Lists; Lists; Lists
A friendly reminder:
Being back country guy is not my day job. Although, I have been doing this for many years and have become comfortable with my way of doing things, I’m sure there are different ways to do just about anything out there; some may be better and some may not be. Please keep an open mind when reading and don’t be afraid to compare my ideas with someone else’s and maybe between them, come up with something that works even better for you.
Okay! We know where we’re going and for how long!
We know we’re going to need a tent and a sleeping bag and some clothes…some food and water…and…and…a backpack…and…a map …and…what was that other thing called again?
… You get the picture.
For me, lists help immensely when planning an extended outing.
Over the years, I have built a backcountry checklist that I always start with. From there, I’ll tailor a list of items specific to my trip.
REI has a great list of checklists you can start with. They can be found, here
|Here’s a template I start with:
Back Country Checklist Template
10 + Essentials
|Extra clothing layer(s)||Map of area (in waterproof case)|
|Extra day’s worth food||Headlamp or flashlight (with extra batteries)|
|First-aid kit||Sunglasses (with retaining strap)|
|Pocket knife or multi tool||Sunscreen|
|Matches (in waterproof container)||Whistle / signal mirror|
|Quick-drying pants/shorts||Fleece jacket or wool sweater|
|Short-sleeved shirts||Wicking long underwear (top/bottoms)|
|Long-sleeved shirts||Regular underwear|
|Warm pants (fleece or wool)||Quick-drying swimsuit|
|Fleece or wool vest|
|Wide-brimmed rain/sun hat||Heavy shell for colder weather/Altitude|
|Warm hat (fleece or wool)||Bandanna|
|Hiking socks||Extra laces|
|Wicking liner socks||Gaiters|
|Hiking boots||Water crossing / Camp shoes|
|Pack cover||Cook set, dishes|
|Tent, tarp or bivy sack||Cooking/eating utensils|
|Tent stakes/guylines||Pot grabber|
|Tent broom||Pot scrubber/dish towel|
|Sleeping bag||Plastic garbage bags|
|Compression sack||Resealable plastic bags|
|Sleeping pad||Water filter/purifier|
|Sit pad or sleeping pad chair kit||Water-purification backup (tablets, halogens)|
|Extra nylon stuff sacks||Water bottle|
|Food / Meals / Snacks||Hydration system (bladder)|
|Stove and fuel||Lantern/Headlamp/Light|
|Toilet paper||Lip balm|
|Toothbrush and toothpaste||Insect repellent|
|Biodegradable soap||Shower bag|
|Small bath towel||Head net – for insects|
|other personal hygene items||Hand sanitizer|
|Altimeter||Repair kit (stove, tent, mattress) / sewing kit|
|Binoculars||50-100ft – 3mm accessory cord|
|Camera, memory cards, tripod and lenses||Cash and CC card|
|After trek food and snacks||After trek change of clothes|
|Notebook and pencil||Photo ID|
|Travel games||Camping/fire permits|
|Watch/alarm clock||Fishing license and fishing gear|
|Weather radio||Trip Plan (left w 2 friends, ranger station, in car)|
|Duct tape (wrapped around 1/2 toilet paper roll)||2 way radio|
Granted, not every item on the template makes it into the backpack, but I find this a pretty good place to start.
Once I have the items I’m going to use checked off from the template, I’ll add them to a new checklist specifically for the trip I’m getting ready for. I use that checklist all the way up to the trail head.
I also keep a separate checklist template for my first aid kit supplies (future post)…and one more usually to plan and buy meals and snacks from. (This one I make as I go)
Once I get my list for the trip dialed in, I’ll print it out and keep a copy with my gear.
The last thing I do, before hitting the trail head, is inventory my pack one last time in the trail head parking lot.
One more thing… I keep a copy of the list with me on the trail too. It’s easy to forget whether or not you actually packed some items or didn’t, and with the list, if I find myself in that spot, I can easily determine if the items were lost on the trail, or if I forgot to pack them all together. That helps in a BIG way…nothing like searching your campsite for two hours… for an item you never packed in the first place!
Keep in mind, this list is suited to my needs and is a dynamic template that changes with the times and my taste in gear. This is only a snapshot of what the template looks like at this time.
I hope this helps!
Until next time,