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2014 PCT Nobo
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AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
2014 PCT Nobo on 10/14/2013 12:43:36 MDT Print View

*Edit: Ive added my gear list as a google doc and changed my shelter and sleeping bag.

Hope this is a little easier to look at now. I am realy pumped to get your feedback on this list before the trip of a lifetime on the PCT. Im planning on attending the Kickoff and starting at the begining of May, I hope to be done in under 4 months. Some items I may not bring the entire trip or swap out like rain gear, bear canister, and crampons.
A lot of these items Ive decided on because of comments and other gear lists. So let me know what I need to change/add/drop!

*Ive taken people recomendations and now my partner and I have complete and sepereate kits.
Heres the list hope it works.

Carried in Sierras, Washington, or as it is needed.
**Tenkara Fishing Kit 5
Hard plastic bottles(for Socal) 2
Bear Cannister ?

Edited by AJGroff on 02/18/2014 20:49:24 MST.

Buck Nelson
(Colter) - MLife

Locale: Alaska
Looking good on 10/15/2013 07:07:54 MDT Print View

Just scanning through it it looks like some sensible choices.

1/8 CCF Mat: Is this the only sleeping pad you have? If so, have you slept on it? Unless you've slept on it a lot and it's worked for you, I'd suggest considerably more padding. A good night's sleep is important.

I was going to say I've never seen a thru-hiker fishing but then remembered I fished myself on the CDT when a friend joined me through the Winds. We even cooked up our catch. If I carried fishing gear on the PCT I'd probably only carry it through the Sierra.

FYI : here was what I carried on the PCT.

Have a good hike!

AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
Looking Good on 10/15/2013 11:53:29 MDT Print View

Thanks for the feedback on my list Buck! I do intend to use an inflatible in combination with the CCF pad. I was thinking a torso length inflatible with a full length CCF pad for protection. My goal is to keep my sleeping pad setup under a pound. I use a Thermarest Zlite now and finding it uncomfortable as Im a bony hip side sleeper. Thank you for the link to your list! I hadn't seen that one before. I went ahead and added the fishing kit to my sierras/washington only section simialr to your list. I love fishing so think it would be cool to have trout 2 or 3 nights on the trail. I was wondering what kind of cord you carry for bear bagging as well as how you liked the Photon lights. I am thinking about dropping my 3 oz headlamp and possibly getting a 1 ox Petzel lamp. Also love the turkey bag stuff sack idea for Down items. I may have to steal that one!

Stephen Adams
(stevemkedcom) - MLife

Locale: Northwest
Looks Good on 10/15/2013 14:45:26 MDT Print View

I just finished a thru hike of the PCT and was happy with the gear I took. My base weight was 9 lbs. I noticed that you have for your top layers Merino T, Rail rider Shirt, Pat Houdini, Paradox Base layer, Down sweater. Seems like you can get by with out one of these but not sure which one to tell you. This is what I had for top layers and it worked at temperatures from 27 to 101.
Ibex Merino wool hoody (kept me warm even when it got damp) 8.8
North Face wind shirt (did not use it that much but was nice when it was windy) 3.1
Polyester T shirt (wore it all the time)5.0
Montbell down sweater (for the evenings and mornings and cold sierra passes during lunch) 6.6
The only thing I would have done differently was bring some Bicycle arm warmers for the first couple of hours in the mornings. Once it warmed up I could peal them off and stuff them in my pockets with out having to take my pack off.
I also ended up sending my thermal bottoms home after the sierra's and think I really did not even need them there. I found that my legs did not feel the cold even while hiking through snow showers and with a 20deg bag you should not need them at night.
I did use the Photon for a flashlight at .4 oz and I only used it about once a week. I was always in bed before it was pitch dark and did not get up until it was almost light. I did night hike with it once and it barely worked for that. If you think you will be doing some night hiking then the 1 oz petzel would be a good compromise.
I used a razor blade instead of a knife.
If you have not bought your sleeping bag yet I would look at the Zpacks at 16.7 oz for a 20deg plus the Down hood at 1.3 oz it's hard to beat. When it was warm I could use it like a quilt and zip it up and lay on the zipper when it was cold.
I did not see a smartphone on the list? Used with Guthooks PCT maps and a Suntactics Solar charger it was indispensable for me.
Everything else looks great. Now you just have to wait until next May.

Good luck
Stay Light my Friends

Terry Sparks
(Firebug) - M

Locale: Santa Barbara, CA
A couple things to consider on 10/16/2013 22:41:02 MDT Print View

I will strongly suggest that you and your hiking buddy carry your own shelters and cooking systems and be independent of each other on the hike. I don't know the percentages of people starting the hike together and finishing together but, I don't think it's very high. It would be tough hiking to carry a two person tent and a two person cook system if you end up hiking alone because of injury, sickness or, just get tired of hiking together.

Also, look at the Rail Riders Bone Flats shirt. It's a couple ounces lighter than the Adventure shirt and has a full button down front. I also like the two zippered chest pockets, they are great for stowing the sun glasses when not worn and for stuffing snacks and other items in them.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: 2014 PCT Nobo on 10/17/2013 00:12:38 MDT Print View

Why are you wearing a merino t and a rail riders shirt? That sounds extra hot. I would go with the just the rail riders shirt.

Edited by justin_baker on 10/17/2013 00:13:09 MDT.

just Justin Whitson
Re:Multi use on 10/18/2013 10:57:05 MDT Print View

If you're bringing the WPB poncho, (which i'm assuming is actually Frogg Toggs?), you don't really need a bivy if you bring a small piece of polycryo for beneath you. Should save you a few ounces.

Especially since your tarp is so large, a true bivy is less necessary, and if you do happen to run into some weather that is really blowing it in, the WPB poncho will protect you just fine.

Add a few tyvek tape loops, like BearPaw Wilderness designs sells, to your poncho and you can easily secure it with some cord.

Another tip for the Frogg Toggs Poncho, is to bring some tyvek tape. Sticks really well to it, is pretty weather and water resistant, strong/durable, and lighter than duct tape. Chances are, you will get holes in the poncho.

AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
A couple things I took into consideration on 10/23/2013 11:47:07 MDT Print View

thank you for your detailed reply. I hoped you enjoyed your time on the PCT and its good to know your feedback from the gear you took. I agree with you and also Justin that I have to many layers so I went ahead and dropped the Merino T-shirt.

I will take seperate shelters and stoves it into consideration and mention it to my partner. Though, I am hoping that being roomates through college and living with the guy that Ill be hiking with is preperation enough for a thru hike. I have seen others mention this as well, the only thing I could potentially see being a problem that would require an additional shelter would be some kind injury. If I hadn't of purchased the RR Adventure shirt this summer Id look into the RR Bone Flats shirt but with those shirts being so expensive I might have to wait.

Justin Whitson,
The pancho is actually Dri Ducks Brand. I have FrogTogg rain gear but it comes in at almost a pound for the Jacket and shorts(rain pants cut off at knees) I love multi use Idea of the pancho. I'd seen people using cuben panchos as ground covers. Im not sure if this method would work for me though as the main reason I want the bivy is to have protection from the bugs. I am just looking at getting a LW bug bivy. (Ill probably end up getting a borah gear or MLD bug bivy).
Thanks for the feedback.

just Justin Whitson
Re: A couple things I took into consideration on 10/23/2013 16:20:44 MDT Print View

Ah, got it on the bugs, makes sense and you are completely right that the poncho won't protect you from the bugs adequately.

Buck Nelson
(Colter) - MLife

Locale: Alaska
Re: Looking Good on 10/28/2013 06:23:26 MDT Print View

I used my bear canister where required, otherwise I slept with my food on the PCT. I've used several different types of cord for bear-bagging elsewhere and don't really have a favorite.

I like the photon lights. Like most thru-hikers when it's dark, I'm usually sleeping. I did use a photon light for a few hours of night hiking so I could do a 40 mile day, and it worked fine.

The turkey roasting bags do work well to line a stuff sack.

Randy Cain
(bagboy) - MLife

Locale: Palmdale, CA
RailRiders Bone Flats shirt on 11/29/2013 22:50:07 MST Print View


Thank you, for updating the weight of the Bone Flats shirt ;)

Edited by bagboy on 12/08/2013 22:17:35 MST.

Hiking Malto
(gg-man) - F
Couple comments on 11/30/2013 06:25:35 MST Print View

1) I would suggest 4 liter water capacity in SoCal.
2) have you worn the trail gloves for extended multiday hikes. Read this.
3) I would not shared gear. You can get split up for the night. It happened to me twice when I was hiking with someone. A third time we split because he hitched into Seattle to get shoes and hiked on. Also, as much as you don't want to hear this, the chance that both of you finishing is low.
4) Fishing. You will be passing some great fishing in the Sierra. But I think few would be able to slow down and actually fish. You would either have to be a great fisherman or be prepared to carry extra food on top of an already heavy food load.

Good luck.

AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
EDIT with google doc on 02/18/2014 20:52:58 MST Print View

I have put my list into a excel file. I have dropped my Sil tarp and got a GG Spinnshelter off gear swap. Its definately looking better and Im ready to hear what you think!

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: EDIT with google doc on 02/19/2014 10:50:04 MST Print View

Be careful with the spinnshelter, I own one and the fabric is very fragile and tears easily , mine also leaked horribly. I don't like spinnaker and moved to cuben years ago and have been extremely happy .

AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
SpinnShelter? on 02/22/2014 14:09:47 MST Print View

Link, Did you just have leaking on the ridgeline or the actual fabric? Ive heard that the spinnaker is really fragile along with crinkly I have noticed. Some people really liked it like, others not so much. I am going to seam seal the ridglines and all the main tie outs. Do you think after doing this It will work for a thru hike if I am carefull with it.

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: SpinnShelter? on 02/22/2014 14:54:34 MST Print View

There seems to be a lot of variation in spinnaker fabric.

A new spinnaker shelter is likely to be good. However, if you leave it erected out in the sun, the UV rays can quickly toast the fabric. Then it becomes more brittle and eventually leaks will happen. I don't know what you can do other than try to erect the shelter in the shade.


AJ Groff
(AJGroff) - F

Locale: Midwest
Spinnahelter on 02/22/2014 15:08:08 MST Print View

Glad to get your input Bob. You seem like you liked your spinnshelter and was part of the reason I got it. I am thinking of attaching a bug net skirt around the bottom of it like you did. Is that something That is detachable if it's not buggy. I though about making one now then sending it in my box to Kennedy meadows. Can you kinda describe how you did the bug skirt? As far as waterproofing the fabric and maybe conditioning it from uv damage, would a 10:1 water to mineral spirit blend be helpful?

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Spinnshelter on 02/22/2014 15:20:45 MST Print View

Perhaps you would have different luck, but I don't think that I could recoat the fabric with anything that wouldn't add a lot of weight.

I've put bug net skirts on two similar shelters. I use a strip of netting that is about 5 inches wide and long enough for the entire perimeter. Then I just sew the one edge. The raw bottom edge of the strip will be sitting in the dirt. If you are concerned, you can always throw pebbles onto that raw edge. Otherwise, it might lift up and allow the mozzies to sneak in. You could make it detachable with Velcro. However, I would bet that you won't get it to close perfectly that way.

Also, I used a couple of overlapping triangular netting pieces in the front doorway.

I used my Spinnshelter in Alaska. It turned out that the mosquitos were not the problem. The main problem was the biting flies. Then the camping areas were getting flooded, so I had to keep piling my stuff up off the ground.


Edited by --B.G.-- on 02/22/2014 15:21:45 MST.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Re: Spinnahelter on 02/22/2014 15:38:33 MST Print View

AJ, you may find this helpful:

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: SpinnShelter? on 02/22/2014 16:59:42 MST Print View

It was a never used spinnshelter that had been seem sealed on the ridge lines and tie outs, it tore at a tie out and I am not rough on my gear.It was not just leaking at the ridge line ,if you notice nobody sells spinnaker shelters anymore and I think for a good reason.I have never had any of these problems with any of my cuben tarps.