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First time I ever weighed my gear!
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Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
First time I ever weighed my gear! on 11/23/2010 11:45:29 MST Print View

I have been hiking/camping/backpacking ever since I was a kid, but I never sat and got a scale out and put my gear to the whole lightweight test with my current set of gear.

I would also note that I am not one of those kinds of people that only gets out into the woods once or twice a year. I go out quite often on not just day trips, but overnighters and weekenders quite a bit during my very active season where I live (Sweden). My very active season is late spring to early fall, around early May to early October. So my gear sees a lot of use.

So here we go. I only did my backpack, its contents, and the few things I have on my belt or in my pockets. But this is pretty much everything other than the clothing on my back, food, and water.

Backpack: Fjällräven Halags Trekking 40 liter, 2kg
Sleeping mat: generic self-inflating, 1.5kg
Sleeping bag: Fjällräven (synthetic, max -8c), 1.309kg
Tarp: generic moss green heavy-duty tarp, .7kg
Rope: generic nylon, .211kg
Survival kit: first aid, pen, pencil, paper, duct tape (wrapped around pen), flashlight, matches, bic lighter, string, razor blade, .232kg
Axe & sheath: Fiskars, .602kg
Trowl: generic plastic, .052kg
Rain poncho: generic plastic (plus duct tape patches), .441kg
Map: color, plus plastic jacket, .055kg
Mess kit: Light My Fire triangle (includes several bags of tea and sugar), .347kg
Toilet Paper: generic partial roll in a plastic bag, .05kg
Hygine: toothbrush, etc. .242kg
T-shirt: generic, .149kg
Teapot: Swedish army issue, .194kg
Cooking pot: Swedish army issue, .177kg
Saw: Pocketboy folding, .207kg
Boxers: generic, .086kg
Cellphone: Nokia, .087kg
Plastic bag: generic black garbage, .079kg
Compass: with singal mirror, .079kg
Pajamas: longsleeve, .411kg
Socks: generic, two pair, .12kg
Insect repellent: liquid pump spray, .16kg
Fishing gear: hooks, pliers, line, reel, etc., .62kg + rod .097kg
Lip balm: generic, .012kg
Gum: peppermint flavor!, .03kg
Knife: Swiss army, Nomad model, .12kg
Water bottle: Platypus 1 liter, .026kg

TOTAL: 10.394kg (if my math is correct, feel free to check!)


Okay nerds, nitpick away!

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
First time I ever weighed my gear! on 11/23/2010 12:53:26 MST Print View

Nerds?

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: First time I ever weighed my gear! on 11/23/2010 13:07:32 MST Print View

Gram Weenies, not nerds.

It would be interesting to hear about your clothing layers and get your Northern/arctic view.

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
Layers on 11/23/2010 15:20:15 MST Print View

I was just kidding about the nerds thing... geez.

But then again... a bunch of people sitting around and weighing the contents of their backpacks... kinda nerdy, no?

As far as layers go, I live in southern Sweden, and it's not so cold here. Actually, I used to live in upstate NY, and it was colder there even though it is further south on the map.

But my layer system is pretty standard. Depends on the weather, of course. But the PJs in my base gear also act as an additional layer if there is a cold sap or if it is very windy. I did go up and camp further north near the border of Norway, and it was colder there. Me and a few friends woke up to snow in the morning in mid May! But was prepared, so it was all good. Long sleeve, t-shirt, wool sweater, light jacket, medium jacket; and of course wool hat, gloves, scarf. Plus we had a nice fire from the night before with embers still burning, so we had another nice fire going up in no time.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Layers on 11/23/2010 15:41:08 MST Print View

"But then again... a bunch of people sitting around and weighing the contents of their backpacks... kinda nerdy, no?"

Weighing the contents of a backpack isn't nerdy. That is conventional wisdom around here.

Weighing the buckle on a backpack and substituting another lighter one... that's getting a bit extreme.

--B.G.--

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
First time I ever weighed my gear! on 11/23/2010 16:31:42 MST Print View

Well in that case, your list looks perfect. I wouldn't change a thing.

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
Really? on 11/23/2010 16:49:35 MST Print View

Hmm. Why do I get the feeling that I am being made fun of?

So... you really wouldn't change anything?

I was thinking that you ultralight guys would come down on the not-so-ultralight guy for being too heavy. In which case I am prepared to defend my choices.

I am amazed by some of the gear lists I have read so far. But at the same time wonder if some of you guys... as has already been hinted at with weighing buckles... might be taking it a bit too far...

But if you honestly dig my list, then thanks!

Josh Newkirk
(Newkirk) - MLife

Locale: Australia
gear list weights on 11/23/2010 17:05:47 MST Print View

Cesar

If you looked at what the gear lists are for you might understand why people can be very serious about a few ounces here or there.
A lot of these lists are for doing multi month trips where a couple of ounces could add up to a lot of wasted energy.

Mike Clelland
(mikeclelland) - MLife

Locale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
feedback on 11/23/2010 17:46:19 MST Print View

Your weight was well into the "traditional" realm, and this is a LIGHTWEIGHT backpacking forum, so be prepared for some serious feedback! I went thru and commented.

Are you cooking on fires? This can be done without an ax, especially if your fires are very small.

_____________________________________________________

Backpack: Fjällräven Halags Trekking 40 liter, 2kg - Heavy, you can find a much lighter option! FIND SOMETHING UNDER 0.7 KG.


Sleeping mat: generic self-inflating, 1.5kg - Whew! Very heavy! There are nice inflatable “torso” pads that weigh .28 kg


Sleeping bag: Fjällräven (synthetic, max -8c), 1.309kg


Tarp: generic moss green heavy-duty tarp, .7kg (this is quite heavy for a tarp, there are LOTS of much lighter options)


Rope: generic nylon, .211kg (what is the rope for?) NIX


Survival kit: first aid, pen, pencil, paper, duct tape (wrapped around pen), flashlight, matches, bic lighter, string, razor blade, .232kg


Axe & sheath: Fiskars, .602kg (What for? Easily NIXED)


Trowel: generic plastic, .052kg (Easily NIXED)


Rain poncho: generic plastic (plus duct tape patches), .441kg - THat is quite heavy for a poncho. You can easily find a lighter option.


Map: color, plus plastic jacket, .055kg


Mess kit: Light My Fire triangle (includes several bags of tea and sugar), .347kg
(Tea and sugar are CONSUMABLES, and you can eat out of your cook-pot)


Toilet Paper: generic partial roll in a plastic bag, .05kg (easily NIXED)


Hygiene: toothbrush, etc. .242kg


T-shirt: generic, .149kg (Is this part of your clothing worn? Is this an *EXTRA* layer? If so, easily NIXED)


Teapot: Swedish army issue, .194kg (easily NIXED, Just use your cooking pot)


Cooking pot: Swedish army issue, .177kg


Saw: Pocketboy folding, .207kg (easily NIXED)


Boxers: generic, .086kg (easily NIXED, what are you wearing when you start?)


Cellphone: Nokia, .087kg (easily NIXED)


Plastic bag: generic black garbage, .079kg


Compass: with signal mirror, .079kg


Pajamas: long-sleeve, .411kg (Are these part of your insulating layers? Or are these just for sleeping? If they are *JUST* for sleeping, NIX ‘em)


Socks: generic, two pair, .12kg


Insect repellent: liquid pump spray, .16kg


Fishing gear: hooks, pliers, line, reel, etc., .62kg + rod .097kg


Lip balm: generic, .012kg {Nice!}


Gum: peppermint flavor!, .03kg {this is a CONSUMABLE}


Knife: Swiss army, Nomad model, .12kg (NIX! you have a razor blade)


Water bottle: Platypus 1 liter, .026kg {Nice}

_____________________________________________________

- You need to list your CONSUMABLES, or at least a weight for them (food, fuel, and water weight)

- You need to list your clothing worn. AND WHAT KIND OF SHOES.

- THere is no listing for insulating clothes? (also called CLOTHES CARRIED)

Mike Clelland
(mikeclelland) - MLife

Locale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 17:48:57 MST Print View

- - Also - -

Weighing a buckle on a backpack is NOT a bit extreme!

It is a honorable dedication to the beauty and enjoyment of the wilderness with a lighter backpack!

(I weigh mine, and replace them with lighter options)

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 18:09:35 MST Print View

"Weighing a buckle on a backpack is NOT a bit extreme!"

You misquoted me, Mike.

The correct quote:

"Weighing the buckle on a backpack and substituting another lighter one... that's getting a bit extreme."

--B.G.--

John Roan
(JRoan) - MLife

Locale: Vegas
Re: Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 18:36:11 MST Print View

You beat me to it Mike...I weigh my buckles and everything else in search of the lightest option. But then again, I wear the "Gram Weenie Badge" with honor :~)>

John Whynot
(jdw01776)

Locale: Southeast Texas
Re: Re: Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 19:00:16 MST Print View

>>Weighing the buckle on a backpack and substituting another lighter one... that's getting a bit extreme.

I did that, plus sliced off excess hip belt and shoulder strap webbing, and removed unused "features"...

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 19:00:48 MST Print View

Buckles? BUCKLES? We don't need no STINKING BUCKLES!!!

When you start swapping out drawstrings for lighter ones, you know you are an ultalighter.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Weigh your buckles! on 11/23/2010 19:39:22 MST Print View

Some of us are cross country skiers. For balance purposes with a backpack, it is necessary to have a decent hip belt and also a decent sternum strap. I just make a point of purchasing a pack that has those designed with proper buckles.

--B.G.--

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
@ Mike on 11/24/2010 03:27:18 MST Print View

Mike, thanks for the detailed feedback, that's exactly what I was looking for. As you pointed out, I am more a traditional backpacker, with lightweight tendencies. I am trying to open my mind to you crazy ultralight peeps. We do the same thing, after all, and get out there into the wild.

But I knew what I was getting myself into posting my gear list, so I appreciate (and am not offended by) the serious feedback. While camping/backpacking is anything but new to me, UL is, and want to learn more about it.

On to some of your comments.

The rope is to set the tarp up. The tarp is a heavy duty hareware store type tarp. I am looking into getting a bivy/UL tarp, however.

The sleeping mat I am conflicted about myself. Yeah, it is a bit heavy, but it is very comfy and has an in-built pillow too. But for the record, I did buy and try out a very light foam mat a few times, and while very light, was not comfy at all and also difficult to roll up. I will look into other mats. Any suggestions? But this is also where cost come into play, more on this later.

The axe has many uses. Chopping wood not just for fuel, but also for building improvised shelters. Also doubles as a hammer, and as a weapon too. I go very deep into the woods, and often run into wild animals like boar and moose. I have been in situations where said animals have gestured like they were going to charge. Lucky for me, they didn't, but I had my axe in hand just in case. So I doubt I will nix the axe, I use it quite a lot and makes things much easier. I would also note that for an axe, it's as UL as you are going to get and still be an effective axe. Nice fiberglass handle helps, and is also stronger than a wooden handle.

I am surprised you would nix the trowl. Good weight, for one. And when you need to dig a small hole (usually for pooping), what do you use then?

I will take the consumables of tea and sugar into consideration next time I weigh. And you know what, you make a good point about eating out of the pot. When I go solo, that's usually what I do and leave the mess kit at home. But last time I went out was with friends, and in that case I need another place to put food when we cook and eat. So next time I weight I will keep the plates out of the kit, but keep the mug, spork, and cutting board/strainer.

The toilet paper was also surprised by. Are you talking about using leaves? I mean it's not that much weight for a whole lot of comfort and ease when you need to wipe.

The t-shirt is a spare one for the next day. This pack represents my most common weekend trip gear. So if I go friday, get all sweaty hiking, then the next day I change into a fresh t-shirt, boxers, and socks. If it is more than one day, I clean the dirty t-shirt, boxers, and socks from the first day and use them the 3rd, and so fourth.

The teapot and cook pot go together because I often want a cup of tea before or during cooking. So I can make both a cup of tea and my meal at the same time. Plus the teapot boils much faster, and I also use it to boil water to clean with (myself and other gear).

Okay, I will give you the saw can be nixed. This is just a pure luxury to make my life easier as I get fuel or build shelter.

The cell phone can't be nixed. Not much weight, either, but I need to keep in touch with friends and family. Espeically when I go out solo, which is often.

The PJs I am conflicted about. They keep me warm while I sleep and it is also nice to have a clean set of clothing to sleep in. In the morning it is often very cool and what I will do is keep my PJs on as an extra layer as I get up and get ready for the day. Once the sun is up and warm, and I have a good fire going, then I strip the PJs off. The PJs have also come in handy when it is colder than I expected and I just leave them on as a extra layer. I think in the end I will keep em.

The Swiss army knife won't be nixed. Working with wood (making grilling sticks, for example), gutting fish, and having it easily accessable from the belt sheath at my side is a must for me. The razor is mostly reserved for emergencies, which is why it is with the first aid kit, or as a back up to my knife just in case something happens to it (lost, broken, etc.). Plus it has other useful things on it other than the knife, like tweezers, bottle opener, can opener, ect. And the weight is good, especially with the sheath.

Okay, I will re-weight a few things and get a new total weight up. Plus the clothing when I have time. Shoes I can tell you right away that I usually were US army issue jungle boots.

And I can comment a bit about food and water. I weighed my food bag, which is 2 servings of lentils, 2 servings oatmeal, salt, powdered milk, extra sugar, and one bullion cube and this adds up to .484kg. Water adds another 1kg, and that's all I carry with me, as here in Sweden there is plenty of water and most of it is safe to drink. I still boil it to be safe, however. Hence the teapot again.

Thanks again for the feedback. I love learning more about this passion of mine especially from other unique perspectives such as the UL mindset. But just as I am trying to be open minded about UL, I would hope that you hardcore ULers can do the same. Because as much as I respect your endevours and find a lot of good advice, tips, techniques, and the overall philosophy appealing... it is not beyond its own issues.

Price for one. A lot of UL gear I have seen is very expensive, which for a poor guy like me leaves me SOOL.

It can also become an arbitrary quest of who has the lightest pack. Often comfort and utlity get sacrificed just to shave off a few grams. Pissing contests about the most UL gear lists abound, and there aer some gear lists I have read that leaves me scratching my head and wondering just how the hell one is able to avoid hypothermia and starvation.

There is an elitism in UL that can be a real turn off to those on the outside. I would like to see more UL and traditional backpackers both influence each other more, and go out into the wild more. To me it seems like the two circles are often exclusive.

These are just generalizations based on my own observation, and of course I could be mistaken, and this is not meant to single out anyone.

But anyhow, my new weight, minus a few things I noted above, is 9.959kg. This should go down much more if I find a sleeping mat that is as cofmy as my current one and the price is nice, and also perhaps get a bivy/tarp combo (again, if the price is nice).

Roger B
(rogerb) - MLife

Locale: Here and there
Re: @ Mike on 11/24/2010 04:33:29 MST Print View

Cesar you may also want to take a look at Nordic Light Packing if you have not already done so.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
exclusive on 11/24/2010 08:10:35 MST Print View

not exclusive by any means imo, you'll find a wide range of views on equipment/techniques on these boards and their resultant weights

what we all pretty much agree on is that if we can lighten our loads, we directly benefit from less wear/tear on the body and the ability to cover more ground (if we so choose :))

lightening comes as much from limiting what we take as what we pieces of gear we chose to take- multi-use items are always sought

so even if you don't end up w/ a sub 5 lb base weight (very, very few of us do) you WILL pick up some nuggets on how to lighten your load, make use of multiple use gear, make you own gear (this should be especially appealing to anyone who likes a challenge and wants to save a little $) and employing techniques that allow us to enjoy the great outdoors a little more

Andy Schill
(Aschill) - F
Hey on 11/24/2010 09:03:57 MST Print View

Cesar,

I'm still a newb but I will comment on what I have learned.

Axe- Do you really use it a lot?? I find most people hardly use them and they never really come off peoples packs. Also, you're not going to have much luck defending yourself against a wild boar or moose with it. Maybe consider a lightweight packsaw to replace both your Axe and your other Saw.

Trowel- I've never used one and never had trouble digging holes with my hands or other natural objects (rocks, sticks)

Good luck!! There are a lot of myths with lightweight backpacking that I'm sure you will find untrue as I did.

Edited by Aschill on 11/24/2010 09:11:26 MST.

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
bushcraft on 11/24/2010 09:20:06 MST Print View

Cesar,

I would say that you are more into bushcraft than most people here. Most (by no means all) of us are more into hiking with as little weight as possible, cooking boil-in-bag kinda meals, etc. Personally, if gutting fish, having wood fires, etc., is what makes it all worth doing for you- then I say do it. Bring the axe and the knife. Heck, I'm rethinking knives, myself. And if you like your pad, keep it- if you can't sleep then you aren't camping, you're "enduring." It's just no fun if you can't sleep. I've always been willing to sacrifice a *little* weight on warmer bags and thicker pads. That said, that is one heavy pad! I think you could find a much lighter one that would meet your needs.

Yes, a lot of your gear has lighter alternatives- lighter tarp, etc., and I've long since ditched my trowel and just kicked holes or used a sharp stick or tent stake. You can definitely shed a LOT of weight by replacing a few things. And a general rule is "don't bring more clothes than you can wear at one time. What's a little funk, when you're solo?

That said, you will never qualify as a gram weenie if you bring all of that. I'm not even sure you can qualify as untralight if you bring an axe. Maybe lightweight.

Edited by acrosome on 11/24/2010 09:23:29 MST.