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#197186 - 12/14/16 04:04 PM Gear List for Alabama January hike
Barefoot Friar Offline
member

Registered: 01/23/09
Posts: 175
Loc: Houston, Alabama
It looks like it has been several years since I last posted a gear list, and I think I'm due to get some new input.

My brother and I are doing five days on the Alabama Pinhoti, as a jump off to section hiking it this coming year. I'm expecting average daytime highs in the low- to mid-50s and nighttime lows in the mid- to upper-30s, though this of course could be wildly different. Here's my planned list:

Gear list on LighterPack.com

Base weight, before any changes, is just over 22lbs for five days. Loaded weight, not counting clothing worn, is 30.83lbs -- that assumes my normal two quarts of water.

A few notes:

  • I am saving up for a Jacks 'R Better Greylock 3 underquilt and Sierra Sniveler quilt, which should drop my insulation weight to 41oz -- a savings of a pound and a half. That said, I most likely won't be able to afford either for a while, because baby diapers and formula are expensive.
  • If the low temperature is forecast to be 50 or higher, I take my surplus Army poncho liner instead of a sleeping bag, which saves me about 2.5 pounds.
  • I am also saving up for a lighter, smaller pack. Once I get the top and under quilts, I can get a better feel for how compressible they are and thus how small of a pack I can go with in winter. Another option that I'm strongly considering is keeping the Big Bear for winter and getting a much smaller (say, 40-45L) for summer, since I don't carry a whole sleeping bag in the warmer seasons.
  • I know I can save a couple pounds by going to a tarped ground setup, but I'd prefer to stay with my hammock. I am looking for a better, lighter, strap setup.
  • I'm strongly considering switching from the Katadyn Hiker Pro to the Sawyer Squeeze or Mini or another light filter. I need to filter in the neighborhood of two gallons a day shared between two people. Would the weight savings be worth the switch?
  • I'm about to buy a set of polypro base layer that will be lighter than a pound of fleece. That way I can dial in what I take based on expected worst case temperatures.
  • I could lose a pound by leaving the phone and charger behind, and I just may do that. On the other hand, it's hard to let go with a wife and baby at home. If it was a quick overnight, then certainly. Five days is a bit long, though, especially since it doubles as an e-reader and has a GPS function.
  • 17 ounces is too much for a stick, so I'm going to find a lighter one. A neighbor cut down a crepe myrtle last week, so I'm going to see about using one of those branches to carve a new one.


Okay, so what do you think? Am I missing anything obvious?

I'm especially feeling like 8lbs of clothing is a bit much, but for the expected temp range (and especially if I get a lighter base layer), each of the items are important. Is this about where everyone else is for the same temperatures?

One last note: I've bookmarked the "7-day, 27lb gear list" on the front page of the site. It's helped so far, and it may help again in the future.


Edited by Barefoot Friar (12/14/16 04:08 PM)
_________________________
"Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls."

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#197188 - 12/14/16 06:12 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: Barefoot Friar]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
I don't hammock but I've looked into it a bit and know these guys are popular for suspension: https://whoopieslings.com/

A space blanket hung underneath the hammock might be good enough for under insulation (stuff with dried leaves if you get cold).

The walking stick sounds like a pound of nostalgia to me.

You have a battery charger and batteries and two light sources (three if you include the phone). Seems like an awful lot of redundancy for electronics. How important are the electronics to your enjoyment/safety?

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#197189 - 12/14/16 06:32 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: BZH]
toddfw2003 Offline
member

Registered: 01/08/16
Posts: 326
Loc: Texas
I agree. I would ditch two of the light sources. walking sticks are a bit heavy. If you need one I would get a carbon fiber trekking pole. 22lbs is a pretty heavy base weight. If you dont mine carrying it then thats cool. my base is about 8lbs


Edited by toddfw2003 (12/14/16 06:34 PM)

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#197191 - 12/14/16 10:17 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: BZH]
Barefoot Friar Offline
member

Registered: 01/23/09
Posts: 175
Loc: Houston, Alabama
Originally Posted By BZH
I don't hammock but I've looked into it a bit and know these guys are popular for suspension: https://whoopieslings.com/

A space blanket hung underneath the hammock might be good enough for under insulation (stuff with dried leaves if you get cold).


I haven't tried either of those yet; the space blanket sounds like a good experiment for this weekend since we're supposed to have some exceptionally cold weather.

Originally Posted By BZH
The walking stick sounds like a pound of nostalgia to me.


Ordinarily I agree with you. Hiking near home, the rocks are mostly sandstone and I don't need it so I don't carry it. On this hike, the rocks are quartzite and with the leaves down it's slippery as it can be. I took it with me when we hiked the area around Thanksgiving and quite literally it saved me from falling frequently. I will replace it with a much lighter one, though.

Originally Posted By BZH
You have a battery charger and batteries and two light sources (three if you include the phone). Seems like an awful lot of redundancy for electronics. How important are the electronics to your enjoyment/safety?


Originally Posted By toddfw2003
I agree. I would ditch two of the light sources.


Good point about the light. The inflatable lantern can go; it was for camp use, but I can just cut a strip from an old milk jug that will rubber band onto the flashlight and make a decent, if somewhat hokey-looking, replacement. I avoid using the phone as a flashlight unless I'm near a wall plug because it sucks the battery down, so I can't really consider the phone as a light source except for short periods and in emergencies. I'll consider leaving it and the battery pack at home, which will save about a pound.

The battery pack itself is a phone charger; it won't charge my flashlight batteries. The flashlight batteries are AAA. (It was unclear from your post, BZH, whether you realized that or not; apologies if I'm misreading you.) For anything less than a week I think I can get by with just the lithium batteries in the flashlight; no spares. So that saves an ounce.

Originally Posted By toddfw2003
22lbs is a pretty heavy base weight. If you dont mine carrying it then thats cool. my base is about 8lbs


For winter as well? I bet you have a down shell rather than fleece, and I bet your sleeping bag is lighter than mine (although it can't be more than a pound lighter, can it?), and I bet you're in either a tarp or a bivy. Amirite?

Thank you both for your input!
_________________________
"Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls."

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#197193 - 12/15/16 12:24 AM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: Barefoot Friar]
toddfw2003 Offline
member

Registered: 01/08/16
Posts: 326
Loc: Texas
winter backpacking my base is around 11 lbs
Enlighten Equipment Revelation 19oz quilt. have a full tent. Six moon Design Skyscape X 17oz and yes a down puffy. That will keep me warm down to 20 degrees


Edited by toddfw2003 (12/15/16 12:32 AM)

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#197195 - 12/15/16 12:22 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: toddfw2003]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6401
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Note that Six Moon Designs is having a 20% off sale (except for cuben fiber items). Tarptent has some new designs and all their tents are reasonably priced. Either of those will provide a one-person tent at under 2 lbs., some nearer 1.5 lbs.
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

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#197197 - 12/16/16 11:44 AM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: Barefoot Friar]
BZH Offline
member

Registered: 01/26/11
Posts: 848
Loc: Torrance, CA
Originally Posted By Barefoot Friar

Good point about the light. The inflatable lantern can go; it was for camp use, but I can just cut a strip from an old milk jug that will rubber band onto the flashlight and make a decent, if somewhat hokey-looking, replacement. I avoid using the phone as a flashlight unless I'm near a wall plug because it sucks the battery down, so I can't really consider the phone as a light source except for short periods and in emergencies. I'll consider leaving it and the battery pack at home, which will save about a pound.

The battery pack itself is a phone charger; it won't charge my flashlight batteries. The flashlight batteries are AAA. (It was unclear from your post, BZH, whether you realized that or not; apologies if I'm misreading you.) For anything less than a week I think I can get by with just the lithium batteries in the flashlight; no spares. So that saves an ounce.


I understood, I was trying trying to point out that you appear to have many layers of redundancy in your electronics. I was trying to keep my advice vague so you could decide for yourself what is important. Personally if you are in an area that gets cell reception, it could be a life saver. If you have your cell, you have a backup light source (probably don't need backup batteries for your flashlight). Also, if you have a cell phone and get service you might feel comfortable slimming down your first aid (you don't need to be prepared for as extended of a period away from civilization).

If your cell phone has a replaceable battery, carrying a spare battery is probably lighter than the recharger.

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#197199 - 12/16/16 01:02 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: Barefoot Friar]
scratchtp Offline
member

Registered: 09/11/12
Posts: 64
Loc: New York
I'll start off by saying I have never hammocked, so have no idea how to save weight there. Also several of the suggestions I have to lose weight also cost money, so it depends on what your budget might be. As for the rest of the suggestions, as always HYOH.

The coleman stove, while not super heavy, could be replaced with an MSR pocket rocket/something similar for a few ounces, or a homemade alcohol stove for almost free. Do you need a cup and a bowl? I usually just take a cup, and it serves for everything.

Clothing: 8oz hat? Is that a typo? I think my simple fleece hat weights a little over one ounce. Even better a jacket/fleece with a hood, and you might even leave the hat at home. 5 oz knit cap? I don't want to repeat myself, but this seems heavy, and redundant. Any reason you can't just take one of them? You already mentioned replacing the fleece at some point, so I'll leave that alone. I don't take rain pants personally, but maybe that's just me. A fleece base layer also seems pretty warm for the temps you are going in, but I hike in NY so might be a little more used to hiking in colder temps, not sure.
You were asking if 8 pounds seemed reasonable for the temperature. To me it seems high. I take a little under 4.5 pounds of clothing (including worn clothing) for similar temperatures. That includes down jacket, rain jacket, long underwear, etc. Just realized your shoes were also being counted in the clothing. That probably puts my clothing at 6 pounds, so lighter, but not as large a difference.

10.4 oz for first aid seems heavy, but I realize this can vary a lot by comfort level/specific medical needs of the person. Similar comments as others about lantern vs light. I'd also say the flashlight seems a little heavy unless you need something really bright for night hiking.

Almost free but finicky weight savings: hand sanitizer might be able to repackaged and save an oz, depends how much you use it/if it's shared with someone else. I don't often take soap, or just take a really tiny bottle of dr brokers, 0.5-1oz saved. Mini bic instead of bic (tiny savings of 0.5oz)

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#197206 - 12/17/16 10:16 PM Re: Gear List for Alabama January hike [Re: BZH]
Barefoot Friar Offline
member

Registered: 01/23/09
Posts: 175
Loc: Houston, Alabama
Originally Posted By BZH
I understood, I was trying trying to point out that you appear to have many layers of redundancy in your electronics. I was trying to keep my advice vague so you could decide for yourself what is important. Personally if you are in an area that gets cell reception, it could be a life saver. If you have your cell, you have a backup light source (probably don't need backup batteries for your flashlight). Also, if you have a cell phone and get service you might feel comfortable slimming down your first aid (you don't need to be prepared for as extended of a period away from civilization).

If your cell phone has a replaceable battery, carrying a spare battery is probably lighter than the recharger.


I'm sorry I misread you; what you're saying makes sense now.

Originally Posted By scratchtp
I'll start off by saying I have never hammocked, so have no idea how to save weight there. Also several of the suggestions I have to lose weight also cost money, so it depends on what your budget might be. As for the rest of the suggestions, as always HYOH.

The coleman stove, while not super heavy, could be replaced with an MSR pocket rocket/something similar for a few ounces, or a homemade alcohol stove for almost free. Do you need a cup and a bowl? I usually just take a cup, and it serves for everything.

Clothing: 8oz hat? Is that a typo? I think my simple fleece hat weights a little over one ounce. Even better a jacket/fleece with a hood, and you might even leave the hat at home. 5 oz knit cap? I don't want to repeat myself, but this seems heavy, and redundant. Any reason you can't just take one of them? You already mentioned replacing the fleece at some point, so I'll leave that alone. I don't take rain pants personally, but maybe that's just me. A fleece base layer also seems pretty warm for the temps you are going in, but I hike in NY so might be a little more used to hiking in colder temps, not sure.
You were asking if 8 pounds seemed reasonable for the temperature. To me it seems high. I take a little under 4.5 pounds of clothing (including worn clothing) for similar temperatures. That includes down jacket, rain jacket, long underwear, etc. Just realized your shoes were also being counted in the clothing. That probably puts my clothing at 6 pounds, so lighter, but not as large a difference.

10.4 oz for first aid seems heavy, but I realize this can vary a lot by comfort level/specific medical needs of the person. Similar comments as others about lantern vs light. I'd also say the flashlight seems a little heavy unless you need something really bright for night hiking.

Almost free but finicky weight savings: hand sanitizer might be able to repackaged and save an oz, depends how much you use it/if it's shared with someone else. I don't often take soap, or just take a really tiny bottle of dr brokers, 0.5-1oz saved. Mini bic instead of bic (tiny savings of 0.5oz)


My budget is severely slim right now, but I am not afraid to save pennies until they make dollars. Several things do jump out at me, though, and the biggest one is the FAK. I've already begun going through mine and tweaking it. I've added a couple items based on an injury I had last time out, but I've removed several that I can either do without or can improvise. I think a large portion of that weight was the container I am keeping it in. I'll put it in a zipper freezer bag.

Another thing I'll do is go over my clothing again and try to drop a couple things. I already mentioned that I'm getting a light base layer to replace the one I have now. I may can drop another item or two. I think my hat actually is a typo, but I'm too tired tonight to weigh it. Either way it's either lighter or getting left. The beanie can stay home if the nighttime low is above 30 or so, and I'll do as you say and look for a lighter one.

As for rain pants: In summer it's not a big deal. In winter, with all the underbrush we have, staying dry in rain is hard. The brush stays wet for a long time after the rain is over, so I've spent most of the day in my rain pants, even after the sun was out. I'll put it in the "Depends on the forecast and where we're going" pile, though, and only take it if conditions warrant. If the pants stay home, though, I'm swapping the coat for my poncho because I like it better and because it's lighter.

And lastly, an anecdote: My friend John is from upstate NY (Rochester area, I think, but I'm not certain.) A couple weeks ago we got our first wicked cold snap of the season and the morning low was 24°. There's a group of guys who eat breakfast at the local restaurant every Friday morning, and we're all in our heavy overcoats and flannel shirts and griping about how cold it is when John walks in. He's in flip-flops, shorts, and a tee shirt, with a long-sleeved flannel, unbuttoned. Everyone looks up, and someone sort of gasped (or maybe just inhaled sharply), and I said, "Look at John here, all dressed for a day on the beach. Got your sunscreen lotion?"

Thanks, everyone, for your input. I've got a lot I can work on for free or cheap, and some good ideas for what to save up for in the future.


Edited by Barefoot Friar (12/17/16 10:18 PM)
_________________________
"Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls."

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