Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Someone on Reddit requested my gear list.

A couple of days ago I posted a comment In response to a post on reddit called "Our Ultimate tour kayaking gear list", what I said was that while I wouldn't go as far as to say Ultimate, it was a good list. Someone in the comments asked me to post my list - I think his quote was something along the lines of 'for trips that are more badassery." I don't know how bad ass I am, but here is my list.  (excluding a few changes, this is my gear list from the Inside Passage and the AGAP trip in 2014, It also doesn't include solar gear/batteries, and cameras)

Paddle Clothing
Seattle Sombrero
Ball cap
Fingerless Gloves
Wool hat

Underneath my drysuit I wear a base layer (Top and bottom) which are listed down the page. I only wear fingerless paddling gloves on REALLY long day. 20 plus mile days. I hate neoprene paddling gloves. I find it really hard to get them on and off while paddling, I much prefer pogies. The seattle sombrero from OR is the best rain hat in the world.

Paddle Gear
Back up Paddle
Spray Skirt
Bilge Pump
Paddle Float
Short tow
Long tow
Deck Compass

I am a firm believer that your primary paddle should be the same as your back up paddle, but I can't afford to do two werner carbon paddles every few years. I get about 5 years out of a paddle. I use a whitewater spray skirt. I want a skirt that doesn't come off the boat. It says deck compass on my list, which I used on the IP, but for AGAP I had a mounted deck compass - which is far better!

In the front pocket of my PFD I have a bunch of things.
Signal mirror
Chemical light stick
Rescue strobe
Compass (listed above)
power food

I actually use the spot connect, which I don't like. I would do an ACR PLB in the future. On long trips I like to keep Jolly ranchers in my vest pocket as well.

Chart case
VHF Radio
Handheld compass
a 1 foot piece of climbing cord

On long trips I pack both nautical charts and topo maps. I print my own topo's using the all trails website, on National Geographic Adventure paper (which is waterproof) and then have it spiral bound. I use a Garmin Oregon handheld GPS which I like because it's small. I have used the same handheld compass for decades and love it. My VHF radio is a waterproof uniden that lives in a pelican case. I can be seen in a lot of my short films. Ive used every chart case on the market (I think) and the one I use is the only one I like.

Cooking Tarp
Sleeping bag
Sleeping pad

I actually use the REI version of that TNF tent (and the three person version) I use a four season tent in Alaska and it is a beast. It weighs 11 pounds and is bomb proof. It is important to have a tarp for both sun and rain protection. And yes, I pack a table and chair, and use them every day. There is no reason we can't be civilized.

Pot set
Fry Pan
Spice Kit
Kitchen Kit
Stove repair kit
10 liter Dromedary
4 liter dromedary
Sponge/Dr Bronners
Insulated Mug
Fairshare Mug
Cup for whiskey
Sawyer Mini
Sawyer Squeeze
Bear spray

I think it is all pretty self explanatory. I pack both Sawyers on big trips, one set up as a gravity system, and the other in the cockpit with me so we can get water on the go. I love the fairshare mug, because it can hold leftovers and won't leak (Make a big meal for dinner and eat the leftovers for lunch tomorrow.) Yes, Whiskey goes on every trip.

Shell Jacket
Shell pants
midweight base layer bottoms x 2
Midweight base layer top (crew neck)
Quick dry, light colored, long sleeve wicking layer. 
Fleece pants
Synthetic Puffy Jacket
long sleeve cotton t shirt
quick dry pants 
Wool hiking socks x 3
Camp shoes
Glove liners

That's it. I don't ever pack more clothes than that. While I am paddling I am wearing a pair of base layer bottoms and one of the tops under my drysuit, as well as one pair of socks. The fourth pair of socks never leave my sleeping bag. I don't really use those prana pants, but something similar. My camp shoes are a minimalist running shoe. I pack one cotton t shirt because it is nice to sleep in. Sometimes, if I know it is going to be really cold, I swap one pair of midnight bottoms for a pair of heavy weight bottoms. This all fits in a 20 liter dry bag.

Personal Gear
Paperback book
bug dope
lip balm

Yes, I pack deodorant. People that say not to because of bears are crazy. It's nice to have when you catch a whiff of yourself on day 12. I always pack a paperback. Something like Dogs of war, or the day of the Jackal. I use an old version of the iPod Nano which is pretty tiny and the battery lasts forever.

Headlamp with extra batteries.
Fire starting kit
First aid kit
Multi towels x 3
1 liter nalgene
repair kit

The repair kit is a small water proof case - like pelican case - that has plastic weld and other materials for fixing thermoform boats. A pole sleeve. Patches for outerwear/tent/sleeping pads. Aqua seal (which will fix anything) and screw eyes (Go ahead, figure that one out!) Currently I am using Sea to Summit dry bags, but I have used just about every type available. They all work well, but the clear vinyl ones have shorter life spans, they crack. The video below is a test pack before the inside passage.

Packing from Paddling Otaku on Vimeo.

That's really all you need to paddle for a month in Alaska. That, and a lot of food and fuel.

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