Packing Lists: Not Just For Rookies

I’m making a list and checking it twice, or else I’m going to find out what I forgot in camp…perhaps my hiking pants, enough toilet paper, my pillow for car camping, allergy medication, or my hiking pants. Yes, that happened on two occasions; feel free to judge me – I do.

The first trip I made a skirt out of bandannas. The second time I thankfully had shorts and a realization that I needed to make a packing list.

Your packing list depends on your destination and activities, but feel free to use my John Muir Trail packing list and check it against your own and adapt as necessary. Or take a look at Backpacker’s WEALTH of gear lists. If you’re packing with an adventure partner from a distance be sure to coordinate so things don’t fall through the cracks or get double packed. Google Docs can be helpful or I’m sure there’s an app for that!

A Week-long Packing List For Two Along The JMT

Group Gear:JMT Packing - Section One
– wilderness permit
– tent, poles, stakes, tarp
– water filter
– stove
– 8oz fuel canister
– lighter
– cook set (something to cook on, eat on, and eat with)
– bear canisters (make sure all scented items fit pre-trip!)
– sleeping pad patch kit
– cards
– first aid kit (which has a compass, water treatment tablets, sleeping pad patch kit, backup lighter, tent pole splint, among the usual first aid supplies)
– map
– toothpaste
– sunscreen
– bug spray
– toilet paper, trowel, hand sanitizer
– food
– water container for car (in case the trailhead doesn’t have potable water)

Personal Gear:
– sleeping bag
– sleeping bag liner
– sleeping pad
– headlamp (w/extra batteries)
– pocket knife
– camera (w/extra batteries)
– identification w/cash to cover any fees
– phone
– medications
– plastic bag to pack out toilet paper
– wet wipes (dehydrate to save weight)
– toothbrush
– chapstick
– whistle (may be built into sternum strap)
– feminine hygiene products (just in case!)
– plastic bag to pack out toilet paper (required in some locations)
– water bladder
– water bottle
– mug
– small paperback and/or magazine
– notebook and pen or pencil
– trekking poles
– packcover? – check forecast
– bug net
– camp towel
– glasses, wipe, and strap (for my prescription glasses)
– car key

Clothing items – NO COTTON ALLOWED!
– hiking pants!
– hiking skirt or shorts
– t-shirt
– long sleeve
– sun shirt
– puffy jacket
– rain jacket
– rain pants? – check forecast
– underwear – two
– sports bra
– socks – three (two for hiking, one for camp)
– bandanna
– knit cap
– hiking boots
– camp shoes
– long johns
– gloves
– hat
– light-weight gaiters

What did I miss?

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