Starting on March 21, 2001, I will be hiking the entire Appalachian Trail, from Springer Mountain, GA to Mount Katahdin, ME.
I'm a bit of a gear-head, so naturally I am obscessing about my gear. I want to have my pack as light as possible, but I would also like to stay alive and (relatively) comfortable.
On your average spring/summer/fall day, I will be wearing the following:
-Columbia mesh hat -REI MTS midweight short sleeve shirt -Umbro soccer shorts -Wigwam C-T Tour cycling socks -Running shoes -Leki Super Makalu CorTec PA Hiking poles -OR low gaiters. I often skip the gaiters.
Strapped to my back will be the following:
Item Weight (ounces) __________________________________________________________________ Pack: -Gregory Reality-X Pack, size medium 70.0 (a few straps trimmed, lid probably removed when my cold weather gear goes home) -Campmor Silicon-nylon pack cover 4.0 -REI Nalgene Water bottle holder 3.0 -Tiny compass/thermometer 1.5 ____ 78.5 Shelter/Sleeping Gear: -The North Face Thunderhead 20 deg sleeping bag 47.0 (plus stuff sack and small garbage bag) 2.0 -Design Salt Silk Mummy Bag Liner 5.0 -Campmor 12'x10' Silicon-nylon tarp 19.0 -Stuff sack, guy lines, stakes, Etc. for tarp 6.0 -Adventure 16 Bug Bivy 5.0 (probably won't pick this up until bug season) -Probably some combination of two of the following: (heavy, but i have a hard time sleeping on less) -Cascade Deisgns Thermarest Backpacker 36.0 self inflating sleeping bag -Cascade Designs Ridge Rest Deluxe 18.0 closed cell foam sleeping pad -Cascade Designs Thermarest Ultralight 3/4 16.0 length self inflating sleeping pad. -6mm poly ground cloth 5.0 ____ 123.0 - 125.0 Clothing (in pack): -4 pair Wigman C-T touring socks 4.0 -3 pair Umbro soccer shorts (drawstrings removed) 9.0 -REI midweight MTS short sleeve shirt 7.0 -Patagonia Levitator R2 pullover fleece jacket 13.0 (also used as my pillow) -Patagonia midweight Capiliene long sleeve shirt 8.0 -Patagonia midweight Capiliene bottoms 7.0 -Sierra Designs Rain Jacket 15.0 (also used as rain flap on tarp) -Large plastic trash bag (stuff sack for clothes) 1.0 -REI lightweight skull cap 2.0 -3 cotton bandannas (handy things, they are!!!) 3.0 ____ 69.0 Clothing (cold weather only): -Thorlo Trekking socks (for camp/sleeping) 3.5 -REI midweight MTS long sleeve shirt 9.0 -The North Face Hydrenaline Rain Pants 8.0 -Masque neoprene/fleece face mack 3.0 -REI gloves 4.0 -Ecospun wool cap 4.0 ____ 31.5 Cooking/Water: -Nalgene 1 Liter bottle 5.0 -Cammelback bag/tube (luxury item, but nice!) 6.0 -Pur Voyager water filter 14.0 -Everynew 1.3 Liter Titanium pot w/handles 6.0 -Generic aluminum windscreen 1.5 -2 or 3 disposable lighters 3.0 -Waterproof match case and matches 1.5 -Pot scrubber and small towel 1.0 -Two lexan spoons and one lexan knife 1.5 -Alchohol stove (tuna can) and potrest. 2.0 -OR #4 stuff sack and small garbage bag (food bag) 4.0 ____ 45.5 Misc: -Camp shoes (I haven't decided between my Teva 0.0 - 18.0 sandals, Walmart Teva knockoffs, flip-flops, another pair of running shoes, or nothing) -50' rope for hanging food bag 3.0 -Photon microlight 0.5 -Petzl micro headlamp & 2xAA batteries 4.0 (nice item to have, but kind of heavy... might dump this for another Photon microlight) -ATC Data book, ATC Thruhikers Companion, and maps 5.0 (will bounce most of the content ahead. Might use Dan Bruce's Thruhikes Handbook instead of the ATC Companion, but I like the 2000 Companion more than the 2000 Handbook.) -Paper/Pen 3.0 -Earplugs 0.1 -Sunglasses 2.0 -Lip Balm 0.5 -Toothbrush, Small tube of toothpaste, and floss 2.0 -TP 3.0 -Glasses 2.0 -Contact solution, contact case, and Purell hand 4.0 sanitzing lotion. -Packet of wetnaps (ounce for ounce, the best 3.0 weight you can carry!!!) -Small ziploc with credit cards, I.D., and $ 2.0 -First-aid stuff (bandaids, neosporen, Vitamin I 4.0 moleskin, small mirror, small scissors, etc.) -Sony Digital AM/FM Walkman, headphones, and 6.0 2 AAA batteries ____ 44.0 - 62.0 _______________________________________________________________ Total Pack Weight: 391.5 - 411.5 ounces (24.4 - 25.7 pounds) Some of these weights are estimated. But the total pack weights shown are accurate to withing 0.5 pounds (according to my digital bathroom scale :-)). Note that this pack weight does not include food, water, and fuel (alchohol or Esbit fuel tablets). Food, water, and fuel will probably total ten pounds on average.
As I send home my cold weather gear, I'm sure I will lighten my load a bit. Experienced hikers will note that I could lose a few pounds from this list, but I have learned that not all weight is "bad" weight. For instance, I will carry as much weight as I need to in order to get a good night's sleep. Every time I try to skimp on my sleeping pad I end up having a miserable time.