Our Colorado Trail Gear Lists: The Big Four

Legs and I are splitting our gear list for the Colorado Trail between two posts. This one includes the four things most thru-hikers find themselves choosing the most carefully: our packs, our tent, sleeping bags, and footwear. Most thru-hikers pick these items to dwell on because with the right balance of comfort and lightweight gear, your choices can prevent injury and alleviate potential misery. And don’t worry you hiker nerds, the next post will include a graphic from www.lighterpack.com so you can really get the nitty-gritty specs on our gear.

Pack: LiteAF Custom 30L

Legs and I both have the same pack from LiteAF. The entire pack is customizable and ultralight. Our customizations include the 30L capacity, a top Y strap for any layers we may shed during a hike, a bottom mesh pocket for our trash bags, an outside bottom elastic strap for our sleeping pads, and a fanny pack waist strap for snacks. The designs are super rad, too!

Tent: Nemo Hornet Elite 2 Person

I asked Legs to sum up why we love our tent. “It’s ridiculously light, free standing, comfortably fits two people, has two vestibules with dual entrances, and Oats learned how to put it up first try. Definitely rocks.” On the AT we frequently had evenings that we would excitedly repeat the mantra, “No rain, no fly! No rain, no fly! No rain, no fly!” Every now and then, we would bolt upright at midnight with raindrops falling and would flail around for the tent fly. But on some beautiful occasions, we would simply be able to watch the stars and satellites slowly move across the sky. Don’t worry, this tent is great for stargazing, too.

Sleeping Bag: Kammok Thylacine 20 Degree and Sea to Summit Spark SP I

The Kammok bag I’m using has a lower limit of 18 degree F and a comfort limit of 29 degrees F. Even for how cold I seem to get (and how much I hate being cold), this should be more than enough to keep me cozy on the CT. As for the Sea to Summit Spark SP that Legs is using, it has a 46 degree lower limit and a 54 comfort limit and is filled with ultra-dry down 850+. Legs figures that he will be comfortable with his layers at night if needed, and this is coming from the guy who started the AT in February without any pants. What we do know is that the weight is quite appealing.

Footwear: Women’s Altra Lone Peak and Asolo Fugitive GTX

Legs will always and forever swear by his choice to wear boots over trail runners. He went into his hike with ankle issues and chose boots for their more notable stability, despite the added weight. His boots are nearly three times heavier than my Altras. “These boots made it the whole trail while everyone around me was going through three or four pairs of runners. And who knows, without them maybe I would’ve had an injury right out of the gate and never been able to finish.”

On the next (and final) gear post I’ll be including a graphic with all the weights of the items in each of our packs so you can have an idea of what our base weight is. So all you gear nerds, stay tuned!

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