Here’s some fundamentals we followed to put together gear for this 20 day expedition. The list is organized in order of priority, the stuff listed first is the most important. Note, that the word comfortable is nowhere in that sentence; that’s a luxury and you’re carrying that yourself.
Just as a word of warning, the information below is just our approach and you should go over any gear you bring on your own adventure with experienced individuals – in full. Do this until you feel comfortable packing on your own, but don’t make the mistake of going into the woods without any experience.
NOTE: It is absolutely critical that people in your party have taken a basic first aid course. Organizations like NOLS offer excellent basic courses like Wilderness First Responder, Wilderness First Aid, as well as higher certifications. You will not become a doctor, but you will be able to identify and manage problems that can lead to real dangerous situations. That said; think about the stuff that will keep you safe and stuff that will save you in emergencies.
- First Aid: First Aid Kit – Adventure Medical Kits provides great starter kits that come with handy basic manuals
- Communication: Emergency Communication Devices – preferably a beacon that automatically sends out your location
- Safety Equipment: Gear like helmets, personal floatation devices, emergency rescue equipment, flares, etc.
- Equipment Repair Kit: Don’t forget your gear gets hurt – you can see my kit in an article I wrote here: Backcountry Repair Kit.
- Clothing: Sun with no shade? Rain? Snow? All of that in one day!? Remember that long sleeves and pants protect from sun and bugs.
- Shelter: Tents, sleeping bags, basic tarps for quick rain shelter
- Technical Equipment: The stuff you need to access the locations you’re going: boats, paddles, ropes, climbing shoes, etc.
- Technical Equipment Repair Supplies: Spare tent poles, extra paddle, etc.
3. Water & FOOD
- Water Containers: Seal-able jars or bottles for portability, metal pots for boiling/cooking
- Water Purification: Filters, tabs, solar bags, etc.
- Food Storage: Seal-able containers to make food we make around the campfire portable and so it doesn’t create a mess in our bags
- Food Prep: Basic pans, pots, and utensils we can use over a fire; easy to clean and ones that can nest to save on space
- Food: Non-perishable, easy to carry, balanced meals; it helps to add variety or bring some light spices to add (curry is your friend)
- Camera and Film: Camera, batteries, extra batteries, memory cards, extra memory cards, tripod, lenses… this is not non-essential to me!
- Journaling: Notebook and pens; my recommendation is water proof paper and water-resistant ink
- Music: Whether instruments, a small speaker and phone, or lyrics to your favorite songs – this is one way to create songs that elicit incredible memories
- Other: Anything else you can think of, this is the stuff that is annoying to forget, but you’ll be fine without
Just want to thank Beau DeCourcy of ExistAnew for the photo of his gear strewn about his deck.