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TwoRoads
04-30-2018, 20:19
What is your ideal target for base weight (without food and water) and what is your not-to-exceed?

Femadog
04-30-2018, 21:01
Depends on the time of year. Last 2 weeks I was at 16 base weight but I carried my full length 20 degree UQ (instead of a short 30 or 50 degree UQ), an extra Icebreaker shirt for sleeping and a slightly heavier hooded Down Jacket. (ended up being good decisions with the weather we had) From May to Sept I shoot for 12 pounds. With Food and water, I try to stay under 25 but have been up to 27 without any issues.

Starchild
04-30-2018, 21:06
I have never hiked just carrying base weight, it's always total weight, which varies over time. It is that total weight in the field as used that really matters, not base weight. Concentrating on base weight ends up a game in semantics and that results in more weight carried IMHO. I have seen many examples of hikers carrying more total weight because they went after a lower base weight. For that reason I don't measure base weight.

Ideal target total weight 11-19 lbs, not to exceed 27 unless I have to.

MuddyWaters
05-01-2018, 06:06
What is your ideal target for base weight (without food and water) and what is your not-to-exceed?

That depends on time of year and where you are hiking. Bugs, no bugs, rain, no rain. Bear. Cannister, etc. Frequency of resupply, backup batt for phone, etc.

Base weight is what your gear weighs sans food and water and fuel.

When you know this you can calculate what your pack is going to weigh for any trip duration. And manage your resupplies to keep it under your desirable weight max.

That's what it's for. Don't listen to people who tell you "oh I don't calculate base weight. " They simply don't have a clue. It's understanding what weighs what in your pack. How much your pack weighs. How much your food and water weigh. That's it. Pretty simple. Period. Duh.

15 lb base, 5 days food at 1.8 lb/day, 2l max= 28.8 lb.
10 lb base, 3 day food , 1L max = 17.6 lb .


Im 7-8.5 base wt most of time without a bearcan excluding winter conditions.


Not exceed? I don't think of it that way. I bring what I need. Only what I need for most part. What I need is what I need, out of gear I have. I'll bring rain gear regardless of whether I need it or not. It's a standard part of my kit. Actually, I bring several things that I rarely need. As well as luxury inflateable pad, bug net, etc.

,

When it comes to " not exceed," then I'm looking at total pack wait between resupplies. That will affect the pack used. I prefer to stay 23 lb or less with food and water. This is about a week's worth of food with the normal base weight, and is 100+ miles at pretty easy pace. I don't worry about resupply ability until the range exceeds 150 miles. That's the beauty of having a low base wt., And ability to hike 20 mpd. I've got this itch to try 200 + miles without resupply sometime.....

Others carry extra crap, heavy gear, and can barely manage 50 miles between resupplies. You can figure out for yourself which ones monitor their base weight and which ones don't.

cmoulder
05-01-2018, 06:21
I have seen many examples of hikers carrying more total weight because they went after a lower base weight. For that reason I don't measure base weight.
Huh? Sorry, I guess I'm 'dense' but I need an example of how this occurs so I can understand the thinking process here.

If you mean that they end up putting stuff in their pockets so that it's not counted as pack weight, then I agree and call BS on that. I don't do that, and I'm sure that most experienced ULers would laugh at it. Folks who need to add stuff to their base mid-trip simply did not have their kit dialed in to start with.

I personally have enough UL gear that I pick what I need for a trip and it is nearly always going to end up UL, or very nearly so, and it weighs what it weighs. If it's over 10 lbs, so be it ó I've given things careful thought and assessed the chosen gear as necessary. And far more important is the experience of having used and tested it in a wide variety of conditions and knowing that it is adequate for a particular trip. I rarely, if ever, return from a trip not having used items that were packed.

garlic08
05-01-2018, 08:23
Back when I was concentrating on trying to reduce pack weight, my target base weight was ten pounds.

My first long hike was the PCT, with a 15 pound base weight. I knew I could do better. I got it down to ten pounds for my CDT hike a few years later. Better clothing selection, going stoveless and using a seven-ounce silnylon pack finally broke the barrier. That felt great. (More important, though, was water and food management.)

On my AT hike, it was eight pounds. At that point, the pack was almost negligible and I have never striven to lose more weight. I don't check it any more, but I know it's never more than ten pounds.

JC13
05-01-2018, 08:57
Summer base(>50*) is 8.75 lbs, fall/winter base(down to 20*) is 10.75 lbs. I don't have a max base weight, like others, I bring what I expect to need for the possibility of conditions.

Gambit McCrae
05-01-2018, 10:51
My total weight for my weeklong trip this july will be right at 15 lbs including 2 liters of water, 16 oz of Jack Daniels and food for 4 days

gracebowen
05-01-2018, 13:04
I haven't got my base weight dialed in yet. I would like to never carry more than 30 lbs. Hoping to keep it at 25 most of the time.

Starchild
05-01-2018, 13:32
Huh? Sorry, I guess I'm 'dense' but I need an example of how this occurs so I can understand the thinking process here.

If you mean that they end up putting stuff in their pockets so that it's not counted as pack weight, then I agree and call BS on that. I don't do that, and I'm sure that most experienced ULers would laugh at it. Folks who need to add stuff to their base mid-trip simply did not have their kit dialed in to start with.

I personally have enough UL gear that I pick what I need for a trip and it is nearly always going to end up UL, or very nearly so, and it weighs what it weighs. If it's over 10 lbs, so be it — I've given things careful thought and assessed the chosen gear as necessary. And far more important is the experience of having used and tested it in a wide variety of conditions and knowing that it is adequate for a particular trip. I rarely, if ever, return from a trip not having used items that were packed.








Putting stuff in the pockets is part of it and I've seen it happen. But other things, swapping consumable weight for base weight savings. Perhaps the one most overlooked and the heaviest item is water treatment. On paper Aquamira may look good as far as base weight, but not total weight carried, which includes water weight. The amount of water one carries has to do with how convenient it is to make it and in what quantities, and how much water is expected.

If water is frequent, such as the AT, it makes sense to carry a method that is easy to make small quantities, and drink most of that at the water source. Aquamira users can't do that, they need contact time, which means carrying the water they need (unless they stop there, but on the AT that could easily mean stopping in a bug infested spot). In my experience aquamira users make 1 quart or more then 1 quart at a time, some have their water loadout for the day when they break camp. Water pumps, sawyer type systems and steripen users typically carry less water weight in these conditions. Far offsetting the weight of the device, and even carrying a aquamira backup.

Another offender is the alchy stove. All well and good on paper, but in practice people bring too much fuel, thru hikers pick up a bottle of Heat when they only need 6 oz, carrying the yellow bottle and the ultra light 6 oz container they have on their spreadsheet.

On paper base weight looks attractive, in real world terms not so much. And that is the flaw of base weight, looks good in theory, smells bad in practice.

Starchild
05-01-2018, 14:09
...
On paper base weight looks attractive, in real world terms not so much. And that is the flaw of base weight, looks good in theory, smells bad in practice.

Just to add, as WB does not permit editing without paying for that (comon, that is a reason not to subscribe). Base weight analysis may be productive at first, but when approaching UL 'status' I feel and have seen it is then counterproductive actually causing more weight to be carried, though there is a placebo effect where a person believes they are UL, and that makes it feel better in itself.

Gambit McCrae
05-01-2018, 15:03
Just to add, as WB does not permit editing without paying for that (comon, that is a reason not to subscribe). Base weight analysis may be productive at first, but when approaching UL 'status' I feel and have seen it is then counterproductive actually causing more weight to be carried, though there is a placebo effect where a person believes they are UL, and that makes it feel better in itself.

Weight is weight. It is a number.
Its either light or heavy...or somewhere in between. And its all perspective.

MuddyWaters
05-01-2018, 15:15
Putting stuff in the pockets is part of it and I've seen it happen. But other things, swapping consumable weight for base weight savings. Perhaps the one most overlooked and the heaviest item is water treatment. On paper Aquamira may look good as far as base weight, but not total weight carried, which includes water weight. The amount of water one carries has to do with how convenient it is to make it and in what quantities, and how much water is expected.

If water is frequent, such as the AT, it makes sense to carry a method that is easy to make small quantities, and drink most of that at the water source. Aquamira users can't do that, they need contact time, which means carrying the water they need (unless they stop there, but on the AT that could easily mean stopping in a bug infested spot). In my experience aquamira users make 1 quart or more then 1 quart at a time, some have their water loadout for the day when they break camp. Water pumps, sawyer type systems and steripen users typically carry less water weight in these conditions. Far offsetting the weight of the device, and even carrying a aquamira backup.

Another offender is the alchy stove. All well and good on paper, but in practice people bring too much fuel, thru hikers pick up a bottle of Heat when they only need 6 oz, carrying the yellow bottle and the ultra light 6 oz container they have on their spreadsheet.

On paper base weight looks attractive, in real world terms not so much. And that is the flaw of base weight, looks good in theory, smells bad in practice.

In the words of Sherman T. Potter....Horse hockey.

Some people kid themselves all the time. Tracking their base weight has nothing to do with it. There's no contest to carry the minimum weight you can, like you seem to think.

I routinely carry 2 liters of water for 10 miles without taking a sip. When I don't need to.
Why?????.


Because I can. My Pack is light enough I don't care.
If you can comfortably make the miles you want to make that's all that matters.

But there are times when it might matter. Like when you need to carry 5 days food and 7 liters of water. Then you start paying attention to the little things. And the guy with the 7lb pack is a hell of a lot happier than the guy with the 15 pound pack.

Carry an extra bottle of heat while you have a fuel container? Dumb.
Carry an extra canister while you have an almost empty canister? Dumber
You can't talk about comparisons between alcohol and canister systems without explicitly defining each. There are many alcohol users that carry systems way heavier than canister systems that are available. There's other good reasons for alcohol like it's quiet. No sound of a Rocket taking off in the woods.

AM... Work expended is going to be proportional to the time you carry the weight, and the distance your support force works thru. . W=f*d. We don't need to know exactly how or what force or distance it is. But we know it's proportional to each. All that counts.

It is less work to carry 2 L of water for 30 minutes, then it is to carry 4 ounces of the Sawyer squeeze for 8 hours a day. In fact it's about 70% of the work. Do math. In addition you don't lose the time that you do filtering water. When I use a sawyer squeeze, admittedly a tiny filter, I lose about an hour a day to filtering water. That's 2 miles. Doesnt matter in summer when days are longer than you need. But in the shorter days in the winter time it will reduce mileage. And the freaking filter might freeze so there's that. And to blow your theory...... I still carry the water. Exactly the same as if I filled up with a.m. because....... That's what i do. I don't behave differently because I use a different water treatment method. And it still doesn't matter to me. Sawyer mini and syringe isn't going to kill me , or even be noticeable.

In fact that's what most people do. Very few only camel up.

Starchild
05-01-2018, 15:16
Weight is weight. It is a number.
Its either light or heavy...or somewhere in between. And its all perspective.
That's what I said

Starchild
05-01-2018, 16:07
In the words of Sherman T. Potter....Horse hockey.

Some people kid themselves all the time. Tracking their base weight has nothing to do with it. There's no contest to carry the minimum weight you can, like you seem to think.

I routinely carry 2 liters of water for 10 miles without taking a sip. When I don't need to.
Why?????.


Because I can. My Pack is light enough I don't care.
If you can comfortably make the miles you want to make that's all that matters.

But there are times when it might matter. Like when you need to carry 5 days food and 7 liters of water. Then you start paying attention to the little things. And the guy with the 7lb pack is a hell of a lot happier than the guy with the 15 pound pack.

Carry an extra bottle of heat while you have a fuel container? Dumb.
Carry an extra canister while you have an almost empty canister? Dumber
You can't talk about comparisons between alcohol and canister systems without explicitly defining each. There are many alcohol users that carry systems way heavier than canister systems that are available. There's other good reasons for alcohol like it's quiet. No sound of a Rocket taking off in the woods.

AM... Work expended is going to be proportional to the time you carry the weight, and the distance your support force works thru. . W=f*d. We don't need to know exactly how or what force or distance it is. But we know it's proportional to each. All that counts.

It is less work to carry 2 L of water for 30 minutes, then it is to carry 4 ounces of the Sawyer squeeze for 8 hours a day. In fact it's about 70% of the work. Do math. In addition you don't lose the time that you do filtering water. When I use a sawyer squeeze, admittedly a tiny filter, I lose about an hour a day to filtering water. That's 2 miles. Doesnt matter in summer when days are longer than you need. But in the shorter days in the winter time it will reduce mileage. And the freaking filter might freeze so there's that.

OK this is the first time I'm hearing it this way and it sounds like a honest answer once you get past the horse hockey. A low base weight allows you to carry less, though it practice normally carrying more if total weights are on the lower side. But if one wants to lighten the load, especially when carrying extra gear (food) one can switch to UL mode and really pay attention to the consumables. I can buy this, low base weights are achievable, but equating that to lower total weight is on special occasions.

MuddyWaters
05-01-2018, 16:36
OK this is the first time I'm hearing it this way and it sounds like a honest answer once you get past the horse hockey. A low base weight allows you to carry less, though it practice normally carrying more if total weights are on the lower side. But if one wants to lighten the load, especially when carrying extra gear (food) one can switch to UL mode and really pay attention to the consumables. I can buy this, low base weights are achievable, but equating that to lower total weight is on special occasions.

Now I'm going to back off and say you actually are right. Sometimes.

There ARE people like that. Just not many imo. Maybe some newbie that just discovered ultralight and thinks that it's some kind of bragging right to State what their pack weighs on geargrams. These are the guys that want to talk gear on the trail. Hey, they're excited they got their pack weight down be happy for them even if they put their 8oz phone charger battery in their pocket. And then there's the guys who are doing under 5 lb targets as an exercise on bpl. But they only go out overnight generally not weeks hiking long distances. Most of them . Sometimes leaving some things out in the process. Putting stuff in pockets.

Then there is the legitimate guy that hangs around here with the 2.8 pound pack and 23000 miles under his shoes.

As always most of your pack weight is stuff you don't really need. Once you have reasonably light gear that is. And it's always possible to go lighter. Most UL long distance hikers with some experience eventually settle in around the 8-9 pound mark. This gives everything you need and some luxuries. Inflatable pad and bug net primarily.

I literally could not get to 10 lbs if I tried outside of winter, there's nothing else I need or want that I don't have. And that includes a plb and a backup battery for the phone when needed. And bearcan. My base weight in the Sierra is still about 9.5 lb. Everyone else complained about bearcans, I said many times it would not bother me if they were required everywhere.including AT.

lonehiker
05-01-2018, 17:02
Just to add, as WB does not permit editing without paying for that (comon, that is a reason not to subscribe). Base weight analysis may be productive at first, but when approaching UL 'status' I feel and have seen it is then counterproductive actually causing more weight to be carried, though there is a placebo effect where a person believes they are UL, and that makes it feel better in itself.

I don't see carrying less weight as being counter-productive. I mean you can create an argument to substantiate any claim (as we all can) but the fundamental premise remains that lower base weight probably means lower total weight for most hikers' hiking style. I mean if the typical hiker starts with a higher base weight they will probably still carry X amount of consumables weight. So why not start lower and carry the same amount of consumables? I do subscribe to the idea that there is a Law of Diminishing returns on weight reduction however. I've always, and will continue to, carried most of my day's water when I leave camp. The weight decreases as the day progresses and I save substantial time i.e. I don't have to spend time hiking 0.3 miles to a spring, and return, plus whatever time it takes to filter/treat the water multiple times a day. Starting with a reasonable base weight (around 12.5 lbs) makes my heavier water carries very manageable. To each their own but to totally blow off base weight as a valid starting point is a bit silly.

Starchild
05-01-2018, 17:39
I don't see carrying less weight as being counter-productive.

Not carrying less weight, but less base weight. At the low end (UL weight range), often leads to higher total weight carried in practice due to swapping consumables weight for base weight savings.





So why not start lower and carry the same amount of consumables?
Why not carry less consumable weight? Water is a primary example. Base weighters love aquamira, but I find in practice they carry more weight then alternatives because they carry more water. Aqua Mira is great for base weight, but horrible when you put you pack on the scale on trail.


I do subscribe to the idea that there is a Law of Diminishing returns on weight reduction however. I've always, and will continue to, carried most of my day's water when I leave camp. The weight decreases as the day progresses and I save substantial time i.e. I don't have to spend time hiking 0.3 miles to a spring, and return, plus whatever time it takes to filter/treat the water multiple times a day. Starting with a reasonable base weight (around 12.5 lbs) makes my heavier water carries very manageable. To each their own but to totally blow off base weight as a valid starting point is a bit silly.
My total weight for 1-3 nights is in the range of 11-19 lbs (assuming warmer season), yet I carry very little water unless needed.

But I do agree that it may be a starting point, but only that. Once you are into realizing 'systems' and not 'items', baseweight starts to work against you, as some systems include consumables.

4shot
05-01-2018, 18:20
you should carry what you want..nothing more or less. Weight doesn't matter one way or another if you do this and are motivated enough to get from point A to point B. The incessant worry and fret over nonsense is making a mountain out of a molehill. Somebody once said on here that it's just walking. That brother spoke the truth.

TwoRoads
05-01-2018, 19:44
I'm really enjoying reading your comments and trying to learn as much as I can. Just comparing what I'm carrying vs. what you all are saying gives me a point of reference. Just from your comments and and my own reflection, I've reduced my base weight from 20 or 21# to about 16. I'm trying to bring total weight down from 37 (although usually 30-35) a couple of weeks ago on the trail. I'd like to get it down to 25 or below with consumables. The reductions I've made are partially due to warmer temperatures than the mid-40s daytime and 30s at night, but I've also downsized some. My biggest issue is that I have some back issues (though I try not to use them as an excuse). But on the trail in mid-April, I was often pretty uncomfortable mid-back and between the shoulders, and feet often felt a bit like hamburger, although I don't think I was actually blistering. Anyway, that's why my question. Most of my weight reduction has been from going to a 20 degree bag (from a zero -- yeah I know, but I am a cold sleeper), going 4 oz less on my tent (from Tarptent Double Rainbow to Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 1), reducing from about 13 oz (Platypus) to about 4 oz (Smart Water bottle and Sawyer Mini filter w/o bag), and going from a Peak 2 rain jacket to a Marmot PreCip. Other items I've reduced/downsized as well, but I'm still wanting to get to 12-15 base weight and watch my consumables. Just trying to get to that sweet spot so the reduced weight helps me enjoy my hiking a little more. Keep the comments coming; I'm taking notes. :)

TwoRoads
05-01-2018, 19:46
Oh yeah, and I'm not going stoveless, although I think that is less a weight savings than it is just a time-saver with my morning and evening routines.

TwoRoads
05-01-2018, 21:01
Sorry, I meant I AM going stoveless.

cmoulder
05-02-2018, 06:21
But I do agree that it may be a starting point, but only that. Once you are into realizing 'systems' and not 'items', baseweight starts to work against you, as some systems include consumables.

Not in my world ó I have found the systems approach to be incredibly useful. And systems are made up of items and consumables are not. I don't understand this part either.


Some general observations regarding the posts above...

If people want to kid themselves about actual base and total pack weights, that's fine by me, and if they're happy carrying 50 lbs it's no concern of mine.

I would offer that most people paying attention to base weight are also paying attention to consumables and very close attention to their water situation especially in the drier seasons. I know that when planning a trip I look at water availability before I look at the trail profile. I use AM almost exclusively, but have seen the utility of a Sawyer Squeeze on occasion.

If one hikes in a desert environment, well of course the base weight is going to be somewhat higher simply due to the need for a heavier pack with more supportive suspension to handle the additional weight of 5-8 liters of water. Other than that, however, the actual base shouldn't be higher, or not much higher.


you should carry what you want..nothing more or less. Weight doesn't matter one way or another if you do this and are motivated enough to get from point A to point B. The incessant worry and fret over nonsense is making a mountain out of a molehill. Somebody once said on here that it's just walking. That brother spoke the truth.

Right up until the point that somebody logs in on WB asking about how to reduce pack weight. :rolleyes: Ever notice how nobody ever inquires about how to increase pack weight??

MuddyWaters
05-02-2018, 06:46
I would offer that most people paying attention to base weight are also paying attention to consumables and very close attention to their water situation especially in the drier seasons. I know that when planning a trip I look at water availability before I look at the trail profile. I use AM almost exclusively, but have seen the utility of a Sawyer Squeeze on occasion.


I'm pretty much the opposite of that.

As long as the pack is comfortable and basically not noticeable, I don't really pay too much attention to water or food.

For planning purposes... I consider maximum water carries. As well as maximum food carries. And I'll really really try to get things into manageable range. But once under 17 -18 lb , it's not a big deal.

Case in point, on a recent hike of half of the OHT, where water was everywhere due to a lot of rain, on one particular day I started with a liter of water. The first time I took a sip of that water was after 15 miles.

There's been many times I've carried 2 L of water for 10 Mi without taking a sip.
This obviously only occurs in cooler weather when temperature is in the maybe 50's maximum.

On the JMT I carried xtra three full days of food the whole second half, in addition to probably a liter of water when I didn't need to. I found I was carrying one plus extra day of food the whole first half. I was simply hiking faster than I had planned cuz I didn't know what to expect.

In recent years I find I'm carrying a lot of extra food on short hikes cuz I'm not eating lunch. I have developed an aversion to stopping for lunch and I prefer just to eat snacks. My metabolism has slowed with age and I don't seem to miss those calories that much over say up to 2 weeks or so.

Typically if I'm under 20 lb I really don't care how much weight I'm carrying. I can still hike the 20 miles or whatever without an issue. Now if I was targeting a 30 mile day...
I probably be looking for ways to ditch some weight and paying a lot closer attention to it.

Besides I'm somewhat of a masochist. I actually think that working hard is good for me. But the real beauty of a light pack for me........ Is I don't have to worry about that stuff...... Like people with the heavier packs do. Also my 17-ounce arc blast can handle that weight very well, whereas a lot of people's frameless packs don't get good till they get under 15. So that crowd maybe a little more sensitive to it as well.

cmoulder
05-02-2018, 06:47
I'm really enjoying reading your comments and trying to learn as much as I can. Just comparing what I'm carrying vs. what you all are saying gives me a point of reference. Just from your comments and and my own reflection, I've reduced my base weight from 20 or 21# to about 16. I'm trying to bring total weight down from 37 (although usually 30-35) a couple of weeks ago on the trail. I'd like to get it down to 25 or below with consumables. The reductions I've made are partially due to warmer temperatures than the mid-40s daytime and 30s at night, but I've also downsized some. My biggest issue is that I have some back issues (though I try not to use them as an excuse). But on the trail in mid-April, I was often pretty uncomfortable mid-back and between the shoulders, and feet often felt a bit like hamburger, although I don't think I was actually blistering. Anyway, that's why my question. Most of my weight reduction has been from going to a 20 degree bag (from a zero -- yeah I know, but I am a cold sleeper), going 4 oz less on my tent (from Tarptent Double Rainbow to Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 1), reducing from about 13 oz (Platypus) to about 4 oz (Smart Water bottle and Sawyer Mini filter w/o bag), and going from a Peak 2 rain jacket to a Marmot PreCip. Other items I've reduced/downsized as well, but I'm still wanting to get to 12-15 base weight and watch my consumables. Just trying to get to that sweet spot so the reduced weight helps me enjoy my hiking a little more. Keep the comments coming; I'm taking notes. :)
It helps to know specifically what items are in each system: Shelter, Clothing, Sleep, Cook (well maybe not now:)) and maybe even First Aid/Repair/Toiletries. Last year when I was down in TN I encountered a guy (not Tipi!) loading his pack (ginormous beast) at the trail head and it included a first aid kit that must've weighed 3 lbs.

If you can go from traditional tent to a trekking pole supported tarp type tent (Duplex, for instance) that'll save a bunch of weight, as will going to a really good quilt (10D shell with 850fp) vs a sleeping bag, and a lighter sleep mat (guessing, since we don't know specifically). Some people also use sleeping bag liners and heavy pillows.

What is the rest of the clothing inventory? Clothes can be a deal breaker, especially for folks who see the need for specific sleeping clothes and other 'just in case' clothing.

Cheyou
05-02-2018, 07:13
Having a light big 4 . Shelter, sleeping bag or quilt, backpack, sleeping mat worked for me. I weigh everything. Saving a few oz on a few items adds up. May weigh less and just be as warm. I don’t pocket cheat ;0)

thom

garlic08
05-02-2018, 08:08
Sorry, I meant I AM going stoveless.

I agree it's less a weight saver and more a time/hassle saver.

But curiously, for me it was also a volume saver, and it's what finally got me into the smallest, lightest packs and thus under the ten pound threshold. It was the lost weight of the pack itself that helped me.

I also noticed the above-mentioned tendency to carry extra fuel, to overstock when it's available.

clay pot
05-02-2018, 08:26
Total weight 30 lbs. with 2 liters of water and food. Only water for a given section takes it above that. Year round no matter where or what. But then, at 78, where and what are surely a big deal. And I hike solo, never splitting the weight by being "married" to a partner. I have driven myself sort of crazy having arrived at this method having used all the others ways to figure. So, when I leave home and hang the bag to weigh, it never ever hits 30. If it does, I have done something "stupid". And i dump all in floor and see what is going on.

lonehiker
05-02-2018, 09:10
I agree it's less a weight saver and more a time/hassle saver.

But curiously, for me it was also a volume saver, and it's what finally got me into the smallest, lightest packs and thus under the ten pound threshold. It was the lost weight of the pack itself that helped me.

I also noticed the above-mentioned tendency to carry extra fuel, to overstock when it's available.

This is the best assessment of going stove-less. With my own recent experimentation with it, I have found it is a wash as far as weight savings.

TwoRoads
05-02-2018, 18:03
Well, since you asked :)

My backpacking list that gets me to 16 pounds base weight:
My clothing system:The clothes on my back1 bandana2 pr polyester boxer shorts2 pr synthetic socksGoretex rain hatBug net for hat1 pr convertible pants1 synthetic long-sleeved pullover shirt1 synthetic short-sleeved shirtMarmot Precip rain jacketFood system:Food bag (nylon), 50' parachute cord, 3 small carabiners2 Opsack odor-proof plastic bagsSeveral plastic ziplock bagsPlastic knifeSpork1 24-oz Smart Water bottle1 Sawyer mini filter1 backwash plungerSleep system:1 Emergency blanket1 16-oz pee bottle 1 Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 1 tent1 20-degree EMS down sleeping bag1 rollup sleeping bag (6.7 oz)Gear:ULA Catalyst backpack (3 lbs)Black Diamond headlampSOG titanimu knife (0.4 oz)AWOL map pages (200 miles at a time)REI waterproof pack coverWhistlePersonal items:PhoneBackup charger, cable, plastic ziplock carrying bag3 extra AAA batteries for headlampTweezersNail clippers4 insecticide wipesToothbrush/toothpasteQtips (about 15)Lip balmDental flossToilet paper Sunscreen*Hand sanitizer*Biodegradable soap*(* repackaged in small plastic bottles)First Aid kit1 large gauze pad4" square moleskin10 Doxycycline tablets for tick bites (thanks, Doc)Antibiotic cream (3 very small containers)Medical tape (about 12" wound around a straw)Duct tape (about an arm's length wound around a straw)2 alcohol pads6 band-aids

TwoRoads
05-02-2018, 18:05
Sorry for the way that posted. I had it in a nice separated list.

shelb
05-02-2018, 18:43
I look at my "skin out" weight (meaning how much I am carrying on my body - including pack, clothing I am wearing, shoes, poles). In this, I also include 2 L of water and food for four days. I hike between June to August only, so no winter gear. I have this down to under 23 pounds...

cmoulder
05-03-2018, 15:50
Well, since you asked :)

My backpacking list that gets me to 16 pounds base weight:
My clothing system:The clothes on my back1 bandana2 pr polyester boxer shorts2 pr synthetic socksGoretex rain hatBug net for hat1 pr convertible pants1 synthetic long-sleeved pullover shirt1 synthetic short-sleeved shirtMarmot Precip rain jacketFood system:Food bag (nylon), 50' parachute cord, 3 small carabiners2 Opsack odor-proof plastic bagsSeveral plastic ziplock bagsPlastic knifeSpork1 24-oz Smart Water bottle1 Sawyer mini filter1 backwash plungerSleep system:1 Emergency blanket1 16-oz pee bottle 1 Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 1 tent1 20-degree EMS down sleeping bag1 rollup sleeping bag (6.7 oz)Gear:ULA Catalyst backpack (3 lbs)Black Diamond headlampSOG titanimu knife (0.4 oz)AWOL map pages (200 miles at a time)REI waterproof pack coverWhistlePersonal items:PhoneBackup charger, cable, plastic ziplock carrying bag3 extra AAA batteries for headlampTweezersNail clippers4 insecticide wipesToothbrush/toothpasteQtips (about 15)Lip balmDental flossToilet paper Sunscreen*Hand sanitizer*Biodegradable soap*(* repackaged in small plastic bottles)First Aid kit1 large gauze pad4" square moleskin10 Doxycycline tablets for tick bites (thanks, Doc)Antibiotic cream (3 very small containers)Medical tape (about 12" wound around a straw)Duct tape (about an arm's length wound around a straw)2 alcohol pads6 band-aids

IMO going back to what Thom (Cheyou) said about the big 4 is the place to start because, as is often said, those are the 'low-hanging fruit' with the biggest potential for weight savings. Also it's very useful to have a good, accurate scale to see what things weigh, and use a spreadsheet app such as geargrams or lighterpack. But even if you don't use a scale or use a spreadsheet app, and you get the lightest items in each of those categories then you'll still be doing well even if you don't know the exact number.

For instance, and going back to Thom's suggestion, compare just the ULA Catalyst (48oz) and the Arc Haul (24oz), and the Copper Spur (35oz) and the Solplex (15.5oz), and you're looking at a weight savings of 43.5oz (2.7 lbs) with only 2 items! I don't know which EMS 20deg bag you have, but the Mountain Light is listed at 2lb 8oz (40oz, without stuff sack) while an Enlightened Equipment Enigma 20deg quilt weighs about 20oz, so there's another 1.25 lbs, for a total of 4 lbs.

I realize replacing all these things isn't cheap, but these are examples of actual weight savings.

Moving on to smaller items, 50 feet of paracord is actually fairly heavy compared to 1.8mm dyneema, and there are some things like a pee bottle that I just do without... I just get up and go water the vegetation for that. :)

And even things like carabiners..... do you really need those, or could you figure out a work-around?

TwoRoads
05-05-2018, 19:28
I must say that from the suggestions in the last two pages, I've been able to reduce my pack weight from 37 pounds (from my 100 mile trip in mid-April), down to 22.5 pounds (at least measuring somewhat inaccurately on my bathroom scale). MUCH appreciation to everyone for your suggestions to this point. Now with cmoulder's detailed post, it seems likely that I can take it to sub-20! So I'm really excited for my next trip to try out my total pack makeover. But the pee bottle will have to stay :)

TwoRoads
05-05-2018, 19:31
Oh, and cmoulder, I do have an ounce scale, which I've used extensively, but was not aware of lighterpack.com. I will be using those tools to get a much more accurate measure of my weight. Thanks!

cmoulder
05-05-2018, 21:16
I must say that from the suggestions in the last two pages, I've been able to reduce my pack weight from 37 pounds (from my 100 mile trip in mid-April), down to 22.5 pounds (at least measuring somewhat inaccurately on my bathroom scale). MUCH appreciation to everyone for your suggestions to this point. Now with cmoulder's detailed post, it seems likely that I can take it to sub-20! So I'm really excited for my next trip to try out my total pack makeover. But the pee bottle will have to stay :)
Wow, 14.5lb is a big deal! Your back and knees are gonna thank you. :sun

bigcranky
05-05-2018, 21:44
Wow, 14.5lb is a big deal! Your back and knees are gonna thank you. :sun

Yeah, we can argue about ounces all day long, but ~15 pounds is really noticeable.

Deacon
05-07-2018, 15:37
What is your ideal target for base weight (without food and water) and what is your not-to-exceed?

My ideal target is to hike with no weight on my back at all. But since that isnít reasonable, I want as little weight as possible. That said, Iím always looking for ways to reduce pack weight.

Once you get the big four down, then take a hard look at everything else in your kit. We can hold each individual item in our hand and say, ďthat doesnít weight muchĒ, and that would be true. Whatís difficult to understand is the weight of the individual item doesnít go away, and is additive to every other item. Iím sure you already know this but Iím just stating the fact.

I take the approach to weight every single item, no matter how small or light. A lot of folks on here will laugh at me for this. Once you weigh an item, ask first if you really need it, then if yes, is there something else that could be substituted in its place. Can the weight for a 1 ounce item be replaced with a half ounce item?

If that seems useless, consider that if you did that with every item in your pack, youíd cut your total pack weight in half.

Good suggestion above about the 3 carabiners. Why do you need those? Leave them home and save 100% of the weight on those. Also why carry hand sanitizer AND soap? One or the other.

Also, why duct tape AND medical tape. Try Luekotape for both.

Oh, to answer your not to exceed, for me itís 22 lbs. max with five days food and a half liter of water. Almost never carry more than a half liter. I just tank up every two hours.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

cmoulder
05-07-2018, 17:14
Going stoveless is also not necessary, unless you simply prefer it, of course.

I find that I really need my hot coffee and cereal in the morning, and I'm not happy without a hot dinner.

But a stove setup needn't be heavy. Pictured below is my setup with Toaks 550, inCycle cup, Esbit tri-wing stove, silicone Hot Lips, lighter, GSI spoon and stuff sack which together weigh 128g (4.52oz) and fuel weight (2x 14g tabs and 1x 5g tab) is about 35g (1.25oz) per day, so the total stove/fuel weight for a 4- or 5-night trip is going to be about 10oz. If I want to use alcohol, it's easy enough switch to the Starlyte with pot support and denatured alcohol for fuel, which weighs about 3-4 total oz more because BTUs per unit of alcohol is less than that of Esbit, and some sort of bottle is needed for alcohol. Still not too shabby, though!!

42647

TwoRoads
05-08-2018, 19:31
Pretty much have finished putting in my new ultralight backpacking list into https://lighterpack.com. What a tool! My base weight is now 15.31 pounds (I don't have a comparison (before) weight; total weight without "worn weight" is 22.2 pounds (before total weight was 37 pounds), so I was very close when I said I had reduced total weight by 15 pounds. I'm seriously considering the Zpacks ArcBlast AND the Solplex tent. Am looking at the Enlightened Equipment Enigma with some interest, but just the other two would put me sub-20 pounds total warm weather weight.

I think I will stay stoveless, as I like the convenience factor and I'm building my options pretty well. However, cmoulder, I have to say my stove and pot combination was almost identical to yours.

As far as looking at other ounce-saving options, I think that will be an ongoing thing, but the suggestions given have been very helpful. I already had questioned why I am carrying both soap and hand sanitizer, for example.

trailmercury
05-09-2018, 12:03
I'm seriously considering the Zpacks ArcBlast AND the Solplex tent


I returned a Solplex and bought an Altaplex instead. Just not enough room in the Solplex for me (6'1", 185).. a weight penalty I'm OK with
I opted for the Arc Haul vs Arc Blast, a weight penalty, but the Haul fabric is more robust and can take more abuse.
There comes a point of diminishing returns, and I want to be comfortable #1 (my pad is a BA Q-Core SLX wide...far from the lightest pad, but pretty darn cushy for its weight!)

I could see myself going stoveless on short trips, but not a thru.

TwoRoads
05-09-2018, 19:59
Your points on the tent and pack are well-taken. I looked at the other packs, even to looking at the two zippered ones, and between the ArcBlast and the ArcHaul, I'm torn. I do like the added durability as a trade for the 3 extra ounces. I don't think I need the extra volume, but I could easily be underestimating that, especially considering my 22 pound total weight is SUMMER weight, and during my 10-day hike in mid-April, I had 5 extra pieces of layers. As far as the tent, the extra 6 inches in width with the AltaPlex would be welcome as a trade-off for the 2 extra ounces. I don't think I need the extra height as much as the extra width being nice. So I'm weighing the differences and hoping to be able to see some of the Zpacks product line at Trail Days in Damascus (they will be there).

AngryGerman
06-20-2018, 19:04
Years ago when I was a tike I read a book by Earl Shaffer. I since have adopted similar practices with newer gear. Multi-purposing gear is a great way to cut back on the weight. Modifying your gear to save weight is also a tactic many ULer's use. I by no means am a gram weenie; more of an ounce weenie.
I went to a Gossamer Silverback vs my GG VC 60 to save more than a pound. Have many quilts and sleeping bags all varying in weight. Western Mountaineering has a 32* bag weighing in at 19.1oz. Mountain Laurel Designs has a synthetic quilt coming in at 21oz. I have synthetic and down alike for different seasons and locations. Surprisingly I have synthetic quilts and jackets that are real close to the weight of down.
My base weight when hiking solo is 9.67lbs and with my wife it climbs to just over 10lbs. In the winter my base weight goes up depending on the terrain and conditions. Am I carrying skies, snowshoes, crampons and/or mountaineering boots etc.
Total weight also varies with the season drastically for me. Winter conditions and higher elevations usually means lots more food. I usually only carry a liter at a time on the AT but out west sometimes you got to "camel up". Occasionally on the AT "cameling up" is good practice too. Water gets a bit scarce in places. Treat or not to treat? Sometimes I carry drops and sometimes I carry a Sawyer.
To Summarize, you can only carry so much and what you carry can only perform/comfort you so much. In order to decide what your comfort/weight limit is it will take many years of practice and lots of discipline. Shorter outings doesn't mean you should be packing more weight. Always work on the discipline part of it and stick to your gear lists.

shelb
06-22-2018, 23:57
I might be really mistaken, but what I think matters is what you weight "skin out." Please, bear with me: take your total weight with all hiking stuff and minus your naked body. That is the skin out weight. Now, I realize this will change in different seasons.

MuddyWaters
06-23-2018, 00:41
I might be really mistaken, but what I think matters is what you weight "skin out." Please, bear with me: take your total weight with all hiking stuff and minus your naked body. That is the skin out weight. Now, I realize this will change in different seasons.

Of course it matters that why it was coined.. as another tool.

But it doesn't tell you anything about where your pack is in relation to the comfortable carry weight of it does it? So it's not the only tool you need.

In fact it's a very marginal tool for an individual, except when comparing heavy clunker boots and winter clothes to summer shorts and trail runners, where several pounds of clothing is added. In most cases it's not very much of a difference ever for warm weather clothing, for a single person. What they tend to wear is, what they tend to wear. And what someone else wears doesn't matter.


These items are tools to people that understand them.

The rest of ignorant folks, just argue pointlessly about things that they have no understanding of. Most with the idea that it's all about bragging or some kind of b*******.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 06:18
These items are tools to people that understand them.

+1

And so often they're misunderstood and/or misapplied.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 06:31
I might be really mistaken, but what I think matters is what you weight "skin out." Please, bear with me: take your total weight with all hiking stuff and minus your naked body. That is the skin out weight. Now, I realize this will change in different seasons.

Of course this is true.

I like it mainly because it "outs" the SUL poseurs who like to hide stuff in their pockets. :D

Having looked at a bunch of gear lists, I'm getting a pretty good sense for spreadsheets that seem suspiciously incomplete. Almost always occurs when people claim a base weight that's just a tick under 5 lbs. ;)

Two Tents
06-23-2018, 09:00
"These items are tools to people that understand them.

The rest of ignorant folks, just argue pointlessly about things that they have no understanding of. Most with the idea that it's all about bragging or some kind of b*******."


And then you have the know it all heavy haulers who have no desire or gear that could get them to a sub 10 pound pack so they belittle others and change the definition of base weight.

Cheyou
06-23-2018, 10:10
Of course this is true.

I like it mainly because it "outs" the SUL poseurs who like to hide stuff in their pockets. :D

Having looked at a bunch of gear lists, I'm getting a pretty good sense for spreadsheets that seem suspiciously incomplete. Almost always occurs when people claim a base weight that's just a tick under 5 lbs. ;)

Using chipmunk cheek pockets is legit super duper Ultralite guru approved . In fact my base weight is 9oz . Just the weight of the pack alone .

weightless Thom

MuddyWaters
06-23-2018, 12:27
And then you have the know it all heavy haulers who have no desire or gear that could get them to a sub 10 pound pack so they belittle others and change the definition of base weight.


Hiking light, is about going faster and farther.
It frees you from resupplies and restrictions at a slower Pace places on you.

I would go as far to say
That if someone's hiking 10 miles a day or less, they have no need to even concern themselves with base pack weight as it relates to UL. Their hurdle is probably not their pack weight either.
From 15 to 20mpd being UL is a big help, with total pack weights under 25 for a long resupply.

When you start getting up to 25 miles a day getting that ul weigh down into the five to seven pound range is very advantageous.total pack about 18-20 max

And for targeting 30 miles a day..... Keep whole pack with resupply under 15. Pushing SUL.

And if not hiking these kind of mileage , some really don't don't understand what the weights even mean, or why its important. But just go ahead and believe it's about bragging rights or such. Yeah a lot of newbies fall into this category when they try and put together a gear list having never hiked before.

Two Tents
06-23-2018, 12:48
"And if you're not hiking these kind of mileage you really don't don't understand what the weights even mean, or why its important. But go ahead and believe it's about bragging rights or such."

Well this is new. So if I do not hike far I need not attempt to carry less and its a long distance thing. Gee here I was thinking less on my back simply feels better. I don't understand important things? That's subjective. I did not realize I was not allowed to hike my own hike and enjoy putting together an ultralight kit.

MuddyWaters
06-23-2018, 14:01
Well this is new. So if I do not hike far I need not attempt to carry less and its a long distance thing. Gee here I was thinking less on my back simply feels better. I don't understand important things? That's subjective. I did not realize I was not allowed to hike my own hike and enjoy putting together an ultralight kit.

No one said you couldn't do whatever you wanted to do.

But being ul and Hiking 10 miles a day is like driving a ferrari to the grocery story.
Looks flashy, but that not what it designed for. If you only drive it 35, youll never really experience or understand it.

Two Tents
06-23-2018, 14:38
But being ul and Hiking 10 miles a day is like driving a ferrari to the grocery story.
Looks flashy, but that not what it designed for. If you only drive it 35, youll never really experience or understand it.

Yea but in the end I still get my groceries. Don't be in a hurry to condemn me cause I don't do what you do or think as you think or hike as fast or as far. Once you carry less its tough to go back to carrying more. There was a time when you didn't know the things you know today. Its all good. Just sayin. Peace, Two Tents

DownYonder
06-23-2018, 19:50
Hiking light, is about going faster and farther.
It frees you from resupplies and restrictions at a slower Pace places on you.

I would go as far to say
That if someone's hiking 10 miles a day or less, they have no need to even concern themselves with base pack weight as it relates to UL. Their hurdle is probably not their pack weight either.
From 15 to 20mpd being UL is a big help, with total pack weights under 25 for a long resupply.

When you start getting up to 25 miles a day getting that ul weigh down into the five to seven pound range is very advantageous.total pack about 18-20 max

And for targeting 30 miles a day..... Keep whole pack with resupply under 15. Pushing SUL.

And if not hiking these kind of mileage , some really don't don't understand what the weights even mean, or why its important. But just go ahead and believe it's about bragging rights or such. Yeah a lot of newbies fall into this category when they try and put together a gear list having never hiked before.

Seriously MW, I know you have tremendous insight and knowledge to share with others but when you start saying that people fall into "this category" that is a bit condescending. Is there a secret handshake we also need to learn to be cool?

Feral Bill
06-23-2018, 20:16
Many modern packs, including rather light ones, can hold quite heavy loads without discomfort. Until, of course, you start uphill and have to do literal work lifting the weight hundreds or thousands of feet. At that point, whether the weight is in the pack or worn does not matter, excepting the weight of footwear, which is worst of all. So, regardless of your mileage, it's FSO that matters. And it matters more with greater elevation gain. Base weight is not really that useful of a comparison tool.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 20:28
Yea but in the end I still get my groceries. Don't be in a hurry to condemn me cause I don't do what you do or think as you think or hike as fast or as far. Once you carry less its tough to go back to carrying more. There was a time when you didn't know the things you know today. Its all good. Just sayin. Peace, Two Tents

I'm UL pretty much all the time. I have a lot of really good UL gear. What am I supposed to do... buy heavy crap for shorter trips? :o
I'm spoiled. I deserve it after a few decades carrying around the kitchen sink.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 20:41
Many modern packs, including rather light ones, can hold quite heavy loads without discomfort. Until, of course, you start uphill and have to do literal work lifting the weight hundreds or thousands of feet. At that point, whether the weight is in the pack or worn does not matter, excepting the weight of footwear, which is worst of all. So, regardless of your mileage, it's FSO that matters. And it matters more with greater elevation gain. Base weight is not really that useful of a comparison tool.

Base weight is where the "low hanging fruit" is found.

Careful selection of shelter, sleep, cook, pack and clothing systems can lop off several pounds of weight and a huge amount of volume. That's all base weight.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 20:45
Using chipmunk cheek pockets is legit super duper Ultralite guru approved . In fact my base weight is 9oz . Just the weight of the pack alone .

weightless Thom

Whoa! Got a link for those?? :D

Slo-go'en
06-23-2018, 20:54
Base weight is not really that useful of a comparison tool.

It's still a useful metric, so long it as included all the clothing which will be carried most of the time. If you mostly hike in a t-shirt and shorts, that weight is insignificant in comparison to your overall body weight.

You should always aim for the lowest pack weight you can manage for a given situation. A one or two night on the first day of Summer takes less gear then a week in April.

Feral Bill
06-23-2018, 21:03
Base weight is where the "low hanging fruit" is found.

Careful selection of shelter, sleep, cook, pack and clothing systems can lop off several pounds of weight and a huge amount of volume. That's all base weight. Clothing worn, which can be anywhere from a couple to several pounds is not counted as base weight. You still have to lug it.

Feral Bill
06-23-2018, 21:08
It's still a useful metric, so long it as included all the clothing which will be carried most of the time. If you mostly hike in a t-shirt and shorts, that weight is insignificant in comparison to your overall body weight.

You should always aim for the lowest pack weight you can manage for a given situation. A one or two night on the first day of Summer takes less gear then a week in April.


True enough, I like a light pack. I'm not so fond of dishonesty, especially in an activity that I don't see as a competition.

cmoulder
06-23-2018, 21:14
Clothing worn, which can be anywhere from a couple to several pounds is not counted as base weight. You still have to lug it.
I understand this. When it is carried it is base weight. I thought this was axiomatic.

You can click my geargrams link in my sig to see how this is handled.

Two Tents
06-23-2018, 21:41
I understand this. When it is carried it is base weight. I thought this was axiomatic.
You can click my geargrams link in my sig to see how this is handled.

And all the consumables plus the base weight of your pack is your pack weight. Pack weight plus what you are wearing is the skin out weight.

MuddyWaters
06-23-2018, 23:36
Yea but in the end I still get my groceries. Don't be in a hurry to condemn me cause I don't do what you do or think as you think or hike as fast or as far. Once you carry less its tough to go back to carrying more. There was a time when you didn't know the things you know today. Its all good. Just sayin. Peace, Two Tents

Didn't condemn anything.

But don't tell me I can't have observations or opinions.

Most fit active long distance hikers , maintain an aerobic workload. As you reduce their weight, the mileage and speed automatically will go up, because it can. There's great freedom in being able to resupplying once every hundred miles or more, instead of once every 30. It opens opportunities to you that you simply don't have at heavy weights and lower mileage. Not everywhere is like the AT.

Not to mention hiking opportunities.
Cant take 6 weeks off work to hike? Trails become shorter at 150 miles per week .
Much shorter at 220+ for exceptional people.

Feral Bill
06-24-2018, 00:31
n There's great freedom in being able to resupplying once every hundred miles or more, instead of once every 30. It opens opportunities to you that you simply don't have at heavy weights and lower mileage. There are a number of places in the west that slowpokes like me would find very difficult for this reason. More an age and conditioning thing for me, but a few less pounds wouldn't hurt.

MuddyWaters
06-24-2018, 02:18
There are a number of places in the west that slowpokes like me would find very difficult for this reason. More an age and conditioning thing for me, but a few less pounds wouldn't hurt.

Precisely.
For instance one can hike the big SEKI loop
It's the best part of the JMT as well as awsome areas of SEKI.
It's 160 miles.
But no ability to resupply.

Back to the point there's people who think that base weight is about bragging rights
And those people simply don't understand the ramifications of weight carried.
And yeah there's a lot of newbies that make up gear list on geargrams wanting to be UL without ever having set foot on a trail...... And they dont understand the reasons you need it. It's not really about "comfort". Some of my hardest hurting days have been with my lowest weights carried. The reason, is because those are also some of my highest mileage days.

Malto
06-24-2018, 07:31
Precisely.
For instance one can hike the big SEKI loop
It's the best part of the JMT as well as awsome areas of SEKI.
It's 160 miles.
But no ability to resupply.

Back to the point there's people who think that base weight is about bragging rights
And those people simply don't understand the ramifications of weight carried.
And yeah there's a lot of newbies that make up gear list on geargrams wanting to be UL without ever having set foot on a trail...... And they dont understand the reasons you need it. It's not really about "comfort". Some of my hardest hurting days have been with my lowest weights carried. The reason, is because those are also some of my highest mileage days.
You perfectly articulated why I both reduced pack weight and started doing much higher hiking days. I was traveling one week a month to Ca and was backpacking in the Sierra usually for three days every trip. As I learned of all the cool places in Kings Canyon and Yosemite a lightweight, "fast" style was needed to see all of those hidden gems. It had nothing to do with bragging rights or irrelevant spreadsheets. Likewise, it enabled me to hike many midrange and long trails in vacation chunks. I even has able to thru hike the PCT. No way could I have taken a 5 month leave of absence, but a 100 day combination of vacation and a much shorter leave of absence was feasibible both financially for me and acceptable for my employer.

Dogwood
06-25-2018, 01:16
...Most fit active long distance hikers , maintain an aerobic workload. As you(we) reduce their(our) weight, the mileage and speed automatically will go up, because it can. There's great freedom in being able to resupplying once every hundred miles or more, instead of once every 30. It opens opportunities to you that you simply don't have at heavy weights and lower mileage. Not everywhere is like the AT.

Not to mention hiking opportunities.
Cant take 6 weeks off work to hike? Trails become shorter at 150 miles per week .
Much shorter at 220+ for exceptional people.




Precisely.
For instance one can hike the big SEKI loop
It's the best part of the JMT as well as awsome areas of SEKI.
It's 160 miles.
But no ability to resupply.

Back to the point there's people who think that base weight is about bragging rights
And those people simply don't understand the ramifications of weight carried.
And yeah there's a lot of newbies that make up gear list on geargrams wanting to be UL without ever having set foot on a trail...... And they dont understand the reasons you need it. It's not really about "comfort". Some of my hardest hurting days have been with my lowest weights carried. The reason, is because those are also some of my highest mileage days.


For me having an appropriate lighter wt and lower volume kit does very much include comfort, less fatigue, which equates to less risk of hike ending injury. As one inclined to LD it equates to having endurance over man weeks, perhaps 6-12 months. It's not just about making hikes of shorter duration through bigger MPD avgs or spreading out distance between resupply although that can be a big benefit. The UL/SUL kit is part of what can potentially make it happen but the kit is just a tool, one aspect of several that brings many things together to potentially make for higher mileage days(IF desired), greater speed(IF desired), faster hikes, and lowered risk of injury. An UL kit without the skill set to match the hike and uh meh one still probably isn't going to hike mega mileage.

cmoulder
06-25-2018, 06:04
Indeed, although a well-honed UL kit, excellent fitness and top notch skill set are mandatory for these huge distances, one needn't do mega mileage to appreciate the benefits of hiking with a light pack.

Dogwood
06-25-2018, 14:30
Indeed, although a well-honed UL kit, excellent fitness and top notch skill set are mandatory for these huge distances, one needn't do mega mileage to appreciate the benefits of hiking with a light pack.


One of the influences GoLite marketing had was associating going lighter with going faster...and that was often associated with doing bigger MPD. That association is deeply embedded in many hiker's psyche. That's all fine but it doesn't have to be "the" only reason for always going lighter.


There's another way of looking at it in regard to resupply too. For example, if the non consumables portion of one's kit is UL and low bulk then it allows some wt and volume wiggle room for larger food hauls (and maybe H2O), food hauls of a greater number of days. This too is another way of approaching longer distances between resupply. Going lighter doesn't mean you have to always associate it with going faster or avg bigger MPD avgs.


This works in reverse too! Minimize food wt and food bulk(and H2O) and it translates into having wiggle room for possibly some "luxuries" or other desired gear.


Lowering wt and bulk of non consumable kit categories also allows the option of bringing along some fresh "living" food or some coffee or tea, etc. Trade Offs are allowed. HYOH.

Slo-go'en
06-25-2018, 16:19
I'm finding a 15 pound load (leaving the trail head) is a lot kinder on my knees then a 20 or 25 pound load is. Which has made a hugh difference in White Mnt hiking with it's insanely steep trail and boulder climbs. I might not be going much faster or further, but I don't hurt as much at the end of the day doing it. These poor knees have seen some abuse over the years.

Currently I'm limited to 2.5 days of non-cook food and need a couple of rain free nights to keep the total load under 15 pounds and fit into my 30L North Face day pack. The NF pack is a little on the heavy side, but am willing to suffer the extra pound for durability and comfort. Thankfully, I can time my trips to coincide with ideal weather - like the next 2.5 days...

DownYonder
06-25-2018, 17:04
One of the influences GoLite marketing had was associating going lighter with going faster...and that was often associated with doing bigger MPD. That association is deeply embedded in many hiker's psyche. That's all fine but it doesn't have to be "the" only reason for always going lighter.


There's another way of looking at it in regard to resupply too. For example, if the non consumables portion of one's kit is UL and low bulk then it allows some wt and volume wiggle room for larger food hauls (and maybe H2O), food hauls of a greater number of days. This too is another way of approaching longer distances between resupply. Going lighter doesn't mean you have to always associate it with going faster or avg bigger MPD avgs.


This works in reverse too! Minimize food wt and food bulk(and H2O) and it translates into having wiggle room for possibly some "luxuries" or other desired gear.


Lowering wt and bulk of non consumable kit categories also allows the option of bringing along some fresh "living" food or some coffee or tea, etc. Trade Offs are allowed. HYOH.

I agree with your sentiment 100%. I will add that going lighter can extend one's hiking career. For some reason, mountaineering with 50+ lbs was doable 20 yrs ago but not anymore.

reppans
06-25-2018, 21:44
I'm finding a 15 pound load (leaving the trail head) is a lot kinder on my knees then a 20 or 25 pound load is. Which has made a hugh difference in White Mnt hiking with it's insanely steep trail and boulder climbs. I might not be going much faster or further, but I don't hurt as much at the end of the day doing it. These poor knees have seen some abuse over the years.

Currently I'm limited to 2.5 days of non-cook food and need a couple of rain free nights to keep the total load under 15 pounds and fit into my 30L North Face day pack. The NF pack is a little on the heavy side, but am willing to suffer the extra pound for durability and comfort. Thankfully, I can time my trips to coincide with ideal weather - like the next 2.5 days...

Nice.. I'm pretty close that tot. pack weight for a 2.5D... say ~6lbs consumables, 4lbs pack/change clothes, and 5lbs of camping gear? (except that includes rain gear, double wall tent, and stove/pot)

Nodust
06-26-2018, 06:04
For some reason, mountaineering with 50+ lbs was doable 20 yrs ago but not anymore.

Plus as I get older I get more forgetful. Less stuff to keep track of helps:)

Shaker
07-12-2018, 20:03
Base weight is relative to the hiker. A 6'2" 200-lb man with broad shoulders is going to need a bigger quilt, pad, tent, clothes, etc. than a 100-lb 5'2" female.

I personally carry everything I want in an external frame pack and tie several large helium balloons to it to offset the weight. :banana

Shaker

George
07-12-2018, 21:46
I personally carry everything I want in an external frame pack and tie several large helium balloons to it to offset the weight. :banana

Shaker

I want to take this a little farther till I have a NEGATIVE base weight

spfleisig
07-13-2018, 14:57
My total weight for my weeklong trip this july will be right at 15 lbs including 2 liters of water, 16 oz of Jack Daniels and food for 4 days

How do you do that! I must be doing something very wrong. I have a HMG Windrider 2400 (that I can't fit all my stuff in), a very small 45* bag, Neoair Xlite pad and a TarpTent StratoSpire 1.

CalebJ
07-13-2018, 15:14
How do you do that! I must be doing something very wrong. I have a HMG Windrider 2400 (that I can't fit all my stuff in), a very small 45* bag, Neoair Xlite pad and a TarpTent StratoSpire 1.
15 pounds is hard to fathom. Even assuming 1.5 pounds of food per day (I hover closer to 2), that's 6 pounds of food, 1 pound of Jack, and 4 pounds of water. 4 pounds remaining for pack, shelter, sleeping bag/quilt, pad, etc? It's possible, but would have to be ultralight across the board for sure.

DownYonder
07-13-2018, 15:22
How do you do that! I must be doing something very wrong. I have a HMG Windrider 2400 (that I can't fit all my stuff in), a very small 45* bag, Neoair Xlite pad and a TarpTent StratoSpire 1.

Not that difficult. Explained in this article: https://thetrek.co/hike_naked_day_2015/

George
07-13-2018, 16:12
How do you do that! I must be doing something very wrong. I have a HMG Windrider 2400 (that I can't fit all my stuff in), a very small 45* bag, Neoair Xlite pad and a TarpTent StratoSpire 1.



air right, you asked: a 45 ish degree (night temp) setup:

MLD core 28 - modified with a padded hip belt 11oz

borah cuban bivy 5oz

gate wood cape, strings and carbon fiber stakes 14oz

gossamer gear 1/4 in foam pad, trimmed 4.5oz

sea to summit 35 degree mummy 17.5 oz

fuel tab kitchen 3oz

water bottles 3oz

stuff sack 1.5oz

toilet paper, aqua mira, + all other 11oz

base wt 4.4lb



not in pack:

shorts, wind shirt, socks and sun hat 12oz

shoes 22oz

carbon fiber stick 10 oz

total 42oz



start or leaving town consumables:

liquid 40oz

food 4days 120oz

fuel tabs 4 days (8 burns) 8oz

total 168oz



skin out wt 17.5lb

pack wt with 4 days consumables 14.9lb


add a spare snickers bar and you have a 15 lb pack wt


it has a full shelter with bug protection,
ability to cook,
and treat water

enough hip belt to avoid misery - the pad inside the pack gives some structure
and a stuff sack to strap on the outside (sleeping bag and tarp), until the food volume goes down

definitely light on clothes - worst case, stay in the sleeping bag until it warms up a bit

George
07-13-2018, 16:21
My total weight for my weeklong trip this july will be right at 15 lbs including 2 liters of water, 16 oz of Jack Daniels and food for 4 days

just in case any one was wondering - gambit always hikes barefoot, naked and no stick - so pack weight and skin out are the same (the JD keeps him warm)

CalebJ
07-13-2018, 20:27
For what it's worth, that list doesn't include 1.5 pounds of water.

DownYonder
07-13-2018, 20:59
@george Very light weight! What do you do about all the small items that add up: eating utensil, rope to hang food bag, headlamp, first aid kit, sunscreen, soap pads, trash bag pack liner, sunglasses, cell phone, bic lighter, ......?

ETA: I will probably regret asking but what about underwear and a change of socks?

yooperman
07-13-2018, 21:28
Right on man

George
07-13-2018, 22:14
@george Very light weight! What do you do about all the small items that add up: eating utensil, rope to hang food bag, headlamp, first aid kit, sunscreen, soap pads, trash bag pack liner, sunglasses, cell phone, bic lighter, ......?

ETA: I will probably regret asking but what about underwear and a change of socks?

no change, rinse the socks at night - shorts (with mesh insert) and wind shirt when there is a chance to bathe

spoon, utility knife blade and mini bic are included with the 3oz kitchen - foster can pot/ cup is boil only so no wash


no phone, or light(other than lighter) - bivy lines the pack for rain, and the gatewood cape covers the pack


in the 11oz is everything else you ask about:

partial roll toilet paper

a few advil

partial roll athletic tape

partial bottle deet

sun glasses

a few storm proof matches

about 1/2 motel size soap - will do 1 body and clothes wash between towns

partial aqua mira

partial zinc oxide based sunscreen - also used for monkey butt

@30ft of spectra line to hang bag - seldom used, reality is the choice of pillow is stinky shoes or the food

enough for 4 days - if you have to buy full containers for resupply, these weights will of course run over, you can dump part or with the common 3 day resupply the extra odds and ends (with only 3 days food/ fuel) could still result in 15lb pack wt leaving town