Equipment Debate – Part 2


In the beginning….

Our first few overnight long hikes were memorable.  Max invested in a big old Osprey with tons of nooks and crannies.  It’s a sight to behold when full.  I think there are corners and pockets he hasn’t even discovered yet.  Maureen, though, continued to haul what equated to a daypack.  Barely held a sleeping bag and food for a few days.  Things changed when a thru-hiker in Shenandoah National Park (“OB”) said to Maureen, “How come you get to carry such a small pack?”  He didn’t say the word “slacker” but he meant it.

That was it.  Max insisted on equality from that point on.

Maureen’s Pack – Gossamer Gear Mariposa 60

Hours and hours of research (way too much, truth be told), resulted in Maureen settling on the Gossamer Gear ultralight pack after carrying a functional, but kinda bulky, Osprey for a few years.  Took some getting used to as the hip belt sits a bit higher, but once on and tightened up, there is no need to adjust or even remove for a break – it’s comfy.   Need to find a better solution than the internal water bladder (Camelback).  I don’t like the unexpected running out and having to try to refill with a full pack.  Love the large external pocket, though.  Means not having to disturb the main compartment during the day.  A compactor bag works well for keeping stuff dry.  Holds lots of stuff but somehow stays pretty light – around 25 pounds with food.

Max’s Pack – Osprey

I’ve had my Osprey pack for over ten years and one of the external zippers is broken.  Maureen tells me I can get a new one for free, but this one has a decade of hiking karma already, and that is something that is hard to buy at an outdoor store.  So I’m keeping it, warts and all.  Nothing I have ever carried has fallen out!  I might change it in at some point but only if I can save a pound or more of weight.  I like this pack also because it is bigger, and I don’t have to shove my stuff in it as much to get everything to fit.

Next up – Sleeping Bag or Quilt?  Sleep your own sleep….

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