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Gear lost while backpacking.
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Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 16:50:16 MDT Print View

Anyone lose a piece of gear while backpacking?

A pair of socks went missing on one trip. Luckily they were wool and will degrade.

I dropped my titanium pot lid in a creek and never saw it again.

Ian B.

Locale: PNW
Yup on 07/26/2013 16:53:46 MDT Print View

Left a relatively new pair of BD Carbon Corks (current generation) in the N. Cascades NP. Fortunately Steep and Cheap had a sale on them and picked up two sets.

Brian Johns

Locale: NorCal
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 16:58:28 MDT Print View

I was swimming in an alpine lake in the Sierras with my sunglasses on and they slipped off and sank to the bottom. It was only chest deep and me and my buddy searched the mucky bottome for as long as we could, which was probably less than 20 minutes in the 50 or whatever degree water we were in, but to no avail. I never saw them again.

Alex H
(abhitt) - MLife

Locale: southern appalachians or desert SW
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 17:04:07 MDT Print View

I have lost some tiny things like thermometers but on a Paria river trip we found clothing items at each camp including womens underwear, flip flops, etc.

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Gear Lost While Backpacking on 07/26/2013 17:14:27 MDT Print View

I left my homemade carbon fiber tripod at some camp in Los Padres NF. Still can't for the life of me figure out which camp I left it at, or which trip. I just suddenly realized it was gone at some point after a series of back to back trips about year or so ago.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 17:14:37 MDT Print View


My wedding ring.

Don't tell my wife.

Luckily I was smart when we got married and I asked the jeweler at Zales Jewelry to sell us the longest running, most popular, always in stock, simple man's wedding band. They have my size on record.

Nowadays I try to remember to take it off when hiking. And then I try to remember where I put it when the hike is over.

James Marco
(jamesdmarco) - MLife

Locale: Finger Lakes
Re: Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 17:24:07 MDT Print View

Nick, you should'a bought two. 8)

I give mine to the wife to hang on to so I don't loose it. humphh...

David W.
(Davidpcvsamoa) - MLife

Locale: East Bay, CA
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 17:35:47 MDT Print View

I lost my wedding ring snowshoeing at the Mariposa Grove. My fingers must have shrunk with the cold temperatures. I told my wife (cringe). Fortunately she has become a very understanding person and I was not put in the dog house. Please send me a PM if you find a platinum band at the Mariposa Grove.

A distant second was losing my sun glasses in the Kings River while washing up after a day of hiking.

Edited by Davidpcvsamoa on 07/26/2013 23:17:14 MDT.

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

I leave them on trees and just walk away... on 07/26/2013 17:45:09 MDT Print View

I keep losing hammock straps...

Peter Griffith
(petergriffith) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 18:36:02 MDT Print View

My Black Rock Gear down hat slipped out of the mesh pocket on the back of my pack when I pulled something else out. It's so light, it probably blew away in the wind. It's somewhere on the trail between Onion Valley and Kearsarge Pass.

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 19:00:24 MDT Print View

I left a stuff sack of titanium stakes at a campsite while car camping. I realized it shortly after I left but couldn't find them when I went back to look.

The worst was when I canoed in the Boundary Waters in Boy Scouts. Our crew was issued three different forms of water treatment for the week. By the end of the second day we'd lost two of them. We had no way to resupply so we treated that last bottle like it was gold.


John Klinepeter
(johnzotk) - MLife

Locale: Northern Rockies, USA
Two items lost on 07/26/2013 19:23:05 MDT Print View

I confess to losing two pieces of gear. In the Wind River Mtns. near Cold Springs TH I was hiking off trail and lost a fleece jacket. It must have been poorly attached to the outside of the pack. On another occasion I was again off trail in the Mission Mtn. Wilderness when some brush must have snagged one section of a GG LT4 hiking pole. I briefly looked for it but it was almost impossible to discern the route I had taken. Lesson learned not to carry poles through heavy brush in a tiny day pack such that they stick out of the pack.

On a related note, about 35+(?) years ago I found a hat while hiking in the Mt. San Jacinto, CA area. There was no name or address but the hat was adorned with many clues in the form of club patches. I was able to track down the owner and returned the hat.

I haven't lost anything for several years. Getting better with age? Naaahhhh.

scree ride
hmmm on 07/26/2013 19:24:47 MDT Print View

Decline to say, but the ranger took it.

David Thomas
(DavidinKenai) - MLife

Locale: North Woods. Far North.
Rings and things on 07/26/2013 20:00:10 MDT Print View

I'd never worn a ring before getting sized prior to our wedding. And I picked a size that was, actually, too large on me. While on our honeymoon in Italy and swimming in the Med, I was doing the crawl and happened to notice the weight of my ring on the very last segment of my ring finger, swept my fingertips up towards the surface, and wiggled it back on. Back home, I bought a $100 off-the-shelf ring while waiting for mine to get resized. Seeing as I might be swimming in the Med again next month, maybe I should switch to the back-up ring?

Sean Nordeen
(Miner) - F

Locale: SoCAL
Several Items. on 07/26/2013 20:05:53 MDT Print View

Lost my bivy sack when I slipped and slide down a snow field into a tree well when on the PCT when I had it in an external mesh pocket. I've also lost 2 water bottles off my pack and a total of 3 flash lights (2 on the PCT and one on the AT); 1 left at a campsite, 1 in a AT privy, and 1 fell out of my opened hipbelt pocket into a stream in the Sierra when I bent over to fill a bottle.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Things Lost on 07/26/2013 20:48:49 MDT Print View

I don't remember losing anything special but my friend lost his headlamp when it snowed on our campsite in the Lost Creek Wilderness.
With a major snowstorm moving in we wanted to get out as fast as possible (especially since our car was 15 miles down a dirt road). We hiked until dark then realized we only had one headlamp between the two of us, oops. It made for a long hike out.

On the BPL meetup on the Eagle Rock Loop Eric found a very nice K-Bar knife complete with a sheath. My guess is someone stuck it in the side pocket of their pack and it worked out.

Jeffs Eleven
(WoodenWizard) - F

Locale: Greater Mt Tabor
Re: Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 22:46:47 MDT Print View

My wife hastily strapped her marmot minimalist to her pack. It fell off and somebody has an xs jacket. Good luck fittin in that thing

@scree- word

Edited by WoodenWizard on 07/26/2013 22:47:43 MDT.

Daniel Pittman
(pitsy) - M

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/26/2013 23:16:02 MDT Print View

Whilst hitch-hiking from San Diego to NYC, I crawled under the railyard fence in Yuma and hopped a box to Tucson. Well, the railyard in Tucson is not that close to I-10, so I scurried over to the Aviation Bikeway (Tucson is so bike-friendly, great town) to hike my ass into a better part of town. I stopped somewhere on the bikeway to discard a flannel shirt I had destroyed sleeping in a filthy boxcar. I was doing laundry at the Greyhound terminal on Broadway when I remembered that I had put my Navy dog-tags in the front pocket of my flannel for safe-keeping. Thus began one of the strangest legs of my journey.

Kiel Senninger
(Kiel.S.) - F

Locale: San Diego
Nalgene on 07/27/2013 00:41:58 MDT Print View

Lost a Nalgene bottle out of a side pocket in a borrowed
Backpack on my first backpacking trip while I was in college. My roommate and I were super unprepared on some washed out trails trying to go from Vicente flat to cone peak in ventana wilderness with no map and only a guide book to help us on our way. (we turned around half way through, never made it to cone peak). Lost my only water holder as I clung to a super steep hillside over a 3ish foot hole in the "trail". I listened to it tumble through the brush for at least 60 seconds. It was almost funny... Luckily I had a gallon size zip lock bag which I gingerly placed full of pumped water in the top of my pack. Oops. Learn the hard way I guess.

Edited by Kiel.S. on 07/27/2013 00:42:38 MDT.

And E
(LunchANDYnner) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Ray Ban glasses frames with prescription transition lenses on 07/27/2013 01:33:40 MDT Print View

Last year, had a won the lotto for Enchantments area (night at Stuart and a night at Colchuck) permits.
Got up to Stuart with my girlfriend, we set up camp, had a quick bite, then jumped in for a dip (just to our knees)... Decided to pose for some pictures with the camera on auto/continuous sitting on a rock.... And course I had to dunk myself in.... Lost my footing and slipped down the steep edge and saw my glasses sink away.

... Had no backup so we packed back up and hiked back down with my girlfriend leading the way. I'm not terribly blind, but she would have to point out any large roots/rocks/potholes in the trail for me.

Plan on returning with a SCUBA and a metal detector one day.

Edited by LunchANDYnner on 07/27/2013 01:40:05 MDT.

Dave Grey
(dapperdave) - F
A Shoe and a Wedding Ring.... on 07/27/2013 04:19:03 MDT Print View

On our first backpacking trip, out of Mineral King, my wife lost a Gore-Tex Vasque trail runner during a creek crossing, we made another couple of miles with one of my insoles inside a sock before setting up camp for the night in Lost Valley, wondering how on earth we were going to get over Sawtooth Pass the next day. Luckily along came a lovely couple who could spare a Teva (4 sizes too big, but we weren't complaining!) they headed up to camp at Columbine Lake where we met them the next morning, then headed over the pass together.

Sawtooth pass

Also at a trailhead campsite she lost her custom-made half-gold, half platinum wedding ring (we were really jetlagged when we made camp, she found it was missing just after we left the next morning - we went back to check, but couldn't find it) We were covered on our home insurance, and she ended up with a platinum wedding band and a Platinum Diamond (Belated) engagement ring.


Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Rings and things on 07/27/2013 09:58:03 MDT Print View

"Seeing as I might be swimming in the Med again next month, maybe I should switch to the back-up ring?"

Last year we were in the Carribean and I decided to go snorkeling. My wife told me to take off my ring -- no, I'm smarter than her. Well, the ring fell off. I saw where it landed. I am very buoyant and even with fins couldn't get down to the ring on the first try. Soon the current pushed me away from the ring location which was only 10 feet below the surface. Took me a couple hours to locate and retrieve it.

I have a gold necklace my wife gave me years ago and I never take it off. When I remember, I put the ring through the necklace.

When I was a mechanic (and married to my first wife) I never wore a ring because it wasn't safe in my profession.

For some reason not wearing it isn't an option with Joyce.

The best one was a few years ago when I lost my ring. Joyce immediately took me to Zales for a replacement. Months later I found the lost ring in my computer. Bag When I got home I showed her both rings...

Joyce: Which ring was blessed by the priest?

Me: This one.

Joyce: Are you sure? How do you know?

Me: I know, because I take these matters very seriously.

Joyce: You are full of crap!

Anyway, that 2nd ring was lost on a backpacking trip.

But I NEVER lose Ti stakes.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Rings and things on 07/27/2013 10:24:48 MDT Print View

Once, when camped along Granite Rapids in the Grand Canyon, I was putting on some sunblock and decided to take my wedding ring off because I hate to have sunblock gunk up my finger around it. My fingers were a little swollen, and I had to pull hard. Then--of course--it popped off, out of my hands, and into the Colorado River.

Seeing where it landed, I thrust my arm into the water, feeling around for where it might have landed. On only the second try, I found it, just a couple of feet from the bank.

When I told my wife, it took her a few days to believe me. She thought it was just some joke.

Jason G
(JasonG) - F

Locale: iceberg lake
lost on 07/27/2013 14:07:47 MDT Print View

2 summers ago I lost my buddy while in Emigrant wilderness... For 2.5 days!

same trip i also left a pair of compression shorts drying on a rock and left a pair of BD trail trekking poles leaning against the car as we drove away...

James Yancey
(jyancey) - F

Locale: Missouri
lost gear on 07/27/2013 21:09:37 MDT Print View

I was packrafting the Current River in Missouri from its headwaters (Montauk Springs.) I had to do a minor bushwhack to reach the river at my put-in on a brushy gravel bar. I unpacked my ULA Conduit to deploy my Alpacka, breakdown paddle and inflatable PFD. When I repacked the pack, I apparently left my SMD Gatewood cape on the river bank in some weeds. It was contained in a MYOG grey silnylon stuff sack, so it was not readily visible. Since the weather was nice, I cowboy camped that night and didn't miss the cape until I returned home and unpacked. My only hope is that some trout fisherman found the cape and put it to good use! Since then I have made day-glow orange stuff sacks for my critical gear, and I make a point of surveying my camp or launching site for any wayward gear before leaving. I also have a new Gatewood now!

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/28/2013 13:22:12 MDT Print View

Jettisoned my Steripen out of my Ohm side pocket. Which is not the place where I usually keep it. Lazy and payed the price.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Gear lost while backpacking. on 07/28/2013 13:36:46 MDT Print View

"Jettisoned my Steripen out of my Ohm side pocket."

Jettison implies you got rid of cargo to reduce weight. Sounded like a good strategy to me, other than the LNT implications.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Steripen - Aaaarrrrggghhh! on 07/28/2013 13:49:43 MDT Print View

Left my Steripen Adventurer at a watering hole in the nearby Spring Mountains just outside of 'Vegas.

But now I have a new "Opti" version that works even better.

I never take my wedding ring backpacking. Too much chafing when using hiking poles so no worry there.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Steripen - Aaaarrrrggghhh! on 07/28/2013 14:00:47 MDT Print View

"I never take my wedding ring backpacking. Too much chafing when using hiking poles so no worry there."

I almost never take hiking poles, so no worry about chaffing with a ring. Plus the ring is much lighter than hiking poles :)

Brian Mix
(Aggro) - MLife

Locale: Western slope, Sierra Nevada
Gear lost while backpacking on 07/28/2013 21:10:27 MDT Print View

Last week I found a moderately expensive item on the winter route from lost lake (AK)(Do we have a "Lost and Found" thread?) Describe it and it's yours.
Yesterday I found a wallet loaded to the hilt but containing nothing with a phone number so I'll express mail it tomorrow- likely after the owner had the unpleasant task of cancelling all credit cards completed.
Knock on wood, I haven't lost anything in recent memory.

Christopher Kuzak
Lost Stuff on 07/28/2013 21:27:17 MDT Print View

Last weekend I lost my new Silva Explorer Pro compass in Disneyland (Desolation) Wilderness. It's either in the forest somewhere between Lost Lake and the PCT or, next most likely, by an unnamed creek along the PCT where I ate lunch. Not horrible, just annoying.

Mark Montag
Once was lost....then found..... on 07/28/2013 22:40:56 MDT Print View

On one outing just after finishing a sunrise landscape photography shooting session in a very photogenic mountain cirque - I realized I had dropped an expensive photo filter encased in it's leather-like protective pouch. I combed the bushwack trail that I used to access my shooting sites, back & forth several times - NOTHING! Went back to camp to packed up and leave - still disappointed that I had actually lost this filter - needing that tool but not wanting to purchase another.

Then it dawned on me - I had a German Shepard with me. He was just a PuP - 6-7 months or so, but I had been working with him on "search" with his dog-toys & such. Showed him another filter from the same filter brand pouch - he excitedly mouthed it thinking it was a frisbee or something - and we re-walked the bushwack trail.

After 10 minutes or so, I had lost interest & even forgot why/what are we doing - then the PuP darted and stuck his head way down into the thicket, obviously interested in something, all I could see was his butt & tail - and came out with that filter pouch in his mouth and gave it to me!!

Whhooo! Such a good dog! Needless to said he got the "you're a good dog" treatment for a week! OK, well, maybe longer.....

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Rings and things on 07/28/2013 23:17:55 MDT Print View

Nick I think you need to seriously invest in a chain that can not slip off your head, and attach your wedding ring on there Frodo Baggins style before any excursion. Blessed or not, it seems like that ring, and its predecessor, have been actively trying to escape.

Tanner M
Re: Once was lost....then found..... on 07/29/2013 01:19:49 MDT Print View

Smart dog. You don't think the whole thing was a setup? Sounds a little fishy he was able to find the filter case like that... If he is smart enough to find it, he might be smart enough to hide it. How many snacks did he score??

I temporarily lost car keys.
On a short walk, really, so not a big deal..

I had been sitting beside a river taking pictures. I pulled my pack over and heard a 'tink' sound. I wrote it off to a side release or something tapping a rock. There was no 'jangle'.

I got back to the car... I pretty much remembered where I had been sitting and went right back to them. The worry I had was that they had fallen down between large rocks to a point I couldn't reach. Easy reach, though.

Anyway, they keys weren't where I regularly put them. That was the problem.

As far as rings, I wonder if a wrap or two of tape a knuckle up from the ring might prevent it slipping off. Would have to remember to not forget to do that... Putting the ring on a key chain wouldn't be a good plan for me. Keeping it in a filter case might help.

> ...that ring, and its predecessor, have been actively trying to escape

That is how Gollum lost him ring. It wasn't his fault; the ring left him.

Edited by Tan68 on 07/29/2013 01:24:00 MDT.