Backcountry Camping Gear List

Backcountry Gear List
(currently using)

Six Moon Designs Starlight
REI Trekking Poles
Tarptent Contrail
Sleeping Pad
Western Mountaineering
MSR Pocket Rocket
Fuel canister
Pot and lid
Lexan Spoon
Rubber pot scraper/spatula
Pack towel
Collapsable water bucket
20 oz. soda bottle
2 platypus 1 liter water bladders
MSR Hyperflow water filter
Garmin E Trex Vista HCx GPS
First Aid Kit
Petzl Tikka Headlamp
Leatherman "kick" multitool
Ursack & caribiner
30' nylon cord
Tooth brush
Antiseptic cleaner
Golite Virga Rain jacket
Mountain Hardware stretch fleece
Montbell Down sweater
Water shoes/Crocs
Lowa Renegade GTX Hiking Boots
X-tra liner socks
X-tra wool socks
Columbia Booney hat
Nylon sleep shorts
Sun Glasses
Digital Camera
Insect Repellent
Sun screen

To be totally honest, I did a horrible job outfitting Yumi and myself at the beginning. I was in such a hurry to purchase gear that I didn't make the wisest choices and wound up paying for it with both my wallet and physically. The good news is that I've made up for my naivete by spending lots since then on mostly good stuff.

My lovely wife bought me a new digital camera for my birthday---a new Sony Cyber-shot something-something. It takes pretty good video but will take me a while to learn how to use it after owning Canon's for the past 10 years.

Time to order a Bear Vault 500 for my upcoming trip to the Absaroka's. this marks the first new gear I"ve purchased in recent years that I actually NEEDED.

OK, this is just sick. I bought the Western Mountaineering Caribou like I should have done last summer. I'll gladly send the Montbell back. But that's not all! My new pack (even though I surely don't NEED another one) as a Six Moon Designs Starlight. More clothing was also on my Christmas list: Golite Virga rain jacket, new base layers, convertible pants and my very first pair of boxer briefs. Somebody please help me. I NEEDED none of this.

I now know I'm one sick puppy. I'm looking to pull the trigger on either a Granite Gear Virga or a Golite Jam. A new rain jacket might be in order as well. Stay tuned.

Since it's an even numbered year, it's time to buy more gear! MSR Hyperflow water filter, Mountain Hardware Stretch Fleece and long Sleeved T. Montbell Super Stretch Down Hugger #4, Montbell down inner jacket, Tarptent Contrail. Garmin E Trex Vista HcX, topo software and another pair of Lowa Renegade GTX's. Almost forgot the new air mattress. The small fortune I spent was worth every penny since my total pack weight for 7 nights in the Beartooths was 27 lbs. My base weight is now just over 12 lbs.

I've been a busy boy this winter and spring.  The Forester has been replaced by a Granite Gear Vapor Trail. The TNF Slickrock won't be taken along as much (or maybe even at all) since I went out and got a Henry Shires Cloudburst 2 Tarptent. Finally, a new Hooded Aspen sleeping bag from Western Mountaineering rounds out my big 3. For the first time in a couple of years I find myself not perusing the web for gear. I can now go under 30 lbs. total for a 6 night trip.

My pack weight including water and food for my 5-night Glacier trip weighed in at 34 lbs. I'm getting there. I could lose another 1.5 pounds buy purchasing a solo shelter, and another half pound by switching to a down bag. I'm also toying with eliminating a few other odds and ends which could save another half-pound. Still, the difference from last year was noticable.

Took a little trip to the Brookfield REI today. Gone is the MSR Dragonfly which was replaced with a Pocket Rocket. The mammoth Kelty Redcloud is now history as I'll be carrying everything in a Gregory Forester


  Henry Shires Tarptent Cloudburst 2
At a shade over 2.5 lbs. this gem enabled me to go even lighter by utilizing a smaller pack (Vapor Trail). Though light, the Cloudburst withstood some serious horizontal rain and wind in, surprise, in the Wind River range.
  Henry Shires Tarptent Contrail
Bought for the 2008 Beartooth trip, the Contrail has more than enough room for a big guy like me, and weighs in at under 1.5 lbs. A great solo shelter
Sleeping Bags        
  Western Mountaineering Sycamore 25*   A sweet bag, cut larger for my massive size. 2 lbs. of comfy warmth.
  Western Mountaineering Caribou *35   Probably my new go-to bag. Compresses small and weighs in at under 1.5 lbs.
  Montbell Super Stretch Down Hugger #5 40*   This one is probably going back to but it packs small and might be a good summer bag.

  REI Mojave *10   Yumi sleeps cold so we needed a warmer bag. Nice loft but only 600 PF so it's a tad bulkier than I'd like.
  Gregory Forester (4850 cubes)   For one reason or another, my heavy hauler has rarely benn used, the last in 2006. I'll hang on to this one in case I ever do a longer base camp type trip with Yumi or kids
  Granite Gear Vapor Trail (3800 cubes)   This is an awesome pack with only a few limitations which led me to find something different. The collar is too long to pack and unpack easily, and the outside pockets are tough get anything into when the pack is fully loaded
  Six Moon Designs Starlight (4200 cubes)   A shorter collar and plenty of mesh pockets make me believe this will be an easier pack to deal with on the trail. The marginally larger capacity fits my trend of going on longer (7-9 days) trips
  Gregory Z-Pack (3250 cubic inches)   Yumi likes this pack because it has plenty of places to stuff things she needs close at hand. Bonus: the color looks good on her.
July, 2011
Winter camping in the Beartooths in July
teton August, 2010
6 nights in the heart of the Absaroka mountains
July, 2009
Another 7 nights with the crew in the Beartooths
August, 2008
7 nights in the Beartooths with Ward and the Canadian
July, 2008
5 nights in the Bighorns with a Canadian

August, 2007
Yumi and I return to GNP for some fun

July, 2007
6 nights in the heart of the Northern wind Rivers
August, 2006
A 3-night solo in the Absaroka-Beartooth
July, 2006
Yumi and I spend 8 nights in the Wind Rivers
Aug-Sept., 2005
Dorf gets his GNP fix with 8 nights on the trail
July, 2005
A quickie solo in the Cloud Peak Wilderness
July, 2005
Our return to GNP aborted 6 hours in :-(
July, 2004
Two weeks of camping and backpacking in Glacier.
September, 2004
Yumi and I get to the Porkies before fall arrives
July, 2004
Yumi and I take the kids to the Porkies
June, 2004
Todd and I prove that last years' Newport debacle was no fluke
October, 2003
Yumi and I test some more gear and nearly die
September, 2003
Yumi and I decide to do a little camping & test gear

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