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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Day 36 2/7/17 - Backcountry Hike Purchases Part 1

I did not explect I would get to go on this backcountry hike by getting reservations, or I would have planned my purchases in advance.  Of course if I had planned ahead I would have missed the excellent advise from folks I have met along the way.


The first thing I needed was a suitable backpack.  What size?  What options? 

Here is where asking friends and sales people pays off after you do some research.

With every oz. counting now towards what I have to carry I chose the above pack based on size, weight, and features.

Size:  I need the pack to fit on the front passenger floor out of my way.  I also spoke with a number of people that told me a 50 liter bag should suffice for size.  

Weight: For weight at 3 lbs. 13 oz. I'm getting a bag without the stiff wire frame so it may be a tad heavier than others but it will fit well on the floor of my Prius.  

Features: After reading reviews having external pouches or compartments make the bag so much easier to access items, but this is a bit more material and zippers. This pack come with outside compartments that can be accessed by another hiker while you wear it and has a separate sleeping bag pouch, and the bottom pouch has an internal zipper that the main compartment can be accessed from the bottom and not just the top.

Sleeping Bag:

The next big item is the sleeping bag.  I have one I use in my Prius but it is rectangular and very bulky.  Therefore it is not suitable for backpacking trips.

The main considerations are weight, temperature rating, and size stuffed in a sack.

Weight:  At 1 lb. 13 oz. this is an excellent weight for a lower temperature bag.

Temperature:  The bag is rated for the lower limit of 19 deg and comfort of 30 deg.  I'm expecting temperatures overnight around 40 degrees.

Stuffed sack size:  At 8" x 17" and moldable it fits directly in the backpack pouch designed for the purpose.

Sleeping Pad:

I have a rectangular Thermarest sleeping pad in my Prius but after checking the weight it is 2 lb. 10 oz. and this is way to heavy if I'm trying to stay light weight.

Weight:  This sleeping pad just came out for sale at REI and is only 15 oz. and is tapered to save weight.  

Thermal:  This mattress manually inflates by blowing into it. Typically air mattresses have poor thermal rating but the R value is if this one is 3.7 and this is actually very good. 

Pack size:  4" x 9.5"


Total weight so far:
- Backpack      3 lb. 13 oz.
- Sleeping bag 1lb.  13 oz. 
- Sleeping pad         15 oz.
                         6 lb.  8 oz.

The good thing about REI purchases is that if they fail they will replace them and if a product isn't right for me I can return and get credit for something else,

As I resolve other items I still need I will include them in another post and tally the total weight.


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