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Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie
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I'm Joe
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 07/09/2013 11:10:03 MDT Print View

I'm working on creating a basic gear list before I go out and start making too many purchases. My focus for this list is 2-3 day, 3 season East coast(PA and surrounding area), 2 person tent, lowish cost, lightweight without too much sacrafice (ie. tent, no tarp... yet.)

At this point the only thing purchased is the cook pot so I'm looking for critcism and proposed substituions. The list isn't all inclusive yet but just what I've researched so far. So basically there are some key things missing like clothes and other things. I'm open to suggestions in areas that I haven't covered on this list that meet my criteria. Thanks in advance!

Pot REI Ti Ware .9L 4.9oz $38 (eBay)
Spoon Sea to Summit Alpha lite spoon .4oz $9
Towel PackTowl Nano Towel .9oz $10
Pack GOLITE JAM 50 30oz $110
Flashlight Photon micro-light II Pro .3oz $14
Flashlight Fenix LD01R2 .9oz $35
Water Filter Sawyer PointOne Squeeze filter 3oz $35
Tent Sierra Designs Flashlight 2 60oz $185
or Tarptent Rainshadow 2 42oz $279
or Tarptent Double Rainbow 41oz $275
Sleeping bag Kelty Cosmic 20 down bag 43oz $100
Sleeping mat Therm-a-rest Z lite sol 14oz $45

** See updated list below **

Edited by imjoe on 08/02/2013 11:49:01 MDT.

Hiking Malto
(gg-man) - F
Where and how many? on 07/09/2013 11:23:33 MDT Print View

Three season Sierra is a whole different critter than three season east coast. Also, you have two person tents listed, is that a requirement that the shelter hold two or more. You can go way lighter on your shelter if you can go with single person.

I'm Joe
OP updated on 07/09/2013 11:32:06 MDT Print View

I knew I would leave out some details... I have updated the OP. Thanks for the reply.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 07/09/2013 11:59:08 MDT Print View

I've never seen a Flashlight 2 tent weigh that little. Have they updated it? My old Flashlight 2 weighed something like 5 1/2 pounds.

I think that the TarpTent Rainbow should be at the upper limit for weight on a tent. Seam-sealed, my StratoSpire 2 (plenty of space for two), is only 40.4 oz (without stakes). If you're willing to spend enough to go up to the Double Rainbow, I would go ahead and get the SS2. It's a much better shelter--double-walled and more spacious.

Also, if you're trying UL out, I would look at ULA packs. The CDT is frameless like the Jam, but much better in design and construction in my opinion. Honestly, though, frameless takes some time to get right, and you might prefer a true frame like with the Circuit, even with the added weight.

The Kelty bag is a great deal, but you could cut that weight in half and still get a reasonably inexpensive bag if you looked at the Enlightened Equipment Revelation X model quilts. I also find quilts far more comfortable than bags, thus the reason I don't even own one even for winter use. The quilt is much more versatile too--you can open it up when the weather is warm (like it often is in the Northeast in the summers), making a 20 or 30 degree quilt much more useful than a comparably rated sleeping bag.

I realize that these are all more money. But, if you're really serious, you'll save more in the long-run investing when you can. Just don't feel like you have to spend big cash to go UL. Often, the best thing to do is take it slow and leave a bunch of unneeded stuff behind.

Jason Mahler
(jrmahler) - MLife

Locale: Michigan
Budget on 07/09/2013 12:31:25 MDT Print View

You are going about starting light the way that I did with very similar weights. I have since sold all of my gear and upgraded and am much happier with my kit.

Osprey Kestrel 48 --> Zpacks Arc Blast
Lafuma bag --> EE RevX
REI Quarterdome T3 --> Zpacks Hexamid Twin Tent

Overall, the cost to upgrade was worth the insane amount of weight I dropped. It would have been even cheaper if I had researched this site before I started purchasing though. It ma be helpful to include a budget for your initial purchase so Ed can help you get the best bang for the buck.

I disagree a bit on the EE RevX 20. I had planned on using this for 3 season, but it is so warm that I bought a EE Prodigy 50 for late spring to early fall. Both are awesome though and the combination should let me avoid a winter bag.

I'm Joe
... on 07/10/2013 06:15:08 MDT Print View

I don't have a set budget but would like to keep things around $750. That includes things not on my list yet. I know its ambitious but it is what it is. I appreciate the suggestions so far. I am really mulling over the quilt vs bag idea. I am trying to weigh out if an extra $100+ for a nice quilt and an extra $100+ for a lighter tent is the right balance for me. Great suggestions so far. This exactly what I'm looking to hear and gives me plenty to ponder over. Keep the ideas coming. Thanks!

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: ... on 07/10/2013 08:13:32 MDT Print View

For me, the question is more about performance rather than weight. Though, being lighter is much nicer too.

Jason Mahler
(jrmahler) - MLife

Locale: Michigan
Re: ... on 07/10/2013 14:01:53 MDT Print View

750 is a good budget to work with. As a lot of people will point out, the best way to go ultralight is to simply bring only what you need. For deciding what to buy, I use a spreadsheet and list the items I need to buy and the weight/Cost for each item for a value selection and the what I really want selection. I then figure the cost per ounce difference between the two and target the lowest ratio to buy first. Of course it isn't that simple, but it will show you where you can get the best bang for the buck.

What you may find is that you can get one or two great pieces and then get a spare on the cheap that can later be upgraded.

Scott Hayden
(Spiffyguy) - F
re tent and quilt on 07/10/2013 14:54:16 MDT Print View

I am still new to the ultra light game but I have an EE 20* RevX with 1 extra oz of overstuff. Weighs 26.77oz with 2 elastic pad straps. I pair this with a DYI top quilt made out of some fleece material from the fabric store. It was simple to make and good for when it is above 50-60*. Didn't cost but 10 bucks maybe in materials and weighs about 18oz. The RevX is a very nice quilt.

I got the Double Rainbow because I wanted some more space. I could probably have gotten away with the single Rainbow but it is only a few oz more. After seam sealing mine weighs in at 40.95 oz plus stakes. I use the MSR groundhogs as I feel they hold a little better than the Easton ones that came with the tent. But the Easton weigh less. 6 would be and extra 2.25 oz so about 43 oz total.

Hope the info helps. Good luck putting your kit together.

I'm Joe
Updated list on 07/31/2013 19:31:47 MDT Print View

After listening to some of your great advice and doing some more research I have tweaked and expanded my proposed gear list. It is a good bit out of my price range but I think by patiently acquiring items over time I can find a few good deals and sales and bring the total cost down.

Gear List

The only thing I can think I left out is a repair/first aid kit, so add ~3-6oz. Let me know what you think. Thanks!

Andy Jarman

Locale: Edge of the World
Prposed gear list. on 07/31/2013 20:44:47 MDT Print View

Your list looks admirably home made, good see you aren't going for broke with the latest and greatest. I wish I had done what you are planning, instead I did a lot of reading then bought a lot of stuff I don't really like!

A couple of comments, your tent and quilt are creeping up there in the cost stakes, I used the Kelty Cosmic as a quilt for a couple of years before saving up for what I really wanted, $200 is halfway between a Kelty Cosmic and the quilt you'll really want - might be better waiting to see how you use it before you buy.

I use a $2 box cutter instead of a Victorinox, need to grease the blade with vaseline though, they can go rusty.

You can learn how to make your own cheap Cuben fibre tarp on You tube, its all done with sticky tape, no sewing machine required.

I use 1443R lightweight Tyvek for a ground sheet, google "Into the Wind" kite supplies. It's half the weight of house wrap and still pretty cheap.

No wind shirt? You can get a cheap nylon top to try this out, its a very usefull thing to have, a lot of warmth for not much weight. Get a dri ducks larger than you need, you can wrap your bag/quilt over your shoulders underneath it at night.

Take a look at Mike Clelland's You Tube videos for repair/first aid tips, cute kitties too.

Drew Jay

Locale: Central Coast
Recommendations on 07/31/2013 22:24:15 MDT Print View

If I were in your position, looking for the best bang for my buck, I would be leaning towards:

Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo LE - $150 for a brand new, roomy, lightweight solo tent.

Granite Gear Vapor Trail - can be found for under $100 quite frequently if you watch gear swap and ebay. Only a few ounces more than a Jam once you trim it down and a very comfy pack. Also watch out for HMG packs on Gear Swap, they often go for $100-$125.

Gear Swap, Gear Trade and eBay for lightly used high end sleeping bags. For instance you can get a lightly used Montbell Super Spiral Down Hugger #3 on GearTrade for $169. I'm not sure I would go for a quilt unless I was also budgeting for a warm inflatable sleeping pad. You might also watch the Stoic Somnus bags on, when they get under $200 (which should be soon) they are a really great deal.

The rest of your list looks pretty good, you've come a long way with your research in a couple of weeks!

Edited by drewjh on 07/31/2013 22:28:27 MDT.

Jason Mahler
(jrmahler) - MLife

Locale: Michigan
Re: Updated list on 08/01/2013 06:23:36 MDT Print View

This is a great list for a great price. There is a ton of gear out there, so make certain you know what you like before you jump in.

Pot - You could save weight and cost going to a smaller pot. Typically a 475ml pot is all you need for most dehydrated food. If you want to cook, then 900ml may make sense. I have seen some posts of people getting $5-$10 aluminum pots from kmart and walmart that are very light. You may be able to save $40-$50 and only cost you an ounce.

Rain Jacket - I think DryDucks are only ~$20 and come with pants as well (rip easy though)

Gloves / Mitts - I use PossumDown Gloves and Nitrile Surgical Gloves for rain protection. The PossumDown insulates while wet and teh surgical gloves create a little microclimate. Haven't used a ton, but seem to work well so far.

Sleeping Socks - You could probably get away with cotton or nylon socks, really anything that is dry.

Pack - Your list is pretty compact. You may be able to go with a Zpacks custom small. You will save a ton of weight at maybe a $50 increase in costs if you want a lot of options

Ryan Slack
(RWSlack) - F

Locale: Minnesota
towel/compass on 08/01/2013 09:37:12 MDT Print View

Just a suggestion on the borderline insignificant: save money by avoiding the brand-name "PackTowl" in favor of microfiber home cleaning or shop towels, or the longstanding multi-use cheap bandana.

I don't hike where you do but I would put the few dollars saved from that into an actual baseplate compass.

Good luck!

I'm Joe
Re:towel/compass on 08/01/2013 11:40:54 MDT Print View

I may very well just go with some cheaper generic alternative for a towel. Thanks for the push in that direction.

As for the compass I don't really have a major need for one. My navigation and map reading abilities should suffice. 6 years in the Marines makes for a lot of land nav practice.

Delmar O'Donnell

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Grease Pot on 08/01/2013 23:30:49 MDT Print View

The aluminum Grease Pot available on Amazon & K-mart weighs 3.2 oz once you remove the hideous plastic knob and replace it with a wire bail. It even includes a strainer, which you can use to strain the water out of your pasta, or you can use with a round paper filter to make delicious fresh brewed coffee from regular grounds. Or you can use the strainer as a plate. I recollect mine cost $7 at K-mart. Holds 4.5 cups liquid. You can fit a SuperCat stove inside, surrounded by a Ziplock 1-cup bowl/cup.

So... that's pot, lid, plate/strainer, cup/bowl, and stove, all nested, costing you about $10, and weighing about 3.8 oz total.

Don't forget to add a pot lifter (another ounce). Add a reflectix cozy for another 1.2 oz, and extend your cook times.

My towel is a PVA AquaDry, found in the car care section of Target. Cut in thirds. That's 0.6 oz and amortizes to $2.

Fear not the DriDucks. Just don't sit on rocks or bushwhack through briars, and take some Tenacious Tape for repairs.

Edited by Bolster on 08/01/2013 23:40:47 MDT.

I'm Joe
Re: Grease pot on 08/02/2013 09:54:50 MDT Print View

The only thing that is keeping me away from the Kmart grease pot is the need for a pot lifter. I like the built in handles on the ti ware pot and how easy it makes it to store. With a pot lifter I would have to find another place to store it and it wouldnt be self contained at that point. My ideal cookset will nest entirely in the pot with the lid closed with the only exception being the coozie. So stove, windscreen/potstand, 6oz+ fuel, towel, and lighter all inside the pot. Impossible to do with a pot lifter added to the mix.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/02/2013 11:06:30 MDT Print View

You can make a complete 16 oz fosters cook kit with a lid, bail handle, alcohol stove, spoon, microfiber mini towel, windscreen, but no fuel bottle that weighs 2.5 oz. Look over on the Whiteblaze ultralight forum. That kit a pictured weighs 2 oz, but if you add a decent spoon and Titanium windscreen to help protect the can you would be up to around 2.5 oz.

If you lose ounces here and there throughout your list you can knock off another pound or two.

I'm Joe
Re: Fosters cook kit on 08/02/2013 11:47:43 MDT Print View

The Fosters cook kit has too many trade offs for me. It is much less durable. It can't be self contained with a fuel bottle. It isn't as efficient a system which requires extra fuel which means extra weight.

If you think I could shave a pound or two more and you think it could be done without adding much more cost please let me know more. That's what I'm looking for, I just need the details...

I also wanted to add that some of the weights for my cookset are over estimated until I finish making them.

Keep the ideas coming. I'm definitely still researching and tweaking my list.

Edited by imjoe on 08/02/2013 11:52:31 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Re: Re: Fosters cook kit on 08/02/2013 15:48:44 MDT Print View

Long sorry....

Gives and takes with everything but here are some more suggestions...
It looks like you are missing some odds and ends stuff but cant put my finger on it.
One for instance, You might want to consider a food bag of some sort like a Ursak minor etc.

You can save over 2# right off the bat with a different tent and pack but it will cost you about an extra $200. If you MYOG some stuff you can recover some of that but I would invest in a SUL top cuben tent and Pack from Zpacks if you really want to lose and extra 2 pounds plus.

A fosters pot is less durable until you put it inside a plastic Koolaid container and that container can handle boiling hot fluids, is absolutely crush proof and holds in enough heat you really dont need a cozy unless its really cold.

Also Holds your plasic bag when you eat, IE the bag of food goes inside the container and add water cap it. Adding that container works out to 3.8 total which is still lighter.

If you want to keep it lighter still then forget the plastic container and Without the container the top ring adds top rim strength or buy one of the machined rings and wrapping the works with a titanium wind screen would help keep it from getting crushed. These are so easy to make and cheap I look at them as disposable. A machined ring can be reused, so just buy a beer, drink it cut off the top and presto - new pot.

The stove I linked fires off in about 5 seconds and boils 1 cup of 60dF H20 in 4 minutes with 3/8 oz of alcohol. Now it depends on how much you cook and the temps, but for moving fast and say 6 cups of water a day, so about 6 oz weight of alcohol for 3 days. If you want to go lighter fuel then Esbit and add a small SS wire pot stand. If using DN alcohol, I do not want that container inside my cookware. Personal preference. Everclear is okay, but no DN alcohol in my pot for me.

There is a youtube of a guy with a sub 2 oz fosters cook kit you may want to look at for ideas. 2-3 days is not a big deal, and one of these is almost free to make and worth trying out just for the experience.

Why a double rainbow tent ?? A Zpacks Hexamid tent will cost about $20 more than the double rainbow and will save almost 2 pounds just by itself. If you are going double then you will split the weight of the rainbow. If you have some extra $ then get the larger hexamid. Tents are one of the really heavy bulky items. If I were starting over and a grounder, I would save and buy the lightest cuben tent I could afford. Zpacks hexamids are so light they are lighter than a sil tarp and bivy setup.

In the summer you dont need or want a 20dF quilt. Personally I have a MYOG modular setup and my 45dF quilt weighs 15 oz and thats for a tall. That would save weight in warmer weather.

A M50 Climasheild quilt like that cost about $90 to make depending although Tims equip is top shelf. I also have a 1.8 oz primaloft liner that weighs about 9 oz and a 5oz liner. The 5 oz liner alone is good to 30dF or so and weighs about 20 oz. Synthetics are bulkier than down.

The older Neoair smalls are on sale for about $90 and weigh 9 oz.

Use polycro (sliding glass door shrink film) for a ground cloth - $15 and 2oz.

Driducks are good. They now make a very thin poncho that weighs like 2.4 oz but not long enough for a pack. Just got a couple to try out and thinking about extended the back of one and adding some velcro but they are very very thin.
My normal driducks top weighs a little over 6 oz.

Jam 50 is too heavy. I have an older Jam II that the bladder sleeve is stripped out it weighs right at 18oz. Bought it used for $50 here. Personally doing it now I would save a little more $ and just do a one time lay out for a Zpacks Arc-Blast.

You can go only tablets for water if you want to go lighter although I like the sawyer filters but you will most likely want to replace the squeeze bag. From what I have read the bag will blow out and some have gone PDQ. Personally I made a little system.
2 plastic bottles cut in half, some tubing, prefilter and adapters. Use the bottom to scoop, top of the bottle as a funnel fastened to the filter with a tornado cap or arrowhead eq cap to tubing etc. something of that sort, and just gravity filter.

FYI look up IceAxe here, at least I think that is his name here if I recall correctly.
He did an AT thru with a 9# pack and you might get some ideas from his post here.

Also check out this guys setup. He is a hammocker but he only has a 20L pack, 9# pack total weight and did an AT thru with that gear. That might also give you some ideas. He has a series of around 125 or so videos of his walk and they are interesting

His gear is pretty close to my setup now, but I did a MYOG double layer 1.1 oz hammock, Climashield topquilt, 1.1 oz sil tarp and I carry a MYOG 10 oz bug net. Also my setup is a lot longer than his, IE my hammock is 12' long where he carried a 7 oz nano hammock.

I probably have about $1000 into everything and have no cuben.
Next on the list is definately an Arc-Blast pack and that wont save me any weigh but will give me more space in my pack.

Edited by tammons on 08/02/2013 15:55:42 MDT.

I'm Joe
Re: Re: Re: Fosters cook kit on 08/02/2013 20:18:04 MDT Print View

Thanks for the in depth response. A lot to take in but definitely good stuff. It will be hard to make use of some of the suggestions while trying to maintain my price point but good ideas none the less. I'm going to have to give the fosters can a shot but I don't think it has the efficiency I'm looking for. I like to tinker so it would be fun even if I don't use it regularly. For warmer summer nights I plan on coming up with some lighter MYOG quilt. Thanks for the info on the other guys. I'll have to check them out.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Re: Fosters cook kit on 08/02/2013 20:52:58 MDT Print View

The way I look at it is this. You are about to spend $675 on heavier gear.

IE cook pot, screen, tent, pack and a 20dF bag.

We have all done it here and later say, self why did I do that - LOL.

A Fosters rig with the koolaid container and a foil wind screen probably cost $10 to make.
Zpacks hexamid - $295
Zpacks Arc - Blast 60L (bigger) - $290
MYOG M50 and 2.5 or 5oz climashield depending on what you want to build - $100

Total of $695.

From that you have a good base to build off and then upgrade as you go. Alternately spend an extra $100 and get a down quilt now. They are nice. I used to have a golite ultra 20 that weighed 21 oz for a long and like an idiot sold it. Oh well.

BTW - You should be able to find driducks on ebay for about $15-20 with free shipping.

From looking at your list again I think some of your weights are off and you have some equipment that is missing. Probably about a pound of it here and there.

At any rate you can still accomplish what you want to do, only with a one person tent at 4# lighter and $20 more than your current list if you MYOG a quilt or about $120 more with Tims 20dF down quilt.

Edited by tammons on 08/02/2013 20:54:21 MDT.

I'm Joe
. on 08/02/2013 21:24:00 MDT Print View

I'm going to have to go with a 2 person tent as I'll be occasionally bringing my gf. I'm also probably not going to go with a synthetic quilt. So the savings aren't quite as easy. Also, it is possible my weights are off, I've pulled most of my numbers from websites. If you can think of anything I'm missing let me know. I appreciate the reminder on the food bag. Forgot about that one.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/03/2013 11:52:49 MDT Print View

You will eventually get tired of lugging around a 2 person tent when you are out solo hiking but understand if the GF is along. One thing that is fantastic is when you are two in a tent is 2 sleeping bags that zip together and that is fantasic and I can almost guarantee you your girlfriend, if she is not a hard core hiker will most likely prefer a bag to a quilt.

Quilt sleeping in colder weather has a learning curve whereas a bag you just zip it up.

Also the addition of a 2nd body in a double bag adds a lot of warmth so maybe you dont need a 20dF quilt/bag with her along.

Or if she is cool with quilts then a double would be the way to go IMO.

Still I think an Arc-Blast would be worth the $ now if you can afford it. With her along you will need 60L since you will be carrying more.

For solo you might want to look at making some solo gear in the future, like a MYOG tarp and maybe a climasheild quilt to fit your solo adventures. Both relatively cheap. Also a smaller cookpot, since you dont need one that big for a 2-3 day solo. Some other odds and ends.

Also one day you might want to try out hammocks. I like them and they are cheap to make, like $20 with walmart or other nylon ripstop 2nds and you are off the ground but you need under insulation. My hammock base right now for 45dF is about 8.5#.

With an UL hammock setup and a lot of cuben you can get that down to about 6# in the summer.

evolution on 08/03/2013 12:42:44 MDT Print View

Since you are a newbie, heres how it works.

You think you only want to go out for 2-3 days. But thats only one or two nights. For sure, one night is not enough time to play with your new gear toys. All walking and no playing with new stuff.

Then you discover that simple trips of even 15-20 miles, are really just an overnight trip when you walk most of the day. Youve got to do more miles if you actually want to get to use your great new gear much at all. You love your new tent and fluffy sleeping bag and want to use them.

Now you figure out finally, since you are walking 30+ miles at a time, that its easier to walk with light stuff, so you start aquiring new lighter gear. Gear you really should have bought the first time to save spending the $$ twice.

Then you discover that with the lighter pack, you can walk 15-20 miles, or more, per day and your trips have to get even longer if you actually want to play with these $$ toys.

Pretty soon you are doing hundred + mile trips that are a week long, and pushing yourself to see how far you can go some days. You keep lightening the pack (more $$) as you set your goals on occasional 30+ mile days, and long unsupplied wilderness traverses. Why? Because when you are light, you can. And you have to in order to be interested, a 5 mile hike to camp at a spot no longer cuts it for you.

Edited by livingontheroad on 08/03/2013 12:46:10 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Re: Re: Grease pot on 08/03/2013 13:15:37 MDT Print View

>With a pot lifter I would have to find another place to store it and it wouldnt be self contained at that point. My ideal cookset will nest entirely in the pot...

Say what now? I put my pot lifter in the pot, next to the SuperCat stove, the windscreen, the lighter, and sometimes even a fuel bottle if it's a short trip.

BTW, a common UL mod is to trim your pot lifter to length preference. It's soft aluminum. I've seen two-inch lifters. People who carry multi-tools just use pliers.

But, do as you wish, I understand not wanting a separate lifting tool.

Lifters do have upsides: (1) makes sliding into the cozy easy, no obstructions. (2) No rivets or welds on the pot. (3) No need to put a notch into your windscreen to make room for the attached handles.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/03/2013 15:51:55 MDT Print View

You might want to check this out.

$100 will save you 3# if you wait to upgrade some of the smaller stuff.
Reason for the Montbell #3 bag is so you can get a left and right zip and connect them

If you cant afford all of it get a junker $50 pack then upgrade to an Arc later.

All the little stuff you can add as you go.

The big expense is really going to be getting your GF set up too.

I added some things you missed. A bit over a pound and when you start packing for real that will grow. Things I did not list you probably need to carry some extra cordage too like the SUL Zpacks stuff, cell phone and a few other things I did not think of like hiking poles etc. According to your current list, I would guess in reality you will end up at about 12# base and maybe more with the GF in tow.

Weights of the last 3 can vary.

Also there are other manuf like bearpaw for one that sells cuben shelters, IE you could go with his cuben shaped tarp and a net tent and ditch the net when solo in colder weather.

 photo listnew_zps04230172.jpg

Edited by tammons on 08/03/2013 16:00:18 MDT.

I'm Joe
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/03/2013 21:50:40 MDT Print View

Every time I get new suggestions the total cost keeps creeping up. It's gotten to the point where I need to remind myself of my original goal of remaining cheapish while staying light and not making too many sacrifices. I don't see the point in spending $400 on a UL double tent when I'm trying to keep close to $750. I understand that mean I might not having the lightest setup on the trail but that isn't my goal. I'm trying to find the setup for the new guy that gets the best bang for the buck. So yeah I might have an overkill 20dF quilt in the summer but I won't have to spend any extra when I need something in the shoulder months. Again, I can't justify $275 on a pack with my budget goals but I can still be on the upper end of ultralight with a $110 pack. So yeah I can save 3 pounds and only spend an extra $100 but it also means that I can't hit the trail in early April without being forced to spend money on another sleeping system. I'm also confused on the suggestion to buy a junker pack and then upgrade later. I'd be afraid that may risk discomfort and put a bad taste in my mouth for the whole experience. I'd much rather but decent but not great stuff and then sell and upgrade along the way. It allows me to get into ultralight backpacking now, get a feel for where I think I can best spend my money on upgrades in the future, and not wait an extra season because I can't afford a the really nice gear now.

Looking at your suggestions for the the things I missed I think that some tweaking can be made there. The double rainbow comes with stakes so those can be removed. I'm not going to need a pack cover since I'm shoving most things in the compactor bag. As for the medical/emergency gear I think I can keep that under 4oz looking at some other people's lists. And 7oz for toiletries sounds like a lot too. I think I can keep it under 5 without much effort.

I agree about ditching the second flashlight. That was something I was unsure of in case I ever needed to night hike. Forgot the cellphone weight so add 5oz as well. I won't be using hiking poles so we can keep that off the list. I need to finish my list but I think I can stay decently below 12lbs maybe below 11lbs... I dunno. More tweaking to do.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/03/2013 22:25:04 MDT Print View

Trust me, you need a pack cover or wear an extended poncho.
First time out in the rain without one and you will know why.

I was going by your total on your original list of $1085 but $750 is along ways from that in terms of UL gear, but what I will say in general is buy the best and lightest big 3 you can afford. The DR is a great tent, but just not for soloing if you want to go UL, IE under a real 10#.

I would probably just start buying top shelf used gear and or MYOG what you can and cheap out on the little things that are easy to upgrade later. Your current big 3 will set you back $600 now and you will probably sell 2/3ds of it next year and buy lighter like we all have.

Also as an FYI the only montbell #3 that comes in L + R zip is the UL SS down hugger if you are interested in one of those.

What you are trying to do IE under 10# on $750 is not easy.
12# however is pretty easy to hit on a budget and 12# is not that bad, IE for you, 3 days, 6# of food, 4# of water and 22# total.

If you look at the loner video #20, I bet he does not have much over $850 in his 9# setup, but he bought some of that used.

So for a 12# base a pretty easy breakup is 6# for your big 4, IE tent with ground cloth, stakes etc, sleeping bag, pad and pack with TC bag and rain cover if any.
6# for everything else.

Right now your big 4 is at 7# so your base will most likely end up at 13# or so.

Edited by tammons on 08/03/2013 22:45:45 MDT.

I'm Joe
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/03/2013 23:06:51 MDT Print View

So I did a little more tweaking. If I can keep my medical/emergency and toiletries under 8 oz I should be able to keep my base at 11 lbs. Unless I'm still missing something.

Also, if need be the ground sheet can double as a pack cover in a pinch.

gear list

Thanks again for all of the input.

Edited by imjoe on 08/03/2013 23:08:33 MDT.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re:towel/compass on 08/04/2013 08:07:57 MDT Print View

"As for the compass I don't really have a major need for one. My navigation and map reading abilities should suffice. 6 years in the Marines makes for a lot of land nav practice."

You can use a bandana for so many things and use the savings on a basic baseplate compass. Your statement is a classic for getting in trouble in the backcountry. Map reading is great until it is dark or foggy. Buy a compass and use it.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 08:48:09 MDT Print View

Bored so long...LOL

Once again I will say invest in a pack cover or use a poncho. Its your call but
I would not use a ground cloth to cover my pack personally but you can try it.

Numbers look about right.

You will probably want a separate hood for your quilt. Thats a typical pice of quilt gear. You will not always want to wear a non zip-able Stoic under a 20dF quilt just for the hood.

If you are really going to be out in 20-30dF weather, in the future, you might want to consider a warmer jacket or an additional layer, and an additional cheap pad and carry the driducks full suit instead of just the top since it works as a layer. Also I am not sold on trash bag skirts. Too clingy for me when in shorts and my legs are wet. I prefer chaps but to each his own. You can try a bag out. Its certainly cheap enough.

Another item in cold weather is you might want to think about your base layer. I got some Indera Polypro johns on ebay (blue) that weigh about 7.5oz either top or bottom for XL and they are very warm. They are good enough and cheap enough that I actually want to pick up a couple more sets.

Just food for thought, I really like down gear a lot, but if I am going to be in rainy weather, which you may not, I prefer synthetics. They dont pack down or last when over compressed like down which is a huge negative, but in general these days a M50 climasheild insulated jacket and quilt can be as light as down gear and it dries in a fraction of the time that down does. I know you are not going on a thru hike, but take a climashield quilt or jacket, throw it into a drier for 15 minutes and its bone dry.

Case in point, I made a M90 climashield jacket with a removable hood from left over stuff I had laying around. A real PIA to make and it took forever but it was worth it in the long run. It has 2.5oz CS in the arms, 5oz CS in the chest, and 3.7oz in the hood and back and collar, and a very high ski jacket type collar. Super super warm and I used it as outer gear to hunt in all last year so I know its warm, you know sitting for hours. Good to a solid 25dF or so and I know my montbell down UL jacket would not even come close to that, but it is 9 oz vs 15 oz. The CS jacket is XL and cut very large and roomy and it weighs 15 oz. The hood weighs 2 oz.

I also have a M50 5oz apex Climashild quilt that I made that is good to 25-30dF, wide long that weighs 20 oz. Cost less than $100 to make.

I agree with above, take a compass.

I'm Joe
compass on 08/04/2013 09:36:52 MDT Print View

I've navigated in dark and foggy many times. Having a dedicated compass vs a mini compass on a whistle will not improve that situation. Get me within 15 degrees of north and I promise if you needed to get to a road you'll have no problem. If it is sunny out no one needs a compass they just need to learn the skills to navigate without one.

Also I don't see a problem with using a ground sheet as a pack cover. With a little shock cord it will do the job fine.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 10:29:20 MDT Print View

I know you are dead set against a pack cover but another options for keeping your pack dry is a parcho. Pattern from Quest. Cuben version weighs about 4 oz or the sil nylon version about 7.5 oz. Sil version cost about $50 for the MYOG kit.

Here is a typical list of stuff you can dig through and pick and choose.
Typically my every day stuff weighs in at about 4-7 oz without a trowel.
Someone here makes titanium trowels that are super light. A trowel is nice, but some prefer a stick, but for me its tough to actually dig a decent cathole with a stick. I would rather carry an extra ounce.

Emer gear about 4oz or so and you should have an emer space blanket of some sort with you. 1.5 oz cheap and good insurance and versatile.

Medical minimum is about 2 oz or so.

Tooth Powder
Micro insect repellant
Good Compass
Micro sunscreen
Hand Sanitizer - a must have and enough to be useful
Wet Wipes - Maybe

KEYCHAIN SURVIVAL - I carry this stuff on my keychain everyday anyway
Fire steel
GI can opener
Small Swiss Army knife
Micro led light
Button Compass

1 non lubricated condom - LOL
4 aquamira tablets
12' of spiderwire cord
Brunton button compass
2 fish hooks
1 needle
1 xacto blade
2 Suture strip bandaids
5 wp matches
1 mag glass
1 wet fire tinder
Micro pencil
2 pc WP paper
Gorilla tape - small amount
2 rubber bands
Safety pin
Space Blanket
Micro Lighter
Howler whistle
Signal mirror
Micro flashlight

The full size Swiss Army knife with scissors and saw is a must have for me.
Way back when I used to only cook on fires and I have used only that saw to do everything I needed to do.

1 MICRO tube krazy glue
3 suture strip bandaid
2 regular bandaids
2x2 surgical sponge
4x4 pad
Neosporin to go
Bad knee take an Ace wrap.

Alternatively if you are more hard core you could just take some duct tape
and a small quick clot in case to have a really bad injury, cut etc.

That said in a case like that you have to clean out the wound. They do make a quickclot that has silver so that should help until you can get somewhere.

I have a friend that was on the last day of a sailing trip, sliced some salami and nicked his finger. He washed his hand off in the ocean and thought he was good to go. Next day he woke up with black streaks up his arm and checked into the hospital and was in the hospital for 3 days on an IV drip. Hand sanitizer and some sort of antibiotic is a good thing too.

Edited by tammons on 08/04/2013 10:32:00 MDT.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 10:46:20 MDT Print View

Troy, You take three compasses, and three microlights?

If you have soap and use it you don't need hand sanitizer. sanitizer sanitizes, but does not clean. Soap does both.

I do not take a survival kit with me backpacking. All that gear is redundant to what I have in my pack. We just stay close to each other.

Unless in Cholla country, I don't take a comb either. Good for pulling various cactus spines out of yourself.

Your friend rinsing off his wound in salt water was a bad choice. So unhealthily. Use soap. Rinse with copious amounts of clean, fresh water.. There is all kinds of crap in sea water. Can't drink it. Why wash with it? He's lucky.

Packcover. No thanks. I really like the big bag inside my pack technique. So much easier. Covers flappin' and snagging, blowing off, meh.

Joe, What about a SMD Lunar Duo?

Edited by kthompson on 08/04/2013 10:52:57 MDT.

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 11:23:56 MDT Print View

You might enjoy watching these videos by Mike Clelland and this article by him on the fastest way to lose weight and cheaply.

Edited by annapurna on 08/04/2013 11:28:18 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 11:32:06 MDT Print View

That is just 3 lists of misc gear (or four) and I dont take it all.
Especially 2-3 days that stuff is not really needed, just throwing it out there.

Right no need for 3 compasses but 2 is good for me.
A button compass weighs next to nothing anyway.

Just lists I had on my computer from about 5+ years back so I dont take all that stuff and some of it is redundant. The stuff on my keychain is always with me and I do have a micro misc emer med pack that fits into a small altoids container that weighs 1 oz I think. That always goes. It has all the tiny stuff in it and comes in handy.

I prefer to keep my pack dry, but to each his own. A cover wont blow off if you set it up right.

Hand sanitizer is a good thing IMO and soap works too, but soap does not sanitize and sanitizer does not clean like soap. Still to each his own and I am sure after the OP's first few hikes he will figure out what works.

Yes bad choice by my friend but it happens. This was probably 25 years ago. It was not the ocean salt water or what was in it, it was bacteria from the salami.

I'm Joe
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 12:17:36 MDT Print View

Wow. That is definitely not a 2-3 day list, at least not for me. I keep my hair short so no comb for me. I can pass on the floss for a short trip. If I'm bringing sun screen I'll leave the chapstick at home and just use the sunscreen instead. Leave the wet wipes at home and I can make do without a trowel. Your survival kit is way more that I'd ever bring. I might bring a few aquamira pills, an extra mini bic, and some gorilla tape. The rest I can do without. Your medical list is about what I'd have though. Nothing extravagant.

Ken, the Lunar Duo looks pretty comparable to the Double Rainbow but requires trekking poles/dedicated tent poles. I'll have to check it out a little more but I don't use trekking poles. Any reason you would choose it over the Double Rainbow?

Link, thanks for the links.

Edited by imjoe on 08/04/2013 12:22:08 MDT.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 12:22:22 MDT Print View

Better living space in the Duo for two.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Re: Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 12:54:04 MDT Print View

Well yes that list was more of a thru hike list of stuff.

Floss is double duty for sewing repairs like your tent rain gear etc.
It weighs nothing.

All this stuff I have to have no matter what even a few days. In the past and mostly long ago, I have been/had totally wet, severe hypothermia, sick, diarrhea, totally wetted out down bag, tent nearly flooded, allergies on the trail, minor injuries, trapped in a nasty storm at 13k, etc etc, and all miserable - LOL and maybe thats why I carry what I do.

This is what every day stuff I take no matter what, but it does not have to weigh a lot.

Toothbrush, Tooth Powder, Floss, TP, SOAP, Insect repellant (unless its cold)
Chapstick (Yeah can do without especially if you carry some vasoline cotton balls for fire starters)
Microlight, Map, Compass, Micro sunscreen, Hand Sanitizer, Wet Wipes (2-3 weigh nothing and are handy, not talking a huge amount and your GF will love your for taking them), Trowel (the small titanium trowel weighs 0.4 oz and is not that expensive) Bandana or microfiber cloth.

With a tent I would rather take a decently think microfiber cloth like from the swap shop, $2 or so to wipe down condensation on the tent interior. Before the microfiber days I used to carry a sponge.

KEYCHAIN SURVIVAL - That lives in my pocket
Fire steel, GI can opener, Small Swiss Army knife (can leave out if packing a real knife), Micro led light, Button Compass.

For the small altoids can survival stuff I will post a photo.
Generally I just add a space blanket and a lighter to that and thats mostly good enough.
Its already together so if its got an extra compass in it or whatever I dont bother stripping this and that out.

Edited by tammons on 08/04/2013 13:34:17 MDT.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 13:00:25 MDT Print View

"It weighs nothing." Heresy! Everything weighs something. We are counting ounces here aren't we?

I'm Joe
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 13:09:23 MDT Print View

I agree. Everything weighs something. So 2-3 wet wipes and a titanium trowel probably add up to an ounce. I don't need either and it's an ounce of savings that didn't cost me a dime.

Edited by imjoe on 08/04/2013 13:17:14 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Re: Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 13:35:14 MDT Print View

"It weighs nothing. Heresy! Everything weighs something. We are counting ounces here aren't we?"

LOL - Grams

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 13:36:18 MDT Print View


Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 16:46:56 MDT Print View

Okay here is some gram counting stuff you might find useful or maybe not. At any rate it might give you some ideas.

This Everyday list/stuff is probably the minimum I would go with.
Button compass is enough if I am familiar with where I am or AT etc.
Just a general direction finder works for me but you have to check them in the store as some are way way off. A real compass will weigh about 1oz so still not a deal breaker.

The list does not include TP, Hand Sanitizer or wet wet wipes or a comb or deodorant or a trowel. I would add in TP and had sanitizer prior depending on length.

The med kit is also pretty much min and both are in cuben stuff sacks.

The key chain rig, like I said lives with me all the time and weighs 1.6 oz.
I lost my little Swiss army knife but frankly to me about the only thing its good for is the tweezers toothpick and scissors. The blade is really too small for me anyway.

The one knife I have been carrying for probably 30 years and replaced I dont know how many times is the full size knife with the saw and scissors. Cant remember the name but mine weighs 3 oz.

For you gram counters 3 wet wipes in a sandwich bag that are actually wet weigh .6 oz. Added this in there because your GF will make that demand - LOL. Just stuff them in her pack.

3 dried wet wipes weigh less than 4 grams. Read someone here that was doing that and they come in handy even dry.

I created the tiny altoids kit to have something I could just stick in my pocket with a few odds and end in it.

The tube was setup more for a hunting pack but the compass is in the bottom so you can just flip it upsidedown and get a direction without tearing it apart or opening it up.

Both of those have a mix of survival stuff and some minor med stuff, IE if I am going out swamping hogs I might just grab one of them and the quickclot and a sawyer extractor and not take any other medical stuff.

I dont take both of these at the same time since they are redundant.

Everyday stuff - 4 oz, No trowel, no TP no hand sanitizer. I dont know where micro headlamp is so shoeing this micro LED light. I think I will upgrade to a Cree LED which is about 10X brighter. Libman microfiber cloth, micro light, soap, tooth powder, sunscreen, button compass, 3 dry wet wipes, lighter, toothbrush and floss, bug juice. In the upper right is a quickclot sports silver that does not normally go in my hiking gear. I usually pack that in my hunting pack, IE not hiking but at any rate it weighs 1.2oz by itself. I swap this stuff back and forth.

 photo everyday_zps9ab26540.jpg

Medical - 2 oz
Gauze pad, sponge (probably not needed) moleskin, tape, 3 suture strips, pills of various sorts, micro super glue, 2 band-aids, neosporin, Visene.

 photo med_zps96d8f032.jpg

Small Altoids Can - 1 oz button compass not shown but it fits.
SS wire, WP matches, Striker, 2 surture strips, 1 exatco blade, 1 needle, 1 safety pin, 2 fish hooks, micro cord, wet fire (needs to be occasionally replaced), 2 aquamira water tabs, button compass, Micro magnifying glass, Antibiotic, an aspirin or two and maybe a sudafed.

 photo altoids_zpsf79d851d.jpg

Tube Kit - 1.4 oz
SS wire, Micro Mirror, micro magnifying glass, gorrilla tape, wp matches, striker rod
micro pencil, 2 aquamira tabs, full size utility razor blade wrapped in alum from a pop can, safety pin, 2 Fish hooks, 2 suture strips, micro cord, button compass on the bottom facing down, an aspirin or two and maybe a sudafed.

 photo tube1_zpsfd098323.jpg

 photo tube2_zps26a243e3.jpg

Edited by tammons on 08/04/2013 17:41:40 MDT.

I'm Joe
Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 17:56:11 MDT Print View

I found some of these at a surplus store. The paste is dispensed from the brush. They a pretty tiny and good for at least a few days.

Matches and a striker? Why both? And the micro magnifying glass?

Why the fish hooks?

Although the idea of it all fitting into the altoid contained is novel it just adds weight. Why not just a zip-lock?

Thanks for the pictures and the weights. My kits will be pretty similar in simplicity.

Edited by imjoe on 08/04/2013 17:57:20 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 19:02:26 MDT Print View

"I found some of these at a surplus store. The paste is dispensed from the brush. They a pretty tiny and good for at least a few days."

Neat will have to check that out. That said toothpaste is heavier than tooth powder so it may be a wash but thats just one less thing to get lost. My toothbrush weighs 11 grams and I was thinking about drilling out the handle - LOL, its contagious. I think I got it at walgreens. The tooth powder container is full and weighs 15 grams. Half that would be good for 2-3 days so maybe 10 grams.

"Matches and a striker? Why both? And the micro magnifying glass?"

I like to carry at least 3-4 ways to start a fire. Lighter, WP matches, striker, magnifying glass. People have lambasted me on the micro magnifying glass, but it will start a fire in full sun as I have done it and it works for magnifying like if you need to check out your skin although these are tiny lenses.
These came out of old bad camera lenses I had laying around so they are pretty high quality glass. The one in the altoids can weighs 1.6 grams. The one in the tube is bigger and heavier at 3 grams.

"Why the fish hooks?"

Spectra Line and hook to go fishing. Remember one time I was in NC somewhere wandering along the AT and came upon a nice stream with some trout and wished I had anything to throw in the water. Hooks and line are just one of those typical survival tools, although if really in a survival situation there are better ways to catch fish if you have the time.

2 fish hooks weighs .25 grams. The line is multiuse.

"Although the idea of it all fitting into the altoid contained is novel it just adds weight. Why not just a zip-lock?"

It is perfect to just drop in my pocket any time, and thats why I did it like that.

With all the other crap you carry in your pockets a plastic bag would not do. That said the small tin weighs 13 grams and wont come apart in your pocket, IE needles hooks, Xacto blades etc and everything just sort of fits so it was a no brainer and I dont care about 1/2 ounce in my pocket. I usually put a ranger band around it to make sure it does not open up. There is probably a small plastic container somewhere in the world that is lighter but I have not fond it yet.

In comparison a freezer bag with a small rubber band weighs 6 grams. Sandwich bag 3 grams so you could save some weight, but there are some sharp objects in there at least there are in mine.

If I am out and really have to use a small compass, I prefer the tube setup.

"Thanks for the pictures and the weights. My kits will be pretty similar in simplicity."

Sure, gave me a chance to go through some of my gear again.

If you are interested in some more photos of some of my MYOG gear...
MYOG M90 Climashield jacket I made. Going to redo the sleeve ends.

M90 Modular Quilt. This was the first one I built with 3.7 oz XP and a 5oz Apex liner.
This one has ties that would not stay tied.

I sold the 3.7 XP quilt and built a M50 2.5oz Apex shell/quilt with nacro biner ties to hold the liners in. It has a zipper on the side to insert the liners. Plan to build a silk covered 1.8 primaloft liner soon. It should weigh 9 oz.

Couple of Tarps although I have 2 more besides that are not MYOG.

The first one is a cut cut 1.1 oz Silnylon hammock tarp that is 13.5 feet long and
weighs 12.5 oz total with all the zpacks lines. It basically takes 2 packs of 50' line to make the tieouts. One for the ridgeline and the other for the stake tieouts. that is set up just after I finished it before seam sealing checking out the pitch.

The 2nd one is a SUL sil hammock tarp type I was trying out. 14' long and 5'4" wide one piece of cloth. It sagged too much so I gave it a slight cat cut around the edges with pointed ends and that fixed it. This one does not have a ridge line seam. I think it weighs 9 oz now with no cordage, but the other cat cut tarp has much better coverage so this one got shelved.

There is more of my stuff scattered around in photobucket, water setups, kitchen etc

Delmar O'Donnell

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Re: Re: Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/04/2013 23:18:41 MDT Print View

"Every time I get new suggestions the total cost keeps creeping up. It's gotten to the point where I need to remind myself of my original goal of remaining cheapish while staying light and not making too many sacrifices."

And yet...when I pointed out an effective low cost alternative (Grease Pot) you found a reason to set the recommendation aside: "pot lifter won't fit." (Which isn't true.)

So, maybe you're like a lot of us...want cheap, light, and cool. Choose two.

Edited by Bolster on 08/04/2013 23:21:12 MDT.

I'm Joe
Pot Lifter on 08/05/2013 05:07:17 MDT Print View

Easy Delmar... Not every choice is based on if it is cool or not. Just like not every decision is based on whether it is cheaper and lighter. First of all you say that a pot lifter will fit in the pot. That may be true but can it fit in the pot with everything including 6oz of fuel? That was a stipulation. The only response that mentioned the possibility of it fitting with that much fuel mentioned hacking it down to 2 inches. No thanks. That is useless at that point in my mind. I'd rather not risk burning myself or spilling hot water and wasting the fuel it cost to boil it. Its just not practical if you have to make it so small. Second, the simplicity of a built in handle has value. I don't have to worry about losing it and it is easier to use. I appreciate the advice and look forward to any more input you may have. I don't think this is the reaction I should get when I don't do exactly what is suggested though. Everyone has their own preferences and in the end will do their own thing. Obviously Troy has suggested many things that I have a different opinion on but he keeps coming back with more great ideas. I appreciate that a lot and would be glad to have many more people willing to give so much input even if my gear list doesn't conform 100% to their suggestions.

Edited by imjoe on 08/05/2013 06:29:34 MDT.

pot on 08/05/2013 08:09:27 MDT Print View

Everyone likes something different.
Thats why we have so many flavors of ice cream.

I didnt like the grease pot. Its too large diameter to slowly pour water from into a freezer bag, because it doesnt have a pour spout molded into the side. You either dump it, or it runs down the side of the pot.

When someone else is trying to hold the freezer bag, its a problem. You are likely to get hot water on them.

Ive said it numerous times. For two person use, $59 for evernew 1.3L with built in handle was the best $59 I ever spent.

Although for the weight, Id just as soon take a solo kit and boil water twice really. An extra 8 min isnt a big deal.

Not everyone agrees with me.

Edited by livingontheroad on 08/05/2013 08:11:47 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 08:46:50 MDT Print View

Well there are a lot of ways to skin a cat, and as we all know, some people on the internet argue issues and some dont. I also could have brought up well, why not carry a 2 oz cookset and save 6 ounces while gram counting other items I like to carry but it all comes down to personal preference. I probably have 6 cook pots and only really like 2 of them while all along avoiding the grease pot - LOL.

FYI I just bought a Jam 70 after arguing with you about your Jam 50 - LOL. Caught one new for $65 so too cheap to pass up. The Jam II I have now had about 8 oz stripped out of it so I figure I can also strip that much weight out of a jam 70. Besides $65 new and 70L shipped was too good to pass up. Should end up at about 23 oz.

A few years ago, when campmor was selling their budget down bags for cheap, you could put together a 12# pack with a down bag for pretty cheap.

Now things are a little more expensive but you can still buy a solo big 4 under 6# and less than $400 if you buy used and MYOG so here is another buying scenario.

Recently I bought a used GG miraposa for $120, 20oz, a used contrail for $110, 28oz, and combine that with a walmart $10 pad, and a used 30dF Montbell sleeping bag for $200, 22oz and you end up at 4.875# and $450.

Build a MYOG M50 5XP 25-30dF quilt that cost about $90 in materials and weighs 18oz and you knock off $110 and 4 oz and are at $340 and 4.675#.
With 5# of additional stuff that would put you at about 10# base.

Thats about as cheap as you can go UL big 4.

With your additional $410 you saved, buy your stoic down jacket and a used double rainbow or other cheaper 2 person tent and piece together the rest of your gear CHEAP
like at the swap shop, salvation army etc.

There are several cheaper sub 4# 2 person tents that have full mesh for around $150, like the spitfire 2. Just saw a spitfire 2 on sale for $145. On those Eureka tents you have to replace the factory steel stakes with titanium and that shaves a lot of weight.

4# sounds like a lot but the spitfire is full mesh and full rainfly with a heavy floor and you can split the weight with the GF so 2# each and save some $. No Vestibule though.

There are others also.

I think my favorite 2 person tent I had was a Sierra designs Velox 2. A lot of netting, 2 doors, free standing, decent vestibule, bullet proof materials, heavy floor and weighed about 4#. I think I bought it on close out for $175 or so. Not made any more though.

Their new version seems to be the Sierra Designs Sirius 2 Person tent that weighs 4# also. Its was on sale for about $120 but everybody is out of stock.

You might want to look around at spadout. Lots of gear deals right now.

I'm Joe
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 09:47:55 MDT Print View

Nice find on the 70l Jam. Those are the kind of deals I'm hoping to run across to keep my costs down.

So after doing some more thinking and a brief discussion with my gf I think I'm going to ditch the 2 person tent idea. She would at most do an over nighter by the sounds of things. So that starts a whole new conversation. I saw the zpacks tent it's light but has no tub floor. Yeah you can add one but that adds weight and cost. I also saw the SMD Lunar Solo and it seems pretty nice. Tarptent also has a few good options. Am I missing any that I should give some attention?

Thanks for the heads up on spadout. Never knew about the site.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 11:37:12 MDT Print View

Found it over on Whiteblaze.

That makes it easier and lighter and just buy a cheap 2 person tent.

Overnight you wont have much stuff anyway. If she decides she is into it you can ebay the old tent and upgrade to a SUL 2 person tent later. You can find quite a few quality 5# 2 person tents on spadout at around $100.

Actually now just solo, you might want to look a lighter smaller pack in the 20oz range or so but you need to watch your equipment volume or you could strip out you Jam to amke it lighter but I would try to find a jam used personally.

My Jam 2 that was stripped out was used but basically like new and $50.

At any rate you can buy all your stuff then buy a pack it will fit into, or buy a pack then dont buy anything that wont fit.

Synthetics are more bulky than down and the main reason I just bought a 70L pack.
I cant get all my winter gear into 3000 CI, and a jam 70 is a lot lighter than my old Kelty Alpine pack at 3.5#.

That said Loner hiked the entire AT with a 20L pack and budget gear and you have watched that gear video I am sure. That video is a good lesson on what you can do as a gram counter on a budget.

Here is another one. I know you are not into walmart pots, but this is a 1.3qt cup with handle for $3 and weighs 3.6 oz.

The small cup is .7qts and cost $2 and weighs 2.6oz - LOL.
Cant hardly argue with $2 or $3 either way and it has a nice non drip lip.
I might try to come up with a folding handle for it or you could just add a SS wire bail handle.

Thats a nice tent but takes a hiking pole to set it up so you would need to add a tent pole. Also depending on how tall you are, you might not fit. Also a lot of other tents are in that category, Contrail, Hexamid etc.

Right the Hexamid has a mesh floor that would eventually need some work I am sure.
You use a tub floor inside of it.

The popular 1 person UL tarptent now is the Moment. I have not tried one.

You could also buy a Etowah 6x10 tarp - 9oz $60, then MYOG a bathtub GC and bivy with mesh and that should weigh about 22oz. With Zpacks cord and titanium stakes That would cost a total of about $130 or so.

Personally one day I want to build a 6x10 cat cut cuben tarp at about 5oz and a 5oz cuben M50 bivy, Zpacks cord and titanium stakes - would cost about $300 in materials and would weigh in at about 12oz total.

A spitfire 1 is pretty solid and cheap. You can find them occasionally at around $90-100 but you have to buy titanium stakes then it will weigh about 48 oz. That said it has a full fly and full bug netting.

They also make a Eureka Solitare and there is one in the outlet now for $35-45. Its basically a very small Bivy Tent with poles, but the poles are crap. First thing you have to replace the poles and prebend Alum Dac poles from Quest, and you can not sit up in it and has no exterior vestibule although the screen top does have a zipper in it and it is a long tent. I think it weighs about 38oz with titanium stakes and some trimming. That is also a full net tent with a full rain fly but basically just a tube.
Has a heavy duty floor.

Edited by tammons on 08/05/2013 12:21:33 MDT.

I'm Joe
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 12:42:33 MDT Print View

I watched a couple of Loner's videos. Good stuff. I could lose the better part of a day on youtube if I'm not careful.

I checked out the Moment and saw it weighed in at 35oz while the Moment DW was an ounce lighter... I also only found the Moment using your link. It doesn't apear on the product list. Discontinued?

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 13:14:44 MDT Print View

I hear ya.

When I started following Loner last year he was about on video 90+ and I spent an entire weekend watching every video wishing I was tagging along - LOL.

Not sure on the Moment as I am into hammocks now and have not been following tents much except for a few exotics, like the terra nova laser ultra cuben and a few other exotic tents in that category. I think Terra novas goal was to produce a tent, sleeping bag and pad under 1 kg.

Also lightheart tents. People like them but I never used one. She makes cuben fiber tents also and makes them by hand here in the USA. Think she is taking a break on the cuben tents. They cost around $500 and weigh about 20 oz. You would also need a couple of carbon fiber poles for her tents since no Hiking poles.

I'm Joe
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 13:49:24 MDT Print View

Ok. I found my answer. The DW is new for 2013. Looks really versatile.

Well there goes 6 oz...

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 14:32:36 MDT Print View

Doesnt have to.

6x10 Tarp - 9oz, stakes and line 2oz, MYOG M50 bivy 5oz, MYOG polycro bathtub GC 3oz, MYOG Climashield quilt 18oz, Walmart blue pad 10oz, Terra Nova Laser 35 Pack 16oz
Total 4#. Smaller is lighter.
Cost about $375 new.

The lightheart solo std weighs 27 oz. You will most likely end up with hiking poles eventually.

A used Contrail is probably the lightest cheapest way to go for a tent - $125 or so used, but you have to jump on them when they come up for sale. The contrail weighs 28 oz if I remember right and only takes one pole so add 2 oz for a carbon fiber pole.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/05/2013 15:15:46 MDT Print View

Another big 4 to blow your budget - LOL
$710 and 3 pound big 4.
Add another $100+ for a down quilt.
You can do everything else in 3# in 45d weather if you skimp.

Base weight would be about 6#.
With 2 days of skimpy food (1.5# per day) and 2L of H2o - about 13# total.

Zpacks Cuben 6x9 Tarp 5oz, M50 bivy 5oz, 45d climashield quilt 14oz, Neoair small and GG 1/8 pad 11oz, Bathtub polycro GC 3oz, Zpacks Zero Large with 3 pockets 6oz, Titanium Stakes and Zpacks cord 3oz.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Another one on 08/05/2013 19:20:48 MDT Print View

This is a bare bones Summer almost SUL ground setup from gear I have with no cuben or crazy expensive stuff. Think I am missing something on this list, oh yeah the silk covered 9 oz liner quilt that I am working on soon. I have not made that yet but the primaloft is coming. Already have the silk. It will be used in my system quilt.
Have not used this poncho tarp and bivy in a while.

At any rate this is a 6# base weight pack for everything. Summer only though.
A 25dF quilt would push it up to 6.5#. To break the 5# barrier I would have to go with a Zpacks zero, a cuben tarp and a M50/cuben bivy more cuben and a few other odds and ends. Still the difference between 5# and 6# or even 7# is nil really. Over on the SUL forum someone just commented the difference between 5# and 7# is just a good mornings dump.

Cost is about $680 for everything.

Terra Nova Laser 20 11.5oz $70.00
Dry Bag 1oz $3.00

Campmor Poncho Tarp 5x10 9oz $70.00

Titanium Stakes 2 oz $20.00
Zpacks Cord 1oz $26.00
1.25oz Tyvek bivy 8oz $30.00
Bathtub polycro GC 2-3oz $10.00

SILK 1.8 Primaloft silk liner quilt 9oz $50.00
GG 1/8 pad 3oz $20.00
prolite pad 8oz $60.00

Fosters cook kit 2.5oz $10.00
Ursak minor 2.5oz $50.00
(2) 1L platy 2oz $20.00
Poly cone filter and bottle 1oz $12
Aquamira tablets .5oz $20.00

Shirt 4oz $5.00
Fleece Beanie 1.1oz $5.00
Fleece mitts 1.2oz $5.00
Spare socks pair 2.2oz $15.00
Montbell UL down jacket 9 oz $125.00
M50 2.5 apex hood 1.5oz $20.00
Frogg Toggs Emergency Poncho 2.8oz $7.00
MEDICAL 2oz $10
EMER Tube 1.4oz $??

Edit: The old Terra Nova Laser 20 is the one that Loner used on his thru just in case you are interested. It is a top loader and on sale at campsaver for $44, just enough not to qualify for free shipping. It weighs 7.5 oz. They also make a cuben fiber version that cost about $135 that weighs 3.5 oz.

Edited by tammons on 08/05/2013 19:59:00 MDT.

Drew Jay

Locale: Central Coast
Tent on 08/06/2013 02:18:21 MDT Print View

I still contend that the Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo LE is by far your best bang for the buck. But for more money/less weight check out their Skyscape Trekker. 2011 Lunar Solo's with the lightweight floor go for about $150 and come up for sale frequently, that also gets you into the 24oz range.

I'm Joe
tent on 08/06/2013 06:07:05 MDT Print View

While the SMD tents look nice, the cost and weight savings aren't as good when you consider you need trekking poles and stakes still. Since I don't use trekking poles it doesn't make as much sense. With that said they do make a carbon fiber pole that you can buy separately. They're on my list to consider. Thanks for the suggestion.

Edited by imjoe on 08/06/2013 06:49:56 MDT.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/06/2013 08:07:03 MDT Print View

The Terra Nova Laser Competition 1 Tent is on sale.

Drew Jay

Locale: Central Coast
Pole on 08/06/2013 08:22:34 MDT Print View

The carbon poles are pricey and only save about half an ounce. I have a new 2.5 ounce 48" aluminum front pole from Tarptent that I could sell you for $10 shipped if you end up going with the Lunar Solo.

Drew Jay

Locale: Central Coast
Stoic Somnus on 08/06/2013 08:26:52 MDT Print View

The Stoic Somnus 30 just went on sale for $179. It's a hell of a bag for the money:

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/06/2013 09:06:39 MDT Print View

Edit, My Contrail weighed 27oz sealed.
A single CF pole 2oz will cost about $20 depending.

I think the Tarptent Stratospire is interesting. 1 or a tight 2, big, 2 vestibules, 2 entries, double wall, full mesh interior, removable mesh interior tent so in the winter just use a bath tub GC and save some weight, 33oz +4oz for poles. More expensive though.

If they made a cuben fly this would be a great super light and expensive tent.

That said unfortunately none of these are long enough for me.

I'm Joe
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/06/2013 09:46:21 MDT Print View

Wow! That Tera Nova Laser Comp 1 on sale looks very tempting. I'm not quite ready to start making purchases but if I was that might have been an impulse buy.

Edited by imjoe on 08/06/2013 09:47:05 MDT.

Thomas Rayl
(trayl) - MLife

Locale: SE Tx
Trimming weight / double usage on 08/06/2013 10:21:51 MDT Print View

If you consider going the Zpacks Hexamid route, look at their cuben poncho as well... It is sized to also use as the ground cloth in the tent, so you get 2-for-1 in weight, usage. Since their design has the ground cloth inside the tent, you don't have a set-up-in-the-rain issue: set up the tent wearing the poncho then move inside & convert it to groundcloth mode.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/06/2013 10:25:26 MDT Print View

Its supposed to be a good tent and way mark down.
I have not used one.

or if you want to spend your entire budget on 1# 1oz

For a totally bomb proof one man tent one of the gotos is the Hilleberg Akto which is in a totally different class. IE Terra Nova more SUL fast pace gear, Hilleberg bombproof.

Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Proposed Gear List for Ultralight Newbie on 08/06/2013 13:39:39 MDT Print View

Here you go....
19 oz and $190