Almost Over the Hill Hikers
  • Over the Hill Hikers [Hardcover]
  • Almost Over the Hill Hikers

    Amazon.com
    Backpacking Forums
    BackcountryGear.com
    backcountry gear

    ---- Our Gear Store ----
    The Lightweight Gear Store
     
     WINTER CAMPING 

    Shelters
    Bivy Bags
    Sleeping Bags
    Sleeping Pads
    Snow Sports
    Winter Kitchen

     SNOWSPORTS 

    Snowshoes
    Avalanche Gear
    Skins
    Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
    Accessories

     ULTRA-LIGHT 

    Ultralight Backpacks
    Ultralight Bivy Sacks
    Ultralight Shelters
    Ultralight Tarps
    Ultralight Tents
    Ultralight Raingear
    Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
    Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
    Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
    Ultralight Apparel


    the Titanium Page
    WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

     CAMPING & HIKING 

    Backpacks
    Tents
    Sleeping Bags
    Hydration
    Kitchen
    Accessories

     CLIMBING 

    Ropes & Cordage
    Protection & Hardware
    Carabiners & Quickdraws
    Climbing Packs & Bags
    Big Wall
    Rescue & Industrial

     MEN'S APPAREL 

    Jackets
    Shirts
    Baselayer
    Headwear
    Gloves
    Accessories

     WOMEN'S APPAREL 

    Jackets
    Shirts
    Baselayer
    Headwear
    Gloves
    Accessories

     FOOTWEAR 

    Men's Footwear
    Women's Footwear

     CLEARANCE 

    Backpacks
    Mens Apparel
    Womens Apparel
    Climbing
    Footwear
    Accessories

     BRANDS 

    Black Diamond
    Granite Gear
    La Sportiva
    Osprey
    Smartwool

     WAYS TO SHOP 

    Sale
    Clearance
    Top Brands
    All Brands

     Backpacking Equipment 

    Shelters
    BackPacks
    Sleeping Bags
    Water Treatment
    Kitchen
    Hydration
    Climbing


     Backcountry Gear Clearance


    Stay Healthy--Eat Well

    MARY JANES FARM ORGANIC MEALS

    Mary Janes Farm Organic Backcountry Meals

    NATURAL HIGH GOURMET MEALS

    Natural High

     

    Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
    Topic Options
    Rate This Topic
    #94321 - 04/13/08 03:00 PM Do you adjust packweight with aging?
    CAbackpacker Offline
    newbie

    Registered: 02/01/05
    Posts: 13
    Loc: Northern California
    Just curious how everyone's looking at the issue of decreasing their packweight as they age!

    I've been considering two approaches (1) Since I'm aging why not do everything I can to decrease my packweight to make trips a little easier? and (2) Since I'm aging & have to consider that I may slip & twist an ankle or somehow otherwise end up spending an extra night (or two or three!) out in the wilderness I want to make sure I'm prepared! So..I want to make sure I have all the 1st aid products I could reasonably need, and also want to make sure I have a comfortable / secure tent & related sleeping gear (sleeping pad & sleeping bag are more important to me now than they were 10 years ago!), etc..

    I should add that I solo a lot, also go to "wilderness" areas aa lot so if I did slip & fall & break a leg it's possible I wouldn't be found for a day or two!

    How are the rest of you adjusting your packweight as you age? THANKS for feedback, I'm looking forward to hearing what y'all are doing (or not!)


    Edited by CAbackpacker (04/13/08 03:01 PM)

    Top
    #94322 - 04/13/08 03:10 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    Glenn Offline
    member

    Registered: 03/08/06
    Posts: 2617
    Loc: Ohio
    I've noted the issues you have, plus I've had trouble keeping weight off as I get older. I took a different approach to pack weight. I consider that my load should never exceed 25% of my ideal weight (50 pounds, given my 200 pound ideal weight.) I consider the excess weight part of my load. So, on a recent trip, 25 pounds of gear and food, and 20 pounds of excess weight meant that I was really carrying the equivalent of a 45 pound pack - and it felt about the same as when I was 35, not overweight, and carrying a 45 pound pack.

    As far as the potential injury issues, I haven't increased my first aid load. Instead, I've started using two hiking poles instead of one for increased stability, walking a little more slowly and attentively, and being a little more cautious in my decision making (I might have crossed the stream on that log 20 years ago; now I scout around for a better crossing spot, or get my feet wet.)

    I've also found that I'm not going into quite as remote areas as I used to. (I never went into truly remote country, but I did go to less well-traveled areas or at times of lower use.) Now, I tend to accept a more crowded trail as simply another safety valve - though I still tend to camp away from those crowds, by carrying water from the creekside valley campsites where they camp up to the next ridgetop, which I have all to myself.

    Top
    #94323 - 04/13/08 03:30 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: Glenn]
    CAbackpacker Offline
    newbie

    Registered: 02/01/05
    Posts: 13
    Loc: Northern California
    Thanks for the comments Glenn, I appreciate al the perspectives / viewpoints I can get!

    I've always leaned to the extreme (in many people's minds!) regarding basic gear that we should all always have with us... As a former Scoutmaster / Venturing Crew Advisor, for years & years I preached the values of having the conventional "top-ten" kit components with you on a BP trip, so I just "assume" we're all going to have (1) all the clothing we need (2) an extra day's food, (3) all the 1st aid stuff we could reasonably need... etc., etc., etc! (probably more gear than we need... that's what I'm curious about... do we all carry all that gear with us or are we making more reasonable calculations?) Probably depends to some extent on where you hike... if you're on a frequently-used trail & 15 people are going to pass you by on the average day... then maybe you can "lighten up" on the "emergency" or "1st aid" stuff you carry?

    Top
    #94324 - 04/13/08 04:21 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    Pika Online   content
    member

    Registered: 12/08/05
    Posts: 1736
    Loc: Rural Southeast Arizona
    I am over 70 now and I have carried about the same base weight for backpacking for as long as I can remember. I carried about 16 lb on a 1954 hike of the John Muir Trail and I will carry about 14 lb now (plus bear cannister) for my repeat attempt this summer. I carried a lot more on my many climbing trips however.

    Of course now, I carry more stuff that adds to my comfort. On the 1954 JMT hike, I didn't carry a mattress; I slept on my clothes and pack. I used a sweater rather than an insulated jacket; I didn't carry a stove, I cooked over a fire; I used an Army surplus poncho for a shelter and rain gear. I also spent a lot of cold nights. A lot of things have changed since those days but my pack weighs about the same.

    I have done some experimenting with pack weights and have gone out for 2-3 days with a pack as light as 10 lb. That is not light by SUL standards but is light for me. I honestly couldn't tell the difference between that pack and the standard 14 lb base weight I use for the western mountains. I was less comfortable with the lighter pack and so have added in a bit of decadent comfort-inducing fat.

    Rather than spend a lot of time and money fussing with lighter gear, I spend a fair amount of time trying to stay fit. I generally get at least an hour of aerobic exercise a day and do some weight work as well. I sure don't go as fast as I used to but I can still go. Any way you can accomplish that is a good way! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />


    Edited by Pika (04/13/08 04:23 PM)
    _________________________
    May I walk in beauty.

    Top
    #94325 - 04/13/08 05:37 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    Glenn Offline
    member

    Registered: 03/08/06
    Posts: 2617
    Loc: Ohio
    I don't carry as much stuff as I did ten years ago. I always used to carry 2 quarts of water, even if the next source was a mile away - "They" said that's what you were supposed to do - now I carry only 1 quart - or even part of a quart. I've learned that a 1-quart kettle replaces the cup, bowl, and 2 pots I used to carry. I've simplified my menus, after realizing that at home, I ate uncooked food for breakfast and lunch, and that a quick-cook freeze-dried entree is just as good for supper as the chicken-and-noodles I used to cook. High-tech fabrics make spare clothes (duplicates, not what's needed for warmth) unnecessary. When I realized that darkness was nature's way of saying "Go to sleep," I quit carrying a candle lantern. All of that has cut a lot of weight.

    But another big factor has been that gear weight has generally decreased. Titanium pots v. stainless, 2-pound packs v. 7-pound packs, 5-pound two-person tents v. 3 pound solo tents, 800 fill down, silnylon, LED lights v. Mag Lites - it all adds up (or down, I guess.)

    Top
    #94326 - 04/13/08 07:23 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    kev452 Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/01/02
    Posts: 93
    Loc: Michigan
    I have found with more money to spend on gear. I do! It is nice to have a bigger check, less kids to take care of ect.
    K

    Top
    #94327 - 04/14/08 01:16 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: Pika]
    ringtail Offline
    member

    Registered: 08/22/02
    Posts: 2296
    Loc: Colorado Rockies
    Pika,

    I am with you on pack weight. Except I started out light because I di not have the gear, then went up to about a 45 pound base weight. At age 50 I started down and now have settled into about a 12-15 pound base weight depending on the season and trip.

    I can drop the base weight to about 8 pounds, but have to give up the hammock or thick pad and eat from a bag.

    It is dangerous thinking that gear keeps you safe in the backcountry. What keeps you safe is:

    Knowlegde,

    Experience,

    Common Sense,

    Positive attitude,

    Fitness, and

    Awareness.

    Gear is convenient and can make you comfortable, but safety is an attitude.
    _________________________
    "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
    Yogi Berra

    Top
    #94328 - 04/14/08 04:27 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: ringtail]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    You're right--safety is an attitude. But it's still a good idea to carry a compass and a some warm, extra clothing. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" />

    Top
    #94329 - 04/15/08 07:13 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: mockturtle]
    cat Offline
    member

    Registered: 07/13/03
    Posts: 273
    Loc: Alaska
    Yep- $$$ for lighter weight equipment. I now have a 2# pack with full suspension, 20 oz. bag, & 2.75 # tent with ti stakes. The older I get the lighter I've gotten. I just splurged on a 6 oz. Montbell UL down jacket. I'm treking out in style! But I sure use my hiking poles to save the ol' knees! Hmmmm... ti poles next?!!?

    Top
    #94330 - 04/16/08 09:27 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    wandering_daisy Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/11/06
    Posts: 2752
    Loc: California
    My pack weight is getting less - but it is more that there are lighter options in gear nowadays. Thank goodness! I am pretty obsessive about keeping my own weight down. I weigh the same now as I did when I was 16. And also obsessive about working out regularly. I agree with the comments about staying in shape. It really helps. As for going into remote areas - if anything I find I go into more remote places as a age! I tend to take more risks. I guess I feel that my kids are grown and independent, I have lived a good life and I am less freaked out about dying in the wilderness. I just do not worry too much about it. I do not do stupid things, but do not try to "be prepared" for every eventuality. I have also backpacked long enough to judge what is actually risky and what is only remotely risky.

    The major change as I age is that my feet cannot tolerate long mileage anymore - no more 20-mile days. Also I am now a avid trekking pole user. I am sure as I get older I will have to make further adjustments. I will take each year as it comes.

    Top
    #94331 - 04/16/08 10:44 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    oswego Offline
    newbie

    Registered: 04/16/08
    Posts: 4
    The older I get the more I try to lighten the load, My knees are not that great, etc. I still carry things that are probably heavy by todays standards,like my trusty old SVEA 123. I just love that old relic. Certain things I will not go without.

    Oswego

    Top
    #94332 - 04/17/08 09:51 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: wandering_daisy]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    Quote:
    As for going into remote areas - if anything I find I go into more remote places as a age! I tend to take more risks. I guess I feel that my kids are grown and independent, I have lived a good life and I am less freaked out about dying in the wilderness. I just do not worry too much about it.
    Same here!

    Top
    #94333 - 04/19/08 09:50 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: cat]
    cat Offline
    member

    Registered: 07/13/03
    Posts: 273
    Loc: Alaska
    I agree so much to keeping in shape. I skate ski daily in the winter to keep in shape for backpacking in the summer. And I am already out hill climbing with weight on my back to ease myself into it.

    Top
    #94334 - 04/20/08 04:05 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: wandering_daisy]
    Jimshaw Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/22/03
    Posts: 3938
    Loc: Bend, Oregon
    Hi Daisy <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

    As per risks taken: Nope I would say that I took more risks when I was younger and smarter but less experienced. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> I find it hard sometimes to understand the questions and fear as related by a lot of inexperienced people. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" />I take so much for granted that I don't even know what it is that modern newbies need to know. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

    I Respect your vast experience in mountaineering and alpine travel. Oh and I DO have a nice rack of cams, which are mostly useful in Yosemite. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif" alt="" /> Now I live 25 miles from Smith Rock and when my climbing partner returns from a one year hitch hike around the Pacific we'll climb there.

    My skill level is such that now I will free solo anything but exposed smooth friction up to around 5.7 or 5.8 while solo BPing in backcountry where basically no one knows where I am. Now is that risky? Not to my way of thinking, not with my experience level. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

    Now when I was 24 and I went out for a day of soloing wearing Lowa Kletterboots and went up a steep 5.9 I was in a far worse place with a lot less experience, but I had the strength and flexability of youth, so I came home. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

    My pack weight is far less than when I was young, OTOH on these BP under 5 miles I like to carry real gourmet food and wine in bottles. I still don't mind carrying 30 or 40 pounds for a few miles. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> Everything beyond about 20 pounds is food.

    Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
    _________________________
    These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.

    Top
    #94335 - 06/09/08 02:38 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    packfish Offline
    member

    Registered: 03/03/06
    Posts: 22
    I still carry around 42# when hiking solo and sometimes a little lighter- just depends. But if I'm going for a week or so it's become obvious to me that I can't do it like I used to and be comfortable. I raised a few pack goats. I don't use them all the time by any means but there are times that it's that or I don't get to go where I wanted to. Even then I carry 20#' or so.

    Top
    #94336 - 06/09/08 08:59 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: packfish]
    lv2fsh Offline
    member

    Registered: 04/27/08
    Posts: 111
    Loc: socal
    I have never really weighed my pack but I know it is not quite ultra light by any standards. I have noticed that I think about whether or not to take certain things and if I really need some of the redundant stuff. I know The quest for the perfect balance between weight and performance will not end. I do know that my pack is a lot lighter than it used to be. I try not to think about getting older but the bones know. My wife has some medical issues and just cannot carry much more than 20-25 lbs. But she is especially sensitive to cold and needs clothing and sleeping gear that does not skimp on warmth. Because as you men all know "if mama ain't happy,nobody's happy <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />". As we get older( I'm on the bubble between 50 and 60) we get smarter and learn that lighter is better and lighter means we can still go. Now if I can just get one of the grandkids to go and carry my some of my stuff, I can finally get Ultralight <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif" alt="" />.

    Top
    #94337 - 06/11/08 02:30 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: lv2fsh]
    Glenn Offline
    member

    Registered: 03/08/06
    Posts: 2617
    Loc: Ohio
    Better yet, get one of the grandkids to go AND bring one or more parents along to carry all the extra stuff (tell them it'll build character or something.)

    My motto: grandchildren are my best revenge. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />

    Top
    #94338 - 06/15/08 04:49 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: ringtail]
    Earthling Offline
    member

    Registered: 02/22/03
    Posts: 3228
    Loc: USA
    Quote:
    Pika,

    I am with you on pack weight. Except I started out light because I di not have the gear, then went up to about a 45 pound base weight. At age 50 I started down and now have settled into about a 12-15 pound base weight depending on the season and trip.

    I can drop the base weight to about 8 pounds, but have to give up the hammock or thick pad and eat from a bag.

    It is dangerous thinking that gear keeps you safe in the backcountry. What keeps you safe is:

    Knowlegde,

    Experience,

    Common Sense,

    Positive attitude,

    Fitness, and

    Awareness.

    Gear is convenient and can make you comfortable, but safety is an attitude.


    Now ain't that the truth Dick! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" /> This should be the top 'Sticky post' for the Beginner's Forum IMO! All in favor post a a yea <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

    As far as age and gear goes, depends on the fitness level and all of the above related to the individual in question; as well as the Region/area IME as to how one fares in the backcountry.

    Summer range is generally 3-5 days 25-35lbs with full gear and 2 qts of water onboard. Spring/Fall more water and warmth and food <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif" alt="" /> Not quite the Winter hound any longer.

    Like many have said, duration of trip, and specific interests and needs dictate what's in my pack. You may have digital gear, me my binos and a bird book, or not.
    _________________________
    PEPPER SPRAY AIN'T BRAINS IN A CAN!

    Top
    #94339 - 06/21/08 10:02 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    captn Offline
    newbie

    Registered: 08/09/05
    Posts: 12
    Considering a PLB to call for help in case I fall down and can't get back up.

    Other than that .... I'm carrying much less these days than I used to, but then I'm taking shorter trips now too.

    Top
    #94340 - 08/21/08 03:31 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: Glenn]
    Jens Offline
    newbie

    Registered: 02/12/04
    Posts: 12
    Loc: Colorado
    When I was a kid - say around 20 - I didn't mind carrying over 60 pounds on long trips. Now, over 30 years later, I have reduced my packweight to around 30 pounds for those same trips. This has allowed me to take nearly the same trip difficulty with the same enjoyment.
    _________________________
    When I Grow Up I Wanna Be An Old Man

    Top
    #94341 - 08/23/08 12:31 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: CAbackpacker]
    DJ2 Offline
    member

    Registered: 01/06/02
    Posts: 1347
    Loc: Seattle, WA
    I'm 64. I carry about 30 lbs per trip. That's about 1/2 what I carried when I was 25 and I go about half as fast.

    When I hike alone this includes a PLB, first aid kit, signal mirror, whistle, 10 essentials, bear spray, extra clothes, tent, sleeping bag, etc. If hurt I want to get to stay alive, warm and comfortable until I get help.

    Top
    #94342 - 08/25/08 09:07 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: DJ2]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    Is that 30 lbs. dry weight, or does it include food & water? Just curious, as I can't seem to limit my total pack weight to less than 35 lbs. and I don't carry a PLB. [It's a great idea, though]. Because most of my hiking is in a fairly dry area, I pack at least 2L of water, roughly 4.4 lbs.

    Top
    #94343 - 08/25/08 10:26 AM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: mockturtle]
    dkramalc Offline
    member

    Registered: 09/19/03
    Posts: 1070
    Loc: California
    Do you have a packing list you want to put up on this site? I confess I haven't done that yet, but it does seem to bring on a lot of helpful suggestions when people do that.

    My most recent weekend starting weight was 12 lbs recently before food/water - the lowest for me yet. My even more recent 5-day trip weight was 18 lbs (not quite sure how that happened...too many little things I didn't want to be without, I guess) before food and water.
    _________________________
    dk

    Top
    #94344 - 08/25/08 12:52 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: dkramalc]
    mockturtle Offline
    member

    Registered: 06/06/07
    Posts: 251
    Loc: WA
    I do have an itemized packing list with weights [I guess I could post it] but I want every item on the list. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" /> It wouldn't BE on the list if I didn't. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> I guess one thing about the 4.4 lbs of water is that the weight decreases over time, so I'm not always carrying that much.

    Top
    #94345 - 09/04/08 12:21 PM Re: Do you adjust packweight with aging? [Re: mockturtle]
    chaz Offline
    member

    Registered: 10/22/07
    Posts: 1149
    Loc: Tennessee
    I guess it's time to buy some kind of scale. I usually pack and weigh myself on a bathroom scale and remove the pack and weigh again. With water, last trip it was about 30 lbs and I carried stuff I won't carry again (didn't use). I just try to carry what I think I'll need and nothing more. I find that with more distance and steeper trails it all gets heavier. After looking at several different gear lists and coming up with my own. I just figure with my budjet, I can only go so light.
    And actually, I'm planning to add a couple of items for more comfort. Since I'm not trying to keep up with someone or have someone keep up with me. I go at my own pace. What's the hurry anyway.
    _________________________
    Enjoy your next trip...

    Top
    Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

    Shout Box

    Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
     
    Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
     
    Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
    Knife, Fire Starter, Ignition Source
    by Jim M
    12/11/17 07:34 PM
    Bivvy bag with wired peak
    by Petro1234
    12/10/17 01:06 PM
    How cheap can you go?
    by EMT Dave
    12/05/17 07:07 PM
    Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
    Greetings - and a question
    by valongi
    12/11/17 11:35 AM
    Just found out about UCO candles
    by toddfw2003
    11/30/17 08:41 AM
    Hitting the eagle rock loop, Ark in 3 days
    by toddfw2003
    11/19/17 11:31 AM
    Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
    Plant based insulation...
    by billstephenson
    11/18/17 02:58 PM
    lightest grommets to use
    by toddfw2003
    10/22/17 06:13 PM
    avalibility of thin ti rod
    by the-gr8t-waldo
    01/26/17 04:45 PM
    Featured Photos
    Breakneck Ridge, New York
    May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
    New Years Eve 2011
    Trip Report with Photos
    Seven Devils, Idaho
    Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
    Dark Canyon - Utah
    Who's Online
    1 registered (), 25 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
    Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
    Newest Members
    valongi, Atkinson J, Dcarpenter, Woodland, ultralight
    12469 Registered Users
    Forum Links
    Disclaimer
    Policies
    Site Links
    HOME
    Backpacking.net
    Family Hiking
    Lightweight Gear Store
    Backpacking Book Store
    Lightweight Zone
    Hiking Essentials

    Outdoor Gear Daily Deals
    Outlets, Sales, Bargains

    Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

    Backcountry Forum
     
     

    Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
    Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum.com