arizona trail initial gear list

i noted elsewhere on this space that gear choices evolve. it is as simple as that. i want to caution aspiring hikers not to get caught up in the ultra light vortex. there are definitely benefits to choosing lighter gear. research and experience are indispensable in this regard . however, selecting the lightest and fastest is no substitute for compromising safety nor does it guarantee success. appropriate gear is contingent on many factors: terrain, weather, individual comfort levels, permit requirements, budget. i’ve yet to meet a distance hiker who is completely at peace with their choices. bear that in mind, pun intended, as you sift through my lists.

on my first ever multi day hike [3 days in the smoky mountains] i carried a set up that weighed well over 40 lbs and i didn’t even carry my own sleeping bag. i also took a propane stove as well as a 3 person tent from walmart. it was all i could afford and i still had a great time with a help of my friends. but that was before i tore my achilles tendon.

when i was preparing for the appalachian trial i lurked in every backpacking light forum i could find. i made and practiced cooking on alcohol stoves; scoured thrift shops and ebay for equipment and clothes. i drove to a small scout shop to behold my first real backpack: the granite gear vc 60. discovering granite gear was a revelation. it was my initiation into to lighter side of hiking. i had never seen anything like that before. towards the end of the applachian trail, my gear selection got better. i switched to a 48 l leopard pack. this is my initial and final setup for the at. compare just how much had changed within just one hike,. this was almost half a decade ago when some of the technology was not nearly as ubiquitous or non-existent.

i didn’t even know smart water bottles or sawyer squeeze existed when i first set out, for example—nevermind, cuben fiber.

images are forthcoming after my start date: 16 february 2019


big 4:

  • granite gear crown2 38 l w. diy shock cord bottle holder & shoulder pouch + trash compactor liner

  • big agnes tiger wall ul2 w. 6 vargo titanium sheppard hook stakes + footprint + fly

  • nunatak arc 30 f/ -1 c down quilt

  • thermarest uberlite regular + gossamer gear 1/8 thin lite

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worn gear

  • arcteryx aerios fl gtx trail runners + bedrock cairn sandles + solomon high gaiters

  • mountain hardware hiking shorts + icebreaker coolite sphere ls hood + arcteryx elaho ls shirt + icebreaker merino ball cap

  • icebreaker bodyfit zone sheep suit onezie + ex-officio give’ngo boxers

  • arcteryx zeta sl rain pants, alpha fl rain shell, incendo sl wind shirt

  • montbell ex-light down anorak

  • icebreaker socks crew x 2

  • icebreaker flexichute + arcteryx gothic glove liners + venta windproof mitttens + cycling sun glasses

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cookwear + tools + electronics + hygne & first aid

  • vargo bot 700 ml + triad stove + windscreen + bottle cap primer + 450 ml titanium mug + pocket knife + syringe + lighter

  • one+3 smart phone w. guthooks + zoom h4n voice recorder + windscreen + sony a6000 mirrorless + petzl tikkina headlamp

  • relevant cables, fast charger block, power monkey extreme, spare batteries for recorder & camera + sharpie + sd cards

  • travel toiletry, tp & wet wipes + micro fleece face cloth

  • sewing needle + leuko tape + imodium, anti-histamine & ibuprofen + spiderwire spectra line + body glide + lip balm

  • leki summit aluminum poles + vargo dig tool + plastic whistle

  • smart water bottles 1 l x2 + 1 l nalgene soft plastic + sawyer mini + coffee filters

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