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  1. #1
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    Default Packing List Help

    Hello all, just looking for some pointers on my what to pack / leave behind. Thanks a million.

    Big 4
    Pack (Osprey Kestrel 68L)
    Sleeping Bag (Mountain Hardwear Lamina 35F)
    Sleeping Pad (Standard Foam Pad)
    Tent (2 person 3 season, will be carried by my hiking buddy)

    Clothing
    Rain Coat
    Convertible Pants & Shorts
    Running / Hiking Socks (2 pair)
    Smartwool socks (1 pair)
    Underwear (2)
    Hiking Shirt
    Cotton Shirt
    Fleece Jacket
    Flip Flops
    Bandanna (2)
    Warm Hat (sleeping, bad weather etc)

    First Aid
    Band-Aids
    Tweezers
    Hand Sanitizer
    Advil / Benadryl / Tums
    Antibacterial Ointment

    Contacts
    Contact Solution
    Glasses & Case

    Food
    ~450-500 grams per day, six day supply
    MSR pocket rocket + 2 8oz fuel canisters (roughly 1 week supply for the two of us?)
    OR
    Homemade can stove using HEET
    (Any suggestions here??? My homemade stoves have not been great so far, though I have been practicing)
    Titanium Pot + Lid
    Spork

    Water
    3 L max at a time (between hydration reservoir and a bottle)
    Filter
    Purification Tabs as backup
    5 or 10L collapsible Bucket

    Miscellaneous
    Shamwow
    Lighter
    Toothbrush / Paste
    Knife
    Duct Tape
    Aluminum Foil
    Safety Pins
    Needle and Thread
    Headlamp
    Soap
    Mirror
    Chap Stick
    Bug Repel + DEET
    Toilet Paper
    Phone + Charger
    ID + $$$ + Credit Card
    Southbounder AT Guidebook
    Pen

    All together this weighs about 13.5 kilos (30 pounds). I am definitely willing to take any and all suggestions. I am prepared to carry up to 35 pounds at any given time, but less would obviously be better.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default

    Also, just as a heads up, I am trying to keep costs down. I have spent a total of $370 on this gear (much of which I already had), and am planning on spending about $2 a day on the trail for food. I am also budgeting $20 a week for shelters / dining / miscellaneous expenses. Any tips on saving money on the trail? I have heard that people can spend $1-2 per mile, which seems insane.

  3. #3
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    Un, just curious, how much do you weigh?

    If you can somehow eat 2+ lbs. of food a day for $2, let us know how.

    And I am still waiting to hear from ANYONE lately (not 2002, or 1989, etc.) who can hike the entire A.T. under $2,000 (AFTER gear).

    Good luck to you!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winds View Post
    Un, just curious, how much do you weigh?

    If you can somehow eat 2+ lbs. of food a day for $2, let us know how.

    And I am still waiting to hear from ANYONE lately (not 2002, or 1989, etc.) who can hike the entire A.T. under $2,000 (AFTER gear).

    Good luck to you!
    I weigh about 155 pounds. I usually eat 3000 calories a day when I am hiking. I try to buy in bulk, or when I can find the foods I like on a solid discount.

    Also, I really hope I wont rack up that kind of expense.. I know it is a fact of the trail but I am extremely low on funds and would have to cut my trip short if I can't keep costs low (~$1000 after gear)

  5. #5
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    Well, I am not Mr. Know-it-all here, but I haven't heard of anyone hiking all of the A.T. for anywhere near $1000 in the past 10 years.

    I think most will tell you that you'll run out of money and to enjoy what hike you can before getting off.

    Have you thought through at all how you'd eat for $2 a day??

  6. #6
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    Default

    I have a good deal of food stored up, planning on doing drops and having friends join me at times for deliveries etc. Starting in Maine, from NH, and have a good network of friends throughout New England. I only have late May to Late August to hike anyway. I am a college cross country runner and run 10+ miles per day when I am in season while only eating 2000 calories to get to my goal weight of 140. So I am really not worried about food. This is one reason I got my weight up to 155, so that I can afford to lose some as I go. $2 should be more than enough. My high calorie foods consist of pure vegetable oils, macadamia and other nuts, raisins, hard cheeses, processed meats, peanut butter, and protein powder.

  7. #7
    LT '79; AT '73-'14 in sections; Donating Member Kerosene's Avatar
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    Default Packing List Feedback

    WRT your packing list:
    • Ditch the underwear if your convertible pants sport a mesh lining.
    • Your rain coat shouldn't weigh more than 14 ounces, and even that is about 5-7 more than you should be carrying. Of course, lightweight gear is expensive.
    • You don't appear to have a change of pants for camp. Wearing the convertible pants in camp after you've soaked them with sweat or cold rain is difficult to pull off. Wind pants can work well for this situation, but lightweight ones are expensive also. Think about walking in shorts (works for me down to the low 40's if it's not too breezy) and reserving the pants for camp.
    • I never carry a bandana, so why do you need two? (I know it doesn't weigh much, but it all adds up.)
    • I assume that you're going with a cotton camp shirt for comfort. Realize that you can probably go lighter with a synthetic, and after a week I don't think you'll care what that camp shirt is made out of.
    • Consider your duct tape as part of your first aid kit.
    • Band-Aids are pretty worthless, especially if you expect them to adhere to wet skin. The only time I've used one is on a finger.
    • Go with Aleve (naproxum sodium generic) instead of Advil. You need a lot fewer pills when you only dose twice a day instead of 4-6 times.
    • That knife should be very small...2" is more than enough for most applications, and if you need more then you probably need a saw also.
    • Don't bring the entire guidebook. Send a bounce box to yourself to Hot Springs, Damascus, Harpers Ferry, DWG, Cheshire, and Hanover.
    • A 5L bucket or sack is more than sufficient. I don't bother with one when I hike solo, but I'll bring a 4L sack when I hike with a partner.
    • If you're careful and have a decent windscreen, then two 110g isobutane canisters should last a week-and-a-bit for 2 people, at least for the first two weeks after which you'll need 220g canisters as your appetite will explode.
    • Ditch the mirror.
    • Don't forget the health insurance card, or at least realize that you're undertaking a slightly higher risk endeavor that requires cash to obtain adequate care.
    • Swap the pen for a golf pencil which you can sharpen with your little pen knife.
    • Think about carrying a few tabs of anti-diahreal medicine. You can thank me when you get off the trail.
    GA←↕→ME: 1973 to 2014

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerosene View Post
    WRT your packing list:
    • Ditch the underwear if your convertible pants sport a mesh lining.
    • Your rain coat shouldn't weigh more than 14 ounces, and even that is about 5-7 more than you should be carrying. Of course, lightweight gear is expensive.
    • You don't appear to have a change of pants for camp. Wearing the convertible pants in camp after you've soaked them with sweat or cold rain is difficult to pull off. Wind pants can work well for this situation, but lightweight ones are expensive also. Think about walking in shorts (works for me down to the low 40's if it's not too breezy) and reserving the pants for camp.
    • I never carry a bandana, so why do you need two? (I know it doesn't weigh much, but it all adds up.)
    • I assume that you're going with a cotton camp shirt for comfort. Realize that you can probably go lighter with a synthetic, and after a week I don't think you'll care what that camp shirt is made out of.
    • Consider your duct tape as part of your first aid kit.
    • Band-Aids are pretty worthless, especially if you expect them to adhere to wet skin. The only time I've used one is on a finger.
    • Go with Aleve (naproxum sodium generic) instead of Advil. You need a lot fewer pills when you only dose twice a day instead of 4-6 times.
    • That knife should be very small...2" is more than enough for most applications, and if you need more then you probably need a saw also.
    • Don't bring the entire guidebook. Send a bounce box to yourself to Hot Springs, Damascus, Harpers Ferry, DWG, Cheshire, and Hanover.
    • A 5L bucket or sack is more than sufficient. I don't bother with one when I hike solo, but I'll bring a 4L sack when I hike with a partner.
    • If you're careful and have a decent windscreen, then two 110g isobutane canisters should last a week-and-a-bit for 2 people, at least for the first two weeks after which you'll need 220g canisters as your appetite will explode.
    • Ditch the mirror.
    • Don't forget the health insurance card, or at least realize that you're undertaking a slightly higher risk endeavor that requires cash to obtain adequate care.
    • Swap the pen for a golf pencil which you can sharpen with your little pen knife.
    • Think about carrying a few tabs of anti-diahreal medicine. You can thank me when you get off the trail.
    Excellent advice, thank you!
    I was considering freeballing but was not sure if that would be a wise choice in camp
    Rain coat is roughly 4 oz
    I was thinking about the convertible pants for hiking, and another pair of thin running shorts for camp... Or would I want pants because it will be cooler?
    Good point, I'll downsize to one bandana
    I was debating between cotton and synthetic.. I feel like synthetic holds odors more, and that's why I went for cotton, when I am resupplying etc
    I'll drop the band-aids. good point.
    I'll consider Aleve, but it tends to upset my stomach.
    Definitely going with the tiny knife.
    I'll divy up the book, nice idea.
    I have been having trouble finding the 5L bucket.. I can really only find the 10L, do you have any recommendations on specific brands?
    I may just start with the 8 oz since we will each carry our own, and carrying the 8 oz ones will save on cost after a while I would say.
    Mirror is necessary for the contacts :/ but I could try to bring something else reflective enough to put them in.
    Health insurance card, check. Forgot to mention it.
    Pencil instead of pen, check. The pen would probably stop working anyway.
    Anti - diarrheal, check. Most definitely a good idea hahaha

    Thanks, Kerosese

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kerosene View Post

    • Band-Aids are pretty worthless, especially if you expect them to adhere to wet skin. The only time I've used one is on a finger.
    • Go with Aleve (naproxum sodium generic) instead of Advil. You need a lot fewer pills when you only dose twice a day instead of 4-6 times.
    Is Aleve easier on the stomach than Advil? Wiki has a similar description of side effects for the two of them.

    Regarding Band-Aids, I have had trouble taking the sports and waterproof versions off my the back of my feet even after swimming (these things are also multiple times as expensive as the normal ones). What else would you use for blisters? Duct tape preventively?

  10. #10

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    450-500 grams = about one pound of food/day. Not enough food, even for a cross country runner.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feral Bill View Post
    450-500 grams = about one pound of food/day. Not enough food, even for a cross country runner.
    One bag of Pasta Sides (formerly Liptons) weighs 170g (6 ounces). Throw in 80g of dried salmon / jerky and there's dinner. I do not eat much of a breakfast, but will probably have a couple granola bars or pop tarts (60g). That leaves me with ~200 grams of other food per day. I like to eat 2 or 3 tablespoons of olive oil (4g/tbsp, 120+ calories/tbsp) per day, and the rest can be a whole lot of GORP, with raisins, peanuts, macadamia nuts, protein powder, granola. Also, if I do get hungry, I have several options. Eat more and carry less days worth of food, eat more and carry more weight, or suffer

  12. #12

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    That 30# also includes food? If it does, your not doing too bad.

    Your list is reasonably minimulist, not a whole lot you can discard. For the most part, if you want a lighter pack, your going to have to get lighter stuff. My pack, less food and water, usually runs about 17-18 pounds and that includes a tent.

    The only thing which sticks out is the cotton shirt, as they tend to be on the heavy side dry and really heavy if it ever gets wet. That said, I'm thinking of going back to a 50-50 (cotton-nylon) T-shirt for when it's hot out. When it's hot, keeping the shirt on the damp side from sweat is actually a good thing, but it still dries farily quickly.

    Nylon underpants are the only way to go. These can be expensive for some dang reason, so nylon running shorts can be a good sub.

    I'm a firm beliver in New Skin liquid bandage rathier than band aids. Yes it's heavier, but much more effective (as it stays in place), plus it disinfects when you apply it.

    2 bandana's? Yes, I always have two. One for my head and one for -- I don't know what for, but I always have one!

    For a water bucket (which is handy to have) I use a the mid sized Wal-Mart dry bag with a nylon strap added for a handle. It is light and packs up small.

    I carry a fine point Sharpie permanet marker, as it is water proof and will write on most anything.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slo-go'en View Post
    That 30# also includes food? If it does, your not doing too bad.

    Your list is reasonably minimulist, not a whole lot you can discard. For the most part, if you want a lighter pack, your going to have to get lighter stuff. My pack, less food and water, usually runs about 17-18 pounds and that includes a tent.

    The only thing which sticks out is the cotton shirt, as they tend to be on the heavy side dry and really heavy if it ever gets wet. That said, I'm thinking of going back to a 50-50 (cotton-nylon) T-shirt for when it's hot out. When it's hot, keeping the shirt on the damp side from sweat is actually a good thing, but it still dries farily quickly.

    Nylon underpants are the only way to go. These can be expensive for some dang reason, so nylon running shorts can be a good sub.

    I'm a firm beliver in New Skin liquid bandage rathier than band aids. Yes it's heavier, but much more effective (as it stays in place), plus it disinfects when you apply it.

    2 bandana's? Yes, I always have two. One for my head and one for -- I don't know what for, but I always have one!

    For a water bucket (which is handy to have) I use a the mid sized Wal-Mart dry bag with a nylon strap added for a handle. It is light and packs up small.

    I carry a fine point Sharpie permanet marker, as it is water proof and will write on most anything.
    I appreciate your reversion to the actual topic of the gear I have questions about and not how much food I am going to be eating each day of the week

    As for the shirt, that may be a good choice, not completely sweat wicking, but not pure cotton either.

    I have several pairs of "compression shorts" which I was considering for underwear. Pretty lightweight and sweat wicking. I think they may be what you were referring to. I am still debating on using them.

    Another great choice for the med kit, I have used the New Skin bandage stuff before.. It does seem like a good idea. Combining that with mole skin or athletic / duct tape may work fine for blisters.

    I'll check out Wal-Mart for their bag selection, good tip there.

    Sharpie, good idea, maybe I could find one of the extremely tiny ones with the key ring.

  14. #14
    Registered User House of Payne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by untitleddocument View Post
    Hello all, just looking for some pointers on my what to pack / leave behind. Thanks a million.

    Big 4
    Pack (Osprey Kestrel 68L)
    Sleeping Bag (Mountain Hardwear Lamina 35F)
    Sleeping Pad (Standard Foam Pad Closed cell?
    Tent (2 person 3 season, will be carried by my hiking buddy)

    Clothing
    Rain Coat
    Convertible Pants & Shorts
    Running / Hiking Socks (2 pair)
    Smartwool socks (1 pair)
    Underwear (2 Underpants to help avoind chaffing?
    Hiking Shirt
    Cotton Shirt I like the combo nylon-cotton
    Fleece Jacket sort of heavy to bring compared to other choices
    Flip Flops
    Bandanna (2)
    Warm Hat (sleeping, bad weather etc)

    First Aid
    Band-Aids I'd consider a few with a small FAK and then pick up or bounce what you need along the way. A durable and highly adhesive type.
    Tweezer might incorporate tweezers into a combo tool that also has a knife
    Hand Sanitizer
    Advil / Benadryl / Tums
    Antibacterial Ointment

    Contacts
    Contact Solution
    Glasses & Case

    Food
    ~450-500 grams per day, six day supply
    MSR pocket rocket + 2 8oz fuel canisters (roughly 1 week supply for the two of us?) I have the pocket rocket also, I would lean this way and only use the stove when you have to.
    OR
    Homemade can stove using HEET
    (Any suggestions here??? My homemade stoves have not been great so far, though I have been practicing)
    Titanium Pot + Lid
    Spork

    Water
    3 L max at a time (between hydration reservoir and a bottle)
    Filter might consider a steripen or go all chemical here
    Purification Tabs as backup
    5 or 10L collapsible Bucket

    Miscellaneous
    Shamwow
    Lighter
    Toothbrush / Paste
    Knife
    Duct Tape
    Aluminum Foil
    Safety Pins
    Needle and Thread
    Headlamp
    Soap
    Mirror leave at home unless needed for contacts
    Chap Stick
    Bug Repel + DEET might consider pre-treating your clothing for bugs
    Toilet Paper
    Phone + Charger
    ID + $$$ + Credit Card
    Southbounder AT Guidebook agree with others, take portions of the book at a time
    Pen I like the pencil idea and use your knife to keep sharpen

    All together this weighs about 13.5 kilos (30 pounds). I am definitely willing to take any and all suggestions. I am prepared to carry up to 35 pounds at any given time, but less would obviously be better. With your anticipated body weight and having a hiking buddy sharing the common items I would think your pack weight should be well under 30 lb considering the food consumption you have planned.

    What are you wearing on your feet?

    Thanks!
    Enjoy your walk!

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by untitleddocument View Post
    As for the shirt, that may be a good choice, not completely sweat wicking, but not pure cotton either.
    Back "in the day" , before 100% nlyon or other synthetic clothes were commonly available, I used to wear a "Ranger suit", aka Dickie work clothes. These are 60/40 - 60% nlyon and 40% cotton. They dry reasonably quick with body heat and thier a lot cheaper then real "hiker clothes".
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  16. #16

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    Gear lists always get a lot of action on WB.
    Random typing begins:

    Food - entirely an individual issue.
    Head net, ball cap.
    Pocket Rocket fuel = get a sharpie and a new can, cook until empty making different marks for cooking supper, boiling water, etc. That way you'll know how much you'll use, and how fast you'll use it. On the trail, pay close attention to your cooking to not waste fuel.
    Contacts/signaling mirror = old computer disk
    Pencil.
    Bandannas = good, for pot holders to water filters to wipes - leave the Shamwow at home.
    Fleece jacket = go with a vest, wear your raincoat as an outer layer.
    Soap *and* hand sanitizer?
    Flip flops = you're going to want something you can wear socks with.
    Bring 'butterfly' band aids to close stitch worthy cuts.
    Lighter = get the clear plastic kind, so you can see when it gets empty.
    Sobo guide book, good book, but like the Companion they should be used for home planning or bounce boxing. Carry the pages you'll need from the Databook.
    No camera? Extra batts for the headlamp?
    Ziplocks for a wallet, keeping phone camera and TP dry, berry picking. garbage bag.
    Bring a few large heavy duty plastic garbage bags for a pack liner, wet gear, etc.
    Teej

    "[ATers] represent three percent of our use and about twenty percent of our effort," Baxter Park Director Jensen Bissell.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJ aka Teej View Post
    Gear lists always get a lot of action on WB.
    Random typing begins:

    Food - entirely an individual issue.
    Head net, ball cap.
    Pocket Rocket fuel = get a sharpie and a new can, cook until empty making different marks for cooking supper, boiling water, etc. That way you'll know how much you'll use, and how fast you'll use it. On the trail, pay close attention to your cooking to not waste fuel.
    Contacts/signaling mirror = old computer disk
    Pencil.
    Bandannas = good, for pot holders to water filters to wipes - leave the Shamwow at home.
    Fleece jacket = go with a vest, wear your raincoat as an outer layer.
    Soap *and* hand sanitizer?
    Flip flops = you're going to want something you can wear socks with.
    Bring 'butterfly' band aids to close stitch worthy cuts.
    Lighter = get the clear plastic kind, so you can see when it gets empty.
    Sobo guide book, good book, but like the Companion they should be used for home planning or bounce boxing. Carry the pages you'll need from the Databook.
    No camera? Extra batts for the headlamp?
    Ziplocks for a wallet, keeping phone camera and TP dry, berry picking. garbage bag.
    Bring a few large heavy duty plastic garbage bags for a pack liner, wet gear, etc.
    Thanks for the tips, I like your idea for the fuel canister.
    The shamwow was more just for toweling myself off, drying the tent/gear, it's only about 12x12 inches.
    Fleece, I may use that idea, just take the sleeves off the jacket I have.
    Good point, I probably don't need the hand sani.
    Flip flops are covered as far as sock use, they aren't the thong type.
    I'm definitely re-vamping my band-aid choices haha.
    Good point on the lighter and guide book.
    I have a good camera on my phone, but am considering bringing my good digital. Also, I think the batteries for the headlamp should last long enough, if not I can always pick up more.
    Ziplocks / garbage bags / dry sacks will be included as needed.

  18. #18
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    I really can not give advice on topics that I don't have enough experience to give advice on. You can appreciate my honesty here. I would like to offer an alternative though. If you make it to North Carolina, South Carolina, or Georgia and need food please don't hesitate to send me a message. I will do my best to accommodate your needs. I think people that are working should try to help our friends on the trail. I know what it is like to be on a budget. I have a very low income. Not all of us are blessed with infinite resources; but we still deserve some happiness. If walking the AT brings you happiness than I think you should do it I will be in a similar situation next year when I walk the AT. I work full time and only make about $15,000 a year. There is no money to save after all my expenses are deducted. It is like living on the AT everyday in my life so, I don't suppose much will change when I am actually on it. Besides, I would do for you the same as I would wish for someone to do for me. God speed.

  19. #19
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    Here is an update of my current gear list incorporating your suggestions!

    Big 4
    Pack (Osprey Kestrel 68L with integrated rain cover)
    Sleeping Bag (Mountain Hardwear Lamina 35F)
    Sleeping Pad (Standard Foam Pad)
    Tent (2 person 3 season, will be carried by my hiking buddy)

    Clothing
    Rain / Wind Coat
    Convertible Pants & Shorts
    Running / Hiking Socks (2 pair)
    Heavier Smartwool socks (1 pair)
    Underwear (2)
    Nylon Cotton Hiking Shirt (2)
    Fleece Vest
    Flip Flops
    Bandanna
    Warm Hat (sleeping, bad weather etc)
    Trail Runners

    First Aid / Personal
    Liquid Nu-Skin Bandage
    Tweezers
    Advil / Benadryl / Tums / Immodium (packaged in 2"x3" ziplocks)
    Chap Stick
    Duct Tape
    Toothbrush (cut down) / toothpaste
    Needle and thread (floss)
    Contacts / case
    Small bottle contact solution
    Glasses in soft case

    Cooking
    MSR pocket rocket
    1 8oz fuel canister
    See-through lighter
    1.1 L Pot + Lid (should be able to hold my entire cook system, I'll see when it comes in)
    Aluminum Foil
    Spork
    Various spices in 2"x3" ziplocks
    Around a weeks worth of food

    Water
    3 L max at a time (between hydration reservoir (osprey hydraform) and a bottle (32oz Nalgene perhaps?))
    Filter (I know it's unnecessary weight but I simply can't deny the convenience)
    Purification Tabs as backup
    3 gallon collapsible Bucket (for filtering, washing etc)

    Miscellaneous
    Shamwow (10"x10" square)
    Small knife
    Headlamp
    Soap
    2 oz. Bug Repel + DEET (lotion form in plastic bottle)
    Toilet Paper
    Phone + Charger
    ID + $$$ + Credit Card + Health Ins. Card
    Southbounder AT Guidebook (Unbound, only the pages I need)
    Golf pencil
    50' Paracord (Maybe cut it down to 30 or 40'?)
    8L Stuff Sack (Food Bag)


    How does that look now? A bit better? Not sure on exact pack weight yet, as I am still waiting for a few things to arrive. Estimating it at ~17# without food or water.
    Also, what are your opinions on trekking poles? Are they a necessity? If so, could I get by with aluminum ski poles?
    Thanks again for all the input.

  20. #20
    Not committing until I graduate! Sassafras Lass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Esau View Post
    I really can not give advice on topics that I don't have enough experience to give advice on. You can appreciate my honesty here. I would like to offer an alternative though. If you make it to North Carolina, South Carolina, or Georgia and need food please don't hesitate to send me a message. I will do my best to accommodate your needs. I think people that are working should try to help our friends on the trail. I know what it is like to be on a budget. I have a very low income. Not all of us are blessed with infinite resources; but we still deserve some happiness. If walking the AT brings you happiness than I think you should do it I will be in a similar situation next year when I walk the AT. I work full time and only make about $15,000 a year. There is no money to save after all my expenses are deducted. It is like living on the AT everyday in my life so, I don't suppose much will change when I am actually on it. Besides, I would do for you the same as I would wish for someone to do for me. God speed.

    Esau, it is refreshing to hear real words of support and kindness here. Hubby and I are headed SOBO too on a very tight budget, life's been quite different these last few years. Maybe if you can get out to the trail we'll see ya.
    Formerly 'F-Stop'

    If you don't like the road you're walking, start paving another one.

    ~ Dolly Parton

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