Five Items For a Lightweight Day Hike
Kevin Felts 04.09.18
Sometimes we want just the basics for a lightweight day hike, so what should be included in the list? In a previous article we talked about putting together a backpack for a day hike. The typical gear was included in the list, such as canteens, rain poncho, TOPO maps. However, sometimes all of that gear is not needed.
For example, the dogs and I recently went on a day hike. It was just a couple of miles and only took a few hours, so no big deal. Not wanting to carry a lot of gear, the list was narrowed down to just five items.
- Boonie hat.
- Lifestraw water filter.
- Toilet paper in a ziploc quart bag.
- Pocket compass.
- Case Trapper pocket knife.
Total weight: 10.35 ounces.
As appealing as it may be to only pack a few items, this list may not suit all needs. For example, if I were going on a 6+ mile hike, then a TOPO map and map compass would be included in the gear list.
The area my dogs and I were in had several small streams, so water was not an issue, thus no need for a canteen. There have been times when the creeks were dried up. So in those situations a water bottle or canteen was needed. The lifestraw has a string lanyard so it can worn around the neck, and the filter weighs only 1.75 ounces.
For biting bugs, spray clothing down with DEET before heading out.
The bad news, if a rain comes along, all the person will have for protection is their boonie hat. Rain is one reason why the toilet paper is in a ziploc bag. If rain does come along, toss the cell phone in the ziploc bag.
Pocket compass helps the hiker keep their bearings.
The Case Trapper is a hefty pocket knife measuring 4 1/8 inches long. I find it well suited for most cutting jobs. If we wanted to go with a smaller knife for an even lighter lightweight day hike, the Case Stockman may be be a good option.
Smart phone was not listed because it should be a given. Most people carry their phone with them just about everywhere. So chances are the hiker will have their phone with them, so no need to mention it.
Ok guys and gals, what did we miss? Let’s keep the gear list below one pound.