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2011 SUL Gear List
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Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
2011 SUL Gear List on 03/04/2011 17:43:18 MST Print View

I finally got a new gear list together for 2011 with a few changes and tweaks. My body is getting heavier and pack is getting lighter-Thank Goodness!!!! This is a 3-Season list and it is in my profile. Good or bad feed back is much appriecieted.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
re: Sierras, eh? on 03/04/2011 18:19:49 MST Print View

Heavy shoes.

Lots of stuff sacks.

No rain coat.

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
2011 Sierra SUL Gear List- Changes and Tweaks on 03/04/2011 18:37:42 MST Print View

Hey David, Ya I do have big feet size 13 1/2 plus Planter Fasciitis so they are definetly needed. Golite Wisp is technically a shell jacket for rain but your right I do need something with better protection. The Sierra storms are very predictable and do not last long. The stuff sacks do not add up to much weight and are needed IMO for my style. I do use a bug net as a clothes stuff sack which is multi-use I hope? What is a good rain jacket that you recommend? Thanks

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
rain coat on 03/04/2011 18:51:01 MST Print View

I could see getting away without a rain coat in the Sierras, I got a poncho tarp recently in part to see if I could get away with leaving mine at home more often.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"2011 SUL Gear List" on 03/04/2011 19:25:48 MST Print View

Great list Jay, pretty similar to your previous list, with a few tweaks.

Possible nixing opportunities:

(-.6oz.) Therm-A-Rest sleeping pad sack... nix it, use your Neo-Air as a 'framesheet', it's either being slept on or functioning as a back pad in your pack while hiking, no need for the stuff sack really.

(- 3.6oz.) Audio equipment... I know you've mentioned how much you love your external speakers for camp, but would you really miss it?

ID,CC,CAR KEY... throw them inside your First-Aid kit bag, consolidates things a bit.

(-1.3oz.) Kookabay Pillow... throw your odds and ends inside your Jam, roll it up and use that as a pillow instead... you did say "SUL" gear list. :)

(-10.2oz.) MLD Serenity... sleep with your headnet on, or are the flying blood suckers that bad up there?

What happened to your MLD Ark? It's big but should compact well and save you a few ounces over the Jam.

A few tweeks and compromises and you could probably save a pound.

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: 2011 SUL Gear List on 03/04/2011 19:35:24 MST Print View

You might revise the weight of your headlamp to be correct for a headlamp with battery.


Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: 2011 SUL Gear List on 03/04/2011 20:00:13 MST Print View


Overall it looks like a great list. I am inclined towards Eugene's suggestions, but for me those are personal preferences and if the the little extra weight makes your trips more enjoyable, then go for it! I would get more substantial rain gear too.

Does your Nano tarp weight 6.5? Mine came in at 5.5 oz without the stuff sack.

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Re: 2011 SUL Gear List on 03/05/2011 04:15:44 MST Print View

Gear choices are excellent. Nice format for your list.

The only thing that made me think for a minute was your pack. Do you really need the Jam? Could cut that weight in half for the gear you've listed.

I take a Zpacks Z1 for a few days of SUL in good conditions, but use my Pinnacle when I have more food/fuel or warmer clothing.

Maybe have a SUL quick trip and a SUL regular.

Again - good job!

Mike Clelland
(mikeclelland) - MLife

Locale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
Your list is UL and not SUL on 03/05/2011 10:32:17 MST Print View

1 - When are you EVER going to have 84 oz of water on your back? Are you walking in the Mojave??? You are from california, are you doing hot weather desert hiking only? Or, are you in the mountains with plenty of available water sources? You have a lot of water capacity, why so much???

2 - You could nix a little from your food weight per day, 1.5 pounds per day = (24oz/day) is a smidge high. 1.4 ppd (22.4oz/day) is plenty.

3 - Your list is UL and not SUL. The title of SUL requires a sub-5-pound base weight. That said, you are easily in the ULTRALIGHT category.

NIX LIST (weight goes to zero)
- toilet paper
- iPod
- headset
- speakers
- pack pockets
- platy hose
- 1/4 cup for measuring (???)
- watch
- ID, CC, Car key (hide these in or near the car)
- Nix a few stuff sacks


- knife (replace with 0.1 oz razor blade)
- The Jam is a nice pack (I have one and I like it) but there are plenty of lighter options. At least go at it with a scissor, and nix a few oz.
- Nix the BUG insert for the tarp, and just use a head-net. Or, nix the liner and use a bivi-sack (like the Vapr) and save a few oz and sleep a bit warmer.


- some sort of rain coat (a dry-ducks or drop-stopper are cheap and perfect for the mountains and desert, recommended)
- a 2.2 oz pack liner (hefty trash compactor bag)
- a tiny amount of soap as a hygiene tool, approx 0.5 oz (weight includes tiny bottle)


Edited by mikeclelland on 03/05/2011 10:48:13 MST.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: 2011 SUL Gear List on 03/05/2011 10:48:03 MST Print View

Not a bad kit, and an honest one, including the toys that I'll bet most people leave off their lists.

Ex Officio makes convertible Amphi pants which would save hauling both shorts and pants.

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
2011 not so SUL but UL Gear List on 03/06/2011 08:44:58 MST Print View

Thanks for all the great feed back friends. I am still learning little tricks and tweaks to save ounces and possibly pounds from my backpack from the BPL community. I think every backpacker has unique comfort levels and every trip requires specific gear for that geographic location IMHO. The learning process never stops.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Your list is UL and not SUL on 03/06/2011 08:50:56 MST Print View

That 84oz water capacity makes life easier in camp. No need to go get water constantly.

Jay and I are about the same size and I pack 1.5 pounds per day too. And eat it all too.

Those using long bags and wearing xl clothes should not worry about the 5 pound mark. I believe FSO and percentage of body weight carried to be more useful and telling.

te - wa
(mikeinfhaz) - F

Locale: Phoenix
Re: 2011 SUL Gear List on 03/06/2011 09:04:32 MST Print View

Jay, others.. Im having a hard time uploading a new gear list, my old list is stubborn and my new one (using the auto-upload button) is sized 96K, and in adobe PDF format. but try and try again, it will not save to my profile.


Edited by mikeinfhaz on 03/06/2011 09:08:35 MST.

Mike Clelland
(mikeclelland) - MLife

Locale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
"in camp" on 03/07/2011 12:35:25 MST Print View

About the prcieved need for 84 ounces of water while "in camp" (a term used in the comment above)

Here's an excerpt from my upcoming book.


The term "in camp" defined

If you are truly on a roll using every trick to boost efficiency, there should be only mere minutes between sleeping and hiking. If you are cooking meals on-trail (see tip 70, eat dinner on the trail) you can hike ‘til bedtime and quickly climb into your bag and sleep. In the morning, you simply roll out of bed and start hiking again. No need to cary more than a liter of water!

With this streamlined strategy, the term “in camp” doesn’t really mean anything.

But, if you wanna relax at the end of the day (and the next morning) in a beautiful spot, you’ll be plunked down in one spot for an extra bunch of hours. This is a traditional form of camping and this lazy zone of dinner/sleep/breakfast is known as being "in camp."

If this has been your time-honored mode of camping, I implore you to re-think your standard operating procedures. (see tip number 24, the human factor) No need to spend time simply parked in one place. Yes, it might be beautiful in camp, but so is moving through the Wilderness with a UL pack. You can drink in that same beauty as you travel.

The traditional camper finds his comfort "in camp" only after the crippling backpack is jettisoned off his back. The ultralight camper finds their comfort on the trail.

Edited by mikeclelland on 03/10/2011 10:25:29 MST.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
UL honesty from Mike C. on 03/07/2011 13:26:00 MST Print View

Mike C., great insight, love your honesty! I'm definitely purchasing a copy of your book. When and where will it be available? What I like most is your challenge of the status quo, a call to be truly UL not just in weight as it applies to a full pack or skin out weight but also how the lightweight methodology can diverge further from that of a traditional backpacker... because if it's only a few pounds and fancy gear or lack thereof that distinguishes lightweight bping from the "herd" at the end of the day then why bother? You've been the UL idealist as of late in a Backpackinglight in transition.

Kevin Tjaden
(ktjaden) - F

Locale: West
Sounds lonely.... on 03/07/2011 13:50:16 MST Print View

"The traditional camper finds his comfort "in camp" only after
the crippling backpack is jettisoned off his back. The ultralight
camper finds their comfort on the trail."

I am not sure that "camp" can't have a meaning for UL backpacking. I often set up in one location to explore from and return to. Also, I am not often hiking alone anymore, so there are others to consider as well. When there is a large group it is efficient to treat a larger amount of water for the group and everybody draws off of that rather than everybody treating their own small amount. And if I am fishing then "camp" is the place we all meet back at. Sometimes I just appreciate the "place" without any need to "move through it".

Your definition would preclude any activities other than sleeping, walking, or preparing for the aforementioned. Which makes sense if your only ambition is high mileage.

I would suggest that for the book you expand your definition a bit or risk losing all but the extremities of your audience.

Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Large water container on 03/07/2011 14:34:09 MST Print View

On the other hand, if you're concerned about protozoa like Giardia and Crypto in the water, and the water is very cold and not otherwise filtered, you'll probably want a large container due to the 4 hour AquaMira treatment time.

If you're planning to camp high, a large container would be very useful, especially if staying high for a while.

Jay Wilkerson
(Creachen) - MLife

Locale: East Bay
2011 UL Gear List-H2O on 03/07/2011 14:48:53 MST Print View

Doctors suggest you drink atleats 64oz of water a day if not more. I will easily drink 3-4 liters of water a day in the Sierras or any where I hike in the summer. IMO you can not drink enough H2O at High Elevations especially in the Sierras/JMT. A 2-liter platy is my "GAS TANK" and I do not want to keep refilling it at every creek crossing. I fill up the 84oz platy early in the morning and will not have to worry about my "GAS TANK" until late in the afternoon. A 2-liter platy is just more efficient IMO and saves alot of time and energy on the trail. Too just put things in perspective I am (6'3-230lbs) so I can easily carry some extra water weight with no problems plus I really enjoy Biodegradable TP. Hike your own Hike.

Kat ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
need more Ul honesty on 03/07/2011 15:13:23 MST Print View


Edited by Kat_P on 03/14/2011 13:53:53 MDT.

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Hair Elastic on 03/07/2011 16:36:18 MST Print View

Use a ladies hair elastic to keep your NeoAir rolled up rather than a stuff sack. These hair elastics weigh 0.1oz and they're much quicker and easier to use than a stuff sack.

Like others have said, a lot of weight can be saved by replacing the Jam. A nice 6oz cuben medium Zpacks Zero with a few add ons to suit your style (hipbelt? water bottle pkts?) would do very nicely and they're quite affordable. You'd drop a full pound off your baseweight.

If you're looking to spend money and you don't want to ditch the pillow, get Kookabay to make you a 0.9oz version of your pillow using their lighter material.

Consider a NeoAir'll save 5oz and you can probably just stuff other stuff (pack, clothes etc) under your legs. If you keep the Jam, you can use the backpad under your legs. I found this quite a painless switch.

There's already a whistle on the sternum strap of your Jam. No need to carry two.

Gaiters? Are these really necessary on most trips?

Edited by dandydan on 03/07/2011 16:44:16 MST.