What I Have Packed for the Appalachian Trail
Being that I had never thru-hiked before, I did not have a ton of ultralight gear prior to the AT. As I began purchasing equipment, I kept in mind that I wanted to strike a balance between sticking with items I already had if they would do the job an, if necessary, purchasing new things that fit the bill but didn’t break the bank. That being said… my bank still hurt when all was said and done…
I break down my pack by The Big 4 (Pack + Shelter + Sleep system), Clothing + Footwear, Electronics, Kitchen, and other.
You can find these broken out by weight at my LighterPack link.
Big 4 (Backpack + Shelter + Sleep system)
- Backpack: Osprey M/L Eja 58L
- I chose this backpack because I needed more volume than some of the other ultralight backpacks on the market, and this backpack has great reviews and is decently affordable.
- In the process of finally landing on this backpack, I went through the Gossamer Gear Mariposa, Osprey Aura LT 65, and the size XS/S Osprey Eja 58
- TarpTent Double Rainbow. I chose this because I wanted a lightweight tent with good reviews that could be both free-standing. TarpTent is well known for their quality, and customer service, and the Rainbow is know for being large. I chose the Double Rainbow because I hope in the future to use this tent to backpack with others.
- Footprint: Polycryo. I bough this from Duck Brand Window Shrink Film from Amazon
- Stakes: Easton Stakes
- Sleeping Quilt/Bag:
- My plan is to carry a Hammock Gear Premium Burrow 30 the first half of my hike while I am hiking in the summer heat. Half way through I’ll meet up with my mom on the trail who will bring me my warmer Sea to Summit Women’s Flame 15 sleeping bag.
- Sleeping Pad:
- Therm-a-Rest NeoAir® XLite™ NXT Sleeping Pad because my Sea to Summit Women’s Comfort Light Insulated Air popped while I was in Joshua Tree
- Sleeping Pillow:
- Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Pillow. Not technically a part of the big 4 but a part of my sleep system and technically not even a necessary piece of gear (many backpackers will just stuff a bag full of clothes to use as a pillow) but considering all I am going to have to deal with as I backpack the AT, I decided that adding this provided a little bit of extra comfort may make a big difference and would be worth the size and weight.
Clothing + Footwear
- REI Co-op Sahara Button Up
- Icebreaker Merino T-Shirt this might be the softest merino clothing I’ve ever put on because it’s mixed with a eucalyptus thread (initially I was going to pack a dri-fit shirt I own but I got concerned that it would start to smell after too long so that’s why I switched out).
- Rain, Wind, and Insulated jackets
- LightHeart Rain Jacket. I initially tried a AntiGravityGear Rain Jacket and a Frogg Toggs jacket but the Frogg Toggs didn’t have pit zips and the light heart rain jacket was lighter than the anti gravity gear (albeit the light heart rain jacket is a lot less durable with a denier of 20 whereas AGG has a denier of 40).
- Enlightened Equipment Womens Torrid Jacket
- ExOfficio BugsAway Vianna Pants (initially I was going to use my Mountain hardware Dynama/2 Ankle Pants but once I decided to switch to the AT, I knew I needed something with more bug-proofing)
- Marmot Women’s PreCip Eco Full-Zip Pants. I choose these primarily because they have the full length zippers along either side and also because they are affordable
- Altra Olympus 4. I chose these because Altras are great for wide feet, have amazing grip, and are quick drying. I added in a pair of SOLE Performance Medium Wide Insoles and now they are super comfy
- Camp shoes: Cheap Amazon Water Clogs
- Darn tough socks (x3)
- Dirty Girl gaiters
- Mesh underwear from Target (x2)
- Sports Bras (x1)
- Base layers
- REI 185 leggings. For those of you who have been following, I did have Brynje base layers when I started my shakedown hikes, but turns out I am one of the few people who’s skin reacts to their fabrics
- Garmin 66i (initially had the Zoleo Satellite Communicator but then my uncle let me borrow his Garmin for the hike)
- Dual wall plug & cords
- Portable Charger
- Garmin – Instinct Solar Smartwatch
- I chose this because it has a solar panel for charging and it has good ratings.
- Soto Stove set + Fuel
- Pot Lid and Wind Stopper created from tin I cut from a baking sheet
- Sawyer Water Filter
- Homemade Pot Cozy
- Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles
- Bear Vault (BV450)
- Bug Net Head
- Osprey outer layer waterproof backpack cover
- 1.5L Smart Water water bottle (x2)
- 2.0L Water Bladder
- Leatherman Squirt Knife
- Pepper Spray
- Kulu pee rag
- CuloClean trail bidet
- Sunglasses + Crystal Light as a Case
- Glasses + Crystal Light as a Case
- Tooth brush
- Lightweight travel brush
- Tick Tweezers
- Hard bar of soap face wash
- First aid kit
- Mouth Guard
- Powder Face Sunscreen
- Emergency kit
- Duck Tape (wrapped around hiking poles)
- Mini-sewing kit
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