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.).
August 1, 2022
Outdoor Life: Do You Really Need a Water Filter for Backpacking and Mountain Hunting?
While DEET products may be more familiar by name and their chemical smell, sprays with 20 percent picaridin, like Sawyer Products, offer comparable protection without the harsh odor and oily feeling on your skin.
The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).
SAWYER MINI WATER FILTER, $22 This has been my water filter of choice for years now. The bags can be iffy — I have had a few break – so carry a couple. However, the filter itself is reliable, light and inexpensive. -Logan