Hiking Gear: Good Weight vs. Bad Weight

hiking gear

I don’t know about you, but every time I came back from a multi-day hiking trek in 2015, I constantly reevaluated what hiking gear I brought with me from the perspective of what I did and didn’t use.

Eventually, I widdled it down to a list of gear that I really couldn’t go without regardless of the conditions.

Anything added to this list for future hikes would be weather dependent only.

But, let’s take a step back to the gear planning stage of your upcoming multi-day trek.

This, in my opinion, is where the ‘good weight vs. bad weight’ aspect comes into play. What does that mean?

The good weight vs bad weight discuss refers to camping or hiking gear that weighs a certain amount but its inclusion in your final list is determined by a number of factors.

These might include weather, terrain, trail difficulty, the length of the trip, and several others.

This topic always reminds me of that scene out of the movie Wild where Reese Witherspoon turns up to a campsite with a heaving backpack.

This old guy helps her go through all of her stuff and eliminates things that she doesn’t really need; most of them were heavy and useless.

hiking new zealand

For example, the backpack I take with me on all multi-day treks is my One Planet Ned backpack.

Without anything in it, it weighs just over two kilograms and is probably on the heavier side for a backpack.

However, I consider this to be good weight to carry because not only does it have a million pockets to use and significant room in the main compartment, but it is durable as anything.

Furthermore, my Klymit Static V Insulated mat is reasonably heavy too. However, when camping during those cold months, it’ll be good to have to keep me warm.

When I ventured into Lake Tali Karng last year with the MeetUp group, one of our hikers had brought quite a bit of stuff with him.

In fact, and by his own admission on our drive home, he had probably overpacked for a three-day hike.

A large container of milk, a bottle of coke, some whisky (from memory), and a few other items were included in his pack.

hiking gear

This, in my opinion, is just one example of bad weight.

They’re luxury items at best and can often take up space where other more important items should.

Another example of bad weight would be the three jumpers I took with me on my first overnight trip into Warburton.

Three was totally unnecessary and added more weight and took up more room than they should have. In hindsight, I really only needed one.

So when you’re putting together your hiking gear list for your next overnight trip, don’t be afraid to take items that are heavy.

Granted it will depend on many of the elements I mentioned at the start, but if your 1.5 kilogram snow jacket is going to keep you warm, then that, in my opinion, is good weight to carry.

On the flip side, the nine litres you want to carry with you on that eight-kilometre hike is probably overkill and will make for a very uncomfortable hike.

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