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Sovi
10-02-2017, 19:08
So I have been collecting bits and pieces over time, and I just about finished with that part (link below in signature) Tell me what you think. It's not the lightest but I went as light as I could afford. I imagine I will be tweaking it on the trail ( I hear every first time thru hiker does), but from a starting out aspect I'd like some feedback.
Thanks

Cheyou
10-02-2017, 19:34
Your hot link isn’t working

Sovi
10-02-2017, 20:13
Thanks for letting me know. Fixed it

Sandy of PA
10-02-2017, 21:26
Are you tenting or hammocking? Half a pound for eating utensils? you only need a spoon. First aid needs reduced unless you have medical issues that require it.

jjozgrunt
10-02-2017, 21:32
This is what I started with this year and what I will be bringing next year to finish the AT. It's been built up over a number of years and I use it for all my bushwalking, not AT specific. https://lighterpack.com/r/czb3eu

Getting specific, dump the fork I have never used one, and if you have a pocketknife get rid of the knife as well. A long handle spoon is the go.
Are you actually going to cook or just boil water? If you're not cooking just use one pot to boil water and get rid of the extra pots.
Unless you are sitting for long periods, get rid of the solar charger. You are constantly changing directions, under canopy etc. I have never found a solar charger worth the weight. Get a suitable sized battery from Anker, or similar, to meet your needs and recharge in town. Don't need to stay at a hostel I recharged at most meal places in town.
Never been a fan of bladders, drop one while its full and it will probably split. Use a 1.5 lt bottle and get or make your own drink tube like this https://sourceoutdoor.com/en/bottles/22-convertube-hydration-system. Bottle gets scungy throw it out and buy another.
When are you starting? do you need cleats?
Why a hammock and tent?
Still a lot of gear missing and I can tell you will easily break the 30lb mark. If you are happy to carry that great, if not look at your big 3, tent, sleeping bag, pack as you can make big savings there.

Besides here for used gear, you can try second hand places and online sales as well as specific websites such as gear trade.

https://www.geartrade.com/?gclid=Cj0KCQjwx8fOBRD7ARIsAPVq-NmNZdXt27v1nEzlBrSc2rnDgY_SqQ60YWQKYXyDlLDVN2SMrin 4H5UaAhG8EALw_wcB

Hope this helps.

DownEaster
10-02-2017, 22:06
If you don't have some specific condition to worry about, you only need a few bandages and antibiotic cream, plus pills for what ails you (soreness, stomach acid, diarrhea) -- not a full medical kit. In my case I react very strongly to urushiol (the active irritant of poison ivy and poison oak), so I add antihistamine capsules (generic Benadryl) and cortisone cream. But unless you've got several such needs, you should come in quite a bit under 14 oz.

What are you doing for clothing? You'll be cold on the trail with just socks and rain jacket. :D

Huntmog
10-02-2017, 22:36
Have you been out and used it? Go try it for a easy overnight to start...and tweak from there. Everyone dials in gear differently and has personal needs and wants.

Me personally? Pack is too heavy and I wouldn't want to through in it. But try it urself and see.

Sovi
10-02-2017, 23:37
The weights on everything without a link where the weight is specified are just a guesstimate of actual weight. after loading what I have in my pack and weighing it it comes to 17.2 lbs so I over guessed somewhere or have trimmed off some of the useless bits( ie. cookpots were trimmed to a single pot, stripped off the brain of my pack etc.)
my medkit consists of an ace bandage roll, blister tape, 3 packets each of pain relievers, stomach aids and sterile pads. antiseptic wipes, sewing needle, dental floss, and an emergency thermal blanket.

I will hit the trail between Feb 11th( if i can catch a ride to the approach trail) and the 13th if I have to hoof it from gainesville ga. So yes I will need the traction for about a month, at which time i will shed that weight. I would do the same for the gaiters too, but the weight there would be negligible if i replaced with a shorter pair.
I will be cooking every meal I eat( as I am a better cook than any restaurant off the trail I'm sure) Save any trail magic I might come across..though I think I'll miss most of that starting out so early. I will be eating out of the pot I cook in to keep weight down.
I will be hammocking without a tarp unless in heavy rain or snow.The weight of the tent is worth it to me as a back up plan.
The missing clothing on my list is not yet purchased. I am still trimming some weight off myself and want a good fit when I start, but it will consist of cotton shorts and shirt for sleeping, 1 pair of nylon convertible pants(legs I will ship home after the snow passes) 1 short sleeve moister wicking shirt 2 pair of boxer briefs(compression) 1 set of long underwear(top and bottom) which will join my pant legs and cleats after snow is passed. The rain jacket has a fleece inner coat that I will likely keep for higher elevation chills.
I have not decided on boots of trial runners yet. Think I may start with boots and switch half way or so.

I currently do day hikes wearing a smaller day pack that I load with 40lbs of water bottles. For a couple of reasons. I want to be used to carrying more weight than I will be on the trail and it's good exercise, not to mention when i get thirsty it right there.

Thanks for the links, I will check those out!

Slo-go'en
10-03-2017, 00:31
Um, you never used a hammock in the winter before have you? You can't just put a sleeping bag in a 15 oz hammock and stay warm. And you never know if it's suddenly going to start to rain in the middle of the night so not having the tarp over you is a really bad idea. Ditch the hammock unless you want to invest in a underquilt and other accessories to make it work. You got the 3.5 pound tent and that will be much more practical. Maybe switch to the hammock when it gets wicked hot in July.

Cooking every meal you eat takes a lot of time and fuel. Before long you'll be eating poptarts for breakfast, gorp for lunch and rama noodles for dinner like everyone else. And lusting for that cheese burger in town.

Leave your cotton shirt and shorts home. It won't take long before they are damp and clammy, even just as sleep clothes.

jjozgrunt
10-03-2017, 01:19
Sleeping bag in a hammock with no tarp. Ok it's synthetic but it still looses some of its insulation value by being compressed under you, and it will get damp with no tarp. 20F for a mid Feb start may lead to cold nights. I started 12th Mar this year, after it was unseasonably warm according to locals and it was single digits to below zero F overnight on day 3 and 4. I like most walkers never wear cotton, you with your setup, will probably need thermals at night for the first month.

You seriously need to make a decision on Hammock or tent and then equip yourself for that option. Lot easier to do it now than wait till you get to Neel Gap, where choices will be limited and it will be a lot more expensive.

Venchka
10-03-2017, 05:29
Much of what you say about your gear suggests that you need to...
Get a clue. Pay attention to what people are telling you. You're obviously unacquainted with Jack.
Cold. Wet. Hypothermic. That will be the first hour. It gets dangerous after that.
Be dry. Be warm. Be safe.
By the way, the good folks at the Blue Ridge Diner in Hot Springs, NC know how to cook better than most.
Cheers!
Wayne


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

DownEaster
10-03-2017, 06:14
... 1 pair of nylon convertible pants(legs I will ship home after the snow passes)
I'd recommend against that. My L.L. Bean Cresta zip-off pant legs total 103 grams (3.6 ounces). I think keeping the legs available is a good plan in case you misjudge the weather, or to protect against mosquitoes and ticks. I'm also keeping my lightest long-sleeve wicking T-shirt when the weather warms up for mosquito protection.

egilbe
10-03-2017, 06:51
Separate rain jacket and warming layer. If its warm and raining you are going to sweat soak your jacket and when you stop, you have no dry warm layer. Hypotherma is going to get old real fast, unless you die first.

no cotton. Stick to wool or synthetics. Plan on being wet 90% of the time. From rain, from sweat, it doesn’t matter, it feels the same.

pack a set of sleeping base layers that never, ever get wet. When you start getting chilled after you’ve stopped for the day and quit setting up camp, and after you’ve eaten you ramen, peanut butter, salami, hot sauce and soup mix, you will want to clmb into your sleeping bag in clean dry clothes.

Med kit wont need to be more than a few bandaids, leukotape, safety pins, triple anti-biotic ointment, antidiarrheal pills, Ibuprofen. If you need anything more than that, you get off the trail.

egilbe
10-03-2017, 06:53
Solar charger wont work in the rain, fog, clouds you will be hiking in the majority of the time. When the sun finally comes out, so do the leaves. You will walk in a green tunnel.

cmoulder
10-03-2017, 07:24
That list needs to evolve a lot more before it's ready for prime time. :rolleyes:

moldy
10-03-2017, 07:29
Your backpack is too heavy. I can't figure out if you are in a tent or a hammock. if you are in a hammock and have no underquilt you will be purchasing one by the time you get to Neels Gap for sure.

Turtle-2013
10-03-2017, 07:58
You are being given some good advise here ... listen to it ... BUT, in the end you have to make your own decisions based on your own experiences. Some of the "need to's" are a matter of style, and not the only safe way ... for instance no offence to Egilbe, but I wouldn't eat "ramen, peanut butter, salami, hot sauce and soup mix" unless my life depended on it ; ) ... and I have know people who have carried heavy packs (up to 90#) the entire length of the trail. SO, while I would cut out a lot of what you have, make other substitutions, and go as light as I can ... that is MY style based on 50 years of my hiking experiences, and it works for me. What will work for you is a different matter, and assuming you can survive the experience, experience will be the BEST teacher ... have a great hike!!!

Hikingjim
10-03-2017, 08:14
Welcome. Don't worry about negative tone in comments, but take it to mean that you have a lot of prep to do.
i'll echo a few things and help you prioritize what you need to do:
1. You need to realize that it gets VERY COLD in early feb and your stuff won't do it. I only recommend feb to people that have their gear dialed in and are smart hikers
2. You should get rid of the hammock idea and you will need a high r-value sleeping pad. If you want hammock, you need underquilt (not an expert on further info there)
3. That sleeping bag is 1.5 lbs of synthetic insulation. Not close to enough warmth for that time of year. You need a more substantive sleeping bag and a down jacket for that time of year.
4. As mentioned above, solar isn't good on the trail. Lots of tree. Lots of clouds. Too heavy. Get a charger on amazon, about 6 oz weight will get you a good about of battery
5. first aid doesn't usually weigh that much for what 1 person needs
6. no experience with that pack. heavy, but could work to start. You need trail budget for failed gear or things that aren't working for you

Hikingjim
10-03-2017, 08:17
Another important point to consider now:
The trail is a lot more kind to newer hikers with cheap gear in April/May!

AllDownhillFromHere
10-03-2017, 09:27
Can't see the pack list, but one thing to remember, not just "first time thru hikers" tweak their gear. It's a constant process. No point in using what doesn't work.

egilbe
10-03-2017, 09:53
You are being given some good advise here ... listen to it ... BUT, in the end you have to make your own decisions based on your own experiences. Some of the "need to's" are a matter of style, and not the only safe way ... for instance no offence to Egilbe, but I wouldn't eat "ramen, peanut butter, salami, hot sauce and soup mix" unless my life depended on it ; ) ... and I have know people who have carried heavy packs (up to 90#) the entire length of the trail. SO, while I would cut out a lot of what you have, make other substitutions, and go as light as I can ... that is MY style based on 50 years of my hiking experiences, and it works for me. What will work for you is a different matter, and assuming you can survive the experience, experience will be the BEST teacher ... have a great hike!!!
No, offense taken :-) I wouldn’t eat it either.

oh yeah, the pack is too big. Shouldnt need anything larger than a 65liter pack, and probably 55liter would be better.

KCNC
10-03-2017, 11:15
I've got a first aid kit I haul around in my daypack (when I might have 5-10 lbs, including water) and on vacations (beach, boats, etc.)

It's 8 oz with everything people recommend here, plus some extra stuff, and all in a hard, waterproof case.

For hiking the case becomes a ziplock and the weight drops to a couple of ounces.

Sovi
10-03-2017, 12:45
Thanks again for all the advice, I asked for it because I felt I needed it. As I said earlier my list is still incomplete and am still picking up a few things. I have some items ordered but not yet delivered.( didnt want to put anything on there, not already in my possession).
As far as the hammock goes no I will not be using it in the snow, and I 'could' use the tarp I have as a footprint for the tent as a cover for hammock if needed. I can use the tents tie offs to tie off the tarp.
You say leave the cotton at home? Sleep in synthetics then? I have heard advice both ways on that. cotton is more comfortable to sleep in, synthetics not so much. Maybe TMI but as a nude sleeper it's going to take some adjustment already to sleep with the constraints of clothing on. When I get my long underwear I'll try sleeping in it and see how it goes. I chose synthetic over down because of the washability of synthetics and the uselessness of down once it gets wet. I am a very hot sleeper so I anticipated sweat soaking my bag and possibly losing all warmth value because of it.
As far as the sleeping pad goes...any recommends ( something I don't have yet but am planning on getting, just haven't decided) I don't need it for comfort just it's resistance value. I am used to sleeping on hard surfaces and prefer it to a bed. Something that wont get wet, (maybe closed foam) is compact and lightweight.
Good point about mosquito/tick protection something I hadn't considered. Though I will be having my clothing and gaiters treated.
I based my pack size on a couple of things. 1. I want everything inside my pack. 2. I have a teton 25L day pack I use for my local hikes. Having packed it with what I already have, unpacking and placing the rest in, and then adding in the space I will need for my food 60L was a tight fit. I want to be able to carry enough food to last me 7-10 days. I know I wont need to all of the time, but I want to be able to when I do. There are several places I have seen on the trail where towns are several miles away. I would like to avoid having to trek to those for resupply. I may not be able to.. we'll see.

As for a February start, I know it's going to be really friggin cold, but I have a goal of summiting Katahdin by Aug 9th which is my 42 Bday. I know that I will likely not start off at a great pace especially plodding through the snow. I also want time to do the presidential summits in the whites without skipping any of the trail. For me the Appalachian trail is about being in and seeing the beauty of the wilderness(not to mention the lifelong goal). I've already been to most of the major cities on the way Boston, DC, New York so those places hold no interest to me as part of the experience. I have seen a few video blogs and read several, that talk about their side adventures, while that is great for them, it's not for me.(Don't get me wrong, If you've never been to those places and have the time and funds they are worth visiting) I want to limit my exposure to "civilization" to resupply, and phone calls to let my family know I'm still going strong. I have 4 kids and a wife, and this window of time will allow me to avoid missing any birthdays(except my wife's whose is 2 days before mine).

egilbe
10-03-2017, 12:59
Food is heavy. You are not going to want to carry more than three or four days after you've been on the trail for a few weeks. You will resent every step up a mountain with food you could have purchased at the next town. Think of the AT as a series of three or four day hikes. When you are wet, and cold, you are going to welcome that next town stop with the hot shower and triple cheese pizza. Not many people can suffer that much misery without some creature comforts, tipi Walter excepted.

Puddlefish
10-03-2017, 13:09
I'll second the solar charger. I met one girl who had one, and it kind of sort of worked at times. I didn't catch your start date, but once the leaves come in, you won't see a lot of big clearings where you can orient the charger directly to the sun. Anker makes portable chargers of many sizes and weights. I got the tiniest one, which was sufficient for my style of stopping at a hostel once a week, and minimal phone use. Your needs might vary.

I'm not a huge fan of paracord for a throw line. It's big, it's bulky, it's heavy and it saws through branches. If you can afford the upgrade to something like this (https://www.gossamergear.com/products/dynaglide-bear-hanging-line), you'll be happier.

Dirty Girl gaiters are probably enough of a gaiter, just lightweight and minimal to keep the dirt out of your shoes. You don't really need the protection of a larger gaiter on the AT.

You'll need to carry more than 1.5 liters once in a while (but not always.) Depending how large your dirty water bag is, it might be enough to get you through the occasional dry stretch.

Like other's have said, you need to decide on a sleep system that works as a whole where the pieces all complement each other.

For an AT hike, from town to town, you don't really need a 5.5 pound heavy pack.

All that said, you can make nearly anything work, it's just cheaper to get set up pre-hike, where you'll have a lot more choices. It is normal to get gear envy mid hike, and you'll also switch up a few things based on what's working for you, and if your hiking habits are a bit different than you anticipated.

Keep at it, and have fun on your hike!

Slo-go'en
10-03-2017, 15:16
I saw a guy at Hawk Mountain shelter on his first day in a hammock. He did not get the tarp right and it started to rain in the middle of the night. He and his sleeping bag got soaked. It was about 40 degrees out. I never saw him again.

I can attest that a synthetic bag will keep you warm when wet, but it's real clammy, it takes a lot of body energy to warm up that water in the bag and it only works when it's reasonably warm out to begin with. Plus the bag gets really, really heavy and takes a long time to dry. Getting a sleeping bag wet is to be avoided at all costs.

I prefer long gaiters in the spring when it's wet and muddy out. Short gaiters like the Dirty Girls are more suited for the summer. You don't have to worry about ticks until you get into Virginia and that's when you treat your clothes. Otherwise the protection will have long since worn off.

As an experiment I carried a solar garden lamp on the back of my pack between Springer and Damascus one spring. (April 1st start). Some days the light would stay on all night, others not at all. Most days it would stay on for a few hours. By the time I got to Damascus, it wasn't coming on at all due to the leaves on the trees. Of course, it doesn't take much to power a small LED.

Knowing it will be friggen cold and living in it 24/7 for 3 months is something else. The mountains of North Carolina where your up at 6000 feet most of the time is a cold and unforgiving world in March and into April. The attrition rate for early starters is very high. Being wet, cold, tired and hungry all the time gets really old, really quick. Plus the trail is really bleak that time of year. Everything is dead and brown. And it's more expensive, with all the extra cold weather clothes you need and more down time in towns.

I hope your ready for it, but at the moment I have my doubts. It's not like your coming from Minnesota and used to harsh winter weather and acclimated to it. Delaying until at least late March eliminates a good month of suffering and increases your odds of making it out of Georgia by a significant factor. Your gear still needs a significant upgrade though.

RollTide
10-03-2017, 16:07
You do not need 50 feet of paracord to hang your bear bag. In fact there are much lighter alternatives such as lash-it. 25 feet of rope is optimal.

Venchka
10-03-2017, 16:12
One more time:
Leave the cotton at home.
ALL of your clothes should be either:
Synthetic fabrics. Dry.
Or:
Wool fabrics. Dry. Wool is warmer then most synthetics. Wool is warmer than synthetics when damp or wet. Look it up.
Or a combination of the two.
Got it?
Anyone who says cotton works in the woods doesn't know Jack.
"Maybe TMI but as a nude sleeper it's going to take some adjustment already to sleep with the constraints of clothing on." You are delusional.
You may make it to Mountain Crossings.
Wayne

rafe
10-03-2017, 16:27
Anyone who says cotton works in the woods doesn't know Jack.


A cotton t-shirt on a hot summer day is not a problem.

But yes, in general, cotton is to be avoided, especially for socks and underwear.

Wool, silk and synthetics are recommended.

Venchka
10-03-2017, 16:43
A cotton t-shirt on a hot summer day is not a problem.

But yes, in general, cotton is to be avoided, especially for socks and underwear.

Wool, silk and synthetics are recommended.
This is about February.
I used to hike in a cotton t-shirt.
Then I saw the light. A wicking synthetic skin weight long sleeve shirt under a 100% polyester long sleeve ventilated fishing shirt. At the end of the day I'm dry in 20-30 minutes after my pack comes off. Double protection from the UV Gremlins too.
Wayne

cmoulder
10-03-2017, 16:49
LOL, sleeping butt nekkid in north GA in February?... https://ssl.gstatic.com/mail/emoji/v7/png48/emoji_u1f62c.png

Courtesy google, a photo of Blood Mtn shelter in MARCH

40475

Venchka
10-03-2017, 16:52
Delusional.
Definitely delusional.
Fabulous photo. I want to go! Dust off the WM Antelope. Pack my woolies.
Wayne

Sovi
10-03-2017, 17:02
" You are delusional.
[/COLOR]You may make it to Mountain Crossings.
Wayne

I will summit Katahdin, of that I have no doubts. You really are too negative Wayne. I've seen some great advice from you in these forums, but assuming you know anything about someone mental state or abilities is uncalled for and really has no place here. I asked for gear evaluations not your opinion on my mental health. I will keep the wool advice in mind when deciding on my clothing though. Thanks for that.

As for the gear, I have taken some of the advice to heart and upgraded a few items. Added a thermal bivvy, and a fleece liner to my sleep system. couldn't find the thermarest sleep pad locally but I ordered it and put it on the list already.Concerned about whether or not that is going to fit inside my pack though. Not having a small scale to weigh the misc items on is leaving me with some holes in my overall weight. But the gear is evolving.. and will continue to..

Sovi
10-03-2017, 17:19
no i'm not sleeping on this trip naked if your read it says that it's going to take some getting used to sleeping in clothes( why i had previously considered cotton until the warnings against it).

cmoulder
10-03-2017, 17:36
OK maybe not clinically delusional but a serious reality check is in order.

Consider the statement above about adding a thermal bivvy (whatever that is) and a fleece liner to your 3.4 lb synthetic bag. So let's say those weigh (conservatively!) 1.5 lbs combined. You'll also need a good winter air mat such as a Neoair Xtherm, which is about 1 lb. So already you're looking at 6 lbs and huge volume for the sleep system alone.

Your misconceptions about the gear needed for succeeding at what you have in mind are massive. At the very least, try to find a complete gear list of someone who has done what you hope to do and replicate that list exactly, down to the last detail. Once you've acquired that kit, take it out on some short trips and learn to use all that stuff in nice weather, then in not-so-nice weather on some longer trips, and then in totally ****ty weather (34įF and RAIN). If you're still alive after that, you have a shot.

At this point your learning curve is incredibly steep, and if you're going to keep the schedule you mentioned earlier you simply must assemble a proven, solid kit and get out to use it as much as possible. Prep time is extremely short and you don't have the luxury of diddling around while figuring out what to take.

Venchka
10-03-2017, 17:42
I know winter. I know the connection between the North Carolina mountains and New England.
I get the feeling that you are nibbling around the edges of putting together a solid gear list without actually attacking the problem.
Mixed with a pinch of poking fun.
The thermal bivvy and fleece liner are indicative of what Iím talking about. Band-Aids instead of solutions.
I wish you all the best. Be warm and be safe.
Wayne


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Sovi
10-03-2017, 17:49
5.5 lbs and that's including the guessed weight( i guessed on the heavy side) of a hammock that I wont be using until warmer weather. I'm not a gram nazi, but I am trying to cut weight where i can and where I can afford it. If my gear is a little heavier, I'm the one who has to tote it. I train with a 40lb pack on my back and at times a 40 lb kid on my shoulders. Lighter is better I know and I am doing what I can. Yes, I will be testing all of this out before I actually hit the trail.

TTT
10-03-2017, 18:32
As pointed out by someone else, your gear and mindset might be better suited for April/May. You need to be pretty cocksure of yourself to sleep in the nude in a hammock in winter.

Slo-go'en
10-03-2017, 22:25
The gear you now have will probably get you by most of the time. The trouble is, not all the time. You can suffer through the occasional real cold night and live, but you don't want to have to do that very often. A popular way to avoid the worst of the cold snaps and snow is to bail to town and wait it out. This can become very expensive.

A pair of wool socks, a good warm hat and a fleece buff pulled down over your neck goes a long way to help keep you warm in the bag.

egilbe
10-04-2017, 05:52
You do realize that 75 to 80% of hikers never finish a through hike? ~30% never make it out of Geotgia? Odds are, you won’t summit. Nothing personal, thats the reality of a long distance hike.

Venchka
10-04-2017, 18:59
You do realize that 75 to 80% of hikers never finish a through hike? ~30% never make it out of Geotgia? Odds are, you wonít summit. Nothing personal, thats the reality of a long distance hike.

The probability of finishing in a single season diminishes the earlier you start.
Mapman of WhiteBlaze crunched the numbers. Ask him what the optimum start date was. I honestly donít remember.
Wayne


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

SwathHiker
10-05-2017, 04:08
I'm not gonna read this all too carefully but I want to implore you to get a rain jacket that does not have fleece in it. Your rain jacket WILL SOAK THROUGH and then your fleece will be soaked and you will have nothing warm to wear. Forget that. Also forget that hammock idea, which is half-baked, in your case. If you can save up, buy some lighter gear. REI's new quarterdome tent is now only 2.5 pounds. Crazy! Get one of those. Klymit's 20 degree down bag is only 2.7 pounds and is only $149 on Amazon. Don't buy a used down bag because you need to rely on the fluff and DON'T EVER WASH THE THING WITH REGULAR DETERGENT. Many people do and ruin the down, so just buy that new on Amazon for cheap, if you can manage it. You can buy a cheap foam pad to sleep on though, those work. Get the thermarest old school one for $20 on sale and don't cut it down, just leave it full length and luxuriate in the length of it while everyone around you has 2 inch squeaky air mattresses. Get some quality high top shoes, not waterproof. Buy some cheap yak traks on sale. Pick up some used trekking poles on Gear Trade or look for cheap Leki Maluku's - those are like Corklites and you can find them cheaper yet they are very good. Look at the favorite thru hiking packs from a few years ago and then search for one on eBay. For example, a Granite Gear pack weighing less than 3 pounds can always be found on eBay or GearTrade and they are awesome for thru-hiking. You can find them new for $100. You have time to stalk the sales. Read all the forums and look at GearTrade.com for stuff.

SwathHiker
10-05-2017, 04:09
That's Leki Makalu's

SwathHiker
10-05-2017, 04:19
Also forget the fleece liner for your synthetic bag that also you should forget. Get that Klymit bag for $149 and get a Sea to Summit Thermolite Reactor Liner of any variety. I use the Plus Compact because I'm only 5'4" and it has double warmth only where I want it. It weighs 9 oz and add about 15 degrees to my 20 degree bag. It's the size of a soda can and I can send it home with my winter gear. A fleece liner weighs much more and takes up a lot more space, and adds maybe 5 degrees. The reactor liner comes in a lighter version that adds 10 degrees and another that adds 20 degrees. Just wait for sales for all the stuff you need, don't buy it all now. But get that Klymit bag as it usually is $179 and $149 is a great price. See you there!

Sovi
10-05-2017, 04:37
Great info and advice, I honestly appreciate all of it. Unfortunately for the gear that I already have, I will have to make do. For me spending another ~$400 or so to replace what I already have just to save 3 or 4 lbs isn't worth it. After shedding the brain of my pack and trimming off the extra lengths of straps I got my pack down to ~4 lbs. I can live with that.
I haven't yet bought poles or shoes for hiking. I will look into those poles. I have been searching for a good lightweight boot, and much to my dismay nothing local has what I am looking for. Other than reading reviews online about them I really have no way to tell their quality. So many hikers use trail runners now, and I'm sure I will too when it comes time to recycle my boots, but I am not gonna try a Feb start in trail runners..stubborn yes, stupid no. Any lightweight boot brands to give consideration? I have a great pair now that I use for my day hikes but they are well worn and approximately 9 yrs old. I would just replace them with the same brand but they are no longer made.

SwathHiker
10-05-2017, 05:47
Well, don't trim your straps just yet because you may need them. I did that when I started and realized too late that I actually needed the length to stick my foam mat to the outside of the pack, etc. You really can't rely on a rain jacket with a fleece lining though. Not for rain. You'll need to plan to keep it dry at all costs, so you'll need another rain jacket and you'll have to take that one off in the rain, if that is also your winter jacket? Otherwise you'll be hypothermic in no time. I'm not trying to talk down to you, I realize that you are an adult. But I do have experience with living out in the cold for extended periods of time, as you will be doing, and nothing will end your trip faster than being wet in the cold. You'll have no way to warm up. That fleece will take hours to dry in front of a fire, and what will you be wearing for that time? A sleeping bag? And if it is still raining, how will you be making that fire? And what about when it is 30 miles or 2 days to the next town and you are soaked, and it is still raining, and there is no fire, and you have no clothing to wear? You will be stuck in your sleeping bag asking someone to call you a rescue because you can't hike in your sleeping bag in the rain, or that too will be wet. This stuff actually happens to people. It's not a leap of imagination at all. It's a natural progression of thought based on the experience of spending several days in the rain in the winter, miles from civilization.

Shoes you can get on sale. Amazon has Zappos shoes with free returns but sale prices. Just put shoes in your cart and monitor the prices for drops. Put several options in there. Go to an REI or a Cabelas to try on some that are popular and then stalk them on Amazon. Good ones are Solomons, Oboz, I also like the North Face Hedgehog Fastpackers. I probably will get those myself in both the boot and the trail runner lows for winter and summer. But in the past I've liked the Solomon trail runners and I like some of the Oboz but not the Bridgers as they are over-structured. You don't want real boots, even in winter, because they are heavy and slow, and not agile, and unnecessary. I'd get something like the Hedgehogs where you can get the low and high in the same shoe so that your foot will be used to the same last. I also like La Sportivas a lot. They have really good shoes. All of theirs.

Actually, it is best to get them at REI so you can wear them and return them if you don't like them, even used. Look in their Garage selections and return them to the store to avoid return shipping. I just tried on some Oboz in the store the other day. They had the same thing on clearance on the website but not in the store. I learned I didn't like them AT ALL (the Bridgers... way too stiff). I'll go with the Hedgehogs probably because I really like them and have no problems with them. Failing an REI move, try Amazon for better prices, or just Google the exact shoe and you'll get price options. Probably you know all this but some people don't.

I don't want to nag you too much!

Sovi
10-05-2017, 06:11
the fleece and rain jacket separate, it just so happens they can zip together too. The fleece also has a thermal reflective layer on the inside.. which might actually work against me if I wear it when hiking. I do plan on adding a down jacket to the mix at some point, for now I only plan on using it in camp and tent when needed. The closest REI is 123 miles from me. So a store trip isn't a likely event unless I happen to be down that way. I will check out those brands you mentioned and see if I can find something that works for me. I too need some flexibility in my soles.. sturdy but flexible. Also looking at inserts so I don't have to break in my replacement shoes on the trail. I will have easily put the rec. 40 miles on my starter shoes.
Thanks for the advice

egilbe
10-05-2017, 06:56
Now would be a good time to go on overnight hikes to see what works for you, and what doesn’t. Experience on the trail doesnt have to come on your through hike. You can even set up your gear and sleep in your backyard. Find the weak spots when warmth and safety is only a few steps away.

Pastor Bryon
10-05-2017, 08:28
Mixed in with commentary, I think there is some good advice here, and it sounds like you are sorting thru to find and use it. My 2c would be to get a handful of nights out in wintry conditions this winter before you go. It does not guarantee how you will do on the trail, but just test drive it and see. While you are out there, imagine one of your pieces fails, rips, breaks, etc. and then consider - do you still have the right gear to stay safe?

Additionally, with your training work on stretching your knees and especially your Iliotibial band. I'm just a year older than you and I can say that on my hikes that is the only part of my body that really gives me issues. I do section hikes so I can power thru it for a few days, but for a thru, I would want that thing as loose and limber as possible. You'll have enough challenges that you can't control to get hung up on things you could have addressed sooner.

Sovi
10-05-2017, 08:57
Now would be a good time to go on overnight hikes to see what works for you, and what doesn’t. Experience on the trail doesnt have to come on your through hike. You can even set up your gear and sleep in your backyard. Find the weak spots when warmth and safety is only a few steps away.

Waiting for a good rainy forecast.. still too warm out to test what I really need to test. It's too bad I don't know anyone with a good walk in freezer...

Sovi
10-05-2017, 11:23
Made a few more changes, to my dismay I dropped the hammock.. will take a move from wayne's playbook and sleep on top of my collapsed tent when/if I want a sky view.. added my clothing current pack weight 26.86 lbs with assumed 8lbs of food.. skin out weight 34.21 lbs also assuming 8 lbs of food...
Stuff still to add. .trekking poles( undecided on those still) stuff sacks for food, dry sack for sleeping clothes( may just stuff them in my sleeping bag stuff sack), bandana's...let's see what I neglected.

Venchka
10-05-2017, 11:29
Thanksgiving through your Blast Off date will provide good testing weather. You may need to drive to the mountains.
Wayne


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Sovi
10-05-2017, 11:36
Thanksgiving through your Blast Off date will provide good testing weather. You may need to drive to the mountains.
Wayne


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Agreed, I wont get optimal testing temps at this altitude.

Slo-go'en
10-05-2017, 11:55
Trust me, get GTX lined boots to start with. You can switch to non-waterproof trail runners later in the summer, but for the wet spring conditions GTX boots are the way to go.

I can understand your not wanting to spend more money upgrading your gear, not with a wife and 4 kids left at home to fend for themselves, but gear is your life and you want to carry it for 5 months and 2200 miles. Once you have to start replacing gear on the trail because it blows out or it's too heavy, you'll spend a lot more then you would if you do it now. Mountain Crossings at Neel gap makes a lot of money replacing peoples poor choices just 3 days into the trip. Your going to have to blow through 4-5 grand doing this trip anyway, so what's another $1000 on gear which will go the distance and not break your back doing it? (And if you think you'll do this trip on the cheap, you really won't get far)

Sovi
10-05-2017, 12:26
Trust me, get GTX lined boots to start with. You can switch to non-waterproof trail runners later in the summer, but for the wet spring conditions GTX boots are the way to go.

This was my original plan, and I was advised against it because my feet were going to get wet either way and it was better to have quick drying feet than "waterproof".
From my reading of post by you both, I'm taken to believe you're both experienced.
I am comfortable in boots, they last longer, provide better foot support, and impact resistance to a point. So my obvious first choice. expect to replace once on trail regardless of wear due to foot swelling. Stay wet longer.
Never lugged a 35lb pack in runners, expect to replace up to 5 times due to wear and foot swelling. Fast drying and lightweight( rumor has it 1 lb on the foot is equivalent to 5 lbs on the back)
choices choices

egilbe
10-05-2017, 13:26
I like goretex boots for Winter, not so much for three season hiking.

Sovi
10-05-2017, 13:36
I like goretex boots for Winter, not so much for three season hiking.

I think I will buy the trail runners I picked out and use them on my gear test this Dec. Gonna bounce between the first two shelters after springer for a few nights, see if the shoes A. keep my feet warm enough, B. dry overnight( or enough that I don't get frostbite hiking to the next shelter), and C. provide enough cushion to support my pack and I.
Should they fail to do any of those 3 I will opt with the boot until the snow melts. (i'll also be packing a pair of boots in case they fail miserably)

Sovi
10-05-2017, 13:45
This will also likely be the time that I make my decision on trekking poles. A few days damn I wish i had poles is better than however long it would take me to find them on the trail on a thru.

Venchka
10-05-2017, 15:51
This will also likely be the time that I make my decision on trekking poles. A few days damn I wish i had poles is better than however long it would take me to find them on the trail on a thru.
Finding poles on a thru? Piece of cake.
Outfitters on/near trail. Neels Gap, Franklin, Hot Springs, Damascus
Mail order pick up at hostels, post offices, etc.
Wally World in Franklin, NC.
Pick up a suitable stick.
Wayne

egilbe
10-05-2017, 19:48
You will probably be able to pick up poles along the trail. I broke a pole just before I started out at Baxter headed South last year,had a pair overnight shipped, went through the 100 mile Wilderness and got to Shaw's and they had barrels of them, lol.

Sovi
10-05-2017, 20:28
Never hiked with poles before, but then I've never hiked 2200ish miles with a pack in one go either. Certainly not at those elevations. Climbing and hiking aren't new, just the height and extended miles.

SwathHiker
10-06-2017, 01:52
Poles are like an extra pair of legs and also will keep you from falling and injuring yourself unexpectedly so they are better to use since you never know when you'll slip, although you are guaranteed to slip on the leaves in Vermont. They are also good for snake-whacking in PA.

So I've been keeping you in mind, and I came across this tent just now that isn't too bad. Winterial has a decent reputation and these are $75!!!!! It would need to be seam-sealed so that would add ounces, and the stakes could be swapped for lighter ones to bring the tent under 3 pounds for $75. Use Tyvek for a groundcloth, it's much lighter and cheaper than a footprint. By the way REI's Quarter Dome is now well under 3 pounds but it costs considerably more.


https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MA4ZSWX?th=1

I don't know if you need a cheap and reasonably light tent, but maybe someone does.

SwathHiker
10-06-2017, 02:08
I am using WP shoes for the winter parts of the trail and then switching but also using high gaiters and rain pants, and my camp shoes are creek crossers too, so I stand decent odds of keeping the insides of my hikers dry. That or I'll skip the WP shoes and get WP socks but I like WP shoes at cold altitudes for the warmth. If they are really soaked you can cook some rocks and stick them inside to dry them overnight but that can get old fast.

You can use trash compactor bags instead of stuff sacks and they are cheap and will keep your stuff dry. Just bring a few to keep your tent and clothes separate, and also your bag separate from both of those too. I am using a ULA bag and it's Dyneema which is waterproof anyway, so I don't bother with bag liners or covers, but I do use WP stuff sacks and that works for me. Many many thru hikers line the inside of their packs with a trash compactor bag because it's so light and cheap as insurance to keep stuff dry. That's required if you are using an Osprey bag or other sil nylon because those really soak up and transfer water in a downpour. There won't be any leaves to block the waterworks for a couple months. I plan on bringing an umbrella.

Yeah, you will be able to find poles lying around here and there and eventually collect a set but you could really use them coming down Springer in the winter, so there's that... look for a used set on GearTrade.com maybe or look around at playitagainsports.com or ebay. Those are kind of expensive to ship so they may not be cheap to buy used. But I saw a nice set of Makalus new the other day for $55 (Leki) and they are virtually the same as Corklites to a lot of people. A little heavier and old-school but still very good and preferred.

The REI branded ones are Komperdells and they will replace them for a year for free so you could always wait until right before you leave and get a set there. Then if there's a problem they'll be replaceable on the trail for free for your whole hike, although most brands will do that for a thru-hiker anyway. It's bad mojo to have thru-hikers trashing your gear all up and down the AT so they all bend over backwards to help generally when something breaks.

SwathHiker
10-06-2017, 04:41
Ah, I HAVE TO CORRECT MYSELF, my ULA dyneema pack is not waterproof. It's robic grid fabric so it requires a rain cover and all that hassle. I used to have a full on dyneema pack and those are waterproof. The robic packs have dyneema threads (the white in the grid).

blw2
10-06-2017, 06:36
Poles are like an extra pair of legs and also will keep you from falling and injuring yourself unexpectedly so they are better to use since you never know when you'll slip, although you are guaranteed to slip on the leaves in Vermont. They are also good for snake-whacking in PA.
.....

but this statement is interesting. I have read many statements where folks will stash them in their pack if traversing particularly tough areas, for fear that if the fall the poles will either prevent catching yourself, or more often for fear that they'll fall on the poles causing injury.... Am I misunderstanding that?

I also read that some folks cut off the wrist strap so that they can more easily let go if fall is imminent.... to my thinking, this makes some sense...
I've never hiked with poles but recently picked up a pair. Have yet to try them out....

Hikingjim
10-06-2017, 07:14
Hiking anywhere for a few days will be informative.
The actual elevation isn't a factor on the AT. It's the constant change in elevation.

Get your gear figured out that you can now (footwear, shelter, pack, etc) while enjoying a nice hike. Then test the specific cold weather gear when it's colder..

Turk6177
10-06-2017, 08:58
I would suggest a different bear bag line. Paracord gets wet, sappy, tangled, etc. I used to use it and got tired of trying to untangle it every time I wanted to hang my food. I would roll it in a ball, do an electricians weave, and other various wraps but was never happy with it. I switched to some dyneema Z line slick cord from Zacks. The stuff is really slick over tree branches, weighs next to nothing and doesn't seem to absorb water. I store mine in a ziplock bag with the carabiner on it so I can easily find the end. I essentially just stuff it into the 1l ziplock back and I have not had a tangling issue yet. Here is their site in case you want to consider buying some: http://www.zpacks.com/accessories/spectra_cord.shtml

Venchka
10-06-2017, 09:44
I would suggest a different bear bag line. Paracord gets wet, sappy, tangled, etc. I used to use it and got tired of trying to untangle it every time I wanted to hang my food. I would roll it in a ball, do an electricians weave, and other various wraps but was never happy with it. I switched to some dyneema Z line slick cord from Zacks. The stuff is really slick over tree branches, weighs next to nothing and doesn't seem to absorb water. I store mine in a ziplock bag with the carabiner on it so I can easily find the end. I essentially just stuff it into the 1l ziplock back and I have not had a tangling issue yet. Here is their site in case you want to consider buying some: http://www.zpacks.com/accessories/spectra_cord.shtml

For me, itís a question of on hand in the garage, gear closet or backpack.
I did however purchase 20í of a more substantial 5 mm Dyneema line to secure my Ursack if hanging was not an option.
In practice I got really lazy. Iím still alive to tell the tale. Loksacks/Opsaks not used. Find my Ursack.
https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20171006/32d627e8a4726613138da187bbaa1cc7.jpg
Wayne


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Slo-go'en
10-06-2017, 10:57
but this statement is interesting. I have read many statements where folks will stash them in their pack if traversing particularly tough areas, for fear that if the fall the poles will either prevent catching yourself, or more often for fear that they'll fall on the poles causing injury.... Am I misunderstanding that?

I also read that some folks cut off the wrist strap so that they can more easily let go if fall is imminent.... to my thinking, this makes some sense...
I've never hiked with poles but recently picked up a pair. Have yet to try them out....

On particularly steep accents and descents in Maine and NH (also known as rock scrambles) where you need three points of contact, poles can get in the way. In that case I either throw them up above me or drop the down below me (and hope they don't skitter down off the cliff) so I can use my hands to hold onto roots, rocks or trees.

On long, reasonably flat sections or road walks, some hikers will put the poles away as their really needed then.

I don't use the pole straps because I keep getting the little basket at the end of the pole stuck between roots or rocks and if you use straps, that can yank on your wrist really hard. If you don't keep the little basket on at the end of the pole, the pole will push into the ground too far and cause a similar problem, much more often.

rafe
10-06-2017, 11:19
About trekking poles - what Slo said.

When the going gets super steep, where you really need to use one or both hands, the poles get in the way. So if it's a short segment, I just throw them down or (if uphill) maybe leave them dangling from my wrists using the straps. If it's going to be a long stretch, fold them and stash them.

As to using the straps or not... I can go both ways. If the going seems treacherous, I'm likely to slip out of the straps. Otherwise, I use them. It's not like I have to commit to one or the other for all time.

Sovi
10-06-2017, 11:41
decent tent, nearly identical in features to the one I have. Thing I love about my tent though is I can set it up free standing and don't have to worry about stakes. It comes with them but I have used it without them and there isn't much difference. I don't know how much the stakes weigh, but they feel about as heavy as the tent itself minus the footprint. Leaving them home or replacing them would likely drop my shelter weight by about the same.
I see a lot of use of carabiners... would it not be as effective to tie a bowline and run your line through it? eliminate the extra weight altogether?

I get a lot of grief about my pack, but after stripping off what I didn't need it's reasonable for the price I payed. It's durable and comfortable to carry, though knowing now what I know about some of the lighter packs I probably wouldn't recommend it to another hiker, but it will do me fine. Until I joined forum this UL wasn't something I'd ever heard or thought about. All in all I think I did okay with my purchases. Not the lightest, but considering my pack started off weighing 5.5 lbs I still managed to keep the weight of every thing in it under 30 lbs. ( will an over estimation of 8 lbs of food, everything I will be carrying with the exception of PB will be dry.(I wanted to see it worst case scenario) )

I still need to plugin my phone ( not yet purchased i dont use them off trail) and toiletries which I haven't packed up yet, but I expect all that to be under 1 lb

Sovi
10-06-2017, 11:43
Trying to talk my wife into giving me her phone and getting herself a new one, this way if Murphy gets me, he's just getting an older well used phone... I think she likes this idea :)

DownEaster
10-06-2017, 12:48
If you don't know anything about trekking poles, you can just get a cheap starter pair at Walmart or Amazon. I got these (https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00WITE6TM/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1) when for a few days (no clue why) the red ones were half the price of the other colors. My total price (shipped, with sales tax) was $20.50. I like the cork grips, and the weight (8.5 oz each pole) seems in line with name brands (Leki (https://smile.amazon.com/Leki-T632-2953-Corklite-Trekking/dp/B00MP22L3A/ref=sr_1_3?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1507307568&sr=1-3&keywords=Leki+trekking+poles), Black Diamond (https://smile.amazon.com/Trail-Ergo-Cork-Walking-70-140cm/dp/B00GZPYWFS/ref=sr_1_2?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1507307499&sr=1-2&keywords=Black+Diamond+trekking+poles)). But you can go cheaper, like these (https://smile.amazon.com/Ultralight-Poles-Anti-Adjustable-Mountaineering-All-around/dp/B074M77WHK/ref=pd_sbs_468_1?_encoding=UTF8&refRID=G8NQ0JWXKWSHW5CGRSF2&dpID=41FLfmut7jL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=detail).

You'll undoubtedly get some value for your money from your starter pair, and can then decide if you want to go pole-less, or if there are particular characteristics you'd like to change. It seems kind of foolish to pay name brand prices when you don't know anything yet about what would work for you on the trail. In my case I'd read enough to know I wanted cork grips and flick locks to adjust length for uphill/downhill changes, but that's really the extent of what I could ascertain before buying my starter poles. I haven't used them enough yet to know if they'll work for the length of the AT, but I also haven't discovered any reasons why they wouldn't.

Sovi
10-06-2017, 13:12
I have read the same things about the cork grips and if I were to get a pair that would be one of the first things I would look for. Also I'm not a small guy, if I were getting poles to prevent falling (though I do have catlike balance) they would have to be able to support my weight without bending. I have done enough climbing to be used to using my hands to assist my ascent/descent. In instances like those I would imagine them being more in my way than useful. I will do my winter test without them, then evaluate whether or not I want to carry/use them on my thru.

egilbe
10-06-2017, 13:20
Even in Maine and NH, I find hiking with them more useful, than not. True, they sometimes get in the way on really steep ascents or descents, but thankfully, on the AT, there isnt that much rock scrambling.

Crossup
10-06-2017, 16:17
As a noob with only a week of the PA AT under my belt I can say my poles felt completely alien to me and seemed a waste of good money until the first 30 minutes of hiking. By that time my body had miraculously picked up a rhythm and cadence that seemed natural and the poles became very helpful. Despite being pretty much over loaded with 40+lbs of pack I never once tweaked anything on my body and attribute that to the stability of using the poles. I think it reduced my energy expenditure because I could maintain my balance leveraging from the top of my body(shoulders) instead of the normal foot(bottom) balance.
Bottom line: dont judge poles or the need for them except in actual use.

Venchka
10-06-2017, 16:27
... Thing I love about my tent though is I can set it up free standing and don't have to worry about stakes. It comes with them but I have used it without them and there isn't much difference.
That clinches it.
You are a disaster looking for a place to happen.
All the best to you! Good luck.
Youíre going to need it.
Wayne



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Sovi
10-06-2017, 16:36
Yes Wayne, i know lol. I should use them since it's designed to be used with them. The times I used it without them it wasn't in rain or high winds.. just an average breeze. If I use them tho, I will be replacing them with lighter ones. Kids wanted to go to the zoo this weekend so I'm going to have an opportunity to hit REI this weekend as well while in jacksonville. Gonna be scoping out several things while there.

Venchka
10-06-2017, 18:01
Ok. I learned the hard way. No tent is free staying.
Unless your stakes weigh a pound a piece, donít waste money on new ones.
Wayne


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Sovi
10-06-2017, 18:15
Ok. I learned the hard way. No tent is free staying.
Unless your stakes weigh a pound a piece, don’t waste money on new ones.
Wayne


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no, but I believe they're steel. I cannot bend them. I had extra's so I tried. They probably weigh a pound altogether(extra included)

Venchka
10-06-2017, 18:40
Ok. Get some cheap aluminum shepherd hooks. Iíve been using those since forever. My current stake bag has 6 of the 8.75Ē Eastons and 6 ancient aluminum shepherd hooks. I mix and match depending on soil conditions.
Keep it simple and cheap.
Wayne


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Slo-go'en
10-06-2017, 19:09
If the tent is self supporting it really doesn't need to be staked if the fly also attaches to the frame. But you better put something heavy inside it or if a good stiff wind comes along, it will roll down the hill.

Sovi
10-06-2017, 20:52
The fly attaches to the frame with u-clips along the poles and to the tent itself with thumb clips at all 4 corners. I will be bringing stakes anyway, just not likely the ones it came with. Looking forward to checking out REI's selection. Also have a hike mapped out for tomorrow, upping my training weight for this one. Going from 40 lbs to close to 70. All my gear plus all the water bottles I normally use. Nice thing about it is I can drink some water to lessen my load lol. Should be able to do this trek every weekend from here until I do my winter on Springer.

Venchka
10-06-2017, 22:36
It sounds to me like Yíall think you can defy the laws of physics.
Stakes hold tents fast.
Have fun stake shopping!
Wayne


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SwathHiker
10-07-2017, 01:34
The Leki Makalu trekking poles I'm pretty sure are cork. They have other cheap cork ones at Walmart I think.

More importantly, this guy has the very best and most useful thru-hiking videos on You Tube. Give some of his videos a bit of attention and you'll be doing yourself a favor:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=leMyVAsgFjU

SwathHiker
10-07-2017, 01:36
I'll be windy at elevations so plan on bringing the stakes. Buy some lighter ones. In other places there will only be platforms so it's handy to have a reasonably free-standing tent, although you can use rocks or stuff in your pack to hold the guy lines or the corners as long as it's not too bad. Or just move on to the next shelter.

Sovi
10-07-2017, 01:47
My tent fits both me and my pack, in places I cant stake I'll get creative.. been referred to as a McGuyver like mf'er by buddies of mine..I can make about anything work. Currently working on making a sleeve for my paracord to prevent sawing the tree limbs..got the idea from my hammock tree huggers. They stick by friction to the tree so the ties dont slide down the tree when getting in and out of it.. should be able to reproduce it for my food bag cord. Trick will be getting it above the limb when i toss the line over.

Sovi
10-07-2017, 01:51
Thinking maybe a knot to push it up after the line goes over, idk, I'll make it work.

cmoulder
10-07-2017, 07:17
should be able to reproduce it for my food bag cord. Trick will be getting it above the limb when i toss the line over.

Food bag hang... (https://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php/112951-New-safer-amp-easier-bear-bag-hanging-method?p=2171156&viewfull=1#post2171156) arguably (because someone will!) state of the art, lol. :D

Best setup I've used, ennyhoo... especially for heavy or multiple food bags. Bit of a learning curve, tho.

gracebowen
10-07-2017, 07:23
You are already at about 34 lbs abd your list is not complete. Toothbrush toothpaste a little soap for hygeine and or hand sanitizer.

Youre bag is kinda heavy but if thats what you can afford so be it. Is it going to be warm enough though.

So far im only window shopping but if i were to buy my gear today im looking at around 35lbs total pack weight. Trying to figure out how to cut that down and stay in budget. Also looking at ways to increase the budget.

Hikingjim
10-07-2017, 08:45
Based on a lot of the posts here, I think the most important things for you are to get walking when you get your gear roughly right, and to keep some budget to replace stuff on the trail
Don't get some ultralight trowel or cords and leave yourself without enough funds to find out what you actually need on the trail

Sovi
10-07-2017, 11:35
Food bag hang... (https://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php/112951-New-safer-amp-easier-bear-bag-hanging-method?p=2171156&viewfull=1#post2171156) arguably (because someone will!) state of the art, lol. :D

Best setup I've used, ennyhoo... especially for heavy or multiple food bags. Bit of a learning curve, tho.
I am convinced I can do without the gromets or carabiners.. pretty handy with a knot. as far as the sleeve goes, since I'm no longer bringing my hammock, I can cannibalize the tree-hugger from it.

You are already at about 34 lbs abd your list is not complete. Toothbrush toothpaste a little soap for hygeine and or hand sanitizer.

Youre bag is kinda heavy but if thats what you can afford so be it. Is it going to be warm enough though.

So far im only window shopping but if i were to buy my gear today im looking at around 35lbs total pack weight. Trying to figure out how to cut that down and stay in budget. Also looking at ways to increase the budget.

Assuming I'm not actually gonna carry 8 lbs of food, it's a bit lighter, and in-pack weight is closer to 29. The remainder of my absentee items should be under a pound, save poles.. if I chose to use them. Warm enough? we'll see. Testing it out this Dec on Springer for a few days/night (well the two camps after springer, I want to hike some and camp some to ensure I am warm and dry enough doing both.)

Venchka
10-07-2017, 11:48
Hand sanitizer.
Snowflake Soap.
Bag! Humbug!
Waste of time, money and space.
Cut down bar of Ivory or Dr. Bronners.
Done.
Wayne


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Venchka
10-07-2017, 15:41
Auto correct. What a crock!
Bah! Humbug!
Thatís better.
Wayne


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cmoulder
10-07-2017, 17:32
Whatever you use for bear bag line, 25 feet isn't nearly enough. 40 feet is marginal, 50 ft needed if you're doing a decent PCT hang (since you're going to lose half the length to the stopper stick.......)

But yes, get out and do some actual trips... you can't really appreciate any advice until you get out and see for yourself.

gracebowen
10-07-2017, 17:38
Whatever you use for bear bag line, 25 feet isn't nearly enough. 40 feet is marginal, 50 ft needed if you're doing a decent PCT hang (since you're going to lose half the length to the stopper stick.......)

But yes, get out and do some actual trips... you can't really appreciate any advice until you get out and see for yourself.

Boy is that true. My first and second overnights were great for truly undetstanding the advice I read here. They were also vital to my future sucess. Pack weight really matters

Sovi
10-07-2017, 19:09
read through this posting.. i bought 50' was considering 75' after reading someone wished they had an extra 20' on their 50' line. good thing I haven't actually cut my line in half yet. I did however manage to get everything inside my bag and still have enough room to add a 20L food bag, and still not fill it i think. 75L+10 was too big to get, but I'm glad I did.. room to dig in and pull stuff out without having to unpack everything to get anything out.(in case I need something in a downpour or whatever)

Did a test hike today with everything loaded in my bag plus some water bottles to bring my weight up.. unfortunately there are no hills here along the coast so it was a flat march, but the bag rode well, and made me really glad I wasn't actually gonna carry 60lbs on my back.

Venchka
10-07-2017, 19:38
Bag? I thought you were using a backpack?
:D
Wayne

Sovi
10-07-2017, 19:45
Bag? I thought you were using a backpack?
:D
Wayne

lol smartass, you know what I mean.

Sovi
10-07-2017, 19:46
bag on the brain from thinking about the food bag

Venchka
10-07-2017, 19:53
Grinning. Just trying to keep you straight.
I'll try to behave. All in good fun.
Wayne

SwathHiker
10-07-2017, 22:21
Look at Uniqlo.com for cheap ultralight down jackets. Look at SectionHiker's blog and Andrew Skurka's blog for some cheap light gear ideas.

booney_1
10-07-2017, 22:40
I'd go with three pairs of socks. Taking care of your feet will become one of your major priorities. You WILL want Dry socks.

I'd suggest tenting at first, and later when it warms up using a hammock. Get a tarp tent or something lighter.

Venchka
10-08-2017, 20:07
I'd go with three pairs of socks. Taking care of your feet will become one of your major priorities. You WILL want Dry socks.

I'd suggest tenting at first, and later when it warms up using a hammock. Get a tarp tent or something lighter.

3rd pair of socks is heavier and warmer than my hiking socks and hermetically sealed with my sleeping jammies to keep them dry at all costs.
Wayne


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Dogwood
10-17-2017, 21:50
Looks like a nice set up. Enjoy the journey.

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Scars
10-18-2017, 01:30
Sovi, we are departing o/a the same day and we had an eerily similar thought on the hammock/tent consideration. I am vlogging my trip and just walked my viewers through the evolution of my shelter system. In my case, I was carrying a hammock as the preferred option and hooped bivy for the worst weather (in or out of a shelter). As a system, I was suspending the bivy under my hammock with a poncho liner as an insulating layer and it had worked pretty well with a 15 degree bag. My decision was made for me, however, when my spouse wanted to join for parts of the hike and I ended up with Copper Spur UL2. I dropped a little over a pound in weight doing so and, although I am still longing for making a warm weather gear swap and going to the hammock, I know in my heart that you and I will be hiking Spring all the way to Katadhin (as ER71 did) and never really get warm. I am definitely heavier on the cold weather gear than your list but I will be really interested to see how this plays out with you. My last comment since, again, you are at the same decision point as myself, is about boot/shoes. I have tried several sets of shoes and prefer them but, like the hammock, the decision to leave in Feb has led me to try the Inov8 325s and gaitors as a compromise. I will let you know how they work out for me, and be interested which way you go.