View Full Version : Gear junkie's confessional

11-29-2010, 22:14
Okay, this stems from another thread (http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?p=1073803#post1073803)

What gear have you purchased but never used or only used maybe once?
How many packs do you own?
Sleeping bags and pads?
Tents, tarps, hammocks?
And how about those stoves and cookpots?
And last, but not least, trail fashion, aka clothes?

I'll fess up
3 packs (a 45 liter Aarn, 30 liter GG Vapor Day, and 20 liter Golite VO24) The GG has only been used once on an overnight:o

3 sleeping bags (a 20 Exped Dreamwalker, a 35 WM Caribou, and a 45 Sierra Designs Wicked Light) Oops, there's also an old NF Blue Kazoo in the closet. In my defense the WM replaced the Sierra Designs bag - look for a sale here in the Gear for Sale section soon. But the 6 month old Dreamwalker has yet to see the out of doors:o

4 pads (A ridgerest, an old thermarest, a BA air core, and a Neoair) The BA will also be for sale at some point - it only got used a couple of times:o

Stoves and Cookware (Jetboil PCS, one of Zelph's Starlytes, a homemade supercat, SnowPeak trek 900 Ti, a grease pot, a larger K-mart pot and fry pan - for fishin' trips, an old Bluet stove, an old Sierra Zip Zstove, and a few boxes of Esbit. The Starlyte and Snowpeak set have only been used once:o

I think I have 3 different pair of hiking pants, 2 or 3 long sleeve shirts, 3 pair of shorts, probably 4 tees, 2 sets of long base layers, 3 hats, etc. And yeah, I confess - there are a few items that have yet to see sun or moonlight.:o

11-29-2010, 22:38
I often joke that I've got enough stuff to take me and 3 people I don't like hiking...

11-30-2010, 01:55
FWIW, I didn't vote as none of the responses fit me very well --- I do have two or sometimes three of a number of things, but certainly nothing with "tags still on" or "never been used" !

Note that there can be various reasons to own multiple items; in some cases it's due to upgrading without somehow parting with the prior gear item, in other cases it's more of a "summer sleeping bag for the summer, spring/fall sleeping bag for the spring or fall" kind of thing. With shelters, in particular, I find it handy to have different options for differing anticipated conditions.

11-30-2010, 02:20
It is not so much I have gear that I have never used, it is I have gear that I used to use! (Tarps, misc mittens and hats, etc.)

I do a purge about once a year..but someone a few geegaws always survive for the 'just in case' scenario. (I'm looking at your mr-bright-orange-potty-trowel! Bought at an EMS in the Emerald Square Mall ~1996. Somehow I never got rid of it. Loan it out to newbie backpackers about once a year who insist needing one. Same with an old PUR filter).

I do recycle gear, too... (Old pads covered in tin turkey basting pans make wonderful stove platforms for winter backpacking)

My worse 'old gear sin' is the very beat up day pack that I used to use. It is full of sweat, salt and dirt stains. It is still functionally OK...but somewhat small/heavy compared to more modern packs. It is very grungy and looks, well, quite er...well used. I just can't part with it though I haven't used it since 2007. :o

11-30-2010, 02:38
What gear have you purchased but never used or only used maybe once?

I used my goretex bivy once. Never used my Whisperlite stove. Only used my BD Lighthouse tent a couple times, but that's because I need to do some work on it. I've never used a few pairs of footwear, but that's because I outgrew them before I could use them, and I'll resell those.

How many packs do you own?
5. REI Great Star, Dana Designs Astralplane, ULA Catalyst* and 2 others.

Sleeping bags and pads?
1 bag, 1 quilt, 2 pads. I always use my EnLIGHTened Equipment cuben fiber quilt. Okay, 3 pads, maybe 4, but the other 2 were closed cell foam pads that were bought to cut up. Big thermarest, POE Hyper Elite*, eva and Walmart blue pad.

Tents, tarps, hammocks?
1 tent, BD Lighthouse. 1 tarp tent, Zpack Hexamid Solo*. 1 tarp, BA Crazy Creek 10x12'. 1 hammock. The hammock needs to go. There aren't enough trees here.

And how about those stoves and cookpots?
3 stoves. Jetboil, Whisperlite and end2endtrailsupply Gram Weenie Pro*.

And last, but not least, trail fashion, aka clothes?
I pretty much just use one set of clothing. Multiple pairs of underwear and socks though.

Some of my equipment is from before going UL, from when I lived elsewhere, and for other types of trips. Like the REI Great Star was from 10 years ago when I only did weekend trips and didn't mind the heavy load. The giant heavy tarp was for a motorcycle trip that never happened. I used to have a nice insulated inflatable pad that I used as a Boy Scout that was still great, but unused, so I gave it to a local trail angel.

Harrison Bergeron
11-30-2010, 10:19
I spent at least a month carefully constructing every alcohol stove ever conceived by the mind of man (all of which boil water in five minutes, plus or minus 30 seconds), and I have three separate titanium messkits to use with them. But I recently bought a Jetboil for my AT hike next year when I realized that the weight of the fuel and all the paraphernalia that goes along with a 1oz pop-can stove is greater than a real stove that does the same job in two minutes.

I spent a fortune and a week hand-making two crappy fleece jackets in an attempt to make a jacket lighter than the 20oz Columbia fleece I normally hike with. I finally managed to save 4 oz by leaving off the pockets, then realized pockets are lighter than gloves -- and besides, you need someplace to keep your gloves.

But it's fun. I think you're right 4-Eye, thinking about hiking is at least as much fun as actually doing it.

11-30-2010, 10:27
used backpacks---GG Vapor Trail[2],

unused packs---Kelty red cloud, GG Nimbus Latitude,Golite Jam, Old Marlboro pack,Old LL Bean pack

used sleeping bags---WM Atelope 5*, Mtn Hdware Phantom 45*, EMS 20* mtn lite, EMS -20* mtn lite, EMS 0* mtn lite bag...

unused sleeping bags---0* Northface Snowshoe syn, 2 walmart mummy 0* bags i got for 15$ each 7 yrs ago.

used shelters---B A Seedhouse 1, N F Tadpole 23, Outdoor Research Deluxe Bivy

unused shelters---H Hammock ultralite, Eureka solitare bivy tent, Old Hillary tube tent

used stoves---Budlite Super Stove[4], Pocket Rocket, Simmerlite

unused stoves---Jet boil original, old Whisperlite, old rapid fire, old coleman exponet?

used sleep pads---Neoair, Zrest, Thermarest fast n lite

unused pads---Thermarest winter pad, 3 different types foam cell pads

Misc unused gear---Garmin oregon 400[bigest waste of money i ever spent, not 4 me], 2 nalagene[pre BPA days],some cookware,bag liner, old outdoor rresearch non gore bivy....

i am sure if i sat and went thru all my stuff i could find more things to list. like others have said it is hard to part with the unused items.i usually lend things to others so that they can join me on some of the local treks and i always make sure to give them the heavier items:eek:...

11-30-2010, 10:35
i just ran my clothing list thru my brain and wow do i have some junk that is unused. this thread has opened my eyes to the problem i have. i love to collect junk!!!!period!!!:confused::(:-?:o:D oh well!!!:sun:sun

11-30-2010, 10:43
I'm at the low end of the scale. Two years ago (post-AT) I packed up a compact car with my wife, two bicycles, and a small dog and went traveling. I have one pack, one Tarptent, one bag, one Z-rest, one set of clothes, a few platypi, one pair of trail runners, and that's pretty much it. No stove or filter, no electronics. Since then I've hiked the Arizona Trail, the Pacific Northwest Trail, the Wonderland Trail, and lots of short backpacking trips, bike tours, and overnight trail work events. I use the backpack for day hikes, and push the limit of the three season bag and the Tarptent.

I definitely understand and relate to and enjoy talking with gearheads, but I've never been one. An old friend calls me a "retrogrouch". If people didn't buy lots of gear, it would probably be more expensive for those of us who don't.

11-30-2010, 10:49
If people didn't buy lots of gear, it would probably be more expensive for those of us who don't.[/QUOTE]

Or, if people didnt smoke cigaretts and drink booze how hi would our taxes be? thank you smokers and drinkers..:D

11-30-2010, 11:50
"I could outfit an entire scout troop with stuff to spare" - guilty. With 6 tents including several 2-person and a 4-person .. plus multiple hammocks .. 7 packs .. multiple sleeping bags & quilts and at least 8 stoves I could easily equip our scout troop for a backpacking trip .. especially if I added the gear I've purchased for my sons.

11-30-2010, 13:03
I have a lot of older gear I don't want to let go of. But the worst thing is all the crap I seem to collect. Little bits and pieces of junk. Maybe someday I can make something out of this, I always think. I should just get rid of it somehow. Otherwise, I don't tend to purchase much gear at all. I'm not the type to rush out and get the newest thing.

Raul Perez
11-30-2010, 14:31
I've accumulated enough gear that I actually made a video series on common items you will encounter when starting out backpacking.... sad really ha ha

11-30-2010, 21:51
Purchases that I've used little or not at all: long underwear bottoms and winter hiking pants. But I expect to use them in the next few months. The only other gear used only once and discarded was an alcohol stove. Gave it to a friend as it didn't meet my cooking needs.


3 Backpacks - only use 1 (Kelty Red Cloud). Still have 2 Kelty external frame packs, one from 1975, one from 1980.
3 Tents - currently use Mountain Hardwear 2-person. Still in stock: Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight from 1991 and an old Morsan (predecesor to Campmor) 2 person from 1976
4 Sleeping Bags - use the Marmot 5 degree synthetic winter bag for cold and Kelty down 45 degree bag for 3 season along with liner for spring & fall. Still in stock: Slumberjack from 1988 and one from the early 70s so old I don't remember the mfgr.
2 Stoves - use Coleman Ultralight canister and occasionally for short hikes the Coleman Peak one-burner. No longer have the old Svea or its predecessor from the 70s.
Cookset - still use the same one from the 1970s.
2 sleeping pads - been using the Thermarest since the mid or early 90s. Still have a closed-cell foam pad from the 1980s.
Other clothes - got rid of a bunch of hiking shirts a while back. I pretty much use what I have now.

11-30-2010, 22:02
I have
3 packs (used them all)
4 sleeping bags (all used)
3 tents (all used)
one stove (pocket rocket and no other)
tons of clothes and socks
2 brand new pairs of trail runners I just got for 2011, 1 fairly used pair I wear now for day hikes, and 7 used pairs from my NOBO and SOBO hikes I don't have the heart to throw away

I will sell to anyone who wants them - (PM me)

2 pairs of brand new insoles - Spenco Polysorb hiker, green color, size 3
banana colored Crocs, the real ones, size 8 men, 10 women, still has the tag
Under Armor sports bra, size large
2 pairs of Bridgeford sock liners, new

11-30-2010, 22:11
I just sold all my surplus gear today. The only thing I have extra is a beat up 6lb Gregory pack.

Red Hat
11-30-2010, 22:26
At present I have four packs (ULA Catalyst, ULA Circuit, Osprey Atmos 50, and a Granite Gear something or other... I have three tents (Walrus zoid, Tarp Tent Rainbow, and a Lightheart Gear)... I have three sleeping bags (two Western Mountaineering and one summer Lafuma)... I have two hammocks (Warbonnet Blackbird and a Hennesey)... two tarps (MacCat standard and a Speer Winter Tarp)... two stoves (MSR Pocket Rocket and a Starlyte). I usually now use my Catalyst, Western Mountaineering, Blackbird, Speer, and Starlyte.

Cabin Fever
11-30-2010, 23:13
My post on the Selling Used Gear forum is me trying to go from two of everything to only extras depending on the season.

12-01-2010, 20:39
I'm Pringles, and I have a problem. :-)

I do, or have, used most all of my gear. I have one sleeping bag that I forgot about. I got it on sale, and didn't think it would work for the trip I had bought it for and it was too late to take it back. But other than that, I use my stuff, just for different types of trips. I do have some items that I wore out, but since the things are old friends, I can't throw them away. (You don't throw away your old friends, do you? ?? )

Packs—Coleman Peak I Rambler, Coleman Peak I Somethin-else (used about a dozen times, then kept as a lender pack), Camp Trails Adjustable II (used a few times, again, kept for a lender), Lowe Contour III, GG Vapor Trail, Outward Bound Somethin’ (used enough to know I liked a lighter pack, and "replaced" it with the Vapor Trail. I’ve used all. I started with the Rambler, and it was very comfortable, switched to the Lowe when I got enough money, then switched to the Outward Bound when I discovered the Lowe was heavy (duh). Now I use the Lowe or the Vapor Trail (summer), usually.

Sleeping Bags—Integral Designs 20* down, REI Travel 45*, 2--yes 2--North Face Snowshoe 0*, a Sierra Designs something 20* (that I forgot I bought and haven’t used), an old LLB super light summer bag that someone described nicely as two pieces of nylon with a zipper, a dirt cheap 20* synthetic liner bag that I use on summer raft trips, a bunch of closeout Coleman sleeping bags that I got for $5 at Walmart, mostly to rip apart for the zippers. I use the Integral Designs bag, the REI bag, and the North Face Snowshoe bags, though for an extended summer driving trip, I used one of the closeout bags. Pads—two z-rests, a Thermarest ultralight 1" and a Thermarest length 2"pad (no leaks in either Thermarest, ever, and have used them for years. Actually, for decades).

Tents—North Face Tadpole (the kind from the 90’s), a Sierra Designs Clip Magic (that I loved, adored, and wore out, so went searching for a replacement and went through), a Sierra Designs Clip Flashlight 2 (not a big fan), a Sierra Designs Lightyear(ok, but sort of coffin like), a Coleman Cobra (like it a lot), a Wanderlust Nomad 242 (love it), and a Big Sky Evolution 2 (love it). I’d trade the Clip Flashlight and the Lightyear for the Clip Magic any day. I also have two Hennessy Hammocks, just the plain old Boy Scout version. I tried tarps a couple of times, but didn’t like squashing spiders in the night.

Stoves—I have a Coleman Peak I Multifuel, a Trangia (just the little gizmo and the stand), the kind that has a fan and you put sticks and pine cones in (never was very successful with that), a Coleman canister (the little kind), a Snow Peak Giga (my favorite!) and a Svea 123 (I enjoy using my brass bomb, but I don’t take it very often). Cookpots? I have a little GSI pot with a lid that’s supposed to be a frying pan—but you could probably only cook half a hamburger at a time, or an unflippable pancake. I have a Snow Peak titanium pot, and a genuine K-mart nesting set (tiny pot with a lid with a little bright colored plastic knob and a bail wire that guarantees a spill, and a plastic cup without measurement markings) that I got for my very first trip and I can’t possibly toss it 'cause we survived an adventure together! Oh, and a Sierra Cup, because Colin Fletcher said I had to have one.

"And last, but not least, trail fashion, aka clothes?"

Not so much on the clothes. I have probably three or four pairs of supplex nylon pants (zip offs) that work for hiking, canoeing, kayaking and rafting, and a similar number of poly-this-n-that shirts for the same activities. Lots of socks, enough long underwear for x-country ski season, and plain ole black gaiters. Oh, and a long sleeve white supplex shirt that isn't white anymore, but it keeps the sun off, and the bugs sort of at bay.

What, no water filters? ????

Pringles, who can walk into most any outfitter store and say, “I’ve got more.” :-)

12-02-2010, 00:32
After I got out of prison I worked for a big sporting goods store. I was the "backpacking guy" for more than a year. The brand reps want the "guy" to use their stuff. It was either free or very cheap. I got tons of stuff.

Spirit Walker
12-02-2010, 11:18
We have lots of gear, but it has all been well used. I've been backpacking for well over 20 years. We don't throw a lot away, though we have given some gear to groups that take kids out and to Jim's grandson, who is a boy scout just starting to backpack. We have a bunch of smelly old and newish sleeping bags in various temperature ratings. We use ridgerest pads for backpacking and old thermarests for car camping. We have alcohol and whisperlight stoves for backpacking and some propane and butane ones for car camping. I've been using the same titanium pot for 15 years. I only have one pack, as I tend to use my pack until it's falling apart before replacing it. Same for shoes: I have on pair of trail runners for dayhikes and summer backpacking and one pair of boots for winter, plus some 20 year old snow boots I wear snowshoeing. We have three tents - one that was only used on one trip that we may end up selling, the others well used. Two sets of hiking poles - one very old and worn, the other slightly less worn but also well used. I wear my hiking pants and shirts until they fall apart. Two sets of raingear, neither very good. The only thing I have in abundance that isn't well used is my fleece. I have several everyday fleece jackets in various colors, most of which are very well worn, but then there are the special warm parkas that I received for Christmas in years past that's too warm for every day. Then there's the bright orange parka I wear backpacking - it's seen a couple of long hikes.

So your categories don't quite fit. I have lots of gear, but I don't buy it and not use it. Instead I buy it, use it again and again, and keep it forever.

12-02-2010, 14:55
The only thing i have that has never been used is some 'DriDucks' jacket and pants. I accidently ordered size XL. I can put my entire body in one of the pant legs. They were cheap so i didn't bother returning em. Maybe make a tent out of them someday i dont know.

12-03-2010, 02:53
I used to have two of everything, and used the extra gear to loan to friends I'd get to go hiking with me who didn't have the gear. The extra gear I had happened when I would upgrade my own gear and just keep the older stuff. Anyway, I "placed" the older backpack recently with someone who absolutely loves an external frame pack, and who literally does have the dream job: backpacks/teaches outdoor living skills for a living.

I have worn out two stoves and have them - thinking I can get them fixed at some point, but bought a new stove when I had to have one to hike this year.

Have two sleeping bags - loan one out when necessary, otherwise use the mummy bag most of the time and the rectangular LL Bean when I go out with the kayak because I like the Bean, but don't like to carry it. (weight wise)

I have several pots and pans - haven't found one I like yet - all the lightweight ones seem to stick when you cook in them, and the heavyweight ones are well, heavy. I can't make myself pay for the TI ones, although I think I'm almost there.

Clothes? I have several pairs of pants and shorts as well as tops and thermals. I only take one outfit when backpacking - take more when kayaking because I'm usually out longer and can afford to change more often, plus they are usually wet and stinky. I do just have one pair of "lucky" pants, and wear them almost exclusively when I can - they fit well, are almost indestructible, and are what I fondly call "dirt brown" so you can wear them for days before any dirt actually shows.