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-   -   Ultralight Backpacking tips by Mike Clelland (https://forums.clubtread.com/22-book-reviews/47123-ultralight-backpacking-tips-mike-clelland.html)

dougz 02-24-2014 01:10 PM

Ultralight Backpacking tips by Mike Clelland
 
There are some good tips to be had here (mostly and most gratifyingly about how to reduce the weight of gear to zero by not taking it at all), and some good recipes in the back..

But damned if I don't keep coming back to my gut-reaction that I'm willing to bear with the added weight for the comfort/convenience..

Examples:

Digging a cathole with a %$#@! tent stake?! I'll use the 'heavy' GSI trowel, thanks! Same for wiping my bum with snow (brrrrr!! Never again!), or grass/leaves (FML). Give me good ol' bulky, heavy 2-ply any day..

My pocket rocket + cannister weighs more than an alcohol stove + fuel, but it is way faster and convenient.

My self-inflating sleeping pad is much more comfortable in my old age than the 'light' closed-cell Thermarest I used for way longer than I should have!

No bunched-up clothing in a stuff sack will ever rival my dedicated thermarest compressable pillow!!

My memory will never rival the pictures I take with my leaden camera..

So, if you are of a like mind on the 'less-weight-is-worth-more-farting-around' philosophy, or really need to lose some pack weight to save your knees, this is a good book to get you there. Humourous illustrations, easy to read, practical applications and explanations behind them.





johngenx 02-24-2014 02:08 PM

Jardine's book is still the "bible" of trimming weight. I don't use his whole system, but I've sure adopted snippets of Ray's Way to save weight.

As for sleeping pads, I find that sleeping on a thin foam pad saps more energy than it saves by killing my sleep. And today, no need to carry heavy to be comfy. My ThermaRest X-Therm is 400g, packs tiny, is comfy, and warm enough for full on winter conditions. It's just expensive.

I save most of my weight through keeping my shelter and sleeping system weights down, and by careful selection of clothing.

dougz 02-24-2014 02:36 PM

Quote:

quote:Jardine's book is still the "bible"
It's on the reading list, thanks!

I'm noticing now that long distance hikers seem to all be using nylon trail runners over traditional hiking boots.. Hmmmmmm.

lowclimber 02-24-2014 02:53 PM

this may be relevant: for inspiration check out

Ueli Steck's Annapurna Kit
Pack like a speed-record holder to move faster

http://www.climbing.com/skill/ueli-s...annapurna-kit/

FamilyGuy 02-24-2014 04:24 PM

It is a zealot book, no question (the Mike Clelland book).

You may want to have a read of Andrew Skurka's book: The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide.

I found it far more practical than Mike's book.

dougz 02-24-2014 04:26 PM

Quote:

quote:You may want to have a read of Andrew Skurka's book: The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide
Yup, that's on the list, too.. His blog is good, too.

trick 02-24-2014 04:30 PM

I have had fairly good success with snow as toilet paper myself, but I heard a story from a guy who used a chunk of raincrust and lacerated his backside. Not exactly his finest moment.

FamilyGuy 02-24-2014 05:03 PM

Quote:

quote:Originally posted by dougz

Quote:

quote:You may want to have a read of Andrew Skurka's book: The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide
Yup, that's on the list, too.. His blog is good, too.
Yes! And he is not afraid to wear (er, carry) fleece as a lightweight, incredibly accomplished long distance backpacker. Hear, hear, I say.

BillyGoat 02-24-2014 09:37 PM

"Backpacking Light" by Mike Wallace is also a good read. I have the Clelland book as well and it has some good tips in there, but he's a bit too much of a gram weinie..

dougz 02-26-2014 02:08 PM

Quote:

quote:"Backpacking Light" by Mike Wallace is also a good read
Ok, I'll see if I can get it..

Unfortunately alot of the heavier stuff like tent, sleeping bag, cooking gear I already have (should have done more research), and don't really have the $$$ to get lighter versions.

gbarron 02-27-2014 09:20 AM

Don't dismiss Mike Clelland so easily! Granted, leaving TP at home might be an uncomfortable and needless way to save a few grams, but his idea for water bottles exemplifies to me the very zen of UL backpacking:

http://cache.backpackinglight.com/ba...kly-tip-86.jpg

Granted, it doesn't save much weight, but the idea forces you to think about the weight of everything in your pack.

You can go UL without sacrificing comfort, safety, or Leave No Trace principles. Here's a few hints that I've found most useful.

1. Decide if you're a hiker or a camper, or something else. One is not better than the other. I've found I like to cover long distances each day and UL gear and strategies help me do that. But if you just want to do 7 km a day and then camp, nap, take photos, fish, or read, it's your trip and that's your decision.

http://andrewskurka.com/2012/what-in...u-to-backpack/

2. Buy a digital 5 kg scale and weigh everything. Everything (except "nothing") weighs something, and it all adds up. Consider setting up a spreadsheet with all your gear weights. Don't even trust retailer's stated weights.

3. Adopt, or at least strive for, the Scandinavian 343 method. That is, your three heaviest items - shelter, sleep system, and pack - should weigh no more that 3 kilos combined. Once you've trimmed those weights, you can think about cutting down your toothbrush.

http://www.fjaderlatt.se/p/343-method.html

I used to carry an MEC Gothic Arch tent (+/- 3 kg), a Feathered Friends Goretex bag good to -7*C and a shorty Thermarest (1.6 kg), and a Serratus 65 litre pack (+/- 1.5 kg). Total weight about 6 kg. Great pieces of gear but overkill for summer backpacking.

I now carry a 900 g Tarptent Moment, a 500 g quilt good to 0*C, a super-comfy 456g Exped Synmat UL, and a 635 g SMD Swift pack. Total weight about 2.6 kg with no loss of comfort or practicality. My tent is definitely smaller and less resistant to alpine winter storms that the Gothic Arch, but it's proven itself perfectly adequate for anything summer solo trips may throw at it. And it pitches in under 2 minutes.

Last summer I double-hiked the Skyline Trail from Maligne L. to Signal Camp in 1 1/4 days and back the next day. This is a short 45 km hike, but I saw numerous hikers labouring under packs as large as I've carried on mountaineering expeditions to Alaska or the Yukon. I felt no smug sense of schadenfreude and I thought I was as well-prepared as they were.

4. Download this free UL backpacking ebook. Glean whatever you can from it.

http://www.hikelight.com/assets/Ebook1.0.pdf

Happy trails!
G.

dougz 02-27-2014 01:31 PM

Quote:

quote:but his idea for water bottles exemplifies to me the very zen of UL backpacking
Yup, that was a good one, though I use a Platypus in summer most of the time. You could use it in winter, as long as you kept it in your jacket..

Quote:

quote:I now carry a 900 g Tarptent Moment, a 500 g quilt good to 0*C, a super-comfy 456g Exped Synmat UL, and a 635 g SMD Swift pack
Like I say, if you have the $$$ to do things right the second time, it's good..

But if you already have the stuff and are reluctant or unable to double-down, you're left with leaving things behind, modifying what's left (cutting extraneous thingies off backpacks, etc) or making 1 thing perform multiple functions (as long as it's not 'stupid light' stuff like digging a cathole with a tent peg).

Best I've done in a day so far is 25k.. 50k in 2.5 days.

Thanks for the link!


FamilyGuy 02-27-2014 01:54 PM

The only issue I have with Mike Clelland is that he has never done a 10 day trip by his own admission (at backpackinglight.com). So in essence, the book is almost a plan of what he WOULD do if he was out for 10 days.

Skurka, of course, has been out for months.

dougz 02-27-2014 02:40 PM

Quote:

quote:Skurka, of course, has been out for months.
Going by himself in Grizzlified Alaska takes cajones! :(

FamilyGuy 02-27-2014 02:47 PM

Quote:

quote:Originally posted by dougz

Quote:

quote:Skurka, of course, has been out for months.
Going by himself in Grizzlified Alaska takes cajones! :(
You might enjoy this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtsI1DOlVow


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