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Need help on a PCT gear list
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(tahiti) - F
Need help on a PCT gear list on 01/27/2014 17:16:54 MST Print View

Many thanks to the BPL community for helping so far. I’m sitting around 12 pounds base for my PCT gear list and I’m having trouble picking the next lowest hanging fruit.

Big 4 come in at 6 pounds 13 ounces:

Sleeping bag: WM Ultralite 20 – 29 oz
Shelter: Tarptent Contrail – 29 oz
Pack: ULA Circuit – 37 oz
Sleeping pad: Thermarest Z Lite – 14 oz

The rest comes from 2 pounds of non-worn clothing and about 3 pounds of everything else. I’m even stove-less and was hoping to get the total weight a bit lower.

I just got the Circuit, WM, and Contrail for this trip so I’m hoping the lowest hanging fruit doesn’t reside here. A Z Packs Arc Blast, quilt, and a hexamid solo+ would drop 2 pounds 10 ounces for a cost of $1154 (new).

Thanks for taking a look!

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

PCT List on 01/27/2014 18:09:55 MST Print View

- The Nano Puff seems a bit light as your only insulation layer. I'm carrying a Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody on the PCT this summer.

- 3L of water capacity seems like too little for SoCal. I feel sketchy planning on 5L.

- No rain gear?

(tahiti) - F
PCT on 01/27/2014 18:18:59 MST Print View

Good call. I was thinking of using my Sierra Designs Gnar Down Hoody until I hit WA where I'm afraid of getting the down soaked and may switch it out.

I'll probably do driducks, but that adds another 16 oz right there. I suppose just the umbrella wouldn't cut it.

Will add disposable 1L bottles for SoCal, tempted to get a 3L platy, but I want to see how I like the cheap water bottle setup first.

Edited by tahiti on 01/27/2014 18:20:03 MST.

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

PCT on 01/27/2014 18:51:58 MST Print View

Rain gear is a tough one. I'm debating between bringing either a garbage bag or my rain jacket for SoCal. Regardless, I'll have my rain jacket, rain mitts and rain pants at Kennedy Meadows even though some people don't grab rain pants until Oregon or WA.

Scott S
(sschloss1) - F

Locale: New England
Gear list on 01/27/2014 19:05:05 MST Print View

- The Nanopuff is fine for insulation. All I had on my thru was a MB Thermawrap, and that's less insulation than the Nanopuff. Unless you're planning to spend hours hanging around camp every night, your sleeping bag will be your main insulation.

- I had 6 L water capacity in a dry-ish year. I'd want at least that much this year.

- You can knock off about 5 oz. if you trim your z-lite to torso length.

- I never hung my food once on the PCT.

- Do you need the solar charger? The PCT is easy to navigate--almost no one I hiked with even had a GPS . I would suggest getting some sort of maps, but you shouldn't need a GPS on all day. And if you're not using GPS all day, you can probably skip the charger.

- Do bring a rain jacket in southern CA. It doesn't rain much there, but when it does it will be cold. I used an O2 Rainshield the whole way--6 oz., breathable, and waterproof for $30.

- If you want to save a pound or so on the cheap, ditch the contrail for a silnylon tarp and a bivy. For $30 you can get a cheap mosquito net to hang off the tarp, but with the bivy you'd only need the netting on the absolute worst nets. (BTW, you don't list a ground cloth which adds a few more oz. to your Contrail. With a bivy, you can skip a ground cloth)

Edited by sschloss1 on 01/27/2014 19:08:40 MST.

Sean Nordeen
(Miner) - F

Locale: SoCAL
Need help on a PCT gear list on 01/28/2014 22:40:25 MST Print View

Solar Charger not needed.
Spot not needed for you. Its more for whoever you are leaving behind.

Some possible alternatives to what you have:
The WM sleeping bag is good, but I used a 20F down quilt at 19oz. Zpacks makes a nice one.

Contrail is a tested shelter. But there are some at a pound or so. Zpacks Hexamid comes to mind. I used a small Tarp/Bivy at <15oz in 2009.

Patagonia Puff. Unless you tend to be cold, I used a Montbel Ext. UL Down Jacket at 6.5oz(L). It was always to hot to hike in and layered under my rain jacket was always warm enough in camp.

The Terramar Lightweight Helix Pants (size M) at 4.9oz are decent thermals. Can be found at Campmor. The top is 5.4oz for a medium.

A Montbell Tachyon wind Jacket (L) is 1.9oz.

A 2oz bottle of 3M Ultrathon SUnscreen is 2.4oz. 1oz is unrealistic. Your DEET weight is even more so. I'd go with a 3M Ultrathon DEET lotion for a similar weight for the High Sierra. Its easier to apply where you want in the amount you want.

Is that Leukotape your entire 1st aid kit? You should have a few things. My kits about 2.4oz. Don't forget some handsanitizer.

You need a real rain jacket. Though you are likely to have little to no rain, it can snow on you in the mountains of SoCal and some years have had a lot of rain in the "deserts". My coldest day hiking before Nor.Washington was the day after I left Wrightwood in Socal. I know some people who became Hypothermic the day before reaching Walker's Pass and had all their gear and clothing wet from the rain since they thought they wouldn't need a rain cover or pack liner along with any rain gear.

I second that you need more water. I had enough capacity to carry 6L but only did so once. I did carry 4.5L often in SoCal. There are a few dry stretches in NorCal and Oregon where you have to tank up though you can add a gatoraid bottle or two as needed. However, this is year is looking to be drier than when I hiked so I would go with the capacity to carry even more. Carry an extra Playpus resevoir which are light and fold up when not in use.

Edited by Miner on 01/28/2014 22:43:37 MST.

(tahiti) - F
Gear list on 01/29/2014 00:02:03 MST Print View

This is great, thank you everyone for the feedback.

-Dropping solar charger, if I need it I can add it later.

-Definitely adding O2 rainshield and considering dropping the umbrella

-Will likely drop SPOT until WA (you're right, I was talked into carrying one)

-I tend to sleep cold, so the WM is probably staying on.

-I might have a used hexamid coming my way, that would be very helpful.

-I'll probably replace the smart wool thermals, good call on Terramar.

-Still working out first aid/semi consumables, reading about these in the gear forum.

Thanks again, this has been very helpful!

Sean Nordeen
(Miner) - F

Locale: SoCAL
Need help on a PCT gear list on 01/29/2014 22:45:24 MST Print View

By the way, the Golite Chrome Dome umbrella is only 8oz. The one I bought in 2009 weighs on my scale 8.042oz/228g. More than 5 years ago it use to be 10oz and a few websites still show the old weight. Due to an injury and loosing 3 weeks off the trail coming into Idylwild, I carried one between Idyllwild and Aqua Dulce since I was now hiking that part in late May/early June. For the San Gorgonio Pass (where the I-10 is), it was a blessing as I had 100F+ temperatures with no shade. For the rest of SoCal it wasn't really needed but the weather ran a bit cooler than normal for the rest of it. Your mileage may vary. You may start with it and see how things work out. You can always mail it home.

To give you some further ideas:

This is the gear I carried on the PCT in 2009 where I used a ULA Circuit:

This lighter list is what I used on the AT in 2012 and would have no issues using it on the PCT today except for some changes to the clothing worn:

Zachary Benson
FWIW on 02/02/2014 07:50:18 MST Print View

This looks like a pretty good start. MUCH better than what I started with last year. Here's a couple nit-picky things I'd recommend.

Lose the pen. Use a pencil. You can sharpen it with your knife and I saw one exploded pen from desert heat. NOT something you want to deal with in your pack.

How's the camera on your phone? I used my phone as my camera, mp3, gps and for communication (obviously). I did take along a solar charger last year/ something I won't do this year. I'll be using a battery pack to keep my phone topped off and my headlamp charged if need be. (I'm heavy on the headlamp, but it is rechargeable and very bright. I spent a lot of time night hiking through the desert.) There's enough places through SoCal to recharge electronics and I found the solar panel inefficient after Kennedy Meadows.

I never used DEET in the desert. I would just send bug stuff to Kennedy. If you decide you need it there's an abundance in every hiker box you'll run across.

Throw your Sawyer backflush in your bounce box. A lot of the water you'll find through the desert won't need filtering as it's mainly water caches. I only needed to backflush once before Kennedy. One thing that helped was using my bandanna as a pre filter. You can also rig a cotton ball for the same use.

Good luck with your planning. Maybe see you on the trail!