Backpacking Equipment Checklist

Backpacking equipment

Double-checking your Backpacking Equipment Checklist will a sure, you have the essential hiking equipment needed while you are on the trail.  Keep in mind that your gear will be more compact, and designed for one person.

Space and weight are obviously a concern and suppliers that have designed backpacking equipment with that in mind.  Another option if you are going to be on the trail a few days is to mail some supplies to a town that is not too far off the trail.

Backpacking Equipment Considerations

The right hiking / backpacking gear is essential to backpacking camping adventures.  Choose wisely, the more you pack the more weight you will have.  It is important that once you have everything packed to take a short hike in your area.  This will help you determine if your pack is at a weight, you can comfortably carry.  Then you can adjust your Backpacking Equipment Checklist to meet the weight.

Backpacking Gear

Surviving in the wild depends on your ability to exist and live off the land.  If you are going for this type of backpacking camping, your gear should be  about  personal protection and not about what is for dinner.  It should contain water for two days, emergency rations such as energy bars, and the rest is clothing and survival supplies.  Typical survival supplies will include a compass, a few fishing lures such as wrigglers and dry flies, emergency first aid kit, water purification tablets, and a refillable container for water.

If you are doing a traditional hike along the AT, then the gear you take will change.  You will be  able to plan your travel more precisely and allow for food pick up along the trail as mentioned above.  Planned hikes, where you know the route and environment allow for a larger backpack and more clothing and food.


Mens Backpack

There are different types such as daypacks, bug out packs, and full gear.  The right backpack is almost as important as your physical training.  If the frame does not match your torso measurement, you can become physically exhausted much more quickly.  Backpacks are made with both internal or external frames.  Each has their advantages and disadvantages.  Compare the features to determine which will meet your needs.  Internal, weight is off your shoulders, and the pack held closer to body, help you navigate difficult trails.  External, carry items outside pack, lighter, you can walk straighter, and easier to carry heavy load.

For a walk in base camp expedition or hike along the AT, you will need to pack as much as possible and there are backpacks that can do this with durable lightweight fabrics keeping everything dry.  For a walk out survival trip, keeping the gear weight to 30% of your body weight or less is important with much of the contents being water, emergency rations, and clothing.

Depending on the terrain, your pack should have most of the weight in the bottom or up near the top.  Flat terrain hiking needs most of the weight to be carried by your hips while hilly walks need you to carry most of the weight on your shoulders.

The backpack has adjustable straps allowing you to shift the weight from either your lower torso to resting comfortably on your shoulders.  Make any adjustments prior to setting off on your trip.  You can fine-tune the adjustment by the manner you arrange the contents of the pack.  If you are in mountain country, pack your clothes, first aid kit, and other light items first followed by heavier items such as water, camping tools, and food.  For flat terrain, the reverse of this arrangement would hold true.

Hiking Boots -

Hiking Boots

Perhaps one of the most important items involved with Backpacking Camping are the boots themselves.  A good pair of hiking boots will not only protect your feet from the terrain, but also provide much-needed ankle and shin support during your trip.  Make sure that you only go on your trip with boots that are well broken in or you will find yourself with foot sores or blisters along the way.  Boots must be waterproof as well as allowing the feet to breathe.  Take extra socks must be brought along, as you will need to change them regularly to keep the feet dry.

Other Equipment

There are other pieces of backpacking equipment  you will need for your trip such as tent, stove, clothing etc.  For more information on these items,  please refer to the respective pages.  It cannot be stressed enough that space is limited.  The more you pack the heavier your backpack will be.  You may be able to handle the weight for short distance, but unless you plan on take several breaks throughout the day. 

Sample Backpacking Equipment Checklist

Use this Backpacking Equipment Checklist as a starting point for your next trip.  You will soon learn what is right for you to take.

Printable version

Untitled Document
Camping Equipment Checklist
Cooking Equipment
Tent Equipment
Camping Tools
Aluminum Foil (Heavy Duty) Ground Sheet Bungi cords/straps
bags, ziplock Rain Fly/Tent Topper duct tape/electrical tape
Bottle opener/corkscrew Seam sealant Glue/super glue
bowls, mixing Tent (with stakes and guylines) Hatchet
Can Opener Tent footprint Knife or Multi-Tool
canister, Food-storage Tent repair kit Knife sharpener
Collapsible water container(s) Utility bags for storage Machete
Cook Set (pots & pans) mallet or hammer
Cutlery Pliers, wrench
Dish Soap / Dish Rags / Scouring Pad
Camp Lighting
tin an stove/box oven/etc Extra batteries/bulbs Small shovel
Egg holder(s) Flashlight Trowel
frozen insulator Headlamps
Grill rack Lantern with fuel/mantles Work gloves
Hot-cold vacuum bottle Maglight
knife, cutting & Paring Solar panel
measuring cups & spoons Solar powered battery charger
Paper Towels
Pot grabber
Sleeping Gear
stove, camp Alarm clock
thermos Fleece sleeping bag liner
Trash bags; resealable bags
Utensils (whisk, spatula, knives etc.) Pillows
Sleeping Bag

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