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Lighten up a little!
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Mark Stalbird
(Off-road) - F
Lighten up a little! on 01/05/2010 15:38:49 MST Print View

Ok...i realize this is a site with serious weight conscious members,more dedicated then i see myself ever becoming but i will admit after reviewing many threads I've made an attempt to lighten up.

Just weighed my entire pack with 1 day supply of food as I'm getting ready for an over-niter.
My fully stuffed Meridian Vapor came to 12.7 lbs.

Is this acceptable?
I'm serious...don't know that i can get lower without major sacrifices,ones that i'm not willing to make at present.

Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Re: Lighten up a little! on 01/05/2010 15:46:20 MST Print View

Mark, if 12.7 lbs is the result of your first efforts to lighten up, then I'd say you're doing awfully well. The beauty is that 12.7 lbs probably buys you a lot of comfort with modern gear. Nice work.

Getting lower doesn't necessarily require major sacrifices, but it always requires some type of sacrifice:

- detachment from gear you're emotionally hanging onto;
- sacrifice of money to purchase new gear;
- sacrifice of functionality that might come with simpler gear;
- sacrifice of durability that might come with lighter gear

the list goes on.

The great thing about all this, is that it's always a cost:benefit analysis, and never just a list of sacrifices...

Keep going, you're off to a great start.

Christopher Graf
(cgraf) - M

Locale: So Cal
"Lighten up a little!" on 01/05/2010 15:50:04 MST Print View

"Is this acceptable? I'm serious...don't know that i can get lower without major sacrifices,ones that i'm not willing to make at present."

The weight of ones pack is purely up to the individual...if it is acceptable to you that is what matters...
12.7 pounds is pretty good especially with an overnights worth of food (does it include your water supply - a liter equals approximately 2lbs)....
I'd weight the pack without food and get the true base weight and post a list of those components....the forum members will be more than happy to give advice/input in areas that can be reduced....

Edited by cgraf on 01/05/2010 15:51:01 MST.

Lynn Tramper
(retropump) - F

Locale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
Re: Lighten up a little! on 01/05/2010 15:52:06 MST Print View

Mark, I've been on this site for years, and have seriously lightened up my load. Even so, 12-13lbs for an overnight trip is lighter than I think I've ever carried (if it includes food and water), so I think you're off to a great start! I like my luxuries and really need some durability, and almost always carry more water than I need "just in case".

Edited by retropump on 01/05/2010 15:53:10 MST.

Brady Fulton
(bfulton) - F

Locale: Phoenix Arizona
Always on 01/05/2010 16:12:13 MST Print View

If you bring anything, there's always room to get lighter! With that said, What's in your pack?

Joseph Morrison
(sjdm4211) - F

Locale: Smokies
"Lighten up a little!" on 01/05/2010 17:35:12 MST Print View

Whats in your pack and what are the conditions you will be backpacking in?


Pieter Kaufman
(Pieter) - F
Re: Re: Lighten up a little! on 01/05/2010 17:57:29 MST Print View

"...sacrifice of functionality that might come with simpler gear..."

And yet, one of the beauties of this pursuit is how simpler pieces of gear like GG's Gorilla pack -- which I received last night, and am in awe of -- is actually MORE tunable, flexible, and extendible than almost any other pack I've ever owned, borrowed, inspected or researched. That is to say, less material has actually yielded MORE functionality. It really is a magnificent piece of design. As are MLD's Event gaiters, which, despite the fact that they are designed for snow or rain, did a flawless job of keeping grit out of my shoes this past weekend while hiking desert washes. It's not something I'd ever do with OR Crocodiles due to weight/heat issues; the MLDs are one tenth the weight of the ORs, and more easily serviceable with easily sourced shock cord, should I cut it accidentally. The ORs would require ordering a replacement strap.

Mark Stalbird
(Off-road) - F
"lighten up a little" on 01/05/2010 18:38:17 MST Print View

Thanks for the replies.

Well...i seldom carry water as most of my backpacking is in WV/VA where streams are plentiful so I've been carrying a Katadyn and boil water straight from the stream I'm camping beside.

Thanks to you bunch i now have a spread sheet with listed weights via scales.

Without running down to the basement here's the off the top of my head list of main components.

EMS 20+ down bag
Speer hammock/Sierra designs Lightning tent
Z-lite pad
Pocket Rocket
Pinnacle Soloist
Petzel e-lite
1st aid kit
Sun glasses
Matches and fire starter.

Let me guess,you want the spread sheet with listed weights.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Lighten up a little -- But Only if You Want To! on 01/05/2010 19:27:16 MST Print View


The whole lighten up thing came about at a time when folks routinely lugged 60-70lbs -- I've seen with my own eyes folks strapping full-size lawn chairs onto their packs!

But in lightening up, it's also easy to fall into the trap of lightening up for its own sake -- be it for bragging rights or whatever.

IMO, we all have a "sweet spot" -- that weight level where we can hike with our pack for an entire day, every day, and not really feel it. Mine is around 25lbs.

Too much over our sweet spot, and we tend not to enjoy the hike. But cut down much below our sweet spot, then what we get increasingly is nothing more than psychic benefits -- bragging rights, whatever.

So, once you are at or below your sweet spot, the question is NOT whether the weight is "acceptable" -- to us or to anybody else -- but whether further cutting for the sake of your psychic benefits is worth your safety or comfort or convenience or enjoyment?

Edited by ben2world on 01/05/2010 19:31:24 MST.

Mark Stalbird
(Off-road) - F
Re: Re: Lighten up a little -- But Only if You Want To! on 01/05/2010 19:51:04 MST Print View

Great post,

Incase anyone is curious i'm 49 and started backpacking at the age of 13.

Age is my motivation to lighten up,
yes...much more enjoyable lugging less weight especially through the rugged rocky terrain that i deal with.

we can get carried away with ultralight but i believe i've hit holy grail with my current set-up,time will tell.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Re: Re: Lighten up a little -- But Only if You Want To! on 01/05/2010 20:03:07 MST Print View

But I believe I've hit holy grail with my current set-up

You have. Until the next new toy comes along and you suddenly feel the irresistible urge to buy it so you can shave another half ounce off your load. Just you wait and see. Mwahahaha...

The Gear Enabler.