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Gear List Advice
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Mark Carman
(MarkC) - F

Locale: Salt Lake City
Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 08:00:02 MST Print View

What a fantastic site and community. I just came across it a few weeks ago and can't get enough of it. I have been working on a gear list and would really appreciate some feedback. Some of the stuff I own and some of the stuff I plan to purchase.

I live in Utah near the Uinta mountains so evenings get fairly chilly even in mid-summer.


Tilley LT5 hat (3.0 oz.) (To be purchased)
Hiking shirt of some sort (7.0 oz.) (To be purchased)
REI Sahara convertible nylon hiking pants (9.0 oz.)
Wool socks (1.5 oz.)
Vasque Goretex hiking boots (40.0 oz.) (Will probably get trail runners)


REI Peak UL carbon fiber trekking poles (5.4 oz.)
Whistle (0.8 oz.)


GoLite Wist Wind shirt (3.2 oz.) (To be purchased)
Patagonia Down Sweater (11.0 oz.) (To be purchased)
GoLite Phantom Goretex jacket (13.0 oz.) (To be purchased)
GoLite Reed rain pant (5.5 oz.) (To be purchased)
(Would it work to skip the expensive shell and pants and just get a decent poncho? I would save some serious money. This stuff is expensive.)
Beanie (3.0 oz.)
Fleece gloves (3.0 oz.)
Wool socks (1.5 oz.)


REI Quarter Dome T3 tent (80.0 oz. total; 40.0 oz. per person) (Returnable but I'll be with my 12-year old son so probably want to take a lightweight tent)
Marmot Sawtooth 600 fill down sleeping bag (15 degree) (46.0 oz.) (To be purchased)
REI Trekker 1.75 sleeping pad (40.0 oz.) (Returnable but want a fairly comfortable pad)


High Peak Pinnacle 65 + 10 backpack (91.0 oz.; would love to get the Jam 2, but unsure if it has adequate capacity)
Sea To Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack - 10 x 24 Specs (1.8 oz.)
Sea To Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack - 10 x 24 Specs (1.8 oz.)
Sea To Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack - 10 x 24 Specs (1.8 oz.)


Snow Peak Lite Max (1.9 oz.)
GSI Pinnacle Dualist (20.0 oz. total; 10.0 oz. per person) (Returnable but I think this set is pretty cool. It comes with a 10 oz pot and four bowls and two lids. I could reduce weight by losing two bowls and the lids. That said, give me your candid feedback.)
Wind screen, foil (1.0 oz.)
Plastic spoon (1.0 oz.)
Platypus bottles, 1L (2) (1.8 oz.)
Aqua Mira kit (1.1 oz.)
UrsaLite Bear Bag hanging system (3.0 oz.) (To be purchased. Is there a cheaper or better alternative?)

Maps, 2, USGS paper in Zip Lock (2.0 oz.)
Petzel Tikka Plus LED headlamp (2.8 oz.)
First aid kit (2.0 oz.)
Sparklite, Bic lighter, matches, and firestarter in Aloksak (2.0 oz.)
Sunglasses (1.0 oz.)
Sunscreen (1.0 oz.)
Insect repellant (1.0 oz.)
Personal hygiene kit (2.0 oz.)
Compass (1.1 oz.)
Pack towel / Buff / Bandana (1.5 oz.)
Casio Exilm digital camera (4.6 oz.)
Leatherman Squirt P4 (2.0 oz.)
Simple repair kit (2.0 oz.)

CONSUMMABLES (Just guessing here)
Snow Peak Giga Power, 110g (3.8 oz.)
Food (2.5 days; 20 oz / day) (50.0 oz.)
Water, average carried, half quart (16.0 oz.)

(1) Total weight worn or carried (68.9 oz.; 4.3 lbs.)
(2) Total base weight in pack (308.5 oz.; 19.3 lbs.)
(3) Total weight of consummables (69.8 oz.; 4.4 lbs.)
(4) Total initial pack weight (2) + (3) (378.3 oz.; 23.6 lbs.)
(5) Full skin-out weight (1) + (2) + (3) (447.2 oz.; 28.0 lbs.)

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Gear list on 02/25/2009 08:12:49 MST Print View

If you replace the stakes and leave the bags on the T3, it drops it down to 72 oz. I'd replace the High Sierra Pinnacle with a Golite Pinnacle; and the 2008s are on closeout several places ( I do know that with a larger pack like the Pinnacle, I have this subconcious desire to fill it completely full. There are a lot of bags lighter than the Sawtooth for the same price, and at roughly the same temp rating (Luxurylite V-bag, for example). I would also replace the Trekker pad with a POE Ether Thermo 6, lighter, smaller, and more comfortable. Mine worked great by itself in 22 degree weather last weekend. If you need to, you can always put a GG thinlight pad on it for colder weather. GSI Dualist? Heavy, just buy a pot and eat out of it, or get 2 plastic bowls at Wally world.

Those changes would save you roughly 100 oz. Just my thoughts, HYOH.

Edited by skinewmexico on 02/25/2009 08:22:38 MST.

John Brochu
(JohnnyBgood4) - F

Locale: New Hampshire
re: gear list on 02/25/2009 08:24:13 MST Print View

You could consider the Mont-Bell down inner jacket instead of the Patagonia down sweater. It's about 7 ounces instead of 11 and is on sale for $104.25 at Campsaver so it's cheaper too. It's not quite as warm as the Patagonia but it's close, at least in the chart that's posted in the Gear forum.

If you're considering a poncho for rain protection you could go with the Six Moon Designs Gatewood Cape and use it for your shelter as well. $135 and roughly 11 ounces. (Edit: just read about you needing a 2-person shelter so the Cape won't work.)

Check out Z-packs for a lighter PCT bear bag system.

You can find a beenie and gloves for about an ounce a piece.

Edited by JohnnyBgood4 on 02/25/2009 08:33:19 MST.

Mark Carman
(MarkC) - F

Locale: Salt Lake City
Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 08:47:36 MST Print View

That was a quick 100 oz plus. I'll appreciate that come trail time. Thanks, Joe and John.

Mark Carman
(MarkC) - F

Locale: Salt Lake City
Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 08:51:03 MST Print View

Joe, quick follow-up question: On the GoLite pack, I'm game for the Jam 2 over the Pinnacle. Do you think the Jam 2 has adequate capacity? It seems to be much more popular than the Pinnacle. Thanks, again, for the input.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Gear list advice on 02/25/2009 09:00:58 MST Print View

The Jam2 does seem to have enough capacity for most people, but not for me yet. I was trying to get all my gear in mine last weekend, and gave up. I have two things working against me though - for some reason, I hate having things on the outside of my pack. And I mostly go with Boy Scouts, so I always end up needing the extra volume of the Pinnacle, because someone doesn't have room for the trash, etc. I could probably make the Jam2 work on a solo trip. Easy to make the Pinnacle smaller, harder to make the Jam2 bigger.

John Brochu
(JohnnyBgood4) - F

Locale: New Hampshire
re: sleeping pad on 02/25/2009 09:08:51 MST Print View

40 ounces for a sleeping pad...? It's hard to recommend because you say you want something comfortable so need to know what you've tried. Have you ever tried a 3/4 length pad before? Honestly, for a lot of people something like a ThermaRest Prolite 3 3/4 length pad at 13 ounces is more than enough comfort.

And if you do go with one of the GoLite packs they both use an internal pad for a frame which you can then use to insulate your feet for sleeping.

Edited by JohnnyBgood4 on 02/25/2009 09:15:49 MST.

Mark Carman
(MarkC) - F

Locale: Salt Lake City
Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 09:38:46 MST Print View

"Easy to make the Pinnacle smaller, harder to make the Jam2 bigger." Absolutely true. I think I'll go with the GoLite Pinnacle. Thanks, Joe.

Yeah, John, I know that pad is a weight problem. I haven't tried much else, but I like your thoughts about 3/4 length and using the pad from the GoLite pack. I'll poke around a bit and figure something out.

Thanks, again.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Gear list on 02/25/2009 10:05:56 MST Print View

Personally, I don't mind carrying that extra 8 ounces and getting an insulated, full length 2-1/2" thick air mattress.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 10:40:23 MST Print View


Over the past 6 months or so, I moved by base weight from 20lbs to well below 10lbs. I suggest you start by buying two books. "Trail Life" by Ray Jardine, and "Lightweight" by Ryan Jordan. A lot of the information they present is available on the Web, but it is nice to have all of this stuff in an organized one source location.

Regarding a poncho or even a poncho/tarp. These have been my favorite rain gear and even shelter for over 40 years. But do some research, the methods are not for everyone. For you and your son, a 8' X 8' tarp would work, and I think it is better than a tent. But others disagree, so do your homework here.

Going through your list, I will skip items others have mentioned. Other than the pack. Assemble all your gear, and then find the pack. What I would do is figure out what capacity I need, then go with a ULA, Gossamer Gear, or one of the other lightweight packs. I am really impressed with the offering from ULA, and bought one of their packs a while back. I might even take all my gear to REI and try some of their packs to get a feel for capacity. I think REI carries some of the GoLite packs.

Insulation - I have a Patagonia Down Sweater, and it is awesome. But at 1/2 the weight, my MontBell Extremely Light Jacket keeps me warm down to 20F, with a shell worn with it. I have not used it in colder weather.

Sleeping bag - Western Mountaineerg Ultralite (20F) at 29 oz, or Versalite (10F) at 32 oz are much lighter than what you have. There are other manufacturers with similar ratings and weights.

Trail Runners - I was surprised how well these work. Of course you need lighter loads to use them.

Tent - Go with a tarp or tarp tent. But do you research, as they have their limitations and you need to know how to use them.

Pads - I now use the 10 oz BMW Torsolite, or the Gossamer Gear 3.5 oz Gossamer Gear NightLight foam torso pad. I can get a good night's sleep by site selection and using my pack under my legs. You will have to do things diffently though, for snow.

Everything else - a lot of little items can be reduced. I would review a lot of the BPL members gear lists for ideas.

You can easily cut your base weight in half if you want, without giving up comfort or safety.

Mark Carman
(MarkC) - F

Locale: Salt Lake City
Re: Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 10:49:28 MST Print View

Thanks, Nick. That is very helpful. I'll definitely pickup those books.

What are your thoughts on the GoLite packs in comparison to the ULA / Gossamer Gear packs? I don't know much about ultralight packs, but I'm kind of leaning toward a GoLite pack.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Gear List Advice on 02/25/2009 11:18:09 MST Print View

I have a lot of experience with packs (have/do own many), but my only experience with UL is the ULA Conduit.

People here are very brand loyal, so keep that in mind.

I did a lot of research, and was looking for something in the 50L range (was also looking for something smaller for short trips). My research got me down to 3 choices, and I wanted something sturdier than the SUL packs (sorted by weight).

- GoLite Jam2
- Gossamer Gear Mariposa
- ULA Conduit

Keep in mind that these manufacturers include the outside pockets in their capacity, which is why the GG and ULA are lighter. But the outside pockets make life easier for me, because of the easy access. So this narrowed my search to GG and the ULA. I chose the ULA, because I liked the shoulder straps and hip belt with pockets better. This was a tough choiced that I mulled over for a while. I have bought products from both GG and ULA, and they are outstanding companies. Just be forewarned, that there is often a waiting time for these products.

Two other manufacturers you might want to look at are Six Moon Designs and Mountain Laurel Designs. Excellent quality and I have bought some gear from both. Again keep in mind that there is often a waiting time with both of them.

Bottom line though is that you need to assemlbe all your other gear first, so you know what volume and weight capacity you are going to need in a pack.

John Brochu
(JohnnyBgood4) - F

Locale: New Hampshire
re: packs on 02/25/2009 12:18:12 MST Print View

I would add Z-Packs Blast 26 to that list of options if you get into that size range. Although the 3 Nick listed are all awesome packs too.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Gear list advice on 02/25/2009 14:15:43 MST Print View

I need a ULA, so I can have all 3 of the packs Nick lists.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Yes you do... on 02/25/2009 14:23:25 MST Print View


... need another pack.

I am fortunate because I work from home, and my wife has a day job. So she doesn't see all the toys rolling in :)

The really expensive stuff is my stamp collection, and it is easy to hide those. The gear just keeps piling up. But then, the gear closet is so full, even I don't know exactly what is in it.

Good thing the dog can't talk!!