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Pacific Crest Trail: Gear Breakdown

Updated on February 14, 2020


There are a lot of things to consider when you plan on living out of a backpack for months at a time. Especially when you plan on carrying that backpack up and over mountains and what not... the latter being the tricky part.

What is worth it’s weight, and what is necessary enough you have to have it? And how much weight are you capable of carrying long distances through difficult terrain?

These are just a few important questions an individual must have the answers for. When they planning on doing a thru hike or any kind of serious backpacking.

Now, anytime you have a problem with multiple moving parts, different people will come up with, different solutions. And this is one of those problems.

You need to just get out there and really test out all of the most common sense things first and then you can build up from there.

Once you find out what works for you and, what some of your limitations are, as well as your strengths. You can then begin to work on maximizing efficiency and really start tailoring these basic tactics to better fit your personal needs.

The Big Three

A good place to start when we’re thinking along the trend of common sense is, the big 3. These are also usually the heaviest items you will carry.



-Sleep System


Starting with a pack, so we can first know how much space we will have. You have plenty of options to choose from, and knowing it’s intended purpose will really help to narrow you in on a good choice for you.

Do you want to go lightweight and barebones or would you prefer a full kit with all the bells and whistles?

Not forgetting the questions we first answered to give us a general idea of what our personal capabilities are.

Important Considerations

The next two depend on a few things we generally don’t have control of. First being climate and weather, last being the terrain.

And these three things will really determine where you should go or how you should lean when trying to maximize your efficiency and pack out a specialized kit.

All factors hinging on weight verse protection so there is also a level of personal comfort to consider.


Providing you are aware of your climate and weather conditions. There are many lightweight and simple options available when deciding on a shelter.

Sleep System

A regular old sleeping bag will usually work great in most temperate climates, but it most likely also weigh over 5lbs. And that may be something you will need to consider when you are making these decisions first having that answer to “how much weight can you carry?”


In future articles I will have a more comprehensive breakdown and go over my personal kit and do some reviews of gear I have personally tested out.

Question for the Reader

What is one item you would have to pack, regardless of the weight?

© 2020 Max Jubalson


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