GEAR LIST REVEALED

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De-icing dock at Denver International Airport

I sit in a quiet nook of the Denver airport. My flight departs nearly three hours from now and although that is an astonishing notion, I have to take this as a blessing in disguise…(Though, by the time I depart, there will be snow on the runway, and the plane will need to park in the de-icer dock for twenty minutes and I will then be slightly anxious to catch my connecting flight.) Having carpooled with friends who had booked an earlier departure, I now have time to warm up from the 3:30am start. With coffee in hand, I can sit back and ponder important things like my gear list.

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REI Denver: 71 people attended the event!

Last night, after a great turnout at REI Denver, hikers in the audience inquired about my gear, my hiking attire, walking to the front to marvel at my pack and take a closer look at the ensemble that will soon be hiking the Appalachian Trail. It was too cool.

Without further ado, I give you the list of gear that I’ll be taking along the Appalachian Trail. The gear list for the CDT/PCT will be considerably less…and lighter. I suspect my base – weight after recent adjustments will be 15 lbs for the AT (not including weight of snowshoes) and easily sub-10 lbs for the CDT/PCT. It weighed in originally at 19 lbs and I honestly thought the scale was broken, but that’s winter weight for ya. I eliminated some “extra” layers and shaved off noticeable weight without compromising comfort and safety for winter conditions. I’m preparing for some cold nights, and if my gear list proves to be overkill, I can always mail something home or ahead. Best to be prepared than to shivering at camp cursing a poor decision.

DAILY HIKING ATTIRE:

●Patagonia Capilene TW Zip-Neck Baselayer
●Patagonia Nano Puff Vest
●Patagonia Houdini Wind Jacket
●Purple Rain Skirt
●Under Armour Coldgear Tights (These tights hiked the AT ten years ago! Yes, I’ve washed them since then.)
●Patagonia R3 Fleece (For when it’s really cold.)
●Patagonia Crossover Bra (Sadly a discontinued model.)
●New Zealand Merino wool/Possum fur neck gaiter
●Patagonia MW Hiking Crew Socks (I’m carrying two pairs total.)
●Salomon X-Ultra Mid 2 GTX Hiking Boot
●Baseball Cap

SHELL/INSULATION:

●Patagonia Refugitive Rain Shell (Gore-tex )
●Patagonia Leashless Rain Pant with adaptable gaiter  (Gore-tex)
●Patagonia Fitz Roy Parka (2012 model. Reliably warm in sub-zero temps.)
●Big Agnes Columbine Skirt

HIKING/CAMP ACCESSORIES:
●Smith Serpico Slim sunglasses
●Rocky Goretex Sock
●Fleece-lined wool hat
●Mountain Hardware Plasmic Mitten (These mittens are like GOLD, but not as versatile as a glove.)
●Patagonia Windshield Glove (For more versatility and to have a backup when the other gets wet.)
●Outdoor Research Versaliner (Only the removable waterproof shell. Not sold separately. I won these in a raffle!)
●Balaclava
●Sierra Designs Down Booties (Scored these at a thrift shop!)

EQUIPTMENT:
●Hyperlite Mountain Gear 3400 Windrider Backpack
●Katabatic 22-degree Alsek quilt
●MLD 28-degree Spirit quilt (New addition to my gear. I’m curious if between the Katabatic quilt, Fitz Roy Parka and Big Agnes Skirt, I can leave this home. Time will tell.)
●Big Agnes Q-Core SL Pad
●Big Agnes Flycreek Platinum (No stakes or ground sheet as I will be relying on sleeping in the shelters for the AT most of the time, but one must carry a shelter just in case.)
●Black Diamond Carbon Ergo trekking pole (Straps removed.)
●Euroshirm Swing UL Umbrella (Silver)
●Vargo Titanium Pocket Cleat
●MSR Lighting Ascent Snowshoes (Waiting patiently at home for when I get into serious snow.)
●Montbell Hiking Gaiters (Waiting patiently at home with snowshoes.)
Equinox UL Shoulder Strap Pouch
●Hyperlite Mountain Gear Cuban Fiber Stuff Sacks (4 sacks, various sizes)
●Sea to Summit lightweight dry sack

COOKING:
●Jetboil Sol Titanium Stove (Sadly, this is a discontinued model.)
●Isobutane/Propane fuel canister
●Jetboil French Press Adapter 
●Titanium Spork
●Bic lighter
●Gerber knife
●40oz 50/50 insulated bottle (Although I generally prefer the lightness of gatorade bottles or equivalent, it will be a welcome luxury to carry hot tea and soup throughout the winter.)
●12oz Klean Kanteen insulated bottle (Again, a heavier alternative, but after enjoying a hot cup of coffee at camp, it will be a luxury to fuel up with caffeine later in the morning. If the weight bothers me too much, I can always send these home.)
●1L Platypus Bottle

ELECTRONICS/ OTHER:
●Black Diamond Revolt Headlamp (USB rechargeable)
●Samsung Galaxy 5 Phone with Lifeproof case (Waterproof, excellent camera, convenient apps to update my blog.)
●Canon Powershot ELPH 340HS (Small, lightweight. This series offers the best self-timer options, which is why I’ll carry it in addition to a phone.)
●Brunton Compass (Highly unlikely I’ll need this on the AT, but it will be nice to warm up on a trail for the CDT.)
●Headphones
●Basic watch
●Braven Powerbank (Charges USB.)
●SPOT Gen3
●Write in the Rain Journal
●Write anywhere pen

TOILETRIES/FIRST AID:
●Toothbrush (Handle intact.)
●Mini Toothpaste
●Floss with sewing need (Dual purpose!)
●Nail clippers
●Tweezers
●Lip Balm
●Diva Cup (For the ladies.)
●Duct tape (Wrapped around trekking poles.)
●Ibuprofen
●Daily multivitamin
●Toilet paper (Leave the whole roll at home and carry 4-6 days worth.)
●A few Bandaids
●Small wad of Gauze
●Neosporin Ointment
●Stainless Steel flask with appropriate drinking alcohol (Hey, dual purpose! Cleans wounds and warms ya up!)

That’s all. Like I said, I might be fortunate to eliminate the weight and bulk of some items, but with frigid camp temps, a few extra pounds are reasonable for the first leg of the Calendar Triple Crown. On the really chilly, wet days, I’ll be wearing nearly  everything so my pack will be appreciably lighter.

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