok shape. Carrying all that stuff will help me get in great shape. I really should read my comments before I hit submit...

@otin: I wanted to choke them.

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