Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
First AT Thru Draft
Display Avatars Sort By:
Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 13:55:41 MST Print View

Osprey Hornet 46 (mod) - 20oz
Liner - 1.3

SMD Lunar Solo - 27.4
Tyvek - 2.4
Stakes (7) - 2.8
MH Phantom 45 - 18.7
BMW Torsolite - 8.8

Clothing Worn
Visor - 2.5
150 Merino S/S - 5.3
Running shorts - 6
Icebreaker Wool Sock- 2.2
Salomon XA Pro - 29.2
Native sunglasses - .9

Other Worn/Carried
Black Diamond Cork Trekking Poles - 18.2
Timex watch - 2

Clothing Packed
Driducks top - 5
WM Flash Vest - 3.5
Nano Puff (maybe at beginning and end) - 11.4
Cap 3 bottoms - 6.2 (maybe switch to cap 1?)
Merino 200 L/S - 7.5
Running gloves - 1.3
Fleece hat - .8
Socks (2 pair) - 3.5

Homemade Alcohol stove - .2
Plastic fuel bottle - 1.1
IMUSA 24oz pot - 2.4
Cozy, lid - 2
Spork - .4
Bic lighter - .7
Platypus 2+ liter - 1
Gatorade bottle (2)- 2.8
Steripen?- 3.6
Backup AM Tabs - ?

Princeton Tec Quad headlamp - 3.2
Small Med kit - 1.6
ID, CC, Cash - .4
Phone - 3.4
Charger - 2.9
Camera - 6.9
Duct Tape - .9
Towel - .8
Toothbrush/toothpaste - 2
Dr. Bronner's?
Journal/pen - 5?
Guide pages - 1?

Total Base Weight 9 pounds 6 ounces

That weight calculation is an estimate, there are a few things that I didn't actually weigh/don't have yet, but that's probably within a few ounces of being right. I've probably forgotten a few small things too.

I am planning a thru that is a little different. I am only planning on being on the trail from mid-May to the end of August, so my insulation layers are light. I have about 90% of the things on this list already. Things I don't have yet but will have soon...

MH Phantom 45 - EN rating of 32, 17 ounces, should be plenty for June-August.

Thermarest Prolite Small - 11 ounces. Been using a T-rest Trail Short at 16.2 ounces. The prolite is more comfortable for me (I like the foam) than the Neoair from when I've tried them in the shop. Also like the z-lite or a foam pad, but i hate the un-compressability of them.

Wind shell? Needed?

Are cap 3 bottoms too much? I guess I could take them and send them home if I end up never using them.

Any thoughts? Anything I'm forgetting?

EDIT: I am updating things as I make decisions on gear.

Edited by rockytop on 02/01/2011 15:21:35 MST.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 14:13:09 MST Print View

Unless you're in some kind of SUL contest or you just really want to be absolutely as light as possible... I think your gear pieces and weights are very reasonable!

Curious, what is your expected total pack weight? Subjective... but if in the low 20's -- many (myself included) have found frameless packs plenty comfy for all-day carrying. A silnylon Zpack, for example, comes in at 4-6 ounces (depending on options, if any). That shaves two pounds off your base and pack weight right there -- with potentially no loss of needed comfort or safety. Silnylon is not going to be anywhere as robust, but if you exercise common sense care over your gear, many have thru-hiked successfully with silnylon packs.

Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
Re: pack on 01/16/2011 14:28:24 MST Print View

I'm thinking I'll be under 20 for the majority of the trip. I've thought long and hard about going with a frameless or stay-only pack, but came to the conclusion that over 2200 miles I would like to have the added support of a frame, and it would just be more versatile in general. I'd love to try out a frameless pack, but I don't really have the money to buy one to just try out. It sucks that I can't just go into a gear shop and play around with them to atleast get a feel for it.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Pack on 01/16/2011 14:39:35 MST Print View

Again emphasizing the subjectiveness of it all... you do seem to be an excellent candidate for a frameless pack -- given your mostly under-20 pack weight! But you don't have to spend big bucks "just to try one out"! Remember, your ONLY cost should you decide to return a pack is simply the postage. And it's really quite cheap to mail 6 or 8 ounces...

Robert Cowman
(rcowman) - F

Locale: Canadian Rockies
Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 14:41:04 MST Print View

with your pro deals

-Osprey Hornet 46 (24oz,Framless on the website now, if you don't like it flip it on here)
-Carbon poles (MSR, Komperdell, Black diamond)
-Shell jacket (lots of 7oz options. But I would try either The Alpha SL or Alpha SL pullover)
-Headlamp (black diamond Ion, or princeton tec scout)

I know how life is with working in a gear shop and getting deals.
If your unsure of mainstream options for weight, drop me a PM, been selling it for a long time...

Edited by rcowman on 01/16/2011 14:42:45 MST.

Ray Dunham
(Raymond) - F

Locale: SE US
AT on 01/16/2011 16:41:47 MST Print View

I would dump the rain jacket for those months or go with something like a poncho or O2 rain sheild. I would also change out your pot to something lighter in the 3-4 oz range.


David Wills
(willspower3) - F
Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 17:09:25 MST Print View

Looks pretty good. May have a few cold nights. You could go with a much light shelter if you plan on staying in the AT shelters. I used a 5x9 tarp (8 ounces) and only set it up about 15 times. Had a MYOG SMD meteor bivy that was perfect for the shelters. You could shave some weight off the Exos by removing the brain and any other extra pieces.

Andy Anderson
(ianders) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: on 01/16/2011 17:43:08 MST Print View

Sell the SMD Lunar Solo (27.4 oz) on and rain jacket (12 oz) Gear Swap, and pick up a Gatewood Cape (12 oz). Pick up an Imsua mug (700 mL) from for $4.50 that weighs about 2.4 oz. These together would save you close to 30 oz, and you might enven end up putting money back into your pocket.

Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
Re: AT on 01/16/2011 18:13:46 MST Print View

Thanks for the input guys.

I'm actually planning on avoiding the shelters and using my Lunar Solo as much as possible. I don't really like tarping, and I love my tent, so I think I'll hang on to it.

As much as it rains on the AT, I think I'd rather use a good jacket and try and be more comfortable than a poncho. But, anyone that has used a paclite jacket in the summer, will I burn up in it?

My pot is actually 3.4 oz for just the pot. The 6 is the pot plus lid and cozy. I could probably make a foil lid and save some weight, but it wouldn't store my stove, spork, lighter.

I'm actually not AS concerned with trying to shave a few more ounces (blasphemous on BPL, right?) as I am wanting to make sure I'm not forgetting anything or will be underprepared with anything. I'm at a point with my kit that I would be sacrificing comfort to cut weight. Though, I may consider going with the Osprey Hornet instead of the Exos.

David, think I will see any nights colder than my bag with baselayers and Thermawrap? I think I should be able to stay comfortable around 30 with it.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Looks decent on 01/16/2011 18:57:52 MST Print View

Edit - Sorry, I posted after you made your reply, so I will let it ride....

I have not read all the replies, but

I fit were me, and not really saying you should do all this, just my opinions...

I would buy a lighter pack after you get everything else. Something around 24oz.

As above the shelter could be lighter, IE a gatewood cape or even a
Campmor expended poncho/tarp at 9oz. Someone here just built like a 2.5 oz bivy, and I would definitely take a bivy with a tarp and at 2.5oz maybe with a tent too.

With a bivy a quilt will work. You dont really need a full bag in the summer anyway, so maybe one a tad warmer just in case, like a 32dF nanatuk arc ghost at 17oz

If you are treking those sorts of miles why not just stay in shelters, and there
you definitely want a bivy.

I would carry a half piece of CCF blue foam for legs. You could trim it to fit inside the quilt footbox and it is good for sitting on mid day.
Full piece if you want to protect your prolite and a little extra cushion.
Also at least you have something if your prolite goes flat.

In the summer I think a vest with removable sleeves are better for top insul. More versatile although I have not found a setup I like.
I will probably end up building something synthetic or at least the sleeves.
Knowing me I will lose a sleeve so I better make 3.

I would take wool gloves instead and use them as a pot lifter.
That said you sound like a trail runner so maybe running gloves.

You can do an entire alcohol bag cook kit for less for about 5 oz with everything in a crush proof container.

I would take some sort of knife. From soup to nuts there. A balado is sub 1 oz.
A mora is 4 oz and nice with an almost 4" blade.
I like a swiss army knife with a saw, scissors, tweezers etc.

Maybe also take a very few survival odds and ends, couple of ways to start a fire
like waterproof matches, a striker, some lint, and maybe a few cubes of trioxaine in case you run out of alcohol. Weber fire cubes are the same thing as wet fire and will burn in water and will catch a spark from a dead lighter. Half cube will boil a cup of h20 and they weigh 22g per cube but they will smoke your pot.
You can get them at Ace hardware.
Maybe a few iodine tabs just in case.
Needle, thread, Spare Lighter, whistle, Signal mirror etc.

If you are going to use your aquamira filter like a gravity filter, you will need some tubing and a dirty bag. Best way to fill is have a sealed dirty bag to fill like a platypus and sit on it with your leg. Think I read that here. You could just ditch the filter all together and use chlorine drops or tablets.

You probably want a ursak minor to keep your food in, and mice out.

Edited by tammons on 01/16/2011 19:00:12 MST.

Frank Deland

Locale: On the AT in VA
lighter shelter on 01/16/2011 19:06:43 MST Print View

Go back to a tarp or a lighter shelter like the Wild Oasis from SMD (11 oz.) You can save some major weight with your choice of personal shelters, especially since you will not be needing it very night.
Try to plan mail drops only at POs or other locals that are close to,or on the trail.( 2 miles max.) You might have to carry a couple extra days of food, but you will travel less off-trail miles.
ake sure your shell is waterproof. Summer rains can be cold on any section of the AT.

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 19:19:49 MST Print View

Overall it is a nice list, I think lightweight-ultralight is easier to do on a thru than SUL anyways. You may have a few cold nights in that bag, but given your odd timing you should be OK. Just make sure you are prepared to do the trail that quick, most people that start out doing big miles get hurt and never finish.

You have a few items you could lighten up on, like your Backpack and Rain Jacket. All rain gear is going to suck that time of year so I would go with something light like a Marmot Essesnce,Micra, or a Driducks Jacket. I used to own a GT packlite jacket and it sucked just as bad as any of the rest of them, definitely not worth the money. I would also drop the sunglasses, you will be in the green tunnel and not in the open, they are just something else to carry, break, or lose. You could also do without the compass on the AT.

Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
Re: AT on 01/16/2011 19:41:39 MST Print View

Thanks for the thoughts everyone.

I'm almost sold on going with the Osprey Hornet instead of the Exos, that will save me 13 ounces. My only concern is that I've seen some people say that frameless is good to about 16-18 pounds and above that a frame is actually more energy efficient. I wouldn't know from personal experience because I've never used one. Has anyone else found that to be true?

I can use DriDucks instead of a paclite jacket. How are the hoods on those? Good hoods are big selling points for me on rain gear.

Any thoughts on rain/wind pants or a wind shirt? I could get a Marmot Trail Wind hoody at a good price, and if I buy DriDucks the pants will come with it.

Brad, I'll ditch the compass. I've never pulled it out of my emergency kit, but it is only 1 ounce. I'm probably not going to carry maps anyways (even though I love maps) and will just carry pages of the guidebook. I don't really want to spend money on all the maps, and figure I could probably check out someone else's map every now and then anyways.

I really love my Lunar Solo, it'll be hard to get rid of it for something else. I eventually want to upgrade to a Cuben Hexamid Solo, but I don't have the money to do that now.

Ray Dunham
(Raymond) - F

Locale: SE US
Compass on 01/16/2011 20:00:35 MST Print View

I agree with Brad - You can ditch the compass as the trail is well marked.

David Wills
(willspower3) - F
Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/16/2011 21:05:02 MST Print View

Maybe a few uncomfortable nights at elevation, i wouldnt change bags though. Stick with the tent if you'll use it frequently. I used a frameless pack the whole way. not a problem if the straps are substantial enough (ULA Conduit, now called CDT). You get used to it after a bit. I would use driducks over a mica. May need a few for the trail. Looks like you have everything under control for a good hike. Pre hike training would do you more good than any gear suggestions if you are looking to go quickly and safely. Best of luck

Joseph Reeves

Locale: Southeast Alaska
Re: Compass on 01/16/2011 22:53:57 MST Print View

Please carry a compass. And yes, you will be walking along well marked trails, and there will be others on the route. However, if you decide to choose another path, if you go into town for food, if it is foggy, if..... A compass is for the ifs. If the compass you have is too heavy ( and at 1 ounce it isn't) get a lighter one and keep it.

We live along the Coast Range and the ocean is always to the left, heading north anyway, but that doesn't mean that in a white out or fog we sometimes debate as to whether or not we are moving in the direction we want. And when we are not where we live we always take a bearing.

Taking a bearing from the Dunes

David Wills
(willspower3) - F
Re: Re: First AT Thru Draft on 01/17/2011 04:02:50 MST Print View

I see you changed your list up a bit. looks good. 10 lb 5 ounces is a good number, especially with a tent. One thing you may want to add is a face net. I remember getting destroyed by mosquitoes in Mass. and NY. It may be more of an issue with a summer hike in other areas. Could get by with just using your raingear i suppose. If you are going to buy the dri ducks, you can get them with free shipping for $15 each at (no affiliation)
I've bought a few sets from them very smoothly. 2 more sets on the way for the PCT.

Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
Re: Driducks on 01/17/2011 09:36:57 MST Print View

thanks david, i just put in an order for a set. how many pairs did you go through on your thru?

Could I swap the thermawrap for an insulated vest? Or would that leave me cold sometimes?

EDIT: sold my thermawrap on gear swap. Thinking about getting the Arcteryx Atom LT or the Atom LT vest. The Atom should be a lot warmer than the thermawrap at only an ounce heavier (I think, the atom feels like it has a lot more loft from when I've tried it on in the store). Or, how much warmer would a Patagonia Down Sweater or vest be than the Atom?

Edited by rockytop on 01/17/2011 23:34:21 MST.

David Wills
(willspower3) - F
Re: Re: Driducks on 01/18/2011 04:54:39 MST Print View

I've completely used up 1 pair of dri ducks non-thru-hiking and found the performance to be very satisfactory. For the AT where there is a lot of bushes and such, you can expect to use about 3 sets with reasonable care and some duct tape, 2 if your careful and its a dry year. For my hike, I bought a Marmot Mica on impulse (it was shiny) and after seeing it received a Nat. Geo Award. I was disappointed in it from the first real rain all the way to the end.

I would pass on a vest, but thats just my preference. I dislike the contrast of cold arms to warm torso.

Concerning jackets, I thought the Montbell thermawrap was the ideal choice. Thickness of insulation isn't as big a factor as thermal effectiveness. Both companies use a generic insulation that is probably similarly warm per weight. The Atom is 11.5 ounces vs. 8.8 for the montbell. The montbell has 50g insulation vs 60g for the Atom. 10g insulation/meter is small difference. I used a Thermawrap parka (12.8 ounces for medium, hood, 80g insulation) for 95% of the trail and it was wonderful. Also, the ID PLQ jacket has 90g insulation, weighs 12.3 oz. Both could be another option for you and would be much warmer than the atom or thermawrap.

If you are going to go with down, the Patagonia sweater has 3 ounces of down and is 12.1 ounces. It would be warmer than the atom or thermawrap jacket. Other options in the area include Montbell tec down (2.9 oz down, 11.3 oz), UL down inner (2oz down, 7.3 oz), ex light (1.8 oz down, 5.7 oz), alpine light down (4 oz down, 13.2 oz) all under $180. The UL Inner and Exlight would be comparable warmth to the thermawrap and atom. Western Mountaineering has the flash jacket (4 ounces down, 10.5 oz) for $250, and the flash hooded jacket (3 oz down, 9 oz) for $260.

The weight savings of the exlight are very tempting. You could have 2 for the weight of the atom or patagonia. They are a bit fragile though.

Sorry if i complicated things. I just get excited about insulated jackets.

Travis Davis
(rockytop) - F
Re: Atom LT on 01/18/2011 08:06:30 MST Print View

Think I will go with a down vest. Should be enough insulation for summer temps I think.

Only purchases left are pack and pad. If I go with a Hornet, will I need a ccf pad to pack it? It has 2 aluminum stays (I think).

Edited by rockytop on 01/23/2011 17:27:47 MST.