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Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
What have I been doing? on 10/23/2011 19:57:58 MDT Print View

OK so I've been on this website for like 4 or 5 years (lurked for 1). My 3 season baseweight? like 15 or something. (switched from PC to Mac and lost my spreadsheet :(

Where is a good Mac Spreadsheet anyway??

15 sounds like a lot. Maybe all the freakin 8LBers just stick in my head...

Sold my Tarptent (I heard they were ruining backpacking ;)) Hubba Hubba ?!? The thought of 4.5lbs is crazy, but we love the tent.

No CTF; my 210D packs are too voluminous- back to my 180,000D Dana Shadow Peak. Started carrying my sweetwater again, of all things. 3# Kooka Bay pad (for two) Photons and E+lite get on my nerves (well E+ is ok, but I want more light)...

you get the idea.

I'm OK with it- I guess the big thing I've learned AND applied is clothing selections. And flippin shoes AARRGH!

I guess if Doug would buy ME some gear instead of wasting it on the "Closet" I'd be lighter ;)
Really it boils down to money, but I am sorta OK with a heavier pack right now. I strengthened my technique so overall I'm happy. Its weird to think about though.

All the hundreds of hours I've ignored my wife and job to read about shaving ounces, and I'm not even UL.

You?

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
adding weight back on 10/23/2011 20:53:49 MDT Print View

I've added some weight back, I had my solo base weight down to 6 lbs, the poncho/tarp was a little too spartan but I did learn a lot about site selection :) have since gone to Solo Trailstar, much better coverage and setup is a little easier too

was using a modified Ion which really taught me how to leave stuff behind, wasn't the most comfortable pack especially going off trail- have since gone to a Talon 33

tried a Neoair short, was too short :) I know I won't be going back to ccf though

went to a Steripen, heavier than ClO2 tabs, but it's nice to have treated water in 90 seconds

since I went to the Steripen (CR123 batteries) I gave a Zebralight H31 a go- it actually allows me to hike in the dark, the e-lite not so much

I've added back a couple of pounds, but my pack is still light (and comfortable)

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Mac spreadsheet on 10/24/2011 12:09:51 MDT Print View

I use Excel on my Office for Mac with compatibility check (I'm currently a Powerpoint ranger)

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Mac spreadsheet on 10/24/2011 13:09:51 MDT Print View

You can use open office on the mac.

I'm not down below 10lbs myself. I think my pack weight feels pretty good. I'm actually looking for ways to shave my dayhiking weight.

One way is I bought this collapsible silicon cup. If I do any hikes with a nice creek, I'll bring very little water and just drink cupfulls when I get thirsty.

Another way is, and this is really weird, I changed my diet to a high fat/low carb diet. I don't get hungry anymore so I don't have to bring any lunch. I'll bring some nuts or something just so I don't end up a burden on anyone accidentally, but so far, no need for lunch at all.

With no need to carry food or water, depending on the trail and conditions, I can just hike in a little running vest with a pocket to carry my windbreaker and another pocket to carry my cup and I'm pretty much good to go.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
P.S. on 10/24/2011 13:18:54 MDT Print View

P.S. So I don't get yelled at. I'm talking about day hikes in Southern California on trails I've done a million times. Distance 4-8 miles or so.

j lan
(justaddfuel) - F

Locale: MN
Re: What have I been doing? on 10/24/2011 13:27:26 MDT Print View

Ryan J is right with you - http://ryanjordan.com/blog/2011/09/practical-natural-simplicity-backcountry-gear/

He's adding back jetboil, eating bowls, tents, framed packs, all of it. Do what you feel!

Charles Henry
(Chuckie_Cheese)

Locale: Arizona and British Columbia
Re: Re: What have I been doing? on 10/25/2011 18:58:55 MDT Print View

I have found increasing fitness helps alot, like more than even if I cut my baseweight to 0 from 15 pounds.

Roger Heward
(green1) - F

Locale: Alberta, Canada
What have I been doing? on 10/25/2011 19:17:37 MDT Print View

It's all about what makes you happy. My friend who first introduced me to the idea of lightweight by cutting the handles down on his cutlery, the tags off his pack, and the edge off his plate, still carries a camp stool on the back of his pack... it makes him happy.

Personally my weight is still on it's way down, but that doesn't mean I'm striving exclusively for the lightest pack out there, enjoyment is still a factor. (I just enjoy more when I'm not carrying as much) that said, I still carry an MSR water filter, I may go to a steripen, but I'm not really willing to go the chemical route. I still carry a whisperlite stove, I may go to a lighter stove, but I'm not likely to go no-cook. Most of my weight savings have been about maintaining the same level of comfort with better gear, or simply leaving behind what I don't actually need. I've lightened my thermarest to a neo-air (which also has the added benefit of being more comfortable!) I've lightened my synthetic sleeping bag to a Western Mountaineering Ultralite (which is also warmer than my old one) and I've lightened my tent to a sil-shelter, I find it to be as close as one can get to a tent, without actually having one. My pack is now a Kestrel32 which is much lighter than I had before, but I'm not willing to give up frames or hip straps.

I could go lighter in most of those categories, but it starts to detract from my enjoyment, and that's counter to the whole point of the exercise.

In the end there's no right or wrong way to backpack, only the way that's right for you.

Edited by green1 on 10/25/2011 19:19:44 MDT.

Ryan C
(radio_guy) - MLife

Locale: OH & AK
Re: What have I been doing? on 10/25/2011 19:57:53 MDT Print View

My story: I started out with a lightweight load, about a 13lb base pack weight for an overnighter in spring/summer conditions when I became a BPL member. Methods here brought it down to about 10lb for me. Now my wish is to make things simpler and focus on only using one set of gear, mostly in preparation for an eventual thru-hike of a long trail. Nothing wrong with overnight or weekend trips, I just find doing longer stretches in other places more intriguing. Due to this, my base pack weight is creeping back up to about 13lbs. That is where I started!

In summary: At least I can do more, go further, and be more comfortable in varying weather/climates with the new 13lb base pack compared to the old 13lb base pack. The technical knowledge and techniques I have learned through BPL have sure helped.

Edited by radio_guy on 10/25/2011 19:59:26 MDT.

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - M

Locale: Cascadia
Me on 10/25/2011 22:38:55 MDT Print View

It seems some people feel bad or maybe guilty on BPL if they are adding back weight....like as if they are failing.

In reality, lightening (and refining) your gearlist is a process that is often most effective when you go too light and then add back only the functionality you really miss. If you've never swung back to some heavier gear, then you're likely either fairly new on your UL journey, or you're not really trying that hard. Trying gear that is maybe too light is a great way to push your limits, or more importantly to find your limits. Sometimes you'll be surprised (ie. I was nervous about trying a sleeping quilt, but they are GREAT if they're not too narrow) and other times your suspicions will be proved right (ie. A single wall tent has no business in the PNW IMO...unless maybe if it's super spacious).

Over the past 3 years or so that I've been involved on BPL, my baseweight quickly swung from about 20 lbs to 13 lbs in the first few months. That was easy. Then I kept shaving it down to about 8-9 lbs. At this I was bottomed out, because that list was for hiking with my wife where I needed to carry a 2 person double wall tent, large-ish pot etc. At that point I made the decision to buy some solo gear, and go lighter when solo and heavier with my wife to add back some comfort, since we do spend a reasonable amount of time in-camp. I sold the tiny 2 person tent and bought a lighter solo shelter (HMG Echo I) AND a more spacious 3 person (BIg Anges Fly Creek UL3) tent for my wife and I. A few other changes led me to a baseweight about 10-11 lbs when I hike with my wife, which is still light and my wife and I find quite comfortable.

On the solo side of things, I now have that even lighter shelter and I've got a few other gems like a Zpacks Zero pack. When I go solo I can easily hit the trail at 6-7 lbs. 7 lbs solo is total comfort for me....I'm wanting nothing. At 7 lbs I've got a double wall shelter, warm down quilt, 2.5" thick sleeping pad, bright headlamp (H51), plenty of clothes etc. When I try to push the limits of light (because I never want to stop trying to progress, even if I do test the limits less these days) I can go about 5.5 lbs in reasonable comfort. I'm still moving lighter on the solo side of things. I'd really like to get it down to 5 lbs and do a few SUL trips before I swing back a little and find a comfortable all-around balance which might come at 6.5 lbs.

Everyone's on their own journey though and there's lots of good ways to hike. We all hike in different locales and with different bodies and comfort levels. Some people hike 14 hours a day and just need a tiny place to crash, while others only hike 4 hours/day and really benefit from stuff like a camp stool and a bigger tent. It's all about matching your gearlist with your wants and your style.

Edited by dandydan on 10/25/2011 22:42:57 MDT.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Your getting lighter on 11/03/2011 19:33:16 MDT Print View

I got back into hiking/backpacking about a year-and-a-half ago and when I returned from a trip having carried around 40+ pounds, I knew I wanted to do it more, but without all the weight. I found BPL in my search to lighten up and the rest has been down hill because I have really lightened up allot. My last trip I started at 27-28 lbs. on a four-day trip and finished back at the trailhead at 16 pounds including a bear canister with some left over food and a bit of water. It was just so much more comfortable than lugging a heavy pack. I hope over the course of the winter to drop a couple more pounds off my base but I've really had fun with the lower weight. I'm not so pooped when I get to camp. And for me, I really want to get to camp so I can go adventuring from there.

Dan has really summarized it well above. Find where you are comfortable, and at some point you'll have left too much at home or found some of that ultra light equipment to be less than pleasing. But just keep working through your gear list and it'll all shake out fine. And really don't let it bother you too much. Just get out there, that's what it's really all about.

Paul McLaughlin
(paul) - MLife
Re: What have I been doing? on 11/03/2011 20:06:55 MDT Print View

Always remember, the most important measuring device is not the scale, it's the fun-o-meter.