My base pack weight (minus food, water and fuel) was 13 pounds. This weight included quite a few luxury items (book, pillow, shorts, stuffed plush marmot at 2.7 ounces, extra maps/trail beta/souvenirs). I could have culled items to go about a pound lighter. Gabriel’s pack weighed in around 14 pounds and didn’t cause him problems either. When our packs felt too heavy, it was due to our food or water carries.
The detailed list of all the items I carried in my pack at some point along the trail can be found in this Google spreadsheet.
Below is a list of the gear I loved and used most often:
For Sun Protection
- Mountain Hardware Canyon Long Sleeve Shirt – Picked up in Idyllwild, CA.
- Straw sun hat – Picked up in Quincy, CA. Worked great for 1,000 miles then fell apart.
- Montbell UL Windshirt – At 2.4 oz this was the perfect layer for cool morning starts or extra warmth at an afternoon break. Breathable and fit in my pack’s side pocket for easy access.
- Montbell UL Thermawrap Jacket – When it got chilly in the desert or in the mountains this layer did the trick. I’ve had mine for 5 years and it’s still going strong. Thank you ProMountain Sports!
- Feathered Friends Hummingbird Bag – With 20F rating, I was comfortable in this bag every night, but one. Lightweight, compact and warm.
- Outdoor Research Helium Jacket – At 5.7 oz it didn’t bother me to carry this jacket for 2,700 miles. Worked well in the rains of So. Cal and in WA.
- GoLite Chrome Dome Umbrella – I snickered at Gabriel’s umbrella, but the first really wet rain in the Mojave had me requesting one for up north. Kept me nice and dry and minimized the drenching of the rain jacket and the pack.
- Flipflops – Picked some up in Shasta City, CA. Made my feet happy in camp, in town, and it was a lot easier to get out of the tent for those late night wanderings.
- Orange plastic spoon – Never lost it even when eating in the dark. Sturdy, lightweight and picked it up at the Outdoor Research store in SODO for 30 cents.
- Lunar Duo by Six Moon Designs – Our tent weighs about 2 pounds, provides enough space for two people to move around without crowding, a 6’4″ person can sit up in it without hitting their head, the breezy mesh lining allowed for good air flow and kept the insects out, and it has doors on both sides. We love our tent!
- Blender bottle – We sent home our stove in Oregon and used Blender Bottles to rehydrate our dinners. The bottles served as our breakfast bowls and as water containers. Made our packs less bulky and dinner prep time a lot easier.
- Bug net – This kept me sane while we hiked through parts of the Sierra and Oregon. Were it not for my bug net I would have been a VERY unhappy hiker. With the mosquitoes at bay, I didn’t have to use DEET or other chemical deterents.
Gabriel’s favorite gear
- Long Sleeve Sahara Tech Shirt by REI
- Lunar Duo by Six Moon Designs
- Poncho by Antigravity Designs