Wednesday, February 24, 2016

That All Important Gear List for a Spring Backpacking Trip

Ah, it's that time of year. Time when we are considering our hiking plans and what we need in the realm of gear to have a safe and enjoyable trip. Here is a typical gear list for a spring start of a long distance hike on the Appalachian Trail. Use it to help construct or modify your gear list. At the end are links to small business outfitters and other retailers.

Sample Gear List for Long Distance Appalachian Trail Hike
 (early spring in the South)
Compiled By “Blissful”  

Backpack (be sure its the right size for you! Do NOT go by your height but by torso length), pack cover, pack liner (I swear by Zpacks liner, bombproof), hiking poles, cuben fiber stuff sacks are light and waterproof (Z packs has a nice variety to double bag your sleeping bag and clothes as they MUST stay dry)

Sleeping bag (15-20 degree rating), silk liner (good for the cold sleeper like me, adds around 9 degrees), sleeping pad (watch the R value which determines how well it functions in cold weather), Tyvek ground sheet to protect the tent floor from mud, snow (necessary imo), tent – poles and stakes (or complete hammock set-up), air pillow (optional)

Cooking and Drinking

Stove, fuel and fuel container, lighter,  -windscreen (optional), titanium pot, pot cozy (all this is incl if you get a Jetboil system), spork (I use a titanium one after breaking three Light My Fire ones), cup (useful for stream dipping), container for getting water from springs and streams, personal water drinking containers (such as liter plastic bottles - Smartwater bottle is good, etc), water purification (Aqua mira, Sawyer Mini, etc), bear bag hanging system (50 feet of nylon cord), food, waterproof food bag (I actually take two bags to split up my lunch and snack for the day so the  heavier, main food bag goes deeper inside my backpack)

Clothing (can vary depending on your likes and the season)
Hiking clothes ( merino wool long sleeve top, one t-shirt top, convertible pants, fleece top) Insulated jacket (down is good to start), windshirt, hat, gloves, midweight merino wool or fleece top and bottom for camp and sleep (a must if your hiking clothes get wet), rain jacket (pants optional, but I believe needed for early start to help against hypothermia), rain hat (good if you wear glasses), underwear, sports bra (women), good socks (at least three pair), crocs for camp, trail shoes or hiking boots

Headlamp, First aid kit, medicines (Vit I, doxycycline for ticks, Tylenol, etc), tooth brush and paste, dental floss, earplugs, prescription (esp. if you wear glasses or contacts), hiker wallet with ID, cash, a few personal checks, credit card, debit card (have an extra on the homefront), toilet paper, a few baby wipes, hand sanitizer, whistle, DEET (later on), sunscreen, body glide (if prone to chafing, can take it out of its container), small jackknife with scissors, bandana, pack towel

Maps and guidebook pages, small journal and pen, cell phone and charger, Yaktrax (optional), stuff sacks and Ziploc bags, compass (optional)

Places to Buy Gear or Change out Gear En Route

Some Outfitters near the Trail 

Other Retail and Online Outfitters (ones I have also personally dealt with)

Related Blog:

Gear List of a 2015 Appalachian Trail Thru Hiker   

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Great advice! My dad and I just went on our first hike in May. Check it out!