Pack it in: A cheat-sheet to packing your bag for a hiking or camping trip

A few weeks ago a colleague of mine asked for some advice on taking a camping trip in the Bay Area. He is new to camping and had a lot of questions. I plan to post my answers to his questions as well as the other advice I gave him in a series of blogs for the beginner camper.

This first post is a simple checklist of items for a day pack and overnight pack.

Day pack recommendations

Take these with you whenever you hike, even if you do not plan to camp out overnight.

  • First aid and/or survival kit (I love my ultimate survival kit)
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Sunscreen
  • Some food and treats (Nature Valley Oak ‘n Honey bars are always in my bag)
  • Water
  • Warm hat
  • Torch or head lamp
  • Compass (should be one in your survival kit but if not, bring one)
  • Topographical map (unless you are on very clear or paved trail
  • Matches (should be in your survival kit but if not bring a few)

Overnight pack recommendations

Add these to the day pack items for overnight camping.

  • Food (dried not tinned as dried is lighter. Bring at least one more than you need as you should be carrying a little extra in case you get stranded/lost)
  • Water purifier (such as a Steripen or use your stove to boil water)
  • Sporks (we like the Light My Fire ones)
  • Small canister stove (we have this super small MSR stove)
  • Extra warm clothes
  • Tent (we love our well used REI Half Dome)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad (we both have a Therm-a-rest Prolite Plus)

One comment

  1. Pingback: This isn’t glamping: Suggested trips for newbie campers in the Bay Area « Somewhere about there

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