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Glenn
10-20-2009, 13:43
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and got the family tent on your back. You have cans of soup and plan on starting a campfire. Any ultra-heavy campers out there? This is not me but my gear is old and wonder what others think.

Jack Tarlin
10-20-2009, 13:48
I think that folks need to decide for themselves what they want to carry, and at the end of the day, it's nobody else's business.

People spend altogether too much time speculating and commenting on what other folks are doing out there and what their pack weighs. Most of these comments are snarky and gossipy. People should carry what they like, and they should like what they carry, and they have no obligation to explain or rationalize this to anyone.

lazy river road
10-20-2009, 13:51
Im a total newb....Before I decided to E2E...I loaded up my non-framed pack, my marmot aura 3p, wisperlight international, lafuma 40, some soup, other random cans of food, one change of cloths and a couple other essentials Id need on a extended hike...I went for a 4 hr hike and was miserable.....it was then i decided that proper gear was a must if seriously considering a long distance hike.....I have started investing in lighter gear and a much better pack...IDK if this answers your question but lighter is def better.....

Dancer
10-20-2009, 14:01
Gear is for your comfort and safety. Just as some people go irresponsibly ultralight (don't carry a tent and then throw a fit when there is no room in a shelter), some go irresponsibly heavy. Inproper clothing can indanger your life. Often it rains for days on end and a campfire is impossible. If you are carrying a very heavy pack it may be tempting to leave those soup cans behind instead of packing them out. I've heard stories of the trail in Georgia being littered with lanterns, jars of peanut butter and other stupidly heavy gear because the owner didn't realize what a 70 lb pack would feel like going up hill.

I've also heard people say the carry a camp stool and lots of other extras that are heavy and don't mind the weight because of the comfort level. Some people thru with a 2 man tent for the extra room.

Hike your own hike and carry what you want, but be responsible. Make sure your clothing and gear are adequate to keep you warm and safe. Practice Leave No Trace and don't rely on other hikers to fill in the gaps.

nox
10-20-2009, 14:03
I went out for a 3 day this weekend in the rain with 3 of my friends. I carried all kinds of extra crap i would never take on a long trip. About 2 lbs of dry wood, a can of baked beans, i wore my waterproof, leather, work boots. One of my buddies carried a 12x16 poly tarp for us to hang out under, and an extra sleeping bag (trying out a new one). Another friend brought a double burner coleman stove!! He was convinced we wouldn't get a suitable fire to cook on. We had an awesome weekend! Sure we carried a lot of unnecessary stuff but it made the trip memorable.

Gray Blazer
10-20-2009, 14:08
I don't know how I survived all those years wearing blue jeans and t-shirts out in the woods. I guess God takes care of fools and morons.

Gray Blazer
10-20-2009, 14:09
I know I'll never wear steel toe boots again while hiking down a mountain. I think all my toes were broken.

Mags
10-20-2009, 14:31
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and got the family tent on your back. You have cans of soup and plan on starting a campfire. Any ultra-heavy campers out there? This is not me but my gear is old and wonder what others think.

Other than the sneakers, that is how I started. (http://www.pmags.com/joomla/index.php/Outdoor-Writings/first_bp.html) I now wear sneakers when hiking. :)



I do not like hiking in blue jeans because they are heavy and constrictive. When they get wet, they suck heat out of you. If you are on a budget (and don't like the shorts/underwear combo), some cheap Dickies (poly-cotton 65/35 blend) from the thifter works fine for 3 season backpacking.

amac
10-21-2009, 04:40
I agree with the other responses. How you hike/backpack is totally your call, and what others think shouldn't really matter. What DOES matter is safety and enjoyment. Safety means cotton is bad. Since your stuff is old, I'm reading between the lines that that means you may not want to spend a thousand dollars on new stuff, just yet. Walmart has UnderArmor-like base layer for cheap money (like $12). If your old gear works for you, then that's all that is important.

Crazy Larry #1
10-21-2009, 05:01
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and got the family tent on your back. You have cans of soup and plan on starting a campfire. Any ultra-heavy campers out there? This is not me but my gear is old and wonder what others think.
At least once or twice a month I witness the Jethro's of the Beverly Hillbilly's walk down the trail in either direction....

Spokes
10-21-2009, 05:53
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and got the family tent on your back. You have cans of soup and plan on starting a campfire. Any ultra-heavy campers out there? This is not me but my gear is old and wonder what others think.

Ahhh, visions of Emma "Grandma" Gatewood.

Lostone
10-21-2009, 08:49
After spending a year or so reading all the opinions posted here.


It is very clear that there is no right or wrong answers. You use what works for you. Don't worry about gear, brand names or status symbols.


Pack your gear and enjoy your trip.

yaduck9
10-21-2009, 10:12
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes, and got the family tent on your back. You have cans of soup and plan on starting a campfire. Any ultra-heavy campers out there? This is not me but my gear is old and wonder what others think.


Everyone has to start somewhere, and most of the folks I know started the way you are suggesting. I am assuming that your going on a short distance on an overnighter and checking to make sure that no rain is in the forecast.

Some of my best memories are those early experiences.

Go and have fun.

skinewmexico
10-21-2009, 10:26
Better to be out there, than sitting home worrying about what other people think.

Trooper
10-21-2009, 10:30
As long as they're enjoying themselves, being considerate of others and staying safe...who cares?

sherrill
10-21-2009, 10:36
Man, back in the 70's all we had were jeans and flannel.

Nowadays I am fortunate enough to be able to afford more modern hiking attire. But as Mags and others have pointed out so well, you can find good stuff cheap (check out thrift stores - you won't believe the great things there).

Some bad trail memories for me involve unasked for/unwanted critiquing of my gear. I don't ever offer any opinion on another person's gear unless asked directly, and even then I try to spin positive on their choice.

Most of all, just be comfortable in your own skin and enjoy yourself.

beakerman
10-21-2009, 10:52
All of these discusions about "proper" gear and the "right" way to do it....blah, blah blah...

Everyone is so freaking spoiled now. I hope you all realise that for decades before the widespread availibility of silnylon and other "miracle" modern fabrics those old-timers were humping heavy gear up and down all of your trails. So I ask who the "real" hikers are: the gram wienies or those folks that pioneered the way with canvas tents and external frame packs?

I'm not saying you are wrong for making your pack as light as you can--I do it too but lets get off this pseudo-religion of UL Ok? As long as you are safe, enjoying yourself and not ruining it for others there is no right or wrong way to pack.

tammons
10-21-2009, 11:57
All I wore back in the 70s and 80s for regular winter hiking was jeans and a flannel shirt. Also packed or wore wool socks, wool sweater, down vest, polarguard parka, regular thermals, Tent.

For a short hike it doesnt matter as long as you dont get wet.

In 74 I hitched around the entire country and went on numorous hiking excursions, trail hikes, NM, Utah, Colo, Grand Canyon, Cali. I was gone for months. All I had was jeans and a couple of shirts, one flannel. Never had a problem except one time when we were sleeping in a bad spot and I woke up in my down bag with the bottom soaked.

Mags
10-21-2009, 12:26
For a short hike it doesnt matter as long as you dont get wet.



Bingo. :)

Spend the $10 total for an old pair of Dickies and some synthetic blend of shirts (again, the 65/35 blend is OK. Blair sells 100% acrlyic shirts for cheap and they often wind up in the thrifter). I am not macho..I don't see why I have to make myself uncomfortable and possibly unsafe when you can spend a a 10 spot. ;)

Anyway, this type of discussion comes up often. "I have older gear that may not be functional as I like...but I don't want to spend a lot of money"

I don't blame people. Who wants to spend a lot of $$$ for the simple act of walking. But, you DON'T have to spend a lot of money to get basic, functional and relatively comfortable gear. Again, I am a wus.. and I suspect the uber-macho men who carried canvas tents and similar would prefer lighter, functional gear, too. (Eric Ryback, he of the 70bs lbs ND first person to thru-hike the PCT said as such at a recent PCT gathering!)

The main thing, though, is what I call the three only real rules of the outdoors:



Be safe
Be courteous to other outdoor users
Have fun!


1 and 3 are easier to do with some functional gear that won't leave you cold and wet. :) Not too mention the countless people who now hate camping and backpacking because they were cold, wet and miserable. :o




BOILER PLATE COPY AND PASTE FROM
http://www.pmags.com/joomla/index.php/Backpacking-and-Hiking-documents/Backpacking-A-Beginners-Primer.html
:D


Quality Gear on the Cheap: If you read those glossy outdoor magazines, you'd think you need a $300 pack, a $300 shell and a $300 fleece. You do not need expensive gear to enjoy backpacking. Often the brand name gear, besides being expensive, is heavy, bulky and overkill for what is supposed to be for the simple joy of walking.
Though written for the Appalachian Trail, the general concepts apply for quality gear on the cheap:
http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?p=206678#post206678

Some additional information I will add is that you should invest in a decent sleeping bag. The Campmor down bag is rated to 20F and is known as a good budget bag.
http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___40065
(http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___40065)

Need long underwear, hats, gloves, socks, etc? Check out Warm Stuff Distributing (aka The Underwear Guys) (http://www.theunderwearguys.com/) . Run, in part, by the well-know thru-hiker Fiddlehead, it features the basics for very reasonable prices. It is mainly surplus, seconds and irregulars. I find this type of clothing is not functionally different from the Patagucci clothing, is sometimes lighter and it is always less expensive!

If you are looking for a light, compressible and warm jacket check out an army liner jacket
(mentioned in the above article, but deserves to be emphasized) :
http://www.google.com/products?hl=en&q=field+jacket+liner&scoring=p (http://www.google.com/products?hl=en&q=field+jacket+liner&scoring=p)


If you don't mind a bit of sewing, you can make a Montbell Thermawrap clone for less than $20 with the above liner jacket. A men's large comes in at 12oz! Considering a Montbell Thermawrap is $150 and weights 10oz, the cheap way is nice for those on a budget on who need something warm, light and cheap!

Check it out: http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?t=41034

For high altitude/desert hiking I suggest a long sleeve synthetic shirt for the princely sum of $4 from many thrift stores. (Old uniform shirts, acrylic shirts from Blair, rayon blends, heck,,.even the 65/35 blends are fine!) I've used this type of shirt for literally several thousand miles of backpacking.

tammons
10-21-2009, 12:41
I never wear cotton now if I am going to be out for even a few days. Those were the post Hipie days and I would not be caught dead without jeans.

Wearing cotton now is just not worth the risk and its heavy. I hit the salvation army every week on 50% off day. I usually find something that works, silk shirts, poly, wool, etc.

Found a new down vest there a couple of weeks ago for $5.

There are always wool suit pants and sweaters there of some sort.
Always a ton of fleece too, but I dont care for fleece to much.

I would say if you are going to spend decent $ on something to do with clothing, go for good shoes, wool socks, merino base layer and good breathable rain gear. Maybe a good insulated jacket like a montbell thermawarp. Other than that you can get everything else for pretty cheap.

I have found 2 sets of insulated pants at the Salvation army. Both $4. One weighs 14 oz which is not too bad. The others are thick, black ski bibs. 1#4oz. Still not too bad for what they are.

CowHead
10-21-2009, 13:58
the more you hike the wiser you get on what to or not to take at least that's seem to be my experience the first time I went out my pack wt was about 47 lbs now I'm at 31 lbs can I get lower yes in time but I'm enjoying my time out there and 31 lbs is ok with me

WritinginCT
10-21-2009, 14:26
I've been spending the past year putting together gear for myself. Money is very tight and I'm doing things very slowly. I sort of made myself a little nuts in the beginning trying to read everything and take everyone's advice. But that approach is overwhelming and made me nutty. So in the end I sat down and wrote out what was important to me. I want to be safe, I want to be reasonably comfortable (both mentally and physically), and I want to have fun.

Some of my gear is old, some of it is heavy, some of if it is odd looking, and some of it will probably be unnecessary. But it gives me a starting point and will let me sort out what's working and what's not.

And every time I go into an outfitter/sporting goods store and get chided for not wanting the latest and greatest I think of the picture of Grandma Gatewood in her Keds on the ATC website and can almost hear Sinatra singing "My Way"... and that's just how I'm going to hike my hike.

Jack Tarlin
10-21-2009, 15:16
Well, she also skipped a bit, too.....but let's not go there. :D

wrongway_08
10-21-2009, 15:33
Grandma Gatewood would roll over in her grave ........ all these wimps needing $300.00 sleeping bags and $275.00 tents ..... cant go above 30 pounds or they would crap themselves from hard work..... :)

Here is a little old lady who had a string over her shoulder holding on her "pack" and she had a great time.

Dont think it much matters, as long as you are having a good time.

Lately I have been carry'n a little more then I used to, extra 4 or 5 pounds makes no change in the hike.

We had a hiker with a 60 pound pack beat out or crew from last year, had a lot of extra "crap" compared to what we all were carry'n but - he was happy the whole hike!

sheepdog
10-21-2009, 16:23
Grandma Gatewood would roll over in her grave ........ all these wimps needing $300.00 sleeping bags and $275.00 tents ..... cant go above 30 pounds or they would crap themselves from hard work..... :)

Here is a little old lady who had a string over her shoulder holding on her "pack" and she had a great time.

Dont think it much matters, as long as you are having a good time.

Lately I have been carry'n a little more then I used to, extra 4 or 5 pounds makes no change in the hike.

We had a hiker with a 60 pound pack beat out or crew from last year, had a lot of extra "crap" compared to what we all were carry'n but - he was happy the whole hike!
fitness trumps weight every time

Rockhound
10-21-2009, 17:14
You da man Glenn. To hell with the know-it-all, gram weenie, professional hiker, techno geek, holier than thou, judgmental, condescending, elitist, hike my hike jerks. If hiking in the real wilderness (not the AT) or in the winter weather you might want to take some of their advice. As for an April to Sept thru, HYOH, have fun and don't let the a fore mentioned people get to you.

cowboy nichols
10-21-2009, 17:49
My first "backpack" was an old wool quilt my Mom gave me. In it I had a small iron skillet,bacon, eggs in a pint jar and a loaf of homemade bread . Rolled everything up in the blanket tied with rope and took off, I was 10 and never heard of a backpack for years. I had a lot of fun and loved sleeping out at nite. Still do.

Wags
10-21-2009, 22:51
you know they also used to sleep in log houses with no electricity. does that mean we are all sissies and wimps for choosing to not live like that anymore?

granny gatewood, while an inspirational story of sorts, has no bearing on how i backpack. my grandpa (and i'm sure the majority of yours, or your dads) went to WWII at age 18. it's a different time, a different era. get a grip...

IRT the topic. i don't care if you're doing it wrong. it's only how i'm doing it that concerns me out there :D

Trailweaver
10-22-2009, 00:52
I used to hike in jeans simply because I couldn't afford (at that time) the more expensive hiking clothing. I was always careful to check the weather and knew I wasn't going to experience rain.

I still hike with an old, heavy stove, but I've never gone without a hot meal at the end of the day, and I've seen a lot of others (with newer, lighter stoves) cursing the same because something was wrong with it and they couldn't fix it on the trail. I have loaned them mine to cook on in that case. I need to get a lighter stove, but just can't bring myself to give up "old reliable."

Wise Old Owl
10-22-2009, 02:13
I never wear cotton now if I am going to be out for even a few days. Those were the post Hipie days and I would not be caught dead without jeans.

Wearing cotton now is just not worth the risk and its heavy. I hit the salvation army every week on 50% off day. I usually find something that works, silk shirts, poly, wool, etc.

Found a new down vest there a couple of weeks ago for $5.

There are always wool suit pants and sweaters there of some sort.
Always a ton of fleece too, but I dont care for fleece to much.

I would say if you are going to spend decent $ on something to do with clothing, go for good shoes, wool socks, merino base layer and good breathable rain gear. Maybe a good insulated jacket like a montbell thermawarp. Other than that you can get everything else for pretty cheap.

I have found 2 sets of insulated pants at the Salvation army. Both $4. One weighs 14 oz which is not too bad. The others are thick, black ski bibs. 1#4oz. Still not too bad for what they are.

I like this answer, we all started in jeans & flannel and nasty wool socks - but after several bouts of chafe, crotch rotch and blisters we will see you come over to the tech pants walmart poly shirt & bergalene undies, and smart socks in a jiffy. I can go head first into a cold mountain stream; swim across and out the other side and be resonably dry in half an hour, no taking stuff off, just hike.

harryfred
10-22-2009, 02:15
I did a 5 day 4 night hike in July and my all my gear, food, Three liters water and a quart of scotch, weighed 38lbs. I just did 6 days 5 nights taking warmer clothing and a blanket prepared for colder nights and my pack weighed 42lbs. The thing is I seriously doubt I have spent more than $400 for everything food and scotch included. And yes I have a tent ($26 mark down at Gander) first aid kit (made it up myself in a qt. Ziploc bag), trowel for cat holes, compass, knife, cord to bear bag, and all the other little things some ultralighters like to leave at home. I even have a camera and mp3 player. Those were gifts I don't know their cost.
The point is as others have pointed out you don't have to spend a lot to have adequate functional and light weight gear. I prowl discount racks, yard sales, second hand stores, thrift shops, Walmart, Ebay, ect. My tent is a pain in the butt to put up and take down but it works and weighs a lot less than the one I had before. My pack is mega heavy @ 6lbs. and Ive had to do a lot of repair work on It, but it was only $60 and I would have missed out on a lot of hiking had I waited till I could have afforded better. Plus it has taught me a lot about back packs and on the fly repairs:D
You know, the repairs, putting up with just adequate gear, making my own gear, and shopping for deals is all part of the fun.
Oh and have I mentioned I have a very large tote full of stuff I thought I needed or others thought I needed thats pretty much useless or just junk:-?

CowHead
10-22-2009, 13:51
I have a very large tote full of stuff I thought I needed or others thought I needed thats pretty much useless or just junk:-?

Amen....................

Spokes
10-22-2009, 13:56
It just occurred to me why cotton is referred to as "Death Cloth". Isn't that what the Egyptians wrapped mummies in?

toegem
10-22-2009, 14:24
When I started getting back into hiking in the early seventies I carried what I could afford, a external frame pack from Wally World, a Wensel sleeping bag that was heavy and provided marginal warmth, I slept under a poncho with no insulating pad. I wore jeans, sneakers and a flannel shirt, cooked a can of beans over a wood fire. There were times I was cold and wet but I survived and learned lessons from my mistakes, as I could afford the new and lighter gear I bought it, but I was just as happy to be in the woods then as I am today, that part has never changed.

http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b229/flpaddler/Backpacking/ultralight1976.jpg

Mags
10-22-2009, 14:51
It just occurred to me why cotton is referred to as "Death Cloth". Isn't that what the Egyptians wrapped mummies in?

An old folk term calls the death shroud "The winding sheet".




Anyway..it is not so much cotton kills..it is that wet and cold cotton kills.

Cotton, when wet, gets heavy, causes chafing, blisters and literally sucks heat out of your body.

For all those guys who say how macho they were in the 70s or whatever,
yeah..I'm sure you did just fine. I did too.

But, if you know better, what is the point?

Again, as many of us pointed out, what is the point of being wet, cold and miserable if you can spend a ten spot to get a decent hiking setup (thrift store) and for another say $40 to get decent long underwear, socks and an acrylic hat. That's $50 total.

Assuming you do not already have el cheapo work pants (again, for three season hiking 65/35 poly-cotton blend is fine) and an el-cheapo dress shirt in your closet already. You probably already have a swimsuit. Perfect hiking shorts!

Hell, I had those items in my closet since I was 14! :) (Like many teenagers, I had a part time job. I wore black dickies or similar for the hospital cafeteria).

The local surplus store is selling long underwear tops and bottoms for $12 ea. With tax, that's less than 30. Throw in a pair of Target or Wally world cool max running socks. Target is selling winter hats now for less than a five spot.


SOOOO..we can all say "use what you have"..which is fine up to a point.

But, what IS the point when you may already have stuff in your closet that works fine or for a few bucks you can gear yourself up?

Finally, (and I really mean this. ;) ), yeah..many of us (myself included) became cold, wet and miserable because of dumb mistakes we made and had a good time anyway.

But how many boy scouts, youth groups, younger brothers, girlfriends, whatever tried out backpacking and were cold, wet and miserable and NEVER backpacked again? :)

I am not macho. I am not manly. I do not have a lot of cash.

There is no reason why any of us have to walk in the woods for extended periods of time with inadequate clothing and gear. There is nothing romantic, cool or manly about being wet, cold and miserable.

(Wearing my patagucci synchilla (http://www.patagonia.com/web/us/product/mens-simple-synchilla-fleece-jacket?slc=en_US&sct=US&p=25095-0-764) fleece right now. $4 at the thrift store. Retail $100!)

beakerman
10-22-2009, 15:46
you know they also used to sleep in log houses with no electricity. does that mean we are all sissies and wimps for choosing to not live like that anymore?

granny gatewood, while an inspirational story of sorts, has no bearing on how i backpack. my grandpa (and i'm sure the majority of yours, or your dads) went to WWII at age 18. it's a different time, a different era. get a grip...

IRT the topic. i don't care if you're doing it wrong. it's only how i'm doing it that concerns me out there :D


it's fine with me if you make a religion out of your packing list/weight. however as you point out: "it's only how i'm doing it that concerns me out there :D" so don't try to tell me I'm wrong because I don't do it like you. (Note: I'm not saying you do that...)

who are you or anyone else to say I'm doing it wrong if I want to carry a 50# pack? It's hike your own hike right?

Everyone makes such a big deal over pack weight...as if it is simply impossible to do anything if you have more than 35# on your back. That's why I make fun of them. sure I do what I can to cut my pack weight, within the confines of my own comfort levels. If someone asks what I carry or why I will gladly tell them but I don't care to post my list on here for anyone's approval because I don't need it. What I have works for my and is still evolving as I go along.

So I think that if someone is going to tell me carrying a pack that weighs more than 35# makes backpacking hard then yes I'm going to call them a wimp because that is what they are. They need to suck it up...as I pointed out those old guys did it the "hard" way and had just as much fun as you now...if that makes them tougher than you so be it.

beakerman
10-22-2009, 15:54
Mag's you are right the is no reason to be cold wet and miserable. Cotton is unsafe at any point really. folks can die of hypothermia at 40F. However If I want to carry my heavey tent on my old external frame pack what is the problem? How about if I am completely comfrortable in my boot rather than trail runners? they are water proof and don't give me blisters so what's the problem other than they are heavy?

I don't object to lighter better gear--as I said I get what I can when I can. I'm not romanticizing the old days but just because I don't hike like you that does not make me wrong--as long as I am doing it safely, courteously and having fun right?.

Jester2000
10-22-2009, 16:13
I'm bringing a lawn chair on my next long distance hike.

ShoelessWanderer
10-22-2009, 16:22
I think that folks need to decide for themselves what they want to carry, and at the end of the day, it's nobody else's business.

People spend altogether too much time speculating and commenting on what other folks are doing out there and what their pack weighs. Most of these comments are snarky and gossipy. People should carry what they like, and they should like what they carry, and they have no obligation to explain or rationalize this to anyone.

http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-happy105.gif (http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys.php) Very nicely put!

Franco
10-22-2009, 16:40
The unfortunate part here is that there are a dedicated few that take any suggestion/gear comment as a personal insult rather than shared information.
For example there was the famous Neo Air thread that went on and on well before the product came out.
Still some do not seem to comprehend that if an 11 oz mat does the same for one as a 30oz version it may be worth considering, but it does not mean that because one cannot afford it, does not like the idea or is happy with what he has ,that he is stupid ...
"Everyone makes such a big deal over pack weight"
Yes and in the cycling forums everyone talks about lighter bikes... there must be something wrong with them too.

It is possible that some miss the point that often people try to get lighter gear not to show off or go faster, but simply to carry less weight.
My experience on the trail is that I never come across people that complain that their pack is too light, however I see plenty of people that labour under heavy loads.
If we have reached a point where we know it all and are perfectly happy with what we have, why bother reading the threads ?
Franco

Jester2000
10-22-2009, 16:52
http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-happy105.gif (http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys.php) Very nicely put!

Well, yeah, but you need to remember that Jack usually has two or three Sunday New York Times in his pack.

bullseye
10-22-2009, 17:20
My pack is mega heavy @ 6lbs. and Ive had to do a lot of repair work on It, but it was only $60 and I would have missed out on a lot of hiking had I waited till I could have afforded better.

I too started in jeans, with a cheap heavy pack, and I'm still at it after 21 years. Harryfred, you make a good point - how many folks miss out on hitting the trail b/c someone tried to convince them they need thousands of $ worth of gear to get out there, when a second hand pack or jacket is perfectly fine for the job?

This year has a been a reminder of where I began this journey. I've hiked solo for many miles and years (haven't had a hiking partner since 1991), and over that time I've acquired all the goodies any respectable gear junky could want:D, as well as the attitude that "I would never hike in cotton in the mountains":eek:. I wasn't trying to be condescending - I just forgot my roots. Every trip I've taken this year was with at least 2 noobs, and the last one I had 7 or 8, and the common theme was they all hiked in what they had (cotton on every one of them). It has been a year of teaching basics and getting back to basics, and it's been more fun than I've had in quite a while! I has been fun watching sweatshirts and external frame packs tromping up and down hills in all kinds of weather. Oh, and there was one more thing in common - every person had a blast! Like we used to say in drag racing, "run what ya' brung".

beakerman
10-22-2009, 17:22
The unfortunate part here is that there are a dedicated few that take any suggestion/gear comment as a personal insult rather than shared information.
For example there was the famous Neo Air thread that went on and on well before the product came out.
Still some do not seem to comprehend that if an 11 oz mat does the same for one as a 30oz version it may be worth considering, but it does not mean that because one cannot afford it, does not like the idea or is happy with what he has ,that he is stupid ...
"Everyone makes such a big deal over pack weight"
Yes and in the cycling forums everyone talks about lighter bikes... there must be something wrong with them too.

It is possible that some miss the point that often people try to get lighter gear not to show off or go faster, but simply to carry less weight.
My experience on the trail is that I never come across people that complain that their pack is too light, however I see plenty of people that labour under heavy loads.
If we have reached a point where we know it all and are perfectly happy with what we have, why bother reading the threads ?
Franco


There is a fundimental difference between trying to make you pack lighter and having it as a religion witha concept of right and wrong. safe is right unsafe is wrong. That is where judgement of gear lists should stop.

In those biking forums do you get the impression you are doing something wrong if the lightest bike you have is an aluminium frame rather than a carbon fiber one? Probably not because everyone knows those carbon fiber frames cost tons of money and are likely not needed by the average user. Additionally if I'm riding an extremely light carbon fiber frame and an unexpected winter storm blows up it's highly unlikely that I will end up calling SAR to come get me.

It's not the gear that makes the hiker, or the biker for that matter it's the mentality.

As far as being happy goes I'm happy when I'm on the trail regardless of the gear I have in the pack--as long as it works. Yes I am always looking for lighter stuff but I'm not going to make a huge deal of it nor am I going to give anyone the impression they have to hike my hike or they are doing something wrong.

Mags
10-22-2009, 17:29
I'm not romanticizing the old days but just because I don't hike like you that does not make me wrong--as long as I am doing it safely, courteously and having fun right?.

You entirely miss my point. Did I mention light weight gear once?

garlic08
10-22-2009, 18:11
If we have reached a point where we know it all and are perfectly happy with what we have, why bother reading the threads ?

Excellent point. I never even looked at that NeoAir thread you mentioned because I knew I would never even come close to buying one at $160 or whatever, so why waste time reading the arguments? If you don't want to evolve the way you hike or possibly actually learn something, don't read these threads. Some of them are very good for sharing information (like Franco's Contrail snow pitch--I'll always be thankful for that tip), some (like this one) are just gripe sessions.

Franco
10-22-2009, 18:37
Garlic
I have done a few mods to the Scarp too ( and Henry has gone way past that with the new version) yet I have not bothered putting them up here at WB because I got sick of being insulted for sharing "free" information. And maybe I am not the only one.
Franco

pafarmboy
10-22-2009, 18:59
Better to be out there, than sitting home worrying about what other people think.

Amen brother.

Bottom line is...if you get from point A to Point B successfully, doesn't matter if you carry 2 pounds or 200 as long as you're happy with how you did it.

pafarmboy
10-22-2009, 19:06
You're wearing jeans, tennis shoes.....

Rather see that than some guy in a "kilt" anyday. Kilt.....yeah right. You're wearing a freaking skirt, dude.

mudhead
10-22-2009, 19:37
Rather see that than some guy in a "kilt" anyday. Kilt.....yeah right. You're wearing a freaking skirt, dude.

Some day you will come home and she will be holding a skirt for you to try on. And you're gonna say no?

I still haven't figured out why a thread started in good cheer devolves.

pafarmboy
10-22-2009, 19:48
Some day you will come home and she will be holding a skirt for you to try on. And you're gonna say no?

I still haven't figured out why a thread started in good cheer devolves.

It was meant as good cheer.

BTW, I'm pretty sure I'd be saying no to the skirt. Pantyhose though? Maybe.......I heard it cuts down on the chafing.

mudhead
10-22-2009, 19:56
Pretty sure means she's have to smile at you to get you to try it on with the fancy socks.:)

pafarmboy
10-22-2009, 20:08
Pretty sure means she's have to smile at you to get you to try it on with the fancy socks.:)

If 'she' is Halle Berry, she could tell me to try on the entire JcPenney's woman's department and I would be doing it.

Sorry, topic definitely devolving at this point.

Doyle Warrin
10-22-2009, 20:11
If you're only cyber hiking, what difference does it make as to how much your gear weighs?

saimyoji
10-22-2009, 20:45
If you're only cyber hiking, what difference does it make as to how much your gear weighs?

zoidfu?........

ShoelessWanderer
10-23-2009, 10:11
Well, yeah, but you need to remember that Jack usually has two or three Sunday New York Times in his pack.

I usually have 2 books with me, so...I can't say a whole lot. http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-gen063.gif (http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys.php)