There is nothing that I love more than getting away for a long weekend with only what I can carry on my back. The empowering sense of adventure and minimalism speaks to my soul. Immersed deep in the rugged, expansiveness of forests and remote coastal beaches, exploring new places or revisiting favourites is my idea of bliss.
The decision of what to put in my bag has come from years of these types of trips with Shan, coupled with my low maintenance, less is more, approach to life. Whist I have refined this checklist each trip, there are a couple of non-negotiable items that for me are a must.
Weight is a critical element when packing as is the right backpack. So let’s start there:
Not just any backpack, the right one!
You needn’t get the most expensive branded backpack on the market but ensure that is has a lightweight frame that provides space for airflow behind your back and the bag. The best is with light alloy frames and mesh that circulate air and keeps the horrid sweaty back at bay!
Padding goes a long way too especially when you are carrying 15kg + so those bulky looking shoulder and hip belts with pockets – you want these! Cushion your hips from the weight and help carry and distribute weight to avoid a sore back through correct adjustment over shoulders. Plus the pockets on the straps provide easy access to; lip balms, sunscreen, snacks or whatever else your heart desires at your fingertips.
I have a 7+-year-old Denali bag that has served all my epic adventures and a smaller Osprey bag that is the best!! Osprey is my definite favourite for functionality, quality and adjustability/fit, worth the extra pennies in my non-paid opinion. The Osprey packs
My 35-litre Osprey just isn’t going to cut it for this adventure, so my next investment piece will definitely be 70-litre multi day packs.
Many of the good brands have adjustable frames/ straps adjustable to your trunk size (shoulders to hips), many of the brands offer gender-specific bags too and trust me with C cup boobs, this is a definite consideration if you enjoy pain-free boobs when hiking!
Go instore and try them on- don’t just buy the best deal online. It’s worth paying the extra for comfort and function.
JET BOILER SYSTEM
Regardless to mention you will want food when multi-day hiking. This is such an important topic it will feature its own blog. The Jet Boiler system, however, will be one piece of equipment you wish you bought sooner. It’s a super lightweight, compact system that is quick to set up, offers adjustable cooking temps for a quick boil or simmer and super easy to clean.
The basic system is all you need however there are bigger bowls, pans etch that can be used in conjunction with this system. We have the 1 Litre and this allows all functionality for the 2 of us when we are on our multi-day hikes. We usually boil the water first, make a coffee (Robert Timms coffee bags are the bomb) and then proceed with cooking meals or more water to rehydrate meals. I'll cover off what food we eat in the coming weeks. The main section can be used as your bowl/ cup if you’re traveling super light. You won’t regret this purchase!
On multi-day hikes, it is crucial that you have some form of water treatment water suitable for drinking. Depending on where you are, you might need to get this from a river or stream. You have no idea what’s in the water or if it’s safe. Boiling is the old school method but will burn through the gas plus you need to wait and cool. Tablets are another option; cheap but taste nasty- add some tang to mask this- Trust me! Straws are great if you want to shove your head in a puddle to quench your thirst but for me, I’ll only use a Sawyer moving forward.
The Sawyer Squeeze water filtration system we are taking for this multi-day hike, we first used last year on our Great Ocean Road hike when our friends brought one along, so I know it’s a sound investment. Super-fast, simple to use, no waiting for water to cool, or a nasty aftertaste plus its light!
I never really liked tang anyway.
Next week on the blog, I’ll give you my comprehensive checklist with break down as to WHY I pack it and even some of the things I've dtiched.