Gear List

I’ll be using this page to track the gear that I’m currently using and some of my backup stuff…

Current gear setup

Pack: Osprey Atmos 65 AG – Vendor / Amazon

Might be a little big for most hikes but I like to have the flexibility for a longer hike without resupply.  This pack is extremely comfortable, both in fit and the way in which it stabilizes your load.  I have removed the top day pack – don’t need the space and saving the weight helps.

Shelter: Big Agnes Copper Spur HV UL2 – Vendor / Amazon

I love this tent!  It is roomy for a 2 person shelter and has a very high ceiling – you can sit up comfortably.  At 2 lb. 12 oz., it is extremely light for a free standing tent.  I’ll use a Tyvek ground cover with this shelter.  It is extremely simple to pitch and is very sturdy.  I like having the extra room to pull my pack in overnight – makes getting ready in the morning simpler.

Sleeping Quilt: Enlightened Equipment Revelation – Vendor

Coming soon – should be delivered by early February!

Sleeping Pad: Thermarest NeoAir XLite – Vendor / Amazon

This is a wonderful pad.  At 2.5″ thick it is really comfortable and doesn’t add a ton of weight for that thickness – just 12oz / .34kg for the regular length.  It is inflatable so if you hate blowing stuff up, see the Thermarest Z-Lite down below.  This pad a has a reputation for being noisy – sounds like you’re rolling on plastic as you move around – but I haven’t found it to be that bad.

Stove: Snow Peak LiteMax Titanium Stove – Vendor / Amazon

Great little stove for 2oz / 56g.  It can boil a liter of water un a little over 4 minutes.  It lights easy and stays lit.  Works great for heating water, cooking ramen, or whatever else you throw at it.

Water Filter: Sawyer Squeeze – Vendor / Amazon

Pretty much the standard these days from what I’ve seen.  Fill the bag, screw it on, squeeze it through the filter.  Light and simple – twi things that are great for backpackers.

Hydration Bladder: Platypus Big Zip LP – 3L – Vendor / Amazon

I like bladders over bottles but that’ll get scornful looks.  I like the ability to sip as I hike rather than stopping to take out or replace bottles.  I’m just not coordinated enough to do it.  At 3L, this is a little big if water sources are abundant – normally 2L is enough.  That said, I don’t have to fill it all the way and it helps if you’re in a dry area – all at the cost of 0.4 oz. over the 2L size.

Food Storage: ZPacks Bear Bag Kit – Vendor

A big bag, line, and a rock bag for tossing over a branch.  Made of Cuben Fiber, the bag has a roll top to seal out water and has an all in weight of 3 oz.  Basic but works well.  I also use some of the ZPacks dry bags to store clothing and my sleeping bag.

Food Storage: BearVault BV500 – Vendor / Amazon

When I’m hiking in areas where a bear canister required, this is my go to.  This canister has a nice wide mouth and will hold 7 days worth of food.  It opens without tools and doubles as a seat.  In the cold it can be a pain to open – you have to pinch in the plastic of the lid a bit – but it’s not too bad.

Light: Princeton Tec Remix LED Headlamp – Vendor / Amazon

It has a high and low setting for both white and colored (red or green) lights.  I went with the red lights as they’re great for preserving your night vision.  I like that the Remix starts with the red lights when you turn it on each time – no blinding you on your way to the red light!


A lot of this is personal preference – ymmv

Base Layers: Nike Pro Combat – Vendor / Amazon

I like the Nike Pro Combat stuff as a base layer.  I don’t really like the compression stuff so I skip that and go for the standard line.  Not married to Nike, just happens to be the stuff I found cheap at Marshalls.

Mid Layer: North Face Ventrix – Vendor / Amazon

Love this jacket!  It is designed to vent when you’re moving and hold in heat when you’re standing still.  I was skeptical as it doesn’t have pit zips and I tend to sweat a lot.  I’ve hiked well over 50 miles in this jack in temps ranging from 15F to 50F and haven’t had any issues.  It is cut slim so get a size bigger than you expect.

Outer Layer: Mountain Hardware Ghost Whisperer Hooded Jacket – Vendor / Amazon

Pictured in my Bear Mountain Birthday Hike post, I love this coat.  It is extremely warm and weighs next to nothing.  Pricey but worth it in my opinion.

Pants: prAna Stretch Zion Convertible Pant – Vendor / Amazon

They’re light and easily convert between shorts and pants.  They stretch in all directions so they move where you do.  I like having the cargo pockets for holding snacks, maps, or whatever else you want quick access to.

Socks: Darn Tough – Vendor / Amazon

Merino wool, lifetime guarantee – what’s not to love?

Boots: Merrell Moab – Vendor / Amazon

Link is to the Moab 2 Ventilator as that’s the current version.  I got an earlier version for cheap when the these came out.  I love these boots.  They fit perfectly and didn’t need a break in period at all.  I was able to hike in the them immediately without issue.  Nice and light and very supportive.  I know a lot of folks are starting to hike in trail runners but I am more comfortable with the ankle support these mids provide.  I didn’t go for the waterproof Moab version as waterproof boots don’t breathe well enough for me.

Older gear

Stuff I used to use but is really only backup gear now

Shelter: Mountain Hardware Skyledge 2.1

I used this tent for a number of years.  Pitches fast and is relatively stable.  I don’t like the fact that the cross pole simply sticks into a reinforced section of the fly.  The Copper Spur has sleeves for the pole on the underside of the fly – a better design.  At 3 lb. 7 oz., the Skyledge is heavier and slightly smaller (-1 sq ft) as well.

Sleeping Pad: Big Agnes Air Core Mummy

I couldn’t find a link to the exact one I have but the link above is close.  I’ve always found the mummy shape tough because I tend to slide off of it.  That wouldn’t be too big a deal but the pad is relatively tall so it gets uncomfortable.  It’s a serviceable pad but I won’t be going this route again.

Sleeping Bag: Klymit KSB 20

I lucked into this bag in my Cairn Obsidian box.  It is a decent bag with a well padded hood and footbox.  I like the interior baffles near your shoulders – tends to seal in warmth.  I do find it a bit heavy and it doesn’t pack as small as I’d like.  I haven’t used it in cold weather so I can’t comment on the degree rating.

Sleeping Bag: Kelty Lightyear 15

It’s an older bag… rating if probably aggressive at this point although Im a warm sleeper so it’s fine down to 25F.  I’m considering switching to a quilt rather than a mummy bag.  I tend to toss and turn a bit before I fall asleep.

Sleeping Pad: Thermarest Z-Lite (Short)

Light (10 0z.), indestructible, multi function (pad, seat, wind screen), cheap.  It’s bulky but you can strap it to the outside of your pack.  With a 2.6 R-value, it’d certainly good enough for 3 season camping.  If you don’t need the additional comfort of an inflatable, its well worth the weight tradeoff.  One of the best benefits is that it sets up and tears down in a couple seconds… far shorter than blowing up and deflating the alternative.

Stove: JetBoil Flash

Love this stove.  There are others that are lighter but I don’t mind the extra ounces for the convenience that this givens me.  Water boils amazingly fast and it’s very fuel efficient.  I may purchase a smaller cup to shave some ounces as the one that came with it is a bit big for solo cooking.

Water Filter: Grayl Ultralight

Another gift from the Cairn box, this was a new design to me.  I haven’t used it much but it is far better than all that pumping.  The Grayl works like a French press coffee maker and you can drink right out of it – great for when you’re very thirsty.  The one negative is that your hands can hurt a bit from the pushing but I’m not too concerned.