Gear List – PCT 2014

Hi Folks! It has been awhile. I hope you are well. Aww thanks, me too! How is the family? The kids? Great, great, good to hear.

Holtwood Dam 3/22

Holtwood Dam 3/22

I have been super duper ultra busy the past few months getting ready for this hike – working on the plans, buying the last minute gear, figuring out my resupply strategy and buying food, packing boxes, testing gear and replacing a few items, and doing my real job, and working with my favorite volunteer group Lancaster Young Professionals. I have been the acting event chair for a gubernatorial debate to be held this October and had many tasks to finish up as well as finding and briefing/training my replacement. Work at RAI has exploded with opportunities, which is good, but the timing is problematic. My dad and I have gamed out as many scenarios as we can, done lots of contract work, and created plans for many different possible futures. Yesterday and today we have been doing all the last minute stuff before he gets on a jet to the MidEast. Normally, i would be going with him, but we both decided it made sense for me to continue on with my plan and let him run with the ball solo for a bit. Potentially missing some of the early stages of the pending business development just means i lose the right to complain about how things are set-up when i get back 🙂 I have also had to wear my tech hat quite a bit getting my dad up to speed on a new computer, introducing an iPad into our workflow, and preparing my mom to be as tech savvy as possible during the research portion of her sabbatical. That’s my paragraph long update and excuse – now to business!

Humbled receiving LYP's Humanitarian Award

Humbled receiving LYP’s Humanitarian Award 3/20 – Photo Credit: Melissa Engle Photography

If you research lightweight hiking, or ultra lightweight hiking, you will find loads of information and many, many gear lists. I get frustrated reading some gear lists. How one approaches hiking and gear selection can be deeply personal and i am not trying to change anyone’s mind about their process. But it does irk me to see so very many gear lists trumpeting Base Pack Weights (all gear and supplies except food and water) at or under 12 pounds that are about 15-20 items long. Any hiker can read those and know, there is tons of small stuff left off of those lists. Small stuff adds up. If you are taking the time to weigh your stuff and make and publish lists, just be real about it. That is my feeling. With that said, here is my actual, no expletive around, gear list.

Base Pack Weight without Bear Canister = 16.17 pounds
Base pack Weight with Bear Canister = 18.73 pounds

The Big Three Description Weight Oz.
Pack Gossamer Gear Mariposa 28.00
Sleeping Bag Z Packs 20 Wide XL with sack 22.70
Sleeping Pad Neo Air X Lite 12.70
Liner Homemade Silk 6.40
Tent, stakes, Stuff sack Tarptent Contrail 29.30
Totals – Ounces   99.10
Totals – Pounds   6.19
Kitchen Description Weight Oz.
Stove Pocket Rocket w/case 3.95
Lighter Bic Mini 0.40
Fuel Can Large Full MSR 227 g canister – 13.2 oz 13.20
Pot SP TI 600 w/lid 3.50
Spoon Yogi Orange 0.20
Cup Sea to Summit X Mug 2.20
Drying Cloth Cut Micro Towel 0.20
* Bear Can BV 500 40.95
Totals – Ounces   64.60
Totals – Pounds   4.04
     
Water Description Weight Oz.
Bladder/Hose Platypus Hoser 1L 3.15
Bottles 1L powerade 1.70
Reservoir Platypus 2 L 1.75
Reservoir MSR 4L 4.30
* Filter – Sawyer Squeeze Mini 16 oz Bag, filter, and Backflush tool 4.15
Purification Aquamira full 3.10
Water gear bag StoS XXS 0.40
Totals – Ounces   18.55
Totals – Pounds   1.16
     
Clothes in Pack Description Weight Oz.
Socks – Hiking second pair Smartwool PHD Run Mini Light Cushion M 1.65
Long Underwear tops Cap 2 Large 5.65
Long Underwear Bottoms Patagonia Cap 2 Medium 4.90
shorts Nike black with white stripe 4.00
Rain Jacket Marmot 13.55
* Rain Pants EMS (11.6 oz)
Balaclava Army 1.50
Down Jacket Golite 6.75 6.75
Hat Army Watchcap 1.25
Gloves Cheap cotton garden gloves 1.60
Camp Shoes Crocs – size 10 14.00
Bag for clothes gossamer gear poly sack 1.35
Totals – Ounces   56.20
Totals – Pounds   3.51
     
Incidentals/Emergency Description Weight Oz.
Whistle Fox 40 Sharx 0.45
Compass Burton Classic 1.25
Headlamp/main light Photon Light w/necklace 0.25
Kindling Sol Tinder Quik 0.05
Emergency fire starter Matches in Waterproof case 0.90
Skin Repair Super Glue x 2 0.45
repair kit/q-tips/earplugs sewing/gear tape/qtips/ear plugs 0.60
Tick Key Tick Key 0.15
Soap Dr Bronners 0.55
nail clippers toe 1.55
Microcloth – personal towel Cut up 0.55
Rope 2 mm 30 ft plus cord wrap 0.50
Headnet Sea to summit 0.90
Bandanna Lucas and PCT Class 2.20
Notebook/Pencil/Zip From Marie 1.70
iPhone 5S with lifeproof 5.35
charge cords 1 Lightning 1 mico usb 0.90
usb charge block Anker 5 port 8.45
Camera lumix DMC-ZS20 7.40
external battery Anker 6000 4.70
more cords camera 1.30
Headphones Sony DREX61IP 0.45
Tooth Kit brush/paste/floss/zip 2.00
Sunblock Sport 1 OZ 1.30
Watch Small w/band 0.60
Lip Stuff Bert’s Bees 0.25
Knife Swiss Army small 0.75
Maps HalfMile Sections per food drop 3.00
Summit Backpack Stuff Sack Sea to Summit 2.60
bags/Zips camera zip 0.25
bags/Zips anker hub/bat/cords zip 0.25
bags/Zips StoS XXS drawstring emergency 0.45
Totals – Ounces   52.05
Totals – Pounds   3.25
     
Toilet Kit Description Weight Oz.
Trowel GSI 2.95
Hand Sani 2 oz container 2.35
Triple Antibac-cream Equate hydro 1.00
Wipes MYO 10-pack from bulk pack 2.15
Trash bag 1 quart freezer zip 0.20
Toilet Gear Bag StoS XXS Drawstring 0.45
Totals – Ounces   9.10
Totals – Pounds   0.57

* items: Bear Can – only need for around 300 miles through the Sierras
Water filter – may send home after the desert, may keep whole hike
Rain Pants – i will not carry these for the ~1,700 miles of California. Might mail them to myself in OR or WA, might not. Never seen or heard of comfortable rain pants. Mine certainly are not. I kinda figure that i am planning to walk outside for 4-5 months, sometimes i might get wet.

Not part of Base Pack Weight Calculations, but important gear none-the-less:

Not in Pack Description Weight Oz.
Hike Pants EcoMesh pants w/belt 12.00
Hike Shirt Patagonia Cap 1 Large 6.75
Hike Socks Smartwool PHD Run Mini Light Cushion M 1.70
Hike Hat Tilley 3.80
Sunglasses Ironman Triatholon 1.10
Poles w/duct tape Leki Khumbu 21.00
Shoes Merrel Moad Vent (10 W) 34.50
Gaiters Dirty Girl Large 1.10
Insoles Super feet green E 3.90
Totals – Ounces   85.85
Totals – Pounds   5.37

There may be some other gear write-ups later, but there may not. Let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything you would like to know more about.

If you made it this far down the page, shouldn’t you get a little reward? Of Course! How about a short little movie combing still pics and video from this weekend’s hike near Holtwood Dam?

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11 Responses to Gear List – PCT 2014

  1. […] More: Gear List – Pct 2014 […]

  2. spivonious says:

    Reblogged this on Ramblings of a Nerd and commented:
    A hiking buddy of mine is tackling the PCT this year. I have to admit that I’m a bit envious.

  3. This is probably a dumb question, but what about the water itself? How much do you need to carry?

    And congrats on the award!

    • Nick Renfroe says:

      Not a dumb question at all. Water is Key! The answer changes based on the terrain and the individual. The first 700 miles or so, water is big challenge. Frequently there are 20+ miles between known water sources. There are a few 30+ mile dry stretches and even a few 40+ mile dry stretches. Everyone is a bit different, but a general rule of thumb is 1 liter of water per 5 miles. 1 liter weighs a bit more than 2 pounds. I do not intend to carry 16+ pounds of water for the 40 mile stretches. One adapts. Most of the rest of trail water is easier. There are still dry stretches, but nothing like the first 700 miles worth. In the Sierras, you can carry 1 liter, or none, depending on your preferences.

    • So when you are talking pack weights it is understood that water weight is not included?

    • Nick Renfroe says:

      1. I am not sure if this will post itself in the right spot as a reply to your last question. Never had a comment thread this long before. It is really neat!
      2. The water issue (and also food) is why we talk about Base Pack Weight (BPW). Base Pack Weight is (generally) all your gear but food and water. Some folks leave out other consumables in their BPW calculations – i prefer to leave as much in as possible. So, you can generally assume Pack Weight talks do not include Water Weight (or food). If you see Base Pack Weight, that number definitely does not include water weight.

    • Learning so much! Kevin Cwalina and I used to fantasize about through hiking the AT someday….

    • Nick Renfroe says:

      You might like the AT. It is known for being a very social trail, which might not be tops of your list, but it does have toilets (granted primitive toilets) along the way…

  4. awesome gear list! Have you used the Merrell Moab Ventilators before? And have you used a tick key before? We had a tick key on the AT and found it pretty useless, tweezers work much better and are multi use for slivers and uni-brows and what not. If you know anyone else who is frustrated with wading through the endless amounts of conflicting info on the internet relating to gear, send them my way (tandemtrekking.com). I recently started a personalized gear shopping service on my blog because lets face it, I’m addicted to researching gear and I have quite a knack for it! So jealous of your trip, my boyfriend and I finished the AT last year and the PCT lies two years in our future, but damn, I wish it was now!

    • Nick Renfroe says:

      Howdy! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I have been hiking in the Moab Ventilators exclusively for 3 or 4 years now, and like them very much. I just got my tick key late this past fall, so there has not been a need for it/an opportunity to try it out. I have heard from many who love it and many who do not. I am eager to try it out and see how it works for me. It weighs so little, i don’t mind bringing it along. I do also have tweezers on my tiny swiss army knife, and matches 🙂 I will be interested to hear about how your gear shopping service works out. It is hard for me to imagine how to actually cover the cost of your time or make a profit with that venture – but i wish you the best of luck with it. Hopefully it enables you to make some loot while helping others with your knowledge and experience. I have been planning the PCT for about 2 years and needed every moment of that lead time. Good Luck and Happy Hiking!

    • Right now its just free, a great way for me to vent my gearhead obsessions while not actually spending any money myself. But maybe some day it can be a business! Best of luck to you! i will be following along!

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