What’s in my pack: Slaughterhouse’s Long Trail Gear List
Gear takes up so much thought, but I thoroughly enjoy it. You really have to take into consideration every little detail – which can be exhausting, BUT it can also be a fun puzzle to solve! I prefer to look at it as the latter.
Base Weight (+ How I Kept it Down)
- I bought an Ursack Major Bear Sack – 10 Liters for food storage. A LARGE chunk of the Long Trail requires proper bear-safe food storage (although, it is recommended for the entire length of the trail). I already had a bear canister from the Pacific Crest Trail, but I didn’t particularly enjoy carrying a bear can (let’s be real, only masochists would). The BV500 served me well, but it weighed in at a whopping 2 lbs, 9 oz. On the other hand, the Ursack 10 L is only 7.8 oz (0.48 lbs). The Ursack would shave ~2 lbs. off my base weight and provide almost the same storage capacity as the BV500. The cost for the Ursack was $144.43 (including taxes + free shipping). Ultimately, I decided the price was worth it.
- I left the stove at home. I really love my MSR PocketRocket 2, but I opted to leave it behind for a few reasons. First, I wanted to cut weight (obvious answer). Leaving the stove also cuts weight from the associated lighter, fuel canister, allows me the freedom to select a lighter “pot”. Second, I will be hiking in August (the warmest time of the year), and a warm meal may not always be welcome. Third, there are a lot of trail towns where I can get a warm meal. Fourth, because I am from Canada, I will be flying to and from the trail. Fuel canisters and lighters cannot go on the planes, as they pose a combustion risk. That means I would have to hunt for fuel after arriving in Boston, but before driving out to the trailhead. I would also have to remember and find a place to dump the fuel canister SAFELY before leaving flying out of Burlington. While these are relatively minor inconveniences, they did play a role in my decision. (I wouldn’t run out of fuel for the 2 weeks I’m on trail, which is why I’m not worried about finding fuel in town). With all this in mind, my stove will be staying at home.
- Classic weight-cutting:
- Trimmed the toothbrush in half
- Trimmed excess strap length off of the pack
- Decided to leave behind a few items that didn’t seem essential after re-evaluation (like Vit. C packets, water reservoir, lip balm, etc.).
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