Currently, I’m sitting in my little room in Surabaya, Indonesia planning my thru-hike less than three months away. Yes, planning a hike on the other side of the world is a challenge. Yes, I’m sure I’ll have many, many mistakes due to it, but thankfully that is the beauty of internet research. I will be purchasing much of my gear online and hoping that I can somehow squeeze it into my 46L Osprey pack. Thankfully, during my time visiting home over Christmas, I was able to visit an REI and pick up some of my gear. Here’s what I’ve got so far:
Backpack – Osprey Packs Women’s Kyte 46 Backpack
This pack is somewhat smaller than the average person takes (that’s usually between 50-65L) but I had read somewhere that no matter what size you take you are going to fill it up. Well, I’m trying to be as ultra light as possible so I decided to risk taking a smaller pack. Also, I already had it and it’s travlled that world with me. We have a bond. Its name is Samwise.
This is ultra light and as easy to set up as I could possibly ask for. It’s probably the most popular backpacking tent on the market right now and has great reviews.
Sleeping bag – Enlightened Equipment Revelation 10 degree Quilt.
I’ve never used a quilt before but from all the people who seem to swear by them, I think it ticks the boxes that I need. Lighter than mummy bags, warmer than most but also able to open for those warmer nights. It also stuffs down really tiny. Once I’m on the trail I’ll let you guys know how I feel about it.
Sleeping Pad – Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Mattress
Lots of people used lightweight air mattresses now, and I may regret not going that route, but I’m going foam for now. That way, I don’t have to worry about poking holes in my pad and having nothing to sleep on at all.
Hiking Poles – Black Diamond Women’s Trail Pro Shock Walking Pole
I’ve also never used trekking poles before but I have a feeling I’m going to love them. Everyone swears by Black Diamond or Leki, but my REI had these available and they seem that they’ll do the job just fine.
Bear Can – BearVault BV500
Ugh, no one looks forward to the areas of the trail where carrying a bear can is required because it adds an extra 3 lbs to your pack, but it is an unavoidable curse. Pretty much everybody uses BearVault. So, I followed the crowd. TIP: It’s hella difficult to get into (hence why bears can get at cha food!) so practice using you knife to open it.
Water filtration – Sawyer Water Filtration System
I got duped at the REI store and was talked into getting the Sawyer Mini. I regret that and I’m going to exchange it for the Sawyer Squeeze, which everyone swears by. Apparently the mini is super slow and gets clogged easily. I’ll be filtering all my water on trail so I need something efficient.
Down Jacket – Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Down Hooded Jacket
Again, this is a popular item and since I won’t get to test out my gear, I went with the foolproof choices. It’s super lightweight and folds up into its own pocket.
Socks – Darn Tough
Darn Tough are the gold standard and have a lifetime guarantee on them. If you get a hole they will ship you another pair for free. The have a variety of different colors, lengths, and fusion options. I bought three pairs but will be returning one.
Spork – Snow Peak Titanium Spork
Sporks are magical and all you’ll ever need in this world.
This is for you guys so I can log and use my trekking pole as a selfie stick.
Buff – Adventure Band
So there’s this bandana thing called a Buff that many hikers use. It doubles as a headscarf, hair tie, mouth covering etc. It can be about 25 different things. I was gonna get one to be cool like everyone else on trail, but decided to go with the Bucketlist Family’s Adventure Band. It does the same thing and costs the same but the proceeds go to end human trafficking. Also, it is patterned after the beautiful Nepal prayer flags which will remind me of my years in Asia and one of my dream destinations – Nepal. Finally, I got the green one which symbolizes the ocean. How perfect is that?
Towel – DryLite towel
I got the REI brand but will be exchanging it for a smaller size.
Apparently this is a lifesaver on sections of the trail.
Cheat item! – Kindle Paperwhite E-reader
Future Plans for Gear Purchases:
Rain Gear – Frogg Toggs Pro Lite Rain Suit
Ice Axe – Camp Neve Ice Axe
Gaiters – Dirty Girl Gaiters
**I will be returning my compass, apparently it’s not really needed and I have one on my phone if I am in dire need.