AT Thru hike Gear

Items to keep you alive in the event you must evacuate: discussions of basic Survival Kits commonly called "Bug Out Bags" or "Go Bags"

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movingchicane
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AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Wed Nov 23, 2016 8:28 am

I'll be joining the class of 2017, and have most of my gear assembled. However I am looking into swapping a few pieces of gear. The First being the headlamp. I currently have a Fenix HL-21. It has plenty of lighting for my needs, but I want a red output for retaining night vision/ being less obtrusive to others in the middle of the night. Nice to have would be rechargeable, and have the option to use a AA or AAA batteries. None of my other gear will take AA or AAA. What do you guys think?
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Wed Nov 23, 2016 9:14 am

Next up is battery backup for cell phone/headlamp (if rechargeable), and possibly small camera. Currently have A goal zero AA charger/solar panel. I'm thinking more along the lines of a LI-ion pack that can be recharged in towns. It would be nice to be able to charge a Samsung S7 0-100 at least 3 times while being as light weight as possible.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Hiroshima_Morphine » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:10 am

Hey~ Good luck!

My family and I section hiked the BMT all the way, and section hiked the AT in all of GA. We had planned to do all of the AT, but now we live in OK and will be moving to AK in Spring of 2019.

Please post pics and let us know how the trip goes!

To your question.... I really can't help much. We never used headlamps because we never planned on hiking after dark and we had flashlights for 'just in case the sun goes down before I get to where I need to be go stay on schedule.'

That happened a couple of times due to sprained ankles.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Murph » Wed Nov 23, 2016 10:23 am

I've done a couple week long section hikes in Virginia. I planned them to be around the time the thru-hikers would be going through. It is really awesome to meet thru-hikers, hear their stories, and of course talk about gear. So take this for whatever you think it's worth...

Most everyone carries a battery pack and recharges it during town trips. This is one of the best recharge capacity (10000mAh) to weight (6.3oz) ratio available, and it's from a reputable brand:

Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger
https://www.amazon.com/Anker-PowerCore- ... B0194WDVHI

I have one and it worked great on my last week long trip, even had power to spare at the end.

Likewise, most everyone is using their cellphones to take pictures. And there are a growing number of people that run trail guides exclusively off their phones to take advantage of the built in GPS. Making battery packs a key piece of gear. Weather and tree coverage make solar setups less than reliable.

As for headlamps... I currently have a headlamp on order that is my "holy grail": ultralight (<2oz), USB rechargable, and can turns on to red LEDs first. But in the meantime, the two lights I like are:

Princeton Tec FRED
https://www.amazon.com/Princeton-Tec-Fr ... B0057VREDI
3x AAA, Red LED mode first, 2.7 oz

FireFly Ultralight Headlamp
https://www.amazon.com/FireFly-Ultralig ... B00K1JKDHU
2x CR2032, Red LED mode first, 1.0oz

...and this looks like a cheaper version of the FireFly, try at your own risk...
https://www.amazon.com/UST-Tight-Light- ... 00YDQINF6/

Let me know if you have any other questions!!
Does your BOB at least have: water, basic tools, fire, food, first-aid kit, and shelter?
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Woods Walker » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:05 am

movingchicane wrote:I'll be joining the class of 2017, and have most of my gear assembled. However I am looking into swapping a few pieces of gear. The First being the headlamp. I currently have a Fenix HL-21. It has plenty of lighting for my needs, but I want a red output for retaining night vision/ being less obtrusive to others in the middle of the night. Nice to have would be rechargeable, and have the option to use a AA or AAA batteries. None of my other gear will take AA or AAA. What do you guys think?
I have done section hikes on the AT. Very often people are up early and to bed early. Hiker's midnight is a term for it. Sure an occasional late hike into a shelter area does happen but very often those 15-20 mile days start early. Also no one I seen used a red led light for anything. I use a Fenix HL30 on the AT and a 4/7 mini 2XAA. As for power most people have a USB battery pack for their phone. Basically buy primary batteries on the fly and plug in that battery pack whenever the opportunity arises.

Image

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Personally right now I would take my Fenix HL50, 4Sevens mini 1XCR123, extra 1XAA body for mini, 1xAAA spacer and 4XCR123s. It would not weight much at all and could just turn everything over to AA/AAA on the trail once the CR123s are spent. Odds are those 4 extra batteries plus the 1 in each light would last a long time.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by SCBrian » Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:15 pm

I've section hiked most of the GA AT, I've section hiked most of the Palmetto trail. I have a Goal Zero panel and Guide 10 charger. My Buddy has the nice high powered Anker. My thoughts.
I got the Goal zero early (And still love it) but I think it takes second place to the Anker. It's great if you plan to base camp for a few days, or if you dont plan any stops in town to reload, but overall, I think in the 2-4 days range the Anker holds the edge. It's overall lighter (6.4oz per amazon) vs the Goal Zero (1.2lbs). Now the on the plus side, you get unlimited recharging with the Goal Zero, You can charge multiple battery types. The Anker is pretty much only USB, phones, tablet, kindle, etc. If you're carrying batteries you need to plan ahead.

My headlamp is actually a Coleman brand I got seriously cheap from their outlet store and have used for years. Power 2xAAA, settings are red/low white/high white/off. Also you dont need to cycle to turn off. After 10 seconds in any setting, one click on the button turns it off.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Wed Nov 23, 2016 1:07 pm

That Anker 10000 looks like the ticket!

I'm still undecided on headlamp. The princeton tec does look promising. CR2032s can be harder to find than regular alkaline, as well as more difficult to change in the dark (because when else would a light die). I see the red light mostly for 2am trips to the bushes, and only while staying in shelters to step over people. It should be said that I'm planning to hammock as much as possible, and there the light is a non issue.

ETA: I do like my current Fenix but technology is always changing.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Asymetryczna » Wed Nov 23, 2016 1:42 pm

Have fun. If you plan correctly you might have replacement gear on call for stops up ahead. Here is an example:
https://backpackingvegan.wordpress.com/ ... ian-trail/
I add this because the most important opinion about gear is your own, and yours might not be fully formed for the first 100 miles.
It could also change in 100 mile increments.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:47 pm

Asymetryczna wrote:Have fun. If you plan correctly you might have replacement gear on call for stops up ahead. Here is an example:
https://backpackingvegan.wordpress.com/ ... ian-trail/
I add this because the most important opinion about gear is your own, and yours might not be fully formed for the first 100 miles.
It could also change in 100 mile increments.
Good points, The guide book I have on hand (AWOL's 2016) provides post offices that are close, friendly businesses, and hostels that accept hiker packages. Another fun fact is you can bounce Unopened packages from post office to post office for no additional fee. Mailing gear allows you to fairly easily swap out hot and cold weather gear.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Woods Walker » Wed Nov 23, 2016 5:35 pm

For me during those 20 mile busting days water was the biggest concern. The Sawyer Squeeze and smart water bottle is the most popular filter system on the AT. Smart water bottle simply because the shape of the bottle fits into pack side pockets well and the threads are comparable. The actual water sold with the bottle meh.....
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by moab » Thu Nov 24, 2016 5:29 pm

Woods Walker wrote:For me during those 20 mile busting days water was the biggest concern. The Sawyer Squeeze and smart water bottle is the most popular filter system on the AT. Smart water bottle simply because the shape of the bottle fits into pack side pockets well and the threads are comparable. The actual water sold with the bottle meh.....
I've used those Smart water bottles as simply water bottles for a long time. Good choice. Matching it with a Squeeze is even more cool. Thanks for the heads up.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by ROCK6 » Fri Nov 25, 2016 2:51 pm

I typically just carry a single cell, AA-headlamp and a single-cell LED flashlight. with an extra LSD rechargeable battery. My main power source has changed a few times and I'm currently using a 10k RAVPower charger that is water resistant. I've been extremely please so far and if you can keep the weight down, 10,000mAh is a lot of juice for the trail. We did four days and my charger was only half used and just barely that. Limiting your power consumption helps and there are different techniques and apps but I would recommend testing how much you really need when on the trail.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B017B ... UTF8&psc=1

To charge my AA NiMH batteries, I just use the rechargeable LED flashlight from Fenix; their RC05 magnetic charged light.

http://www.batteryjunction.com/fenix-rc05.html

Another word of advice; pack a light AC travel charger (and cord). I carried a dual port wall charger and my wife packed a car-charger which came in handy after we got off the trail and caught a shuttle. I kind of like the dual purpose charger below:

https://www.amazon.com/DreamSky-Charger ... T51YX5Z6QE

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Redbad » Sat Nov 26, 2016 4:34 pm

The lightest headlamp would probably be the Petzl elight. 70 hours of burn time + red light capability. It uses Li CR2032 batteries which you could include in a mail drop when you get to your halfway point. Not a whole lot of extra weight if you don't need the batteries at the time.

I used the Anker battery mentioned above on my trip to Isle Royale NP this past year. It charged my Iphone and my GoPro multiple times over 12 days in the wilderness.

I also used an Anker solar panel to charge the Anker battery as well. Lightweight and tough and survived conditions that you are unlikely to face until you get to Maine.

Pack light. The first month will be the time when you screen out what works, what doesn't, and what weighs to much.

Good luck and post pictures!

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Mon Nov 28, 2016 8:50 am

Woods Walker wrote:For me during those 20 mile busting days water was the biggest concern. The Sawyer Squeeze and smart water bottle is the most popular filter system on the AT. Smart water bottle simply because the shape of the bottle fits into pack side pockets well and the threads are comparable. The actual water sold with the bottle meh.....
I've heard, (not confirmed yet), That the Smart sport bottle top can be used for back flushing the Sawyer as well. Which would preclude having to carry the syringe, Bonus!
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Murph » Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:49 am

movingchicane wrote:
Woods Walker wrote:For me during those 20 mile busting days water was the biggest concern. The Sawyer Squeeze and smart water bottle is the most popular filter system on the AT. Smart water bottle simply because the shape of the bottle fits into pack side pockets well and the threads are comparable. The actual water sold with the bottle meh.....
I've heard, (not confirmed yet), That the Smart sport bottle top can be used for back flushing the Sawyer as well. Which would preclude having to carry the syringe, Bonus!
Yup, the Smartwater flip cap can backflush.
Does your BOB at least have: water, basic tools, fire, food, first-aid kit, and shelter?
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Asymetryczna » Tue Nov 29, 2016 10:49 am

You might try to chronicle some of the trip here, location, etc. I suppose there are forums where people do this. I haven't looked. I once found one that tracked a BMW biker from Seattle to the tip of S. America. Fantastic. I read the entire 100 pages. At this point in my life I don't see having the time to do the entire AT but I envy those that try it.

The longest I've done on the AT is through the Smoky Mnts, 40-50 miles. 1987. That area is burning right now, I believe. Ended at Fontana Damn. Beautiful walk. Carried a 2 quart canteen and two 1-quart canteens that were issued. Used iodine tablets from one of those waxed-lidded little bottles. Never wanted for water. Based on the amount of brush fires there and w/o going googly boolean, I don't think I would have been finding the mountain streams this year.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Sun Dec 04, 2016 2:00 pm

Next up knives/mt from left to right.
Helle Temagami CA 7.25 oz w/sheath
Mora bushcraft black 5.75 oz
Victorinox swiss army swisstool spirit X 7.375 oz sans sheath
Emerson cqc-7b 4.375 oz
Leatherman style ps 1.625 oz
Not shown leatherman wave ~8.5 oz

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Woods Walker » Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:03 pm

I would take a SS mora and small SAK.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by majorhavoc » Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:21 pm

AT through hiking is not remote wilderness camping. Bring a bigger knife if you like to play bushcraft, but a Victorinox Huntsman has everything you need on the AT, including the all-important corkscrew. There will come a time when you need it and when you do, the people around you will consider you a hero. Just sayin'.

If you must have a separate, dedicated blade, I'd recommend a plain jane Mora Companion because its so light.

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Delsaw » Mon Dec 05, 2016 10:24 am

First sorry for the long post, coffee kicked in and meetings haven't started.

Congrats on the future thru hike. I did about 2 months in 2002 (Springer Mountain GA to Rockfish Gap VA - start of the SNP). It was June and July, so we started behind the Thru hikers, but did catch up to a couple slow pokes and meet some SoBo folks.

Below are my two cents:

Lights:
You'll want a headlamp for sure, but wouldn't worry much about red light. You hit the sack pretty early, but it was nice to have a headlamp for reading a book at night (pre-kindle days), finding the outhouse in the evening and maybe an hour or two hiking for and early or late day. I think we only used it a couple mornings when we got up really early.

Original equipment: I only took one light, a 2X AAA Princeton-tec, cant even find it now on amazon.

If I did it again: I'd take a single AA headlamp (something light, but that could have a nice wide beam for hiking and a low for reading). The other option would be the Petzel e-light, battery and lamp are really light and would be worth having. Other light would be a single AA flashlight (currently have 4SEVENS Mini AA).

Blade:

Original equipment: I took a random SAK and that was fine. You arent in the boonies, but you do need something. And bonus points for corkscrew.

If I did it again: Would probably take a SAW again (corkscrew and can/bottle opener would be good to have) and a Mora companion. Mora would be because I'd probably want to do more bushcrafty things or at least have a fire or two. In my first trip I only recall one or two fires and those were by weekender folks. We were two tired or focused on other stuff to do that. I'd be hiking slower now. :)


Other stuff:
Water - I took the MSR mini-works, because that was what I had. It worked fine and having a hose was key a couple times to reach some pretty gross but all there was water sources. I'd probably do the sawyer squeeze and some backup water purification tablets. I took Nalgene bottles because they fit the MSR, but smart bottles make a lot of sense. Hydration bladders would be ok, but I would imagine hard to clean on the go. i would probably do smart water or something similar, would need to get more familiar with the squeeze to see what combo worked.

Sleeping - First thing I dumped was my heavy sleeping bag and bought a lightweight down bag at thge outfitters at Neel's Gap.

Tent - We took a two man (there were two of us) tent, but only used it a couple times, slept in shelters otherwise. Of ours we weren't hiking at peak time. Would probably look at doing a hammmok and tarp combo to have now. But would try and use the shelters.

Bag - my bag was too big for my frame, but I was broke college kid and was fit enough that I could deal. Make sure your bag and shoes/boots fit. That is the first priority.

Other than that 'Hike your own Hike' People have done it barefoot, only using stuff from Walmart, whatever. You're carrying the stuff and if it makes you happy, doesn't interfere with other people (or break any laws), then do what you like.

Have a great hike.

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Murph » Mon Dec 05, 2016 12:40 pm

I've gotten to the point where I only bring a Swiss Army Classic SD. I find myself used the scissors and tooth pick a lot. I look at bigger knives as more weight, and less functionality, these days.

And my new "holy grail" headlamp showed up, and so far it seems to do everything I was hoping it would...

FreeFly Rechargeable Ultralight Headlamp, Mini-USB Rechargeable, 75 Lumens, Red Night Vision
https://www.amazon.com/FreeFly-Recharge ... 016VGKBBO/
USB Rechargable Battery, Start in last mode (Red/White), 1.6oz
Does your BOB at least have: water, basic tools, fire, food, first-aid kit, and shelter?
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by movingchicane » Sun Jan 29, 2017 10:39 pm

Well everything is picked and packed up. Total dry weight is just at 17lbs so my pack pack weight should be just under 30. Image

The resulting packsplosion
Image

From the top left
White trash compactor bag to keep the down dry
Warbonnet Blackbird hammock with tree straps
Warbonnet mamajamba tarp
2.5 feet of 1/4" closed cell foam for foot box/sitpad
SAK huntsman
princeton tec sync headlamp
Anker 10000 mah battery pack w/12v and 120 chargers
Warbonnet yeti UQ 20 deg
Jacks R better old rag mtn TQ 5 deg
Spare trash bag
Osprey atmos 50 w/ raincover
Cook pot w/alcohol stove, foster cup, wind screen, folding spoon, bic
50ft of zing it line for food bag hang
stake bag with Alum y and Ti pin stakes/ bag doubles to hold rock to throw food hang line
K&R Alpin compass w/mirror and magnifying glass
toothbrush, toothpaste, and ear plugs
poo shovel and TP in ziploc
Luci inflatable solar lantern
8L food bag
merino patrol cap, merino buff, icebreaker 200 top and bottom, exofficio boxer, 2 pairs darn tough sock (one for sleeping, and spare for hiking)
AWOL AT guide
smart water bottle
Nalgene
first aid ziplock w/ spare bic, needle and thread, super glue, gorilla tape, ace bandage, gauze, bandaids, advil, immodium, and benadryl
Sawyer squeeze w/ 2 1L pouches, and 1 2L platypus
Frog toggs pants
Arc'teryx beta sl jacket
Arc'teryx cerium lt puffy
and silny clothes bag

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And last but not least... a hand carved Melaleuca walking stick.
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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by majorhavoc » Sun Jan 29, 2017 10:57 pm

Style points for sure. Might have some influence on your trail name too.

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Re: AT Thru hike Gear

Post by Murph » Mon Jan 30, 2017 10:40 am

Hey Movingchicane!

Awesome job on the base weight, and that Melaleuca walking stick is really cool!

And I have a couple questions...
What's a Foster Cup? Is it a cut down beer can?
What are you carrying your stove fuel in?
It seems like you've got your water covered with the Smartwater and soft-bottles, why bring the heavy Nalgene?

...And where did you get all the small mesh net pouches? :D
Does your BOB at least have: water, basic tools, fire, food, first-aid kit, and shelter?
"When planning, prepare for the most likely, and then the most catastrophic."
raptor wrote: Being a gun collector does not make you a prepper.
the_alias wrote: Murph has all the diplomacy of a North Korean warhead, but -he has- a valid point

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