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JMT Late June 2014 gear list for 12 days hike southbound - from Happy isles to MTR - need overhaul ?
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Huan Huynh

Locale: Central TX
JMT Late June 2014 gear list for 12 days hike southbound - from Happy isles to MTR - need overhaul ? on 12/13/2013 09:45:26 MST Print View

Please take a look and help me out here. So far the base weight is at 12.5lb without considering sleeping bag, sleeping pads and few other essentials. I really need to drop some cash to upgrade and/or purchase new gears for the trip. I'm shooting for lightest base weight as much as possible so I can haul the camera. This would be my first through hike with 4 others newbie. As far as experience goes, I've only done couple overnight hiking trips in Texas, day hiking in Yosemite, Mammoth Lake and North Rim GC. I'm open to all suggestions, including the wildest ones, but not going to compromise for safety.

The JMT trip would be on late June 2014, 12 days southbound, will maximize resupply resources to eliminate weight.

Personal stats: male, 140lbs, 5ft7

Empty slots are items need recommendation.

Specific questions: Do I need the down jacket? What sleeping bag and pads would you recommend? Should I ditch the backpack?


Edited by granolagrinder on 12/13/2013 09:51:45 MST.

Arn Aarreberg

Locale: Northern Bay Area, CA
things to consider on 12/13/2013 10:44:23 MST Print View

I would drop the extra hiking shirt and fleece. Add a light wind shirt and a down jacket and thats all you will need. Look at the golite Selkirk or hadron jackets. Good price and pretty light. You should also consider adding a buff to your worn cloths. This was the best clothing item I took last year, wont hike without it now.

Drop the Nalgene for a 1L gatorage bottle
No need for the GPS, trail is really easy to follow (unless there is a lot of snow)
First aid is really heavy. You could have everything you need for about 2 oz max.
You do not have a bear canister in your list. Can you fit a canister in your pack?

For a sleeping bag and pad you can't go wrong with an EE revX quilt and neoair xlite. I would shoot for a 20-30 degree bag. I was fine with a 30 degree last year on the JMT.

If you still need to drop weight after adding the gear you need, I would consider replacing your pack. 57 oz is pretty heavy and you could cut that pack weight in half without breaking the bank. 12 lbs base weight with a bear can isn't bad.

Manfred Kopisch
(Orienteering) - F
JMT Gear suggestions on 12/13/2013 13:56:53 MST Print View


since you wrote "drop some cash to upgrade and/or purchase". I will make a couple of suggestions that will require some cash.

First the "cheap" suggestions for things you might want to leave at home:

1) Survival bracelet - 0.8oz
2) Midlayer Jacket - 10.8 oz (use a down jacket)
3) Short - 4 oz (you have convertible pants)
4) Extra hiking shirt - 4 oz (wash your other one along the trail on a sunny day)
5) Sleeping socks - 2.2 oz (use your extra pair of hiking socks)
6) Nalgene - 4 oz (bring a 20 oz Gatorade-like bottle instead)
7) Compass - 1.15 oz (in my opinion not needed on the JMT)
8) GPS - 7.35 oz (in my opinion not needed on the JMT - I carry one nevertheless to record my track and analyze it later)
9) wallet - 4 oz (just carry some cash and 1 credit card in a ziplock)
10) 1st Aid - I won't argue with a nurse, but I think you can get it down to 4 oz

That saves you already 42.3 oz. Not too bad - over 2.5 lbs gone.

Now some upgrades

1) Trekking Poles: Gossamer Gear LT 3 - 5.6 oz (saves 15.4 oz)
2) Rain Jacket: DryDucks - 5.5 oz (saves 5.3 oz)
3) Shelter: SMD Cuben Haven (10 oz) + GG Polycryo groundsheet (1.6 oz) or ZPacks Duoplex (19.3 oz) if you prefer protection from bugs - (saves 24.4 oz)
4) Backpack: ZPacks Arc Blast - 16.5 oz (saves 40.5 oz)

Now you saved another 85.6 oz - over 5 lbs. Your total savings is now 128 oz or 8 lbs.

Some of those 8 lbs will now be spent on some purchases

1) Bear canister - Bearikade Scout - 28 oz (with resupplies in TM, and RM this should be fine) Ideally you would get an Expedition and share the 37 oz canister. The same is true for the two person tent above.
2) Down Jacket - Today is a great time to buy the Golite Bitteroot as it is only today on sale - 13 oz
3) Down quilt - Take 20F as you are going in June (normaly I take a 30 F) - Zpacks (16.7 oz) or EE Enigma (16.5 oz)
4) Sleeping Pad - NeoAir XLite - 12 oz (take the full length)

Now you added 69.5 oz back. That leaves you still with a saving of over 3.5 lbs.

Other things I would personally add. Bring a Tenkara Pole - for 2 oz + 1 oz in accessories you add a lot of fun to your trip. A buff and/or a merino balaclava and/or a down hat (like black rock hadron) to cover your head while sleeping or while sitting in camp. Personally I prefer the SteriPen Freedom over Aquamira drops. It weighs only 2.6 oz and saves me from carrying a lot of extra water that is treated. All I need is my 16 or 20 oz bottle and I can drink right away. The battery lasted me 7 days on the JMT. If you bring a USB charge cable you should be able to charge at RM while resupplying there.

Going with 5 friends sounds like a cool trip. That in itself gives you a great opportunity to save some more weight by sharing tent, bear canister, cooking gear, etc.

Have fun out there!


Edited by Orienteering on 12/13/2013 15:07:03 MST.

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: JMT Gear suggestions on 12/13/2013 14:29:25 MST Print View

"9) wallet - 4 oz (just carry some cash and 1 credit card in a ziplock)"

I agree somewhat with Manfred on this, but I like to have a little bit of mass in my ziploc bag of valuables. In case it slips out of some pocket, I want to hear it hit the ground. So, I normally carry one driver license, one medical group card, one credit card, and a few twenty dollar bills.

You never know when you might have to exit your planned route unexpectedly and have to get on a bus to get somewhere.


Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: JMT Gear suggestions on 12/13/2013 18:15:05 MST Print View

Other then what Manfred said.

Grooming could easily get down to 3 ounces.
You can wash your hands in a stream every 5 minutes along the JMT, why so much soap?

Water treatment. Only need it for a few spots, why not just have a few Katadyn micropur tablets? Would save 2.5 ounces.

If you really need a GPS (you don't) then don't bring a compass also.
I'm sure between all of you there will already be to many naviagtion items.
That's another 9 ounces saved.

So with 3.5 pounds, you could still shave another easy pound off that.

Matt Keenan

Locale: In the Mountains in the clouds
RE:JMT Late June 2014 gear list for 12 days hike southbound - from Happy isles to MTR - need overhaul on 12/14/2013 14:42:51 MST Print View

All this gear suggestions are great, I will second the wind shirt, down jacket, driducks, and down quilt. Also as many others have pointed out the cheapest way to save weight is to share gear or simply just leaving things at home. The underwear is something I went with out on my JMT thru hike last year and I loved it. Your GPS could easily be left at home replaced with a good set of maps which I see you have, or you could just use your smart phones. For a sleeping pad I just used 3/4 length z lite and felt like I slept better than I did at home. Since you don't use a frames pack however the cc foam pads can be a bit bulky. Before getting a sleeping pad I would see how your pack fairs as insulation under your legs if you like it then you can save some money and weight and just get a 3/4 length. All of this being said you could go with all your current gear+ a sleep system, and youd be fine, so I would highly recommend spending more time and energy on prepping your body for the amount of hiking and weight you'll be caring then you do on your gear prep.

Oh a head net might be nice when your hiking near the water I would imagine the skeeters will be out with a vengeance in late June with another low snow pack.

windshirt on 12/14/2013 14:53:39 MST Print View

Driducks are more breathable than most wind shirts.
Work fine to wear as a windshirt.
Id say, forget the wind shirt if you have driducks for raingear.

My only clothing I will carry next summer will be a lt weight long sleeve baselayer top (3.95oz), Montbell ex light (5.9oz), long john bottoms (3.2oz), fleece beanie (0.95 oz) and driducks jacket(6oz). Also a cuben fiber rain skirt (1.9 oz) (provides puncture protection under my xlite as well)

I am toying with the idea of just wearing the very light LS baselayer top as only shirt. I wore it last summer in NM, no problems in 95F temps during day due to the low humidity. I tried that on the AT this yr, but found myself too hot in 70F temps with the humidity there. Its kind of a UL powerstretch.

100 miles in 12 days is pretty slow. You must have some other activities planned besides walking, or plan to sit around a lot. Nothing wrong with that. Heavyweight hikers would be expected to be slow, this kit doesnt sound like its made for 8 mpd pace.

Edited by livingontheroad on 12/14/2013 19:51:47 MST.

Huan Huynh

Locale: Central TX
Lightest pack possible so I can haul the camera ^_^ on 12/15/2013 10:03:53 MST Print View

Thank you guys for all the suggestions. Manfred, your inputs are direct and on point.

I'm in the market for a lightweight wind shirt (too bad the Stoic Wraith Shell is no longer in stock), down jacket w hood, down quilt and a great down beanie. I've hike with foam pad in the past, but it's too bulky. I'm debating between Z-lite vs neoair xlite.

Matthew, you are on point about physical reconditioning. Did my first half marathon last month, and currently training for a full marathon next march. But all that running is nothing compared to hiking with 25+ lbs on your back for days. Hopefully, after the full marathon, I will be able to focus more on weight training for back, legs and core.

M B, 12 days and 100 miles is also one of my concerns. I just randomly follow past hikers who post their itinerary on the blog and 12 days seem about right at Muir Trail Ranch. Plus, I don't know much about my fellow friends and their current backpacking stats (eg base weight, quality gears). We all love to run, and in fairly good shape since most of them have finished either a 1/2 and/or a full marathon. If everyone could go as light as possible then we can really get going fast. Perhaps, camping off trails would fill in some of those down time, and a side trip to half dome. I really don't know any better way to guesstimate average mileperday rate.

My personal reason to go lightest is because I want to haul a full-frame DSLR, tripod, and 1 lens, of course all this would be a shared weight.


Edited by granolagrinder on 12/15/2013 10:05:51 MST.

(ardavis324) - F
Re: 100 miles 12 days on 12/16/2013 07:26:47 MST Print View

I don't think your group will regret this pace. Yes, it is slower than necessary but why are you out there in the first place? To enjoy things, take pictures, spend time together. There is so much to see, and just a couple miles off of the JMT there are some truly breathtaking places you may end up having time to see.