Becky's Mom's Gear List

Becky's Mom's Gear List

If we've never been introduced, I'm Becky, Minimal Gear's marketing manager and frequent poster in this blog. Mother's Day is coming up, which gives me the excellent opportunity to brag about my own mother, who is currently 500 miles into a nobo… LASH? Thru-hike? A hike of to be determined length of the PCT. She hiked several hundred miles of the PCT last summer after retiring in the winter of 2022, and is back for more this summer. In honor of Mother's Day, I gave her the extra labor of writing up her gear list, as well as posing her some questions about how she makes gear choices as an older backpacker. 

Gear List

Big Three:

Tent: Zpacks Plexamid 1P, polycryo ground sheet
Sleeping Bag/Quilt: Enlightened Equipment Revelation APEX 20 degree (for warm weather) or Western Mountaineering Versalite 10 degree (used from Campo to Acton and for the Sierra)
Pack: Gossamer Gear Mariposa Vaporwave with Shoulder Pocket

Trekking Poles:

Diorite Carbon Fiber Telescopic Trekking Poles, EVA Foam

Sleep System:

Pad: Nemo Tensor Insulated Sleeping Pad - size regular
Pillow: Sea to Summit Aeros
Other: Gossamer Gear 1/8 inch pad, Nemo Fillo Elite, Exped Schnozzel Pump Bag - it gets used as a stuff sack for my sleeping bag.

Kitchen:

Stove: MSR Pocket Rocket
Pot: Toaks 750 ml Titanium
Food storage: Zpacks Large Food Bag
Other: Ziploc Twist and Lock - 2 cup container, titanium long handle spoon, Bic lighter, ½ bandana for cleaning, classic swiss army knife

Water Treatment:

Filter: Sawyer Squeeze
Collection Bag: Cnoc 2L VectoX
Other: Coupler, two 1L Smartwater bottles, 1 1.5L Smartwater bottle, 1 Gatorade wide mouth bottle.

Hiking Clothing:

REI Co-op Sahara Convertible Pants, Jolly Gear Sun Hoodie, REI Co-Op Active Hipster Underwear (2 pair), Injinii Run Lightweight No-Show Socks (2 pair), Darn Tough Women's Hiker Quarter Lightweight Socks (2 pair), Adidas Superlite 2 hat, REI Co-Op On the Trail Sun Gloves, CoolNet UV Buff, Altra Olympus 5 women's trail runners.

Sleeping Clothing:

REI Co-Op Lightweight Base Layer Tights, Darn Tough Micro Crew Cushion Socks, generic short sleeve shirt.

Outer Layers: 

Lightheart Gear Fleece, Enlightened Equipment Torrid Jacket, OR Helium Rain Jacket, Mont-Bell Versalite Rain Pants

Electronics:

Nightcore NU25 Headlamp, Nitecore NB10000 (x2), Anker PowerPort 2 Elite, Garmin InReach Explorer+, Garmin Instinct, Samsung Galaxy s10, Osprey 3L Dry Sack.

Snow items:

Kahtoola Microspikes, Sealskinz Waterproof Socks, skipping or doing alternates on sections that require ice ax. 

Hygiene:

WetOnes, The Deuce Trowel, sunscreen, ChapStick, small lotion for cracked hands, hand sanitizer, toothbrush, toothpaste, small comb, floss, GUM soft-picks, ½ bandana

Miscellaneous:

Dyneema trail wallet, compactor trash bag as pack liner, Therm-a-Rest Z-Seat Pad, Cotopaxi Bataan 3L Fanny Pack.

Questions

What’s your favorite item of gear so far?

My Lightheart Gear fleece has kept warm and comfortable on the colder than usual nights and sleeping on snow (I don't need a beanie and use the hood and my buff to keep my head warm). Importantly, the trash compactor bag I use as a pack liner kept all my gear dry when I went I fell in a river - it sounds stupid, but this was invaluable.

What items have you changed from last year?

I switched from Opsrey Eja backpack to reduce weight. I switched* from Black Diamond trekking poles because they broke. I added polycryo ground cloth to keep tent cleaner and ability to pack the ground sheet in pocket of pack. I started the season with my warmer sleeping bag as it has been much colder with more snow at the beginning this year. I also lost my favorite hat in the Whitewater river and had to get a new one.

*Becky's note: This choice aided by that sweet, sweet Minimal Gear friends & family discount.

How does being an older hiker impact your gear choices? What items do you carry that you may not if you were 25?

I need my bifocals to read FarOut! Beyond that, I think there is a need for more comfort sleeping which calls for the better sleeping pad and extra pillow - I use my second pillow between my knees as a side sleeper. I also wear shoes that have more cushion and traction than those used by most younger hikers. Other than that I am not sure if I have many differences. Some older hikers carry a camp chair but I would rather not have the weight. I do use my z-seat to kneel on when setting up my tent to save my knees and roll onto it to get out of the tent.

I do wish that I had brought camp shoes this year due to the numerous knee to thigh high water crossings and amount of snow hiking early on - I have probably had more days with wet feet than not. It would have been nice to put on dry shoes to set up camp and cook dinner. But that has nothing to do with age.


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