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crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

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crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby toyotaguy » Mon Feb 03, 2014 11:11 pm

I'm wanting to do a 4 day pack/ fishing trip with less than 20 lbs in my pack. I'm thinking sleeping bag, poncho, pot, matches, and snacks. I've done similar but always had the security of the military wanting me to stay alive



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crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Bluewater » Tue Feb 04, 2014 12:30 am

Without fishing gear I can stay under 20 lbs for up to seven days (with canister). I would imagine it's also within reach if using a Tenkara setup for a 4 day trip.


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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Rockchucker » Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:49 am

Sure you can! Post the weights of you big four and that will tell a lot. Figure if you can get your base weight under 10lbs then the rest is food, water, fuel . Or go no cook and save a bit more. My average week long trip weighs in just below 25 lbs but that's with a few luxury items, and food for me and my 10 yo son.
I'm no suture for my future.
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby afahrland » Tue Feb 04, 2014 8:36 am

Sure you can. My pack weight leaving the Muir Trail Ranch on the JMT was 16 lbs with 4 days of food in it. You should check out backpackinglight.com.
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby AaronRDavis » Tue Feb 04, 2014 9:20 am

Start here: http://andrewskurka.com/2011/seven-steps-to-lighten-up/

I got interested in lightening up a couple years ago. I went from about 22lbs before food/fuel, to about 8lbs now. Add a couple pounds of food a day, and a 4 day Tenkara fishing trip would be about #16. When you get your big 3 items really light, you can even bring more luxuries like good food, cameras, etc. and still be very comfortable, warm, and safe.
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Tom_H » Tue Feb 04, 2014 11:43 am

It depends upon 3 things:
1. Where you're going
2. When you're going
3. How much you're willing to spend

A couple of decades ago saw the beginning of the ultralight movement.
About a decade ago saw the beginning of the super-ultralight movement.

I will assume that you are going to the Sierra in the summer, not the Himalayas in the winter. First select your gear, then select a pack based on the volume and weight of the contents. If you are willing to spend a considerable amount, and are a great fisherman, you could go with less than 6 pounds on your back. This is accomplished by using a moisture resistant down "quilt" (semi sleeping bag shape sans zipper) and placing the seam face down on your pad. This is less than a pound. For shelter you take a ZPacks cuben fiber rainfly only with 1-1.5 mm nylon cord (mine is about 6 oz. total). Your stove would be made from 2 aluminum soda cans and burn alcohol. For longer than 4 days and in allowable jurisdiction you would take a titanium stove that burns twigs. Your backpack would be a cuben fiber ZPacks frameless with no padding in the shoulder straps.

For a little more comfort, you could go with a Western Mountaineering moisture resistant down bag that weighs 2 lb. and an Osprey Exos 58 pack (61L @ 2.5 lb) and Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1 Platinum at just over 2 lb. or a ZPacks Hexamid Solo tent @ 1 lb.

There are books on ultralight backpacking, but not so much on Super-Ultralight. There is, however, a ton of info online, including scores of YouTube demonstrations of all the above products. The best alcohol stoves are made by small cottage industry vendors. When I have more time later, I will try to dig into my bookmarks on another computer and put up some links for you.

As for food, take enough basics to survive and plan to catch a lot of trout.. You might go with a super-lightweight frypan (Al or Ti) or bake in Al foil on a fire.

I'll put up more info. ASAP, but gotta run now.
Last edited by Tom_H on Tue Feb 04, 2014 3:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby RoguePhotonic » Tue Feb 04, 2014 12:54 pm

Even though people may think it's a bad idea it's easy to cut out stuff like rain gear. I have hiked in total down pours soaked to the bone and was happy as could be.
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Wandering Daisy » Tue Feb 04, 2014 2:25 pm

Four days is really a short trip. I agree with Rogue- if you have a 5-day forecast for no rain and it is middle of summer, I too would skip the rain gear. If it did rain, you could just hunker down and wait. My trips are usually 10 days. Weather forecasts tend to fall apart after 5 days so I do take an 12-oz rain jacket - no need for rain pants.

My base weight with not-the-lightest gear is 18 pounds, including the bear can and a 10-degree bag (2#14oz stuffed). Personally I would not invest in "ultra light" gear until first trying simply "light" gear. With the "light" 15 pound base weight category, you may be perfectly happy and save lots of $$$.

If you plan to camp at lakes known for easy fishing, you could reduce other food weight to 1 pound per day. Four days is really 3.33 days assuming you eat breakfast before starting and eat dinner when you get out. So that is 3.33 pounds of food. Even if you catch no fish a 1lb/day ration is OK - after all it is only 4 days.

Minimize fishing gear. I did a 10 day fishing trip last year, caught LOTS of fish, and only brought a cheap 0.5 oz kitchen knife. It worked fine. Dull has hell the last few days, but I just had to spend a little more time cleaning the fish. I also only took fly gear and one film can of flies. I do not use a regular rod case - I bought a $2 piece of pipe insulating tube at Lowes and put the rod inside and use rubber bands to keep it closed. ALL my fishing gear weighs 11 oz. I have one light reel with a very minimum length of line. IF I were to break my line, I would be out of luck, but that never has happened. I do not carry a net - only a 2-ft polypro fish holding line. Yeh, if I do catch the "big one" I probably would not be able to land it - just as well - leave it for someone else to enjoy. If I catch fish en route, I put in a zip-lock bag with some water and put that in the back outside pocket of my pack. Sometimes leaks but none of my stuff gets wet. I pull out the bag and refill with fresh cold water when I come to a stream. Fishing gear is just like your regular backpacking gear - you would be surprised what you can do without and still have fun.

I also have done 14 day trips in the Sierra with only a bivy sack. Nowadays, you can get a tent for almost the same weight. I do not think I would be brave enough to totally "cowboy" camp in the Sierra - no rain jacket is one thing - no rainproof shelter is another. If you stay below timber a tarp is fine (and cheap).
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Tom_H » Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:36 pm

UL & SUL Links:

http://zpacks.com

http://www.wild-ideas.net/the-scout/

https://www.bigagnes.com/Products/Produ ... ilters/139

http://www.ursack.com/ursack-catalog.htm

http://sectionhiker.com

http://www.trailspace.com

http://www.practicalbackpacking.com

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin ... index.html

http://www.backpacking.net

http://www.backcountrygear.com/camping- ... hlite.html

http://thru-hiker.com/materials/index.php

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin ... 126.143.24

http://katabaticgear.com

http://www.mchalepacks.com

http://www.wild-ideas.net/the-scout/

http://www.froggtoggs.com/home

http://sticksblog.com

http://ccorbridge.wordpress.com

http://www.mountainultralight.com

http://www.antigravitygear.com

http://gossamergear.com

http://www.mountainultralight.com/p/links.html

http://www.youtube.com/user/1377stick/v ... t=p&view=0

http://suluk46.com/products%20%20-%20P1 ... rowel.html

http://outdoorequipmentsupplier.com

http://hikelighter.com

http://www.expedlife.com

http://www.bearpawwd.com

http://www.mountainlaureldesigns.com/shop/index.php

http://www.prolitegear.com/index.html

http://www.outdoortrailgear.com

http://www.hikelight.com/index.html

http://litetrail.com

The rest of these are about alcohol stoves:

http://adventuresinstoving.blogspot.com

http://www.peskybeaver.com/?p=154

http://www.thesodacanstove.com/alcohol-stove/myths.html

http://outdoorkopitiam.blogspot.com/201 ... toves.html

http://www.taiwancamping.net/2011/01/id ... stove.html

http://zenstoves.net/BasicPressureBurner.htm

http://zenstoves.net/Stoves.htm

http://www.campstovewizard.com/pepsi-can-stove.html

http://briangreen.net/2009/04/my-alcoho ... ystem.html

http://www.bikepacking.net/reviews/stov ... hol-stove/

http://romeifyouwantto.blogspot.com/201 ... stove.html

http://www.pmags.com/stove-comparison-real-world-use

http://www.tatogear.com/product/side-je ... hol-stove/

http://www.outdoortrailgear.com/feature ... hol-stove/

http://www.trailquest.net/sbstove.html

http://www.adamsventure.com/alcohol-stove/

http://grabcad.com/library/hybrid-alcoh ... can-design

http://www.instructables.com/id/Johans- ... e/?lang=de

http://www.survival-gear-guide.com/alcohol-stove.html

http://www.arrowheadology.com/forums/hu ... stove.html

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin ... ad_id=3408

http://www.bigtreestech.com/trails/2010 ... ng-stoves/

http://www.m4040.com/Survival/Store/Store_Other.htm

http://www.getoutandtravel.net/2013/06/ ... nt-cut-it/

http://mtmusings.wordpress.com/tag/alcohol-stove/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8h6UJE6qFA8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfktNzVKftU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PH47hDELj4g

http://www.jureystudio.com/pennystove/
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby ndwoods » Tue Feb 04, 2014 9:01 pm

Wow Tom! That has to be the best list ever!
I too am under 20 lbs for 4 days....but I don't carry fishing equip and have no idea how much that weighs...:) My base weight sans food and water is 12 lbs....
dee
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby acorad » Tue Feb 04, 2014 11:06 pm

Holy crap! Tom_H's post should be preserved for the eternities. Thank you!
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Re: crazy for thinking I can pack less than 20 lbs for 4 days?

Postby Tom_H » Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:24 am

Thanks guys. I have to say that I agree with everything W. Daisy said, she always gives good advice. You can get weight down significantly just by omitting certain things. I do have a $235 super-ultralight rain jacket from ZPacks. The thing is, you can also buy a roll of 65 gal. garbage bags, poke a hole for your head, get in it and sit our the few summer rain showers that the Sierra ever sees. You can take another to put over your pack. You can also do like WD and take no trowel, just use a stick and sharp rock for gouging out scat holes. Those soda can alcohol stoves are dirt cheap and feather light. You can go lightweight on the cheap. SUL, though, does require investment.
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