My 2023 PCT gear 

It is now only a few weeks before I start my PCT hike and I am tweaking and prepping my gear.

I am a gear nerd, not only do I love backpacking but I also enjoy sitting in my basement with a spreadsheet and scale trying to bring down my base weight. I consider myself ultralight, my PCT starting base weight is under 10 pounds but will go up when I go through the Sierras.

This is the gear I am bringing, not sure if it is the best gear to bring – I will write about that when I return. I plan on switching out some gear when I get to the Sierras and then again when I get to Portland, where all my stuff is in storage.

The big 3


Tarp: Zpacks 7′ x 9′ Flat Tarp – From Campo to Kennedy Meadows south I will be using my trusty Zpacks tarp. I love how small and light it is and I will use it anytime there may be rain. I have taken this tarp on many trips from rain to snow and never had an issue with it.

Tent: Hyperlight Mountain Gear Unbound 2P – From Kennedy Meadows South to Timberline I will be using the new HMG Unbound 2 person tent. I have never used this tent so we will see how it does. I liked the design better than the Zpacks Duplex and will need a little extra protection going through the sierras especially since there will still be snow.

Tarp: Six Moons Designs Deschutes Ultralight Backpacking Tarp – From Timberline to Canada I will use the Six Moons Design Deschutes Tarp. I love using tarps but generally stick to a tent during bug season but this lets me tarp camp even when the bugs are out and is really spacious for a one person tarp.


Backpack: Hyperlight Mountain Gear Unbound 40 – I bought this backpack for the PCT and have been using it for most of the winter. It is the favorite backpack I own and I have a bunch of UL packs.

Sleep system:

Sleeping pad: Therm-a-rest NeoAir® XLite Sleeping Pad – I have used this sleeping pad in the snow a few times so I trust it to keep me warm. I may switch out for the Uberlite when I stop by my storage unit.

Quilt: Hyperlite Mountain Gear 20-Degree Quilt – Decided to go with a 20 degree bag for this trip, I haven’t used this quilt yet but I’m excited to try it out.

Worn clothing:

Sun Hoodie: Town Shirt Co Sun Hoodie – Such a fan of this company and stoked to rock this shirt on the trail. I’m kind of a black band-t person in my normal life so I enjoy the wild prints on trail. I am also pale so sun hoodies keep my skin safe from the sun.

Shorts: Ramen Bomb Men’s Trail Shorts – Of course since I’m blogging for the Trek it’s fitting that I rock the Trek Shorts. Haven’t put these on yet but I’m stoked to wear them.

Shoes: Vivobarefoot Tracker Decon Low FG2 – I am all in on barefoot shoes and these are the best ones I have found. I tried another brand and they broke on the Timberline trail.

Socks: Darn Tough Light Hiker Quarter Lightweight Hiking Sock – Well, of course, are you really a backpacker if you don’t have Darn Tough. Plus if you get a hole in them you can swap them out for a new pair.

Packed Clothing:

Shirt: Patagonia Long-Sleeved Capilene Cool Daily Graphic Shirt – This will be my base layer for the trip besides the Sierras.

Shirt: Smartwool Classic Thermal Merino Base Layer Plant – Based Dye Logo Hoodie – This will be my base layer through the Sierras

Puffy: Patagonia Micro Puff Hoody – I almost upgraded to a different puffy but this will get the job done.

Base layer bottoms: Smartwool Classic All-Season Merino Base Layer Bottom – I have been using these all winter sleeping out in the snow. I trust these to keep me warm while I sleep in the Sierras.

Base layer bottoms:REI Co-op Silk Long Underwear Bottoms – For all of the trail, besides the Sierras where I will switch to wool bottoms, I will use these super light silk leggings to sleep in.

Wind shirt: Zpacks Ventum Wind Shell – I haven’t worn this yet but it is an upgrade from my Patagonia wind shirt so I’m excited to use it.

Rain jacket: Vertice Rain Jacket – I got to use this a few times last fall before the snow started and so far I really like it.

That is a bunch of the gear I will be bringing. Check out my complete PCT gear list here to see everything else and the weight of everything.

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