Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Lightweight Camping Gear I Reccomend

When preparing for big climbs, I get fairly focused on logistics. Especially when I am planning to solo technical terrain while carrying my camping gear, food, and climbing equipment. Day climbs are easy to prepare for, climbs that can take up to a week, not so much. In recent months I purchased some new gear, tested it, and picked what would perform best for solo ridge traverses or during backpacking trips on which I want to enjoy myself more by carrying less weight in my pack. I bought all the equipment I mention here with my own money and am not sponsored by any brands in any way, nor do I get a commission in case anyone purchases anything, so my opinion is free of that kind of bias...

Recently several friends asked me about the gear I use etc so I put together a quick list of things.

1) Zpacks Nero 38L backpack - 10.7 oz. probably less weight than listed, as I stripped it of anything extra and cut off one of the pockets....For climbing trips I use a Hyperlite Ice Pack, which is comfortable, has everything I need and nothing I don't. Used it for two years now, so it is quite durable. Took it up Fitz Roy, Cerro Torre, and a ton of local backcountry trips. I even hauled it a few times. Pretty strong pack and comfortable enough while carrying up to about 50lbs.
2) Zpacks Solo Quilt 30F 12.6 oz - am very happy with its performance and weight so far. Also, use a 20F Patagonia down bag.
3) Therm-a-Rest Neoair Uberlite Sleeping Pad 8.8 oz, medium. Light and comfortable! With a Sea to Summit ultralight pillow.
4) Toaks Titanium 550mL Pot with lid 2.6 oz (very cheap online). 
5) Fuhoz BRS 3000 Stove - 0.9 oz  (very cheap online). Aside from being cheap, it boils water just as fast as more expensive light stoves. Not as fast a Jetboil, but the weight difference is HUGE. 
I still use Jetboil Sol from time to time. 
MSR Reactor works better than the Jetboil for winter outings/alpinism - situations when you will be relying on melting snow.
6) Small gas canister
7) BD Twilight bivy sack (0.7 lbs). Instead of my usual emergency blanket, I decided to use Twilight bivy because I actually plan to sleep in it and hope this semi breathable sack will prevent my light down quilt from getting too wet (emergency bivy bags do not breath at all). It should also prevent my light pad from getting popped. I will have my pack under the pad as well, to help with protecting the thin inflatable pad.
For normal camping trips, I use a Black Diamond HiLight tent. Older is lighter, newer is more bomber and is seam sealed.
8) Small lighter, plastic spoon, lip balm. 
9) Food (4 breakfasts, 4 dinners, 4 days worth of snacks). I use one freeze-dried dinner bag and cook the dinners/breakfasts in it for the rest of the trip. Carry all the other dinners/breakfasts in zip lock bags. Breakfast is usually a pack of instant brown sugar oatmeal, a scoop of chocolate protein, nuts, dry blueberries/raisins, a scoop of Nutella, and instant coffee. YUM.
10) Hydrapack Seeker 3L water bladder with a hose to allow drinking on the go. Gatorade/Powerade bottle for a backup. Nalgene bottle is a heavy beast, so I will not bring it.
11) Climbing gear - 50m 5mm cord in case I need to abseil. Double length sling instead of a harness, Edelrid micro Jul belay device. A few slings, a few light carabiners. A few leaver nuts. Some cord for rap anchors, if needed. I cut the cord by banging it with a sharp rock and avoid bringing a knife. *rapelling on a 5mm cord, without a harness is not something approved by any organization associated with climbing and is due at your own risk, in a scenario in which you REALLY HAVE to.*
12) Five Ten guide tennies approach shoes. Scramble WELL.
13) Black Diamond Spot Lite headlamp  - light and pretty good!
14) NF sun hoodie, Patagonia Houdini light shell, Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer Hoody. Some light and stretchy pants. 

My pack weighed in at just under 11lbs with all the camping gear and 4 days of food. Under 15 lbs with climbing stuff, jackets, and a few random things/electronics (mp3 player and a portable battery charger). 
Every liter of water you carry will add 2.2lbs to your total weight.