It is even possible to be less than the “Low End Weight”, which is what you should be striving to make.
Clothing low-6.5 high-9.5 Personal Gear low-9.9 high-17.5 Tent Mate Gear low-3.1 high-4.1 Troop Gear (12 hikers) low-3.1 high-3.1 Optional Items low-0 high-6.0 Total Pack Weight low-22.6 pounds high-40.2 pounds (this is crazy high!
(Some ultra light people do not bring any clothes except what they wear.) Each Buddy Team: Two-man tent (count the stakes) and ground cloth (optional) Group Equipment – Distributed among hikers Water filters – Water jugs/bottles/bags Stove and fuel bottles Large and/or medium cooking pots Cook Kit: spatula, serving spoon and/or utensils, measuring cup, camp suds and sponge, bleach, scrubber, Purell Stuff sacks for food Bear bags and rope (50 ft ¼” braided nylon rope, 50 ft 1/8” parachute cord, 2 ft 1/8” nylon cord) or Bear Canisters in some areas Repair Kit (sewing kit, small piece of cloth, safety pins, wire, pliers or Leatherman, superglue, tube, O rings for filter, rope, and more) Troop First Aid Kit (check it every hike) Permits, Maps, Medical Forms Pack List Weights in pounds No one should be carrying the “High Weight”.
It is listed so you can see how much you can save if you are careful.
Waterproof Pack Cover needs to be large enough to protect items strapped to the exterior of the pack.
A couple of large garbage bags may be suitable for summer hiking in the Sierras, but if multiple rainy days are anticipated a dedicated pack cover is better.
For extended treks the internal frame pack should have a volume over 3,000 cubic inches (50 liters), but less than 4,200 cubic inches (70 liters).
The larger the pack, the greater the tendency to fill it with non-essentials.
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Personal Gear (should weigh less than 15 pounds) Backpack and rain cover (garbage bag OK) Sleeping bag in a waterproof stuff sack Sleeping pad (pillow optional) Personal first aid kit Two water bottles – minimum 2 liters total Two small flashlights Scoop and toilet paper Mess Kit (bowl, cup, utensils) Light towel and/or bandanna Sunglasses Carabiner Emergency Food Personal Items (Toothbrush, soap, glasses, contact solution, medicines) Emergency Kit in a bag: compass, pocket knife, sunscreen, chap stick, signaling devices (whistle and mirror), paper and pencil, map in a waterproof bag, matches in a waterproof bag, water purifier tablets, duct tape, insect repellent, two zip lock bags, two garbage bags Nice to Have: Walking Sticks, Stool or Chair, Waterproof Watch, Camera, Mosquito Hat, Wire Saw, Spices for food, Fishing Pole Clothing – including what you wear (Should weigh less than eight pounds): Sturdy hiking boots (broken in) Water shoes/camp shoes 2-3 pair non-cotton socks 2-3 pair sock liners (optional) 2 Hiking shorts or pants (one pair of long pants and something for swimming) 0-2 pair underwear 2 T-shirts and one long sleeve shirt Rain gear or poncho Hat or Cap (Wide Brim) Warm heavy shirt, sweater, sweatshirt or jacket (no cotton) Fleece pants or long underwear bottoms Gloves or glove liners and warm hat Many new backpackers bring too many clothes.
The basic rule is wear one set of clothes and pack one change of clothes unless weather is a major consideration.
Down bags are not good because they are ineffective when wet.