The Road goes ever on and on; Down from the door where it began;
Now far ahead the Road has gone; And I must follow, if I can;
Pursuing it with eager feet; Until it joins some larger way;
Where many paths and errands met; And whither then? I cannot say.

[JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings]

Monday, 24 March 2008

LEJOG Packing List

These days when we go out for a couple of days my pack weight, without food or water, is usually around the 5kg mark. Add water and food and it’s still usually less than 7.5kg. The benefit of such short trips is that I don’t need a towel, can take minimal quantities of consumables (e.g. toothpaste), omit other toiletries (e.g. shampoo, soap) and can take clothes appropriate to the weather forecast, with no spares.

A three month trip demands a bit more stuff. Some would say that you don’t need more for an extended trip than you need for a week long trip, but for me that doesn’t seem to hold true. Except for needing to wash, have clothes for all weathers and a bigger range and bigger quantities of the consumables, taking electrical stuff requires spare batteries and/or chargers.

Yesterday I gathered together all of the stuff that I thought that I’d need. The end result (and I stress, this includes 2 litres of water and 10 dehydrated main courses) was a pack weight of 10.8kg (including Osprey Aura at 1.4kg). Husband’s pack weighed in at only a tiny smidge more at 11kg.

That may not seem too bad for the roughty-toughty boys amongst you, but for me it feels awful heavy! I’m just trying to remind myself that I’ve carried that weight plenty of times before and it’s not been a problem.

Here’s the full list. Feel free to comment on it (but note that comments that involve additional expense at this point are unlikely to be heeded!).

Berghaus Paclite Extrem Jacket
Berghaus Paclite Extrem Trews
Paramo Azuma Vent Trews (maybe…*)
Paramo Fuera Smock
Smelly Helly s/s crew**
Icebreaker 200 l/s crew
Decathlon’s Kalenji Underpants x 2
Bridgedale Endurance Trekker Socks x 2
Peaked Hat
Extremeties powerstretch beanie***
Extremeties powerstretch gloves***
Extremeties overmitts***
PHD Minimus down jacket in stuffsack
Salomon XA Pro OR Inov8 Roclite AND trainers (weeks 1-3 only)
Sealskin Socks (weeks 1-3 only)
Scarpa ZG65 (week 3 on)

Thermarest Prolite 3 Girly in stuffsack
PHD Minimus 300 in stuffsack
Silk sleeping bag liner (?)

Cooking and Eating and Drinking
Coleman F1 Lite stove
Gas Canister
Tinder paper
Wash up sponge
Small superabsorbent cloth
2 M&S tough plastic spoons
MSR Titan Kettley Thing
Pot cosy
2-litre platty
2-litre platty hoser
Hose cleaning brush
Sterilising tablet
Up to 10 dehydrated evening meals

Personal Care and Hygiene
First Aid Kit
Pack Towel (small)
Handkerchief x 2
Toothbrush x 2 (the other one is Husband’s; I’m not carrying two for myself!)
10 pairs contact lenses
ear plugs
Sun cream
Hand sanitiser
Folding hairbrush/mirror combi
Glass case & cleaning cloth
Soap flakes for clothes washing

Petzl Tikka Plus Headtorch
Mobile Phone
Mobile Phone Charger
MP3 Player
Camera battery charger
XD memory card x 2
Spare batteries (CR123A, AAA, AA, Camera)
Foretrex 101 GPS

Pacerpoles (carbon)
Ortlieb Map Case
Closed-cell concertina sit-mat
Small mesh stuffsack for toiletries
Stuff sack for holding the little stuff
Sea to Summit ultralight sack liner

* Still no trouser decision made, but I’m tending back towards only taking one pair and just looking muddy and dishevelled a lot.
** The Smelly Helly may yet be replaced by an Icebreaker 150 for smell reduction purposes
*** It’s not that I have a thing about Extremities. The hat’s great, but the gloves could have easily been any brand (but I got a good price on the one pair and the others were a gift).


  1. Coleman F1 Lite stove + Bushbuddy
    doubling up a bit?

  2. It is doubling up. Here's the theory:

    - A canister of gas weighs around 350g;
    - A canister of gas will last us around 5-6 days (two cups of tea each per day, plus an evening meal each).
    - Bushbuddy weighs less than 150g.

    We couldn't use the Bushbuddy alone (because I don't much fancy sitting trying to cook tea over a woodburner in the pouring rain!), but as a fine weather alternative it potentially will save weight by not needing to carry fuel to go with it, plus it should pad out the time between needing to resupply with gas.

    I'm also hoping that it will double up as a midge repellant in Scotland!

  3. Not clear why you're carrying Mick's toothbrush. Perhaps he could carry something of yours - maybe your pack! Now that would be true love. Seriously, though, it's scaryy how the lightweight stuff steadily mounts up.

  4. Hi Gayle,

    for some mysterious reason my first attempt to post a comment went into the digital nirvana so here we go again...

    So, those are my 2 cents for some more weight saving options:

    - Leave the Paramo Azuma back home. The underpants plus Rain pants should be sufficient. If not someone at home can send it to a post office ahead of you.

    - You have the Fuera smock plus the down jacket for insulation. Could you leave the Fuera back home and combine the down jacket with your rain jacket?

    - 2 Underpants? Go for one

    - Smelly Helly. Mmh. Maybe exchange thtat with a Merion s/s crew?

    - Take the sleeping bag liner with you. Extra warmth, feels nice. Dries out quickly in the morning, much easier to wash when smelly/dirty compared with a sleeping bag. Doubles as a blanket in Youth Hostels etc.

    - Leave the superabsorbant cloth back home. Dry with the sponge at let the rest dry out in the air.

    - Steripen plus sterilising tablets? Leave one item back home.

    - Hose cleaning brush. Leave back home. Rinse your drinking valve/tube daily and hang it out overnight. This is sufficient against bacteria etc.

    - 2 times soap? I guess copy/past error...

    - Soap plus shampoo plus hand sanitiser plus soap flakes... Depending which kind of soap you use you can use it for hair and body. You can also wahs the clothes with soap and it can replace the sanitiser. Therefore one bar of biodegredable soap could do it.

    - I don't wear glasses but 10 pairs of contact lenses plus glasses? Leave the lenses back home.

    - Glasses and Sunglasses? Couldn't you get one of those sunglass shields that you clip onto your glasses? Looks funny but who cares?

    - Could your mobile double as a MP3 Player?

    - You can buy AA/AAA batteries almost everywhere. Why cary them with you (maybe one set at most)

    - Ortlieb map case? Heavy. Why not replacing it with a Ziplock/Aloksak bag?

    - If you need the MP3 player...why not loading audiobooks onto it and leave the book back home (yes, I know it is not the same..but)?

    That should save you some weight..

    Roman - Lighthiker

  5. Can you put up Mick's kit list? I assume he's carrying the tent.

  6. I love kit lists... I was just about to go to bed when this caught my eye, and I had to stop and read it.

    It's a good list, and--as others have observed--it's frightening how the weight builds up even when being as minimalist as is consistent with still wanting to go.

    As I read through your blog I look forward to learning what you took/left behind/how it performed :)

  7. Have I got it right thaty you got all of this in your OMM Villain? Its just I've got a villain, and a not dissimilar kit list and I'm still having to fold the tent flat and put it in the MSC, with the poles in the side pocket, and even then I'm short on space. How on earth did you fit all your kit list in there?

  8. Hi Julian
    Yes, I did fit all of that in the Villain, and although I didn't start out carrying the tent, by the time we reached Scotland I'd started doing my fair share and had half of the tent too(which I would say equates to the same as a Laser Competition; I didn't carry the poles - they would have had to have gone on the side if I had).

    The biggest factor in fitting it all in was replacing the OMM backpad with my Thermarest - there's no way I would have fitted it all in otherwise.

    The tent (which was folded into a flat square in a stuffsack) usually lived inside the pack, but it did have to go into the MSC when I had four or five days of food on board too. Oh, and my waterproofs, when I wasn't wearing them, always went under the MSC - but that was more for ease of access.

  9. Thanx for that, it makes a bit more sense now. I can get all my kit and 5 days food in with my waterproofs in the msc and the tesnt strapped to the bottom.
    I think the difference is that I'm carrying all of a not particularly small tent (vango banshee) and my RAB Atlas 500 sleeping bag is taking up tons of space compared to your Minimus. Going to get myself a lighter, smaller sleeping bag for late spring/summer/early autumn use, probably a SnugPak Merlin. Then I shouldn't have any problems.