Goto Backpacking Gear

Thought it would be interesting to see how my primary items have changed over time:  I am ignoring items that were used briefly or for testing purpose. For a while I was regularly purchasing new gear and trying it our. When I found something that was “better” than what I was using, I would potentially hold on to the old item for my “loaning library”, or see it to fund my gear habit. In recent years I have been slowly giving away / selling items I was holding as “loaner”. What I still own is bolded.

Packs

Something like 18 packs tested. Never became go-to but used the SMD StarLite, SMD Comet, and Gossamer Gear Whisper a fair bit. LuxuryLite was the most innovative pack I owned for a bit.

  • Kelty Pack (first “real” pack I bought)… 1972-1978
  • JanSport D3 (replace destroyed pack)… 1978-2000
  • Gregory Forester (wanted something more comfortable)… 2000-2001
  • GoLite Speed Pack (looking for something lighter)… 2001-2002
  • Osprey Aether 60 (looking for something more comfortable than Speed, loaner until given to friend’s son)… 2002-2020
  • Granite Gear Vapor Trail (lighter and more compact than Aether, was a loaner until gifted to someone in need)… 2002-2014
  • Gossamer Gear Gorilla (even lighter, more compact, and more usable)… 2009-

Sleeping Bags

  • White Stag Synthetic Bag (first “real” bag I bought)… 1972-1977
  • North Face Cat’s Meow (old bag lost loft)… 1977-1988
  • North Face Cat’s Meow (old bag stolen)… 1989-2002
  • Marmot Arroyo (old bag lost loft, wanted lighter and more compact bag)… 2001-2002
  • NuntakUSA Ghost (Lighter and warmer than Arroyo) 2003-
  • Western Mountaineering Versalite (for winter trips and loaner)… 2004-

Shelters – Solo

  • MSR Zoid 1 (first solo tent)… 2001-2001
  • Brawny Poncho Tarp (lighter for solo trips)… 2002-2004
  • Gossamer Gear Spinnshelter (better storm protection)… 2004-2008
  • Gossamer Gear The One (more space, bug free, easier pitching?… maybe not much easier)… 2008-2010
  • ZPacks Hexamid (lighter, easier pitching)… 2010-

Shelter for 2

Either used larger shelters (below) or borrow shelters for hardcore snow trips. Favorite were Warmlite and Bibler. Snow trips ended cause my wife doesn’t enjoy them and I no longer enjoy doing solo snow.

  • North Face Tuolumne Tent with snow tunnel entrance A frame front pole, I rear pole… 1974-1982
  • … see below, used larger tents for awhile…
  • Six Moon Designs Original Europa (lighter shelter to share)… 2002-2002
  • Tarptent Squall (more ventilation, better / faster pitch)… 2002-2005
  • Tarptent Squall2 (replaced Squall… more room than the Squall for two people)… 2005-2008
  • SD Lighting (wanted something freestanding)… 2004-2007
  • Tarptent Double Rainbow (more protective than squall, lighter than lighting… sold Lightning, Squall2 becomes loaner)… 2007-2014
  • MLD SuperFly (lighter weight, better in shoulder seasons… sold Squall2, Double Rainbow became loaner)… 2008-2014
  • BA Copper Spur 2 (Wanted free standing easy setup and bug free)… 2014

Large Shelters

  • Sierra Designs Three Man Hex Tent (dad’s.. so I couldn’t always use it)… 1970-1985
  • Sierra Designs Stretch Dome (wanted more space and more storm worthy than NF Tuolumne)… 1982-1988
  • Sierra Designs 3/4 Season Convertible 3 Person Nightwatch? (Stretch Dome stolen)… 1988-2002
  • 4 Person Free Standard Car Camping Tent (family car camping)… 2002-2011
  • GoLite Hex3 (group backpacking)… 2004-2008
  • GoLite Shangra-La 4 (more room, easier setup for group backpacking)… 2009-2016
  • MSR Carbon Reflect 3 (free standing, smaller footprint)… 2012-

Stoves

  • Svea 123 – 1969-1978 (dad’s)
  • Funny folding canister stove when Svea 123 was not avail – 1976-1978
  • MSR X??- 1978-1989
  • MSR ???  had a plastic fuel tube (replace stolen stove) – 1989-2000
  • MSR Whisperlite International  (MSR ??? recalled, tube unsafe) – 2000-2005
  • Snowpeak GS100 (lighter and easier use)… 2002-2003
  • Burton Stove (faster cooking for groups)… 2003-2005
  • Coleman Xtreme (winter and bigger groups… until fuel no longer made)… 2005-2011
  • Snowpeak GS100 (burton mistake, back to snowpeak: more stable and less carbon monoxide)… 2005-

Solo Stove

  • Photon Alcohol Stove… 2003-2003
  • Ion Alcohol Stove (more fuel efficient and less hassle)… 2004-2009
  • UL Caldera Cone (easier to use and faster than Ion for solo, normally esbits)… 2009-

Pots

Some experimenting with small pots and Mug over the years, but never for an extended period of time.

  • Boy Scout Mess Kit with mini pot (used Troops cook kit)… 1974-1978
  • MSR Alpinelite Cook Kit (First multi-person cook set)… 1978-2001
  • MSR DuraLite (car camping, Alpinelite worn out)… 2001-
  • Evernew .9L pot (lighter weight)… 2001-2009
  • Evernew 1.3L pot (group trips)… 2002-
  • MLD 850ML Pot/Mug (more compact with Caledra)… 2009-

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