What is your total pack weight

Discussion in 'Backpacking' started by tomme boy, May 3, 2016.

  1. tomme boy

    tomme boy Guide

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    What is the total weight you pack out for a couple days hike? Let's say spring time for the time of the year.

    I'm thinking I need to reevaluate my kit. Just wondering what everyone else packs in.

     
  2. stingray4540

    stingray4540 Scout

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    Trailhead weight? Including consumables(food, water, fuel)?
    I think I was at 25lbs last 4 day trip with full load of water food and fuel.. I have plans for a few purchases that will bring it under 20lb., but I haven't been backpacking much since the second kid so haven't been able to justify the money.

    Start a spreadsheet, list every single item you take down to your Chapstick and Kleenex. List all items weights. Then go through and get rid of everything you didn't use last trip. Now get rid of everything you didn't NEED to use last trip. Like, you don't need 3 knives... You also don't need a bunch of bags inside of bags. Forget about organizing, stuff it all in there and keep day use stuff in outside pockets.

    You could also post your spreadsheet when it's done if you can stomach people picking through it and criticizing your choices. That being said, you'll have better critics over at backpackinglight if you are trying to lose weight. There are some lightweight hikers here, but the majority of bush rafters carry heavy stuff, but that just all depends on how you enjoy spending time on the trail.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  3. Mazer

    Mazer Scout

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    17.8#'s without food or a water bottle
     
  4. bmwrider

    bmwrider Scout

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    22.5 lbs with food and water, 3 days 2 nights.
    But to be fair I work for REI and get deals on the best stuff money can buy.
    Thats using a Hammock and trap as shelter.
     
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  5. PaPa K

    PaPa K Supporter Supporter

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    Last overnighter was 19.5 w/o water. I use a hammock, tarp and quilts. Interestingly my Mountain Smith pack is super tough, but almost 5lbs on it's own, but fits well and is very comfortable.
     
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  6. tomme boy

    tomme boy Guide

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    I'm at 45 lbs right now. But I tend to bring a lot everything. I think the redundancy of my kit is the problem.
     
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  7. Bushin in Az

    Bushin in Az Tracker

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    I am at about 35 pounds with decent multi use gear, that doesn't include consumables and normally I have a gallon of water on me so add at least another 12 pounds to my base weight.
     
  8. DuctTape

    DuctTape Scout

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    20# including food and water. I also include all items in my pockets. Only weight not included is normal clothing I am wearing.
     
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  9. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    22 Pounds for 48 Hours.

    Food Only.
    Water weight not included.
    Late Spring till Early Fall

    On the trail on a Friday afternoon, off the trail by Sunday afternoon.
     
  10. Sanquhar

    Sanquhar Tracker

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    I just got back from a 3-day, 2-night meetup with 15 people in St. Mary's Wilderness in Virginia. Total pack weight was 30.5lbs (with water). That also included 6lbs of cheese that I hauled in for a group meal.

    Anything more than 30lbs and this old man's knees are going to be uncomfortable with elevation changes or significant distance.
     
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  11. Paul Sand

    Paul Sand Tracker Bushclass I

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    Mid 30s for overnight trips. It varies a bit depending on the trip. That is with some admittedly cheap stuff, like a $30 sleeping bag that is too bulky (but comfy). Winter will be more, of course. When the kids come it's WAY more, ha. I use a Gregory z-55, and it handles the load beautifully. At the end of the day, bring whatever you want to bring. I know one buddy who loads out over 50lbs, while my brother in law can't stand weighing in over 20 lbs.
     
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  12. quball101011

    quball101011 Tracker

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    Headed out for a planned 2 nights. (May only be an overnight) will be right around 33-34 pounds. Will be carrying a little extra water in as there is no drinkable water do to farm run off. Bring a little extra clothes as well do to colder overnight temps. I try and stay 30 pounds and under. I have several items that could be lighter but as I figure that would cost me about $500 to save about 5 pounds. I feel it's not worth it at this time for 5-8 miles I hike.
     
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  13. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    Really depends what I'm doing... a short (<2.5 miles) walk to a known location before bug season means Whelen lean-to, axe/saw, and that's going to be about 25lbs, including food and 2qts of water.

    In my "light" wanderings of previously unexplored territory, I strip down to a bare minimum, maybe 15-16lbs plus 2 or 3 qts of water, which puts me in the 19-22 lb range, no ax/saw.

    If you add clothes and pocket contents, that's another 5 lbs.

    You best bet is to make a spreadsheet and weigh every single piece of gear. Look hard at each piece of gear. If you don't use it every day, don't bring it, with the sole exception of a SMALL FAK, and the possible exception of rain gear.

    The 3 biggest/heaviest items are going to be your pack, your sleeping bag, and your tent. You can make MAJOR improvements in cutting total weight with just these three items. If they weigh, respectively, 5, 3, and 4 lbs, for a total of 12lbs, and you cut them to 2, 2, and 3lbs, for a total of 7lbs, you have just cut 5lbs off the total... that's significant.

    Ray Jardine wrote a book (probably has a new one by now) called "Beyond Backpacking" that addresses this issue pretty well. I don't agree with all of it, but he's got the right philosophy.

    edit: Age has a lot to do with what you'll put up with... up until I was 40/41, I could still hump a 35-40lb pack 15 miles a day up and down through the Smokies for a week... at some point, it began to hurt to sleep on a 3/8" thick closed cell foam pad and a stick started to become a welcome tool coming down a pile of rocks... I went through a serious "ultralight" experiment for a couple years, getting down to the UL-nirvanah goal of a sub-12-lb baseweight, etc... but I eventually shook free and came back a bit heavier, settling on a blend of UL, bushcraft, and common sense that works for me. I prefer canoe trips now, since my arms still work (where my back and knees hurt), but that's the next 'phase' of life, i guess.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  14. cabbagepatch

    cabbagepatch Tracker

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    My pack weight really depends on what I plan on doing while i am out. Am I hammock camping or sleeping on the ground, am I building a big shelter that requires me to bring an axe or no? That being said I like to bring different things to try out while in the woods so with food and water for a three day, two night trip my pack usually comes out to about 35 pounds for the spring. I am also not doing super long hikes, at most 6 miles a day so 35 lbs is easy to do that with.
     
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  15. Monkeynono

    Monkeynono Supporter Supporter

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    Last trip was 27# out the door, food,water, 0* top and bottom quilts, hand drill, and tools. Side note my pack weighs 5.5# on its own.
     
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  16. JackintheGreen

    JackintheGreen Tracker

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    I use mostly USGI surplus stuff and build a tarp or debris shelter for shorter trips. With 3 days of food and 6 quarts of water my pack weighs in a hair over 32 pounds. I've carried packs upwards of 90 pounds for days on end with the military and can't recommend it at all. A decent rule of thumb is to stay under 45 pounds or 25% of your body weight for any movement lasting more than 3 hours.
     
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  17. ra2bach

    ra2bach Bushmaster

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    well it depends. my last 3-day hike my pack weighed 27lbs with food and 2L of water but I was using my Baltoro75, a 5.25lb Cadillac of a pack comfortable with loads up to 50-60lbs, a 20* synthetic sleeping bag, and a 3.25lb tent.

    this was just a short hike when I wasn't paying any particular attention to weight. I had plenty of "comfort" items - a 4" knife, candle lantern, Kindle reader, pistol/spare magazine, comfy air mattress AND a 24x48" foam pad for sitting/lounging, work space, and deck for vestibule of tent, etc....

    for point-to-point trail hiking, the focus is carrying as little weight as is reasonable. there's "light", and there's "stupid light" and I'm in the first category for that. I've pretty painlessly dropped 3.2lbs from my pack, 2.5lbs from my sleep system (bag and pad), and 1lb from my tent. that's only a couple candy bars shy of 6.5lbs lost from just those three areas...

    there's still food/water, clothing, and other bits to add to the total but being more disciplined I can probably knock off another 2-3lbs. that gives me a sub-20lb pack weight, all-in, for 3days/2nights. not impressive at all to dedicated thru-hikers carry but I'm not looking to go stupid light, because for me, it still has to be fun to keep doing it...
     
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  18. Bushin in Az

    Bushin in Az Tracker

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    Just reweighed for an upcoming trip this weekend. Looking at 15 pounds without food and water so about 25 pounds total weight.
     
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  19. Paveglass

    Paveglass Scout

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    Always under 30#, I target 25#. Weighing your stuff helps, and the key point is to leave frivolous stuff out if it is redundant or "just in case". Generally, I find that pack and straps etc run about 5#, sleeping system (bag and mat) is about 5#, kitchen (stove, fuel, pots, utensils) is about 5#, shelter (3 man tent) is about 5#. You can save weight in your water purification system (boil, pills, vs filter), cooking system (wood stove vs stove and fuel if you are only really going to heat things), and tentage (do you need a bug liner this trip or will the fly do). Some will get a very light pack...not me, I like the structure and support. These are rough numbers but allow for durable gear and some room in the tent. That puts you at 20 plus food, water and odds and ends that you will need...not want.

    Also, be careful about adding gadgets. If you bring a camera, gps, satellite tracker, and a cell phone...you just added a lot of weight.
     
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  20. ineffableone

    ineffableone Guide

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    This is really good advice. While yes you can cut weight by finding those small items that you don't need to bring, finding lower weight options for the big 3 weights is by far the most effective method to cut weight. Combining eliminating unneeded items with lowing the weight of the big 3 and you can get a real significant drop in weight.

    *edit to add, I really can't chime in on my pack weight for a couple day trip, since I tend to only go out if i have 3 or more days. Preferably a week or two. So my pack weights tend to be a bit heavier. I don't through hike or do weekend camping. I tend to go out to an area set up a base camp and explore and enjoy the place for longer periods.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  21. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    Loaded my pack up w/ 3-ish days of gear/food this past weekend for a training outing in the Bob, 14 lbs 10 oz includes food/water and snowshoes (snowshoes are a little over 2.5 lbs). I'm hoping by the end of the month we can ditch the shoes and be in the 12-ish pound range. We're hoping to cover 30-40 miles per day, so lighter is definitely better :4:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  22. winterlover

    winterlover Supporter Supporter

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    I'm impressed! Would you mind sharing how you get your pack weight so low?
     
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  23. mrgreen

    mrgreen Tracker

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    Some great advice posted above. I'd like to make a comment regarding carrying water. I typically carry 1 liter of water, but I always have the ability to store a large amount in camp with a collapsible nalgene container or similar. Each liter of water weighs more then 2lbs, but a water treatment system can weigh only a few ounces.

    Of course, in arid conditions you have no choice.
    .....Since I get rained on every time I'm out it's a '99 problems but dry ain't one' kind of situation.

    By the way, my pack with two nights of food, liter of water, huge Klymit V-Luxe pad (27oz) and Helinox chair weighs a hair over 22lbs. On my digital fishing scale it was 22lbs 3ozs. My 6lb Kifaru pack(included in total) feels empty with this load. Conversely, the frameless daypack I use for work weighs 2lbs less and feels heavy as hell after a short walk. I keep my necessary gear as light as possible so I can be comfortable in camp with a real chair, thick wide pad and pillow for my screwed up neck.

    Have fun,
    Steve
     
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  24. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    sure :) My pack is a running pack, 30 liters that weighs about a pound- I use a 30 degree quilt that weighs a pound, my shelter is an eVENT bivy- under a pound, neoair inflatable pad also under a pound- cooking is a ti pot w/ a light canister stove- food is eaten out of a bag, so just an additional spoon; I use two used gatorade bottles (about an ounce each) and aquatabs for purification- one bottle is ready to drink, one has a tab in it- I simply keep switching. Clothing- rain jacket, rain pants, rain mitts, lwt fleece beanie, lwt fleece gloves, a 100 weight fleece top, lwt insulated jacket and spare wool socks for sleeping- in all just a touch over 2 pounds. Essential gear includes map, compass, first aid, fire kit, repair, headlamp w/ spare batteries, TP- about 10 ounces. I also carry an iphone 6 that has Gaia maps- which makes it a fully functioning gps (and camera) in a waterproof case- 6 oz. A SPOT satellite emergency device- 4 oz. Food is roughly 3 lbs.

    This is a pretty bare bones/spartan setup (sleeping in a bivy isn't very luxurious :4:), but suits our need to cover ground quickly
     
  25. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    Can't beat some sort of down bag/NEOAir/tarp combo for lightness... the older style thermarests were too heavy once you got them thick enough to be comfortable. I went to a hammock for the comfort and snake/bug protection, but still like the new/modern NEO Air for comfort in NY or down here in the winter...
     
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  26. longhunter

    longhunter Northman Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    My scout pack weighs 14 1/2 pounds all inclusive and will allow me to stay +- 3 nights if need be.
     
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  27. stingray4540

    stingray4540 Scout

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    Very nice, I'm impressed.
    I couldn't do just a bivy. I use a bivy under a tarp for solo stuff but I don't think I could ever get confident enough to just bivy it.

    Question: If you are using snow shoes, how are you staying warm enough to be comfortable in a 30* bag? That's one area I struggle with is going to a warmer bag.
     
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  28. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    On a "normal" trip I would use a tarp and a water resistant bivy (vs waterproof) or a small pyramid shelter- bivy selected both due to simplicity (throw it on the ground- done) and weight- the Bob Open isn't a "normal" trip :4:

    the trip is at the end of May, so temps won't be too much below freezing, but there will likely still a fair bit of snow at all the passes and heavily shaded areas, thus the possible need of snowshoes; my quilt is rated at 30 degrees, but it's much closer to 20 degrees in reality (Katabatic is "famous" for under rating their quilts) and I've found bivies to add close to 10 degrees of warmth and with the additional clothing carried, could push it further yet
     
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  29. Coryphene

    Coryphene Guide

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    Two words: Too Heavy!

    If going into the woods to play around with sharp things, it weighs far more then if I'm trying to cover ground with a purpose. I'm not a gram weenie that bothers cutting the handles off toothbrushes and lives in fear of any knife larger then the SAK Classic (keychain model). I made my own hammock and tarp and over/underquilts. Sewing my own pack for a PVC frame will be next.
     
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  30. Red Ochre

    Red Ochre Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    50 ish in the winter. 25-40 in summer but it depends where I'm going.
     
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  31. JollyGreenGiant

    JollyGreenGiant Tracker Bushclass I

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    23lbs for 3 days 2 nights with food and water included.

    There's a website called geargrams.com that is incredibly useful for making spreadsheets with weights of all of you gear, which you can then drag into different load outs for various trips.

    Just using the spreadsheet has saved me a tremendous amount of weight by seeing what I need and then only packing that.
     
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  32. rocketbomb

    rocketbomb Guide

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    Recently did a 6-day hike in the Grand Canyon (planned for 7 days but came out a day early because we were ready to be out). Full load except for water came in maybe a touch over 35 lbs to start out with. Usually started out the days with 4-6 liters, though on the first day I had nearly 8 as our first camp was dry.
     
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  33. ROCK6

    ROCK6 Scout

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    My pack is set up for distance hiking along with a couple of my "comfort" items. I typically carry two liters of water (4.5 pounds); fuel (typically alcohol) and food depend on how many days. I can't remember what my fuel weighs, but I typically just carry 9 ounces (total of 10 ounces with bottle) and my food average 1.5-2 pounds per day. My pack's (ULA Circuit) base-weight is right at 14 pounds. Add 4.4 pounds for water, 1.5 ounces of fuel per day and let's just say 6 pounds of food for three days.

    Total pack weight would be 14 (base weight)+4.5 (water)+0.5 (fuel)+6 (food) = 25 pounds for a three day trip with my kit.

    ROCK6
     
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  34. mischief

    mischief Guide

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    Way to much, as I am a card carring "what If" club member
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2016
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  35. Andy

    Andy Scout

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    For a colder three season hike down to freezing for a 3 day weekend, my total pack weight is generally about 14-15 pounds. That includes food, but not water. I very rarely carry more than 1 liter unless I'm heading to a dry camp.

    I usually don't carry any type of stove. When I do, it's often a light alcohol or Esbit stove.

    The main items:

    backpack: 25 oz
    sleeping bag: 21 oz
    sleeping pad: 17 oz (an insulated inflatable; I often add a 17x17x0.25 inch 1.7 oz sit pad which I also use as additional sleeping insulation)
    shelter: 42 oz tent (Big Agnes Copper Spur UL1) or 21 oz 8x10 ft silnylon tarp, sometimes a 35 oz US GI bivy instead


    Edit: I laughed when I saw this posted next to my avatar! That's a photo of me carrying about 60-80 pounds as the family pack mule.
     
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  36. Swarvegorilla

    Swarvegorilla Guide

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    Usually around 50lbs on way in. Under 30lbs on way out. I can go lighter.... but I like toys and willing to suffer to bring them. Not unusual to have 10litres of water on me. If I can filter it tho, thats a 20lb saving.
     
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  37. tonyg

    tonyg Tracker

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    My life started with whatever fit in the Jeep around you went. Then started working on what I did not need.
    With my son in boyscouts and me probably taking the troop over I had to figure out the less part.
    Between this forum , a couple light backpacking forums and that crazy guy shugg(sp.). I got my son's pack down to 22 lbs and mine to 27 lbs. And that was for a three day trip including food. Once I upgrade us to the nice sleeping bags then I can shave a couple pounds of each. So I'm quite proud of that accomplishment.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2016
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  38. justin_baker

    justin_baker Bushmaster

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    It really depends on the weather conditions, but for typical conditions the weight of my gear without food or water is about 10 pounds. I carry at minimum 1.5 lbs of food per day, so 3 pounds of food. The most water I will carry, unless I am in a dry environment with scarce water sources, is one liter or 2 pounds. So lets say 15 pounds of gear.

    But like I said, condition dependent. I have carried base weights from 5-18 pounds depending on my needs.
     
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  39. justin_baker

    justin_baker Bushmaster

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    Mike, we are planning on missing the bob marshal wilderness open this year. I made the choice to attend the packraft roundup in wyoming instead.
     
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  40. Luchtaine

    Luchtaine Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    This thread really got me thinking. I've never weighed my gear or really considered it much. So tonight I started weighing it all and putting it in excel. Next weekend I am going into the ADKS for 2 nights. I added up the bulk of my gear I plan to bring minus toiletries, clothing, and food. I'm sure I may add or remove small items but so far I am at 20.95 pounds. That's carrying a good chunk of gear including a boys axe and bigdaddyhoss buck saw for firewood processing and building camp stuff. Cutting the stuff out that's just to show your buddies I think I could easily be in the 15 pound range. My last set up was uncomfortably heavy so I am pretty pleased to see it cut down to this even with extra play things. I should come in under 30 pounds for a 3 day trip.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  41. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    Justin- hope to see you next time :) this is shaping up to be one that might not be too bad to miss- the weather has gone completely to hell

    enjoy the roundup!

    Mike
     
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  42. shoot

    shoot Tracker

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    2800 lbs - depending on whats in the back seat - sadly my hiking days are over.
     
  43. Tatonka

    Tatonka Young Brave

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    I understand the Merritt of ultralight hiking. I am not an ultralight person though and my pack reflects my size. I can comfortably carry 35-40 pounds. I don't like to be without so I pack more than I need. That being said, I have taken a lot of things out to make room for lighter more practical gear. It's all about what you are personally comfortable with.
     
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  44. Naturalist

    Naturalist Guide

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    About 32 pounds and that is with 14 pounds of tent and sleeping bag and 3 quarts of water.
     
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  45. Edgeman

    Edgeman Scout

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    I just started backpacking this year, and on my first pack weight was 32 lbs - without water.

    That's including carrying a stove and a 20 oz bottle of fuel, hammock, both quilts...the works.
     
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  46. Phisikos

    Phisikos Scout

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    30lb for 3 day 2 nights. Thats with 100oz of water and food for trip, tent and fly to sleep in. Ill be cutting back a little from this even without any gear upgrades, mainly some little tweaks and i dont need that much water. If it's comfortable for you it's a good weight
     
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  47. petey091

    petey091 Scout

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    My last weekend backpacking trip my pack weight was at 25lbs. My big three are under 10lbs. The best money I spent was on an Enlighten Equipment Enigma quilt.
     
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  48. Hunt4lyf

    Hunt4lyf Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    This past weekend I was right at 20 lbs for 2 days/1 night, that includes all food, 50 oz of water and 3.25 lbs of camera gear. For longer trips I would just need more food so add about 18 oz extra per day out.
     
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  49. kcardwel

    kcardwel Hardwoodsman Hobbyist Supporter Hardwoodsman Bushclass III

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    few weeks ago for about a 4-5 hours trek it was 37 lbs.
     
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  50. T-Rav

    T-Rav Tracker

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    Did a 6 day trip a couple weeks ago. I was at 20 pounds. Three pounds of that was fishing gear.

    I was forced into the ultralight world due to a knee injury. I should have done it years before. It makes the whole thing much more pleasant, albeit much more expensive.
     
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