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No New Gear 2012
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John Vance
(Servingko) - F

Locale: Intermountain West
Count me in!! on 01/02/2012 19:03:25 MST Print View

It may be a bit too easy to make no purchases in 2012 seeing how I have been going a bit crazy the past few years. I keep a close accounting of what has been purchased, and since my quest to lighten up and simplify my gear on the trail, I have spent nearly $13,000. I have also sold and given away much of it, recovering a little more than $5,000. I have been working towards just one of everything to help simplify the pre-trip planning as I anguished over which item to take for the same need.

To date I have been able to do that with the exception of quilts, pads, and stoves. For these I have two of each, one for three season use and one for winter. If I stopped going out in the winter I could reduce one of each of these items, but I really enjoy the solitude of winter that can be had so close to home.

I am still waiting for my Backcountry Boiler....does that count?

Edited by Servingko on 01/02/2012 19:04:20 MST.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: No New Gear 2012 on 01/02/2012 19:33:48 MST Print View

Good goal Craig. I'm trying to outfit myself for the next 15 years. I turn 45 next week. I'm set in my ways hiking style wise. I know what I like and what works for me.If you take care of your gear it lasts and lasts. A few things left that I would like to change out. But I'm nearly there.
Need to add a bear canister compatible pack.

ben wood

Locale: flatlands of MO
uh-oh on 01/02/2012 19:53:59 MST Print View

Its day 2 of 2012 and I have already broke that goal. Dangit!
Oh well...the streamline is in process.

I recently went on christmas vacation on which I thought I might have the chance for a quick overnight. It took me 2hrs to pack for the overnight. "Which stove should I take?" "Which shelter?" "Which quilt?" And on and on and on...then I packed my duffel bag for the 2 week vacation, 10 minutes for pete's sake!

That's proof of unnecessary gear.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: uh-oh on 01/02/2012 20:25:00 MST Print View

I think I already broke it. I just used some of my credit at The Clymb.

Eric Swab

Locale: Rockies
No New Gear 2012 on 01/02/2012 20:38:13 MST Print View

Nicely put Craig

I like the way you summed things up:
"So here’s to the challenge, to a year of learning new things, to studying the names of plants and animals and rocks instead of the technical specifications of tents. To a year of adventure, of buying food and gas and plane tickets instead of stuff, a year of doing it rather than thinking about it. Here’s to starting 2013 with a tattered kit full of tears, duct tape patches, burns, grease stains, and amazing memories."

I have the Patagonia "Don't buy this jacket" ad taped right next to the computer and have bee thinking a lot about this anyway. This year has a mountaineering class and wilderness first aid class on the list. Can't commit to the NO Gear challenge because I want to expand into other things like cross country skiing, kayaking but as far as backpacking, it is no new gear.

Ian Skelton
(inotleks) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
No New Gear 2013? on 01/02/2012 21:05:50 MST Print View

I am an old school backpacker that took the leap into lightweight backpacking just last summer. I still have a lot of gear that needs to be replaced. I was a tough young man who felt pride in being able to carry a 50 pound pack. While my current gear setup is now around 25 pounds (I still have two of the big three over 5 pounds), thanks to the information I learned from this community I will be under 15 by this summer.

While I enjoy the sentiment of this thread, here is to no new gear 2013 and 2014!

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
No New Gear 2012 on 01/02/2012 21:07:07 MST Print View

I knew I should have bought that Stratosphire in 2011! And I really had my heart set on a new full suspension MTB. Oh well.

Aaron Croft
(aaronufl) - M

Locale: Oregon
I'm in. on 01/02/2012 22:15:44 MST Print View

I'm totally in, except for the trail shoe thing. My montrails just gave up the ghost this morning, so looks like I'll have to get a new pair.

Or strap breadbags to my feet.

David W.
(Davidpcvsamoa) - MLife

Locale: East Bay, CA
Here Here. on 01/02/2012 22:27:40 MST Print View

Well said Craig. I have been thinking about the general sentiment of spending less time reading about gear and more time devoted to new skills and experiences. I do not usually announce my personal resolutions but the spirit of your post hits home with me and I am going to give it a fair go. No gear purchases in 2012!

I got off to a great start by spending 12/29/11 fixing holes in the side of my shoes with shoegoo (the soles have plenty of life left). The next two days were spent tromping around Yosemite in my patched shoes. Of course, being an admitted gear junkie, I have new pair of trail runners ready to plug in when the current ones fail.

I would also like to devote the resources I would have spent on gear to a basic mountaineering course. Shamefully, I have an ice ax in my closet that I have no experience with.

This site makes it difficult to avoid gear with all the discussion that often dominates the forum. I am sure I will still read and talk with others about their fun new gear but I will have to double my resolve to resist the temptations it creates for me.

If I can avoid purchasing new gear and continue to avoid the Chaff section, 2012 will be a personal success. Most importantly, I hope my 2012 will be about trips with old BPL friends and meeting new ones.

Mike In Socal
(rcmike) - MLife

Locale: California
A compromise on 01/03/2012 00:50:09 MST Print View

Ok, I really like the idea of no new gear in 2012 but I know that something will pop up - it invariably does - and I'll break the commitment - just being honest here. I am going to use my 30-day wish list: if I spot an item, it goes on my wish list for 30 days. If at the end of that period, I still want it, then it gets more serious consideration. In the meantime, I can sell redundant or unused gear to cover my cost. I usually don't buy most of the stuff that goes on my 30-day list. I am on board with the "repair it" approach, though. With a few tools, glue and material, you can fix most things.

We should revisit this thread at the end of the year to see how we did. :)


Richard Scruggs
(JRScruggs) - MLife

Locale: Oregon
Re: No New Gear 2012 on 01/03/2012 00:55:01 MST Print View

Two days into the new year, and no new gear purchased yet.

This is really, really hard!

I will be strong. I will be strong. I will be strong.

At least until a "great deal" comes along, anyway.

Then it would be like an investment, you know.

Diplomatic Mike

Locale: Under a bush in Scotland
No new gear? on 01/03/2012 01:13:38 MST Print View

I wonder how many folk will resist the new Exped UL Downmat when it is released soon? )

Richard Scruggs
(JRScruggs) - MLife

Locale: Oregon
Re: No new gear? on 01/03/2012 01:45:32 MST Print View

And wonder how many folks will resist a used silnylon Trailstar at a great price when they show up on gear swap once the cuben version hits the shelf?

Edited by JRScruggs on 01/03/2012 01:46:18 MST.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: No New Gear 2012 on 01/03/2012 08:01:29 MST Print View

Craig's post: No new gear in all of 2012!

A number of replies: Me too!

Fine Print: Promise void in case of killer deals, killer new kit, lack of willpower, getting a raise, lottery win, just because. Void where prohibited by law. Taxes and tags extra.

Edited by idester on 01/03/2012 08:02:44 MST.

Hobbes W
(Hobbesatronic) - F

Locale: SoCal
Switch gears on 01/03/2012 09:28:29 MST Print View

Well, I cruised this thread, and much to my surprise & amazement, I didn't see one post suggesting that perhaps a change in focus might be helpful. By that, I mean, MYOG.

Now, here's a great (new to some) area in which to really focus on function, develop various craft skills, and save some money. Rather than take a pledge not to buy any more gear in 2012, I would take a pledge to learn how to sew, acquire an inexpensive sewing machine, and get down to it.

As for myself, after not buying any gear in 2011, but rather, building out an entire kit and getting to test it on a number of different occasions, I'm planning on replacing MYOG quilt, bag & tarp during 2012. The new down quilt will be around $125, pack should be around $10 (I'm going to re-use my straps - 1 yd of 1.9 is $8), and tarp maybe $30.

I'm less than 1 lb off a SUL baseweight - and this is for the Sierra, so it includes par/sub-32 gear, and sufficient rain gear (oversized tarp, skirt, etc). If I were to tray & assemble this from different mfgs, it could easily run over $1k.

Edited by Hobbesatronic on 01/03/2012 09:31:06 MST.

Aaron Croft
(aaronufl) - M

Locale: Oregon
Another idea... on 01/03/2012 15:08:58 MST Print View

I think another good idea is making any new gear purchase contingent on getting rid of something you already have. I've made it a rule that for any new piece of gear I buy, I have to sell/get rid of two pieces of gear in return. That way I'm still downsizing and taking a critical look at my purchases. Honestly, I've been selling off all of my excess and I'm back down to one tent, one sleeping bag, one backpack, etc. It feels great.

This idea also goes for buying redundant gear; do I need a new tent when the one I have works just fine? I feel like going ultralight in backpacking and going ultralight in life are on two different sides of the fence in this forum as of late (i.e. Ryan Jordan's latest article regarding cottage stagnation).

K ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Another...another idea on 01/03/2012 15:14:52 MST Print View

Maybe we could make some skill specific trips, as part of our outings with other BPL members. One could be orienteering, which I sure would benefit from, another could be plant identification, or fishing or...

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Switch gears on 01/03/2012 15:20:13 MST Print View

"Well, I cruised this thread, and much to my surprise & amazement, I didn't see one post suggesting that perhaps a change in focus might be helpful. By that, I mean, MYOG."

I posted that I'd be doing MYOG this year. There are a couple things that I'll probably get that I can't make myself, like a headlamp, lithium ion battery and charger. I may also need a snow shovel for a trip in a couple months. The rest I'll make, both because I want to improve my setup, and to improve or gain skills. Quilt, vest, pants, arm chaps and down hat...maybe a few other things, even a pack if I get good enough.

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
No New Gear 2012 on 01/04/2012 01:45:10 MST Print View


Edited by skopeo on 06/17/2015 16:50:04 MDT.

Erik Basil

Locale: Atzlan
I like the fine print... on 01/04/2012 07:32:57 MST Print View

Yeah, well the "good deal clause" has already resulted in my acquisition of a 1 lb.-lighter sleeping pad for $36 and my first UL down puffy. Doing my part for the economy, fellow patriots! I'm still in acquisition mode after many years of not.

Now, for 2012, I plan to "buy" things like margarine containers and, thanks to a BPL posting, half-gallon milk bottles for UL kits to be built by our Scouts. I may even go hog-wild and get another roll of Reflectix! Acquisition need not be $$$