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PCT 2014 Fine tuning needed!
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Richard Banks
PCT 2014 Fine tuning needed! on 12/07/2013 21:33:10 MST Print View

Hey everybody,

Looking to do the PCT and starting to get all my gear together. Thoughts or comments would be great, but before you go through my list I'm still up in the air on some things.

Replace Ridgerest (8.4oz) with GG nightlight pad (4.9oz)

Add windhsirt. Sold my Houdini and there doesn't seem to be any decent breathable offerings at the moment.

Replace Royal falcon (11oz) with Montbell EX-LIght jacket (5.5oz)

Change out poly cro ground sheet (2oz) for bivy from Borah gear (5oz)

I plan on carrying the Bear Cannister empty on top of my pack. Can't decide between the bearikade weekender or the Bearvault 500. Input would be nice


Edited by EDDAKA on 12/08/2013 04:26:26 MST.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Burn? on 12/07/2013 22:28:47 MST Print View

My only question would be whether the Burn will carry the water weight in south CA. I'm guessing you've thought of that though.

Seth Brewer
(Whistler) - MLife

May or May not work on 12/08/2013 09:23:44 MST Print View

Only one person used a MLD Burn this year that successfully thru-hiked the PCT. That was Lint. Who was on his 13th thru-hike if I remember right. He started May 19th, same day I did, and was doing 30's pretty much right off the bat. I only saw him for the first 3 days - as I was doing about 27 mpd right off the bat. ALL the weight will be on your shoulders - which may be annoying.

I used a MLD Burn for the AT in 2011- the bag is great, but VERY small...I went stoveless when I carried that bag. IMO It would be way too small for the amount of food and water needed between the large sections on the trail. It also isn't very comfortable when loaded over 20 lbs. -- I'd carry a MLD Prophet (AT THE LEAST) since it will be annoying having a bear canister (even empty) strapped to the top of your pack -- if will put a lot more weight on your shoulders.

I think you'd be much more comfortable carrying a Zpacks Arc Blast, which is what I carried for the PCT this year (minor weight increase compared to comfort) and you'd be able to keep a bear can inside the pack. You could also try the very comfortable HMG Windrider, ULA OHM, or GG Gorilla.

Your tent set up looks very dependant on finding trees, and while it may be fine for the desert -- you'll likely need to beef it up for the sierra's, and certainly make it rain/wind stable for Washington. If you don't use trekking poles - sticks are possible, but will limit where you stay each night.

Overall I'm sure you'll figure it out - and your lightweight list looks good. Enjoy the trip and have fun !

Here is the link to my gear used this year:

Matthew Stenger
(MatthewStenger) - F

Locale: its flat but its home
Re: May or May not work on 12/08/2013 11:03:23 MST Print View

Seth, do you think the Windrider is more comfortable than the Arc Blast?

I am trying to choose right now between a ULA pack, a Windrider or an Arc Blast, and comfort is a huge factor.

Seth Brewer
(Whistler) - MLife

My thoughts on 12/08/2013 12:26:49 MST Print View

Hey Matthew - looks like you've got about a 12 lb. base weight for the AT - and based on that base weight, and the trail you're hiking, I'd suggest a ULA or the HMG pack based on DURABILITY and COMFORT for that base weight. I had under a 9 lb baseweight for both the PCT and the AT for summer, and think that for the price / comfort / flexibility of the pack you may be better off getting a more rugged and beefier set-up.

IF you get a very low base weight and have light resupplies and carry only a liter or two at most of water -- than the ARC BLAST would be great -- I think the 52L would be plenty large enough for your needs. The key is compact and light gear. I carried up to 34 lbs in this bag, but found it to be very comfortable around 25 lbs and below.

FIT AND COMFORT IS VERY PERSONAL so take my advice for what it is - just another opinion. I HAVE NOT USED THE WINDRIDER but I have used the PORTER (which I believe is the same harness / basic pack system) and for heavier loads I found it to be a nice bomber pack. I'd imagine the comfort would be the same as with the ULA Circuit (a bit more expensive though).

EASY ANSWER - HEAVIER GEAR (>10 lbs baseweight) Get a ULA Circuit or OHM or a Windrider (kind of like a cuben Circuit I would think). I see more of ULA on the trails than any other UL pack -- and a wide range of people and body types seem to fit this companies packs very well. Seem to have a lot of issues with belt pockets braking though. I've used the Circuit for about 350 miles while on various trips, and really do like the comfort -- best I've tested extensively.
EASY ANSWER - LIGHTER Compact GEAR (7-10 lbs baseweight) Get a Arc Blast. little extra support from the frame will compensate for the extra weight by being really comfortable.
EASY ANSWER - REALLY LIGHT/COMPACT GEAR (<7 lbs base) Get a MLD Prophet.Super rugged, comfy, and good for lighter loads.

(ardavis324) - F

Locale: High Sierra
Re: PCT 2014 Fine tuning needed! on 12/09/2013 08:50:33 MST Print View

Nice list, only things I might suggest..

Pack liner bag from Gossamer gear weigh 1.2oz and worked well for me (I've heard of using turkey roasting bags too)

Is 8oz of fuel enough to get you between resupplies? Last summer there were no fires allowed in the Sierra, and theres never fires allowed above 10k feet.

Why shorts instead of pants? I am curious because I feel like doing the same thing in future, but I always am glad I have pants.

If you are going to wear shorts, I'd recommend some type of mosquito repellent for at least part of your trip.

I think 4oz of leukotape might be way too much. I bring 24" of it, along with the rest of my first aid kit which is less than 1oz. (although im not thru hiking, so yours may be fine)