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The Ultimate Gear List

Thanks to my friend Russell Young for this slightly modified, carefully curated, and exceptionally good list of long trail hiking gear. I think it’s the “canon” of gear lists.

☐ Backpack
☐ Waterproof backpack cover or liner (I recommend trash compactor liners)
☐ Water bottles (approx. 4 liters worth, may also use a water bladder such as Camelback)
☐ 6-12 one gallon Ziploc bags
☐ 2-3 small stuff sacks
☐ 1 waterproof stuff sack
☐ 550 cord
☐ Pocket knife
☐ Firestarter (lighter, matches, flint and steel, etc.)
☐ Flashlight/headlamp
☐ Compass
☐ Whistle
☐ Toiletries (toothbrush, etc.)
☐ 1 small camp towel
☐ Tent or Hammock
☐ Sleeping Bag
☐ Sleeping clothes (shorts and shirt – may be worn only to sleep in and stored in sleeping bag)
☐ Raingear (must be jacket and pants, Frogg Toggs is an example)
☐ Camp shoes
☐ Hiking shoes/boots
☐ 2 shirts for the trail
☐ 1 pair of convertible pants
☐ 1 pair of shorts or another pair of lightweight hiking pants if you prefer
☐ 2 pairs of socks
☐ Spoon
☐ Bowl/Plate
☐ Cup
☐ Cap or hat
☐ 3 pair of underwear (compression, not cotton)
☐ Light jacket or vest for cold mornings
☐ Clean clothes in a separate bag for the ride home


There are also a few optional items that many hikers may consider bringing depending on needs:

☐ Medicine (personal meds, antibiotics, pain meds, Immodium, Benadryl, antacid)
☐ Contacts/glasses (contact solution)
☐ Phone/camera
☐ Extra batteries
☐ Journal/pencil
☐ Personal first aid (moleskin, scissors, band-aids, alcohol prep, needle, triple antibiotic)
☐ Instant coffee
☐ Beanie (for cold nights)
☐ Sock liners
☐ 2 bandanas
☐ Spices (Tony’s, garlic powder, S&P)
☐ New bite valve (for bladders)
☐ Hiking poles
☐ Stove and fuel (normally crew gear)
☐ Sharpie
☐ Water filter (normally crew gear)
☐ Baby wipes
☐ SAM Splint