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Lightweight Backpacking, Wal-Mart Style
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eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
wallymart on 12/12/2010 14:56:15 MST Print View

i actually think that big box stores are the bet place to start for certain things ... like underwear and midlayers and socks and gloves

keep in mind that quite a few folks that work outdoors buy clothes at big box stores ... the clothes should last quite a while ...

ive never had to return any clothing to a big box store yet ... the wallymart and costco underwear is still going strong

home depot gloves last longer than a lot of those fancy outdoor gloves for a fraction of the price ...

i might just have to go buy a wallymart 29$ daypack ... thats weights 28 oz and has an aluminum stay and test it till destruction ...

the one the folks here seem to have no issue with ...

someone also reviews their $30 Arrowhead 50L 2.25 lb pack positively here ..

i suspect there's a definite snob factor at work here ... hell there was a snob factor with one of the REI threads a bit back ;)

Edited by bearbreeder on 12/12/2010 14:58:42 MST.

Frank Steele
(knarfster) - F

Locale: Arizona
Great article on 12/29/2010 14:55:19 MST Print View

nice to see that you can drop weight without dropping loads of cash (Wish I had tried that)

As for the wahhh "Walmart treats its employees bad" crowd. If they don't like their job, quit, simple as that.


Locale: American Southwest
Keep it real on 01/01/2011 18:28:52 MST Print View

The late Harvey Butchart was a determined explorer of the Grand Canyon, logging some 12,000 miles and 1,000 days, summiting its peaks and finding new ways to get from the rim to the river. He did it wearing K-Mart boots and backpacks. He wouldn't know what to do in an REI.

On principal I abhor Walmart for the many reasons already cited. But let us keep it real. Consumerism is a disease, yet it has lifted many millions out of poverty - at a very high cost to the planet. I visit and hike the Grand Canyon several times a year. It is a ten hour drive each time. I know that the relative merits of my frugal miserly ways of making my own gear and babying it to last me a lifetime (and buying local) hardly makes up for my transportation to get me to trailheads.

Greg Geiger
(ghgeiger) - F

Locale: Appalachian Trail
more goodies on 02/15/2011 13:10:44 MST Print View

I just wanted to chime in with some more goodies that are available at walmart.

- 5/8" CCF sleeping pads for $5

- 250 gram coleman isobutane canisters for $4.50

- Nite-Ize S-Biners in SS and plastic, multiple sizes for $2+ (I've seen these in both the camping section and the hardware section next to screws and picture hangers)

and my personal favorite...

- Sawyer .1 micron water filter element w/water bottle for $40 (I ditched the bottle & use the filter in a gravity setup)

Nathan Baker
(Slvravn) - MLife

Locale: East Coast - Mid Atlantic
Re: more goodies on 02/15/2011 13:18:05 MST Print View

Greg - do you know how much the sawyer filter weighs from the bottle combo? Thanks

Greg Geiger
(ghgeiger) - F

Locale: Appalachian Trail
sawyer weight on 02/15/2011 13:48:36 MST Print View

Mine weighs in at 69 grams or 2.43 ounces.

Nathan Baker
(Slvravn) - MLife

Locale: East Coast - Mid Atlantic
Re: sawyer weight on 02/15/2011 16:45:36 MST Print View

Thank you Greg. It appears to be a bit heavier than the inline, but a few dollars cheaper too.

Greg Geiger
(ghgeiger) - F

Locale: Appalachian Trail
water weight on 02/16/2011 08:46:21 MST Print View

I realized last night that I had stored it wet, so I dried it out overnight and reweighed it. It now weighs in at 62.6 grams or 2.21 ounces. It's possible that there's still a little bit of water in there, but then again, when you're on the trail it's going to be wet anyways.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
more goodies on 02/16/2011 09:08:08 MST Print View

Sams and probably walmart also carry Cuddle-Duds which are technically speaking Ahem.... marketed to women. they are VERY light, comfortable next to skin, and hit the sweet spot for me on adding warmth without too much insulation for high exertion. The V-neck top in a size M which I can wear and I wear a mens lg ( the stuff is very stretchy and I wanted a snug fit) weighs 3.7 oz. A lg hoodie which I've really enjoyed this winter weighs 6.7 oz and we're talking anywhere from $10.00 on clearance at Sams to @$20.00 per piece full retail. Cuddle duds has a very thorough website you can google if interested but no mention of weight. I think pants weigh @ 5oz. I cut a pair off just at the knee and they weigh 3.1.

Michael Ray
(topshot) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Cuddle Duds warmth on 02/16/2011 11:00:33 MST Print View

FYI for those that want to try them, my wife says CDs are clearly not as warm as Capilene 2 from 2 years ago.

James S
(HikinNC) - F
Buying the cottage on 02/16/2011 12:10:57 MST Print View

Buy what you can afford and what keeps you safe and having fun. Snobbery is more costly than any gear I'll ever afford. As others have said before me, Walmart isn't even close to being the devil. If you don't want to shop there - don't. Problem solved.

obx hiker
(obxcola) - MLife

Locale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
cuddle duds warmth on 02/16/2011 12:17:08 MST Print View

that sounds right. I first looked at them as a very light sleeping layer, bag liner thing; which btw the mld momentum 50 liner looks like a weight saving temp boosting solution to that concern, but found them fine for a high activity level layer. They are very open, almost like hosiery, and seem to work like a cross between a woven layer and more of a fishnet air pocket effect. Put it this way you wouldn't wear them alone unless it was pretty warm. The cuddle-duds website for ex doesn't really display or expose the sheer nature of the material. If it did there would be modesty issues.

Jim Morrison
(Pliny) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Tarp shelter for less money and less weight? on 02/27/2011 22:05:17 MST Print View

You mentioned a tarp shelter might cost less and weigh less. Can you direct me to a place that advertises one or give me a brand name?

Greg Geiger
(ghgeiger) - F

Locale: Appalachian Trail
Re: Tarp shelter for less money and less weight? on 02/28/2011 16:02:21 MST Print View

I was browsing the camping section of walmart this afternoon and saw a product that I've never seen before. A 5x7 urethane coated nylon backpacking tarp made by Outdoor Products for $9.88. I weighed it (in the produce section ;)) & it came in right at 8 ounces with the stuff sack & tag. I'd say that it was about 7" long and 4" diameter in it's stuff sack. I would guess that it's somewhere in the 70 denier range.

Here's a pic:Outdoor Products 5x7 tarp

Michael Ray
(topshot) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Re: Lightweight Backpacking, Wal-Mart Style on 04/25/2011 07:39:51 MDT Print View

Another thing I haven't seen mentioned yet is Outdoor Products 3-pack of dry sacks for $10. I use the larger green one as my food bag with an OpSak inside it. It seems pretty airtight and water resistant at least.

Another find is braided catfish line. All but one spool (and the mason's line) they sell is twisted, but this 1 spool I believe was 100 lb (~1.5mm) and braided.

Tom Caldwell
(Coldspring) - F

Locale: Ozarks
3.4 oz, $5.88 Packable Daypack on 06/07/2011 23:23:16 MDT Print View

Outdoor Products Packable Daypack

Wal-Mart Packable Daypack

I spotted this at my local Wally World today. Couldn't resist, at least it's an excuse to take a short hike.

Edited by Coldspring on 06/07/2011 23:29:45 MDT.

Michael Ray
(topshot) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Polycro on 06/08/2011 06:45:11 MDT Print View

I guess this hadn't been mentioned here before either. You can get window film kits (polycro) near the paint and tool area. The normal window kit should give you 6 sheets of 5x6 for $9. Mine currently has them marked down to $5. They also have large door kits that are 7x10 that could be used as a very light albeit see-through tarp. That was marked down to $4.50.

Aaron Benson
(AaronMB) - F

Locale: Central Valley California
Re: Re: Tarp shelter for less money and less weight? on 06/08/2011 07:41:31 MDT Print View

I found myself at the 'Mart a few weeks ago and curiosity got the best of me...

Stitching and material is good; grommets are the weak point, it seems.

(My first time pitching a 'tarp' - quick and easy. I can dig that!)

I was actually surprised that there was not more separation from the other
grommets; this was the worst one.



Edited by AaronMB on 06/08/2011 07:55:54 MDT.

Michael Sagehorn
(msagehorn) - F
Wal Mart has good finds on 07/27/2011 22:14:37 MDT Print View

Here's what I buy at WalMart:

1) Sturdy cotton khaki hiking shorts- $10-lasts for five years and I wear them nearly every day.

2) Hiking pole- I bought a red, collapsible pole 12 years ago and it has supported my poncho "hooch" many times, walked many a mile, and even regrettably killed a rattlesnake that wouldn't slither away after giving it plenty of opportunities to escape in a campsite loaded with 12 year old Scouts.

3) CA Fishing license- REI and the local sporting goods stores don't sell them. Why not?

4) Coffee percolator-French press coffee on a camping trip is a way too girly-man for me.