Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Getting the Gear

Getting the gear for this is a challenge. So is trying to keep my thoughts on work, home, and other things while still scanning the web looking for deals. It's hard to decide what to take and what to leave. Weight is very important as you don't want to lug some inconsequential thing over 2,000 miles. I've come to the decision that I just need to backpack when I can and see what works. I am poring over journals, forums, etc to get ideas. I also am keeping track of gear ideas, what I have and don't have, in a seperate Word file. I've put down ideas as well concerning when I will need certain kinds of gear (like my down jacket which I definitely don't need after May but likely will by the time I reach NH and ME). And of course, I also have to consider my son who will be on this trip with me.
But for now this is my sample gear list so far, with modifications bound to come -

Lightweight down jacket (Sierra Designs)
Terramar zip top
Moving comfort tights
Heavier silk long underwear (get ?)
Two pr shorts (need extra new one for summer)
One duofold t-shirt – grey (one more for summer)
Duofold long shirt (get a heavier one)
Fleece hat
Fleece gloves
3 pr wrightsocks (need 2 more)
Marmot precip rain jacket
North face rain pants
North Face zip jacket
Gaitors (get)
Synthetic hankerchief (get)
Hiking boots (Salomon GTX – 2 pairs)
Crocs (China pink ones)
Clothing stuff sack – possibly use turkey bag
Bug net (get)
Instep crampons (?)
hiking poles
Osprey Areil pack or GG nimbus ozone (?) – get
Trash compactor bag to line inside of pack
Pack cover – green one (?) or sil nylon (?)
Ultralight belt case for snacks, maps
Tarpt tent
20 degree synthetic bag - get
Ultralight stuff sacks - make
Big Agnes pad, one ridgerest until May, then maildrop back at Glencliff
Thermorest seat pad
Thermorest pillow stuff sack
Ultralight Pillow ( 2) – do have two sm travel pillows but bulky
Snowpeak Titanium cookset
Carry one small jackknife with tweezers, scissors on it
sm lighter
Stove – alcohol, fuel, wind screen – (possibly convert Whisperlight to shaker for three people)
Alcohol bottle
Synthetic towel
Castle soap
Silnylon Stuff sacks (2 – one for kitchen, one for food to hang plus rope)
Aqua Fina bottle for each
Hiker Water filter – (?), Aquamira
Hydration sack and tube – (?) or Aquafina bottles, possible hydration bag without tube for water collection
Sm first aid kit – antiobiotic cream, band aids, Ace wrap, tape for blisters, sm hydrocortisone (Ziploc), Sm sunscreen, chafing powder, epi pen, DEET
Glass case - light
Sm sewing kit with one thread, needle, pins in Ziploc
Sm toothbrush and paste
sm deodorant
Brommers peppermint soap and reynolds oven bag for trail laundry, cleaning
Silnylon stuff sack for personal items, meds for each
Journal - Phone numbers, e-mail addresses, pen, stamped envelopes, Ziploc
sm Bible – remove cover
Thru hiker companion info, ATC Data Book, Maps
Travelers checks, credit card, phone card, some cash for hostels
MP3 player with extra batteries
Ultralight trowel
Rope for bag hanging


AuntieCoosa said...

Pare this list down, it's got too much "stuff" in it.

Spread out a sheet on the floor. Then set everything listed on the sheet. Separate into sections: "Bedroom" Items, Clothing Items, "House" Items, Kitchen & Water Items, First Aid & Personal Items, Miscellaneous.

Include your rainwear in with your clothing. Include your bearbagging supplies with your food. Include your water-treatment with your kitchen. Include your flashlight with Miscellaneous. Get a food scale from K-Mart (I got a Martha Stewart scale that goes to five pounds -- NOTHING should weigh over 5 pounds except your food, and then not often).

Weigh out everything in its group. Then see if you 1- really NEED it or just 'want' it; 2- can find a lighter substitute; 3- already have something in that or another grouping that you can use in two or more areas (like NO PILLOW NEEDED, stuff something in a stuff sack and use that as a pillow -- that removes the pillow weight and volume). Socks can be used for mittens. You don't NEED the towel -- use a bandana or one of those tiny disk-towels and replace it every so often. (A Bandana is MUCH LIGHTER WHEN WET. Better two or three bandanas than one camp-towel.) Put the sewing kit in your bounce box. Sure it's "only an ounce" but it's one more that makes 15 ounces into a pound. Ditch the trowel -- you can use a tent stake (I carry a 'snow stake' at one ounce, but I used to use one of those "V" or "Y" shaped stakes) or your poles or your heel. And BRING MORE T.P. than you think you'll use -- you'll use it. You don't need two soaps -- just use one. And you won't need more than 1/2 ounce every three to four weeks because a drop of Bronners goes a LONG way. Bounce the larger container so you can refill your little bottle. Don't carry your DEET (or Naturapel) until you need it. Bounce it.

After this exercise, you should have two more piles -- the "I do not need this luxury" and the "Bounce Box" piles.

If you find that you DO want something from the luxury pile, you can have your support person put it in the next mail drop box they send.

BATTERIES go in your mail drops, too.

See you on the Trail. I'm leaving the first weekend in April 2007. But not as Coosa. I'm going under an 'assumed name.'

LOL, Coosa

tom said...

I saw your post below mentioning sleeping bags and I highly recommend you check out this podcast interviewing the owner of Western Mountaineering, who makes only down sleeping bags:

His point is that a good down bag will last a really, really long time, much longer than synthetics, and that with a a little care you can keep your sleeping bag dry no matter what the weather's like.

Down is also far more compressible. Something to think about anyway, though I suppose I'd check whiteblaze and the other forums to see what the veterans think.

Speaking of hiking, I have a hiking blog you may find interesting: ... I have a couple thruhikers among my readership.

Pike said...

It's be great if you could show more clearly which items you have and which you need to get. Think of the Christmas present ideas!!!!!