1. Sign-up to become a member, and most of the ads you see will disappear. It only takes 30 seconds to sign up, so join the discussion today!
    Dismiss Notice

Ultralight Backpackers

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by JayV, Feb 19, 2003.

  1. JayV

    JayV Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 30, 2002
    Messages:
    612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'm looking for a little help from the ultralight crowd.

    I've been trying to reduce my pack weight, so I put all my gear into a spreadsheet to calculate total weight. I came up with 22 pounds -- before food and water.

    Keep in mind that most (okay, almost all) of my backpacking is the one or two night variety in the winter, and I weighed my winter gear. Also, I did not include a tent, since I usually carry food and cooking supplies or a tent, but not both.

    That weight also reflects me replacing my Raichles with lighter boots and my pack with a ULA P-2.

    Is 22 pounds reasonable? I'm not looking to cut off labels or trim map edges (neurotic origami as Backpacker put it).

    -j
     
  2. Greg_R

    Greg_R Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2000
    Messages:
    1,996
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Real Name:
    Greg
    Some things that reduced pack weight for me:

    - Get light cloths. Absolutely no cotton. A bathing suit works for shorts (no underwear required). Hydrator shirts are light and quick drying (no carrying around wet cloths). One day's cloths can easily roll up to the size of a softball. The same rules apply for winter. Remember that most heat leaves your body through the neck and head (so a small neckwarmer could possibly replace a heavy coat layer).
    - Minimize cook gear. I carry 1 pot and a fork (pocket knife is assumed). There are a lot of 1 pot meals. Drink instead of using a spoon.
    - A hammock + lightweight tarp (+ possibly mosquito netting) will save you a couple of pounds (vs. carrying a tent).
    - Lightweight shoes (but you've already figured that out). I use Nike ACG trail hikers (not even high-top) and my feet love me.
    - Keep a list of things you've used on each trip. Eliminate things you don't use after each trip (besides 1st aid kit).


    Some of these shortcuts may not be appropriate for winter camping. 22lbs for a winter trip is fairly light (during summer you should be able to cut more weight).
     
  3. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 1999
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    What kind of sleeping bag are you using? Recently I shopped for a sleeping bag in the > 0 range for winter camping here in VA/WVA and I found that "ultralite" bags really were only good down to about 15-20 degrees. I noticed that everything got bigger and heavier once you got near 0 degrees. My bag somewhat heavy, large, and rated to -15°. It fits just nicely in the bottom of my new backpack.

    Oh, the camping trip I was gearing up for was scheduled for Presiden't Day weekend. [​IMG]

    Personally I don't obsess about how light my gear is, at least not that much. [​IMG] (A little).
     
  4. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2000
    Messages:
    1,492
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  5. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,654
    Likes Received:
    33
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Pittsfield, MA
    Real Name:
    Jay
    Michael, [​IMG] Nice full length shovel!

    JayV, does that 22lbs include snowshoes or skis or poles?

    Shelterwise, tarps that use hiking poles are superlight, such as the Betamid are popular in the summer crowds. But I bet they could be adapted for winter use pretty easily too.

    There are some nice moderately expensive sleeping bags:

    http://www.backpacking.net/gear-revi...ng-bag-review/

    is a great site with comparison charts and stuff of some of the newer light down bags out there.. I've been thinking of a Marmot Hydrogen for a summer bag for cyclotouring for a bit and I believe you've seen my other post about the hammock I got.

    Philip, that sucks [​IMG], better luck next time, it's supposed to rain up here in NJ on saturday, gonna mess up all the fresh powder up here now. People are worried about flooding and all that.

    Jay
     
  6. JayV

    JayV Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 30, 2002
    Messages:
    612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Interesting thoughts. I was wondering if I was in the ballpark for a light load. Looks like there isn't much I can do (short of the obsessive stuff).

    I can't do the trail shoes thing; I'm too clumsy to risk spraining/twisting/breaking an ankle. I'm looking at some Asolos and Nikes which are MUCH lighter than my current pair of Raichles.

    I like Greg's hammock idea and may eventually go with a Hennessey hammock for the solo summer camping. I think Other Jay recently got one and hopefully will share his thoughts on it after he uses it.

    Greg, how are your Nike's build quality? I'm wondering about the ACG Air Tumalo.

    Phil, I use an old 20 degree Moonstone filled with Polarguard. It weighs 3 lbs even. And yes, I am always cold, particularly down around 0 F.

    I saw a Slumberjack 0 F bag (650 down) in a gear guide that weighs 3 lbs 5 oz for 215 bucks. That may be my next bag. And sorry to hear you missed your last trip (I did, too).

    Since my next two purchases will be new boots and a new pack, do any of you have thoughts on Nike, Asolo, and the ULA P-2?

    And do any of you use drops or anything other than a regular water filter?

    -j
     
  7. JayV

    JayV Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 30, 2002
    Messages:
    612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Michael, is that a folding deck chair attached to the back of your pack? Holy mackeral. You might be better off skippnig the waistbelt and attaching wheels with knobby tires to your pack. [​IMG]

    That weight includes poles, but I don't include tent weight in the winter. A buddy carries the tent and I'm responsible for food, cookset and water purifying.

    Jay, I missed your Hennessey review (I think), so I'm off to do a search.

    -j
     
  8. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,654
    Likes Received:
    33
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Pittsfield, MA
    Real Name:
    Jay
     
  9. MikeH1

    MikeH1 Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2000
    Messages:
    1,492
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    lol you wouldn't believe what we carried up to that lake on that trip. Lets just say we wanted to do some ice fishing their too so we even hauled up a 4" ice auger. It was stuffed somewhere in my pack [​IMG]

    No Jay V, thats not a folding chair. I never liked those things, I would rather sit on a stump. Or the tarp I usually bring. What you see is snowshoes like whats on the pack in the foreground of the pic.

    And as for the snowshovel, once we got to the lake, yeah it came in real handy


    look closely on the left in the snowbank and you will see the ice auger.
     
  10. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,654
    Likes Received:
    33
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Pittsfield, MA
    Real Name:
    Jay
    Ohhh, didn't know that was an ice fishing trip Michael, most people who pack avalanche shovels typically carry the small and portable ones cause it's hopefully never used.

    Jay
     
  11. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 1999
    Messages:
    6,873
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
     

Share This Page