Joe's Ultralight Backpacking

3-Season Gear List

PACK WEIGHT: 10lbs 1oz / 4.6kg (Base Load, no fuel/food/water)

Notes: This is my typical solo load as of August 2005. The only other item I plan to add is a pair of WindStopper fleece full-finger gloves. I have a detailed breakdown of item weights available for the curious. Overall it's about 3/4lb heavier than my base load of a few years ago, but gives me a lot more margin of comfort for the swing seasons. I could shave off half a pound going with a lighter bag for true Summer-only travel, but don't feel it's worth it to me. I like the extra margin. Besides, snow tends to follow me - been hit in April in the Grand Canyon, July in Idaho, August in the High Sierras.

Core changes over the past few years have included:

When heading to the High Sierras or other lofty spots, I add in my favorite fuzzy synthetic fleece longsleeve shirt (12.1 ozs). Yeah, that's pretty heavy but 1) I really like it, and 2) I can't yet afford the down jacket I really want from Feathered Friends - the Hyperion down jacket, 1 oz lighter than my fuzzy shirt, plus EPIC shell and 800-fill option. Hopefully soon....

Also, thanks to fellow OTI member "Gunga Din" George, I now have a Black Diamond Lightsabre bivy to experiment with. I really like it! I'll be swapping between it and my tarp system (below) as whim and logistics dictate. The Lightsabre weighs about 1/4 lb more than my 8'x10' Siltarp (Campmor) plus A16 Bug Bivy combo, but it's a pretty sweet piece of gear.

As of August 2005


Hiking Shoes (Lowa Tempest Lo)             Hiking poles (duct tape wrapped around)
Nylon Longsleeve Shirt                     2 pair "SmartWool" Socks
Nylon Hiking Pants                         Sunglasses
Nylon Running Shorts                       Camera (in pocket when I bring it)
Hat ("Grandma gardening hat" - function over fashion ;-)


NOTE: Sleeping pad is inside the pack, providing some form.

CORE                                       CLOTHES
----                                       -------
Backpack (GoLite Breeze - Lg, 3000+ ci)    Nylon rain jacket w/ hood
Feathered Friends Swallow (20F, 800-fill)  Warm hat (Mountain Hardwear Windstopper fleece)
Siltarp (8'x10')                           Synthetic longsleeve undershirt
Tyvek groundsheet (7'x3')                  Gloves, Fleece (cutout fingertips)
A16 Bug Bivy                               Bandana
8 Kelty Nobendium stakes                   Long Underwear Bottoms
3/4-length Sleeping Pad (RidgeRest)        
GoLite Dome Umbrella                       
50' Nylon guy line (cut in pieces)         HOUSEKEEPING/KITCHEN
                                           MSR Pocket Rocket
SURVIVAL                                   Titanium pot w/ lid (1.3 liter)
--------                                   Spork, titanium
1st Aid Kit                                2 - 1 lt Water Bladders
Leatherman Micra                           Dental Floss (few feet - sewing/etc)
Map                                        Infant Toothbrush
Compass, Orienteering                      Toilet paper
"Hurricane" matches                       
Whistle (plastic)                         
Light, PrincetonTec Impact II LED          MISC
Light, Photon LED                          ----
Space Blanket                              Mosquito-netting hood
2 Candles                                  ID, Credit Card, Cash
Water filter (Sweetwater)                  Plastic garbage bag (many uses!)
Signal Mirror (coated plastic)             Pen
Sewing Needle                             
Iodine/Neutralizer Tablets                

Digital camera (Canon A70)
Ursack or Bearvault bear-resistant container

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