Lightweight Backpacking Ideas: The concept of lightweight hiking is not a new thing, there have always been those people who enjoy heading into the countryside with little more than a blanket and some food. The methods involved with lightweight hiking involve taking several steps to lighten your load without a loss of safety or too much comfort.
Step one – Lighten the Big Three
Tent, Sleeping bag, and Backpack are three top-ranking items that you’re going to want to carry, but the lighter they are the better.
There are many lightweight tents on the market today, but the lightest of these is probably the tarp. Tarps are sold by many manufacturers, and the lightest will weigh in at less than 1lb. Tarps can stand up to wind and rain much better than you might think, and their openness facilitates ventilation too.
Here you’ll find cost is usually directly proportional to weight and quality, so expect to pay more for something which is rated as warm enough and light enough.
A lot of backpacks are designed to carry heavy loads, and of course,if you’re planning on travelling light this becomes unnecessary. Look for something which eliminates heavy frame and thick fabric, but weight till you’ve sourced and changed everything else before you buy this, as until you’ve made all your changes, you won’t know how large or heavy-duty a pack you’ll need.
Step 2 – Lightening smaller items
Many items in a pack can be either replaced with smaller or lighter versions or eliminated completely. One tip here is to look for multi-purpose items where you can.
Canister stoves tend to be smaller and lighter than liquid fuel types, but you could go lighter still, and make your own alcohol stove from food or drink can. Alcohol doesn’t need a custom fuel canister, so can be carried in a pop bottle easily.
Avoid carrying multiple pots and pans – go for a single pot and spoon. Cook in it and then eat straight from it.
Look for synthetic material, minimal pockets and zippers,and thin breathable fabric. Clothes are ever-evolving so there’s plenty of choices out there.
Hiking boots are heavy so you could look at tennis shoes or running shoes. Take caution though as these won’t provide ankle support and may increase chances of injury if you have weak knees or ankles.
Step 3 – What don’t you need?
Eliminate everything that really isn’t necessary to you – this is quite personal so you’ll have to work this one out for yourself.
The last thought
The process of lightening your load can seem quite daunting, but it’s actually quite a liberating experience. Try things out – test the new equipment without ditching the old one, until you’re happy, and only then remove the old one from your pack. This can take several trips till you learn what’s going to be best for you, but better safe than sorry, and you will gain experience all the time.
Inspirational places to go backpacking this year
Backpacking is an excellent way of going on vacation that provides an alternative to the more standard approaches of renting a hotel and relaxing on a beach for a couple of weeks. Active travelers on every corner of the globe make use of backpacking in lieu of traditional vacations, as do people who are interested in traveling on a budget or reaching areas of the world that just aren’t accessible through guided tours and hotel stays. It is fair to say that backpacking can inspire changes in people’s lives and even provide a fresh outlook on one’s surroundings long after one has returned home. This article will list four of the most inspirational places to go backpacking this year.
1. Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park may be found in central California and draws backpackers from every part of the globe who wish to experience its natural grandeur. There are more than 800 miles of trails and no shortage of amazing lakes. There are plenty of climbing opportunities, breathtaking views, and terrain at all levels of difficulty. The picturesque views of Yosemite National Park are sure to inspire backpackers of all backgrounds and levels of experience, which is why it deserves to be first on this list.
2. The Appalachian Trail
Backpackers, tourists, and lovers of nature will agree that The Appalachian Trail is an excellent location for exploring the great outdoors. It is possible to hike the more than 2000 miles of the trail that stretched from Maine to the northern stretches of Georgia. More than 2000 different kinds of plants and animals call the trail home, including the Black Bear. As the trail was created to foster hiking and exploration, it is truly fit for backpackers who want to get closer to nature while exploring the eastern seaboard of the United States.
Alaska is the most geographically diverse state in the United States as well as the largest, and its pristine and untouched nature makes it one of the most inspirational places a backpacker can hope to visit. There are thousands of people who come to the state each year to rediscover what life used to be like before the trappings of modernity, such as cell phones and instant access to hot coffee. Backpackers will enjoy the myriad of sights present in the state, from vast mountains and plains to piping hot volcanoes to green forests and crystal clear lakes.
4. Yellowstone National Park
Last but not least, Yellowstone National Park should be visited by every backpacker seeking inspiration at least once in their lives. It is found in the state of Wyoming, and the park spans close to 3500 square miles. The ecosystem in the park is rich and full of varied flora, fauna, and geological features. Some of these features include turbulent geysers and hot springs with unique colors. The challenging terrain draws thousands of backpackers each year from all over the world, and it is well worth visiting no matter what one’s level of experience backpacking.