Originally Posted By Bunny
Hi Lori. Personal preference is funny, isn't it?

Well, I have to say that I'm with Lori here. If you haven't actually used a alcohol can stove, like a "Super Cat" or "Penny" stove, then you don't a have a good point of reference to evaluate it, but you probably should look closer at those options.

I have an exponent extreme stove that I love. It was considered lightweight, high tech, and very reliable when I bought it, and it still is all of those things, but a Super Cat stove is way lighter (more than 300 times lighter!) and it is more reliable because, like Lori said, it's so darn simple, so that is what I carry now.

Carrying less is a preference too, as is carrying more. It was tough for me to stop carrying things I have and like. It took me several years to give up my cool stuff in exchange for a lighter pack weight. I had to wean myself off of it. I did this by facing the hard fact that I either didn't ever use it, or I really didn't need it.

I seldom used binoculars, never used my multi-tool, didn't need a big heavy water bottle, a big knife, or two weeks of food and fuel for a three night trip, or three pairs of pants and shirts. But I lugged that stuff around for a lot of miles.

So, like Glenn said, you can do a lot more with what you've got before you buy new stuff. You can leave stuff at home for starters :D, and be a lot more selective about what you do bring.

If I were you I might look for a good, lighter 2-person backpacking tent, and you can surely find something used that will save some bucks and work great for you, but I'd go scrounge the local thrift stores for stuff too. You can find down jackets, wool sweaters, and fleece clothing there for huge savings over new. Someone here said they just scored a really nice down sleeping bag for $6 a couple weeks ago at a thrift shop.

And I'd get some time in the field with all the gear I'd bring for a hike like you're planning. Start doing some 1-3 night trips so you can get comfortable with your gear and knock the rust of your skills to use it.

With the help of members here (especially Glenn) I was able to get my pack down to about 26lbs for a 2-3 nighter this past season. It took a lot of fiddling, fine tuning, learning new ways, and some real gnashing of teeth to restrain myself from bringing stuff I didn't need, but wow, was it ever sweet to not be crushed under the load I was carrying.

Keep us up to date on your progress, and we'll all be wanting trip reports no matter where you go, so keep that in mind too!


"You want to go where?"