By S. Dee Davis
As stated already in the buying guide, how much gear you’re carrying will have a huge impact on what kind of bag you use. Here is a rough list of essential things you’ll want with you on a backpacking trip. Depending on how many people you’re in a group with, you may need to carry most or all of this gear yourself, resulting in the need for a larger pack. This list was developed with a late-summer backpacking trip to… oh, let’s say Colorado in mind. Keep in mind that your personal gear requirements are going to vary based on your preferences of total pack weight, accessories you like to carry with you and again, the number of people in your party and the total amount of communal group gear necessary.
- Sleeping bag
- Sleeping pad
- Tent with rain fly and poles
- Small nylon tarp for use as a cooking shelter
- Backpacking stove
- Fuel bottle
- Two cooking pots, or a pot and a frying pan.
- Cooking utensils
- Eating bowl and mug
- Food (planning food for a backpacking trip is a whole separate list. If you’re willing to spring for freeze-dried ready-made meals, however, food can be very lightweight).
- Rain jacket
- Extra pair of socks and underwear
- Midweight jacket
- Long-sleeve shirt
- Warm hat
- Pair of tennis shoes for wearing around camp at the end of the day (not only are they vastly superior to hiking boots in the comfort department, lightweight shoes are much friendlier to the ground you’re treading on).
This is not a comprehensive list, but should give you an idea of how much gear you will have to stuff into and strap onto your pack. When planning a trip, consult guidebooks and other hikers and gather as much information as you can on local conditions if you’ve never been there before packing your gear.
|As an avid golfer and tennis player for most of his life, he enjoys researching the latest in golf and tennis technology as well as analyzing his own game. He has been a writer and reviewer for a dozen years… See more about S. Dee Davis|
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