Best baby carrier and the best shoe holders: Backpack: If you do borrow a pack, try it on first to be sure that it fits comfortably. Load it up with assorted items to about 30 pounds, and take it out on a long test hike. If it’s comfortable on the hips and in the shoulders, it’s probably fine for this first backpacking trip. If you decide to buy a pack, have an REI pack specialist measure your torso so they can properly fit you. Don’t be tempted by an ultralight model for your first backpack because it will be less padded and have a less supportive structure than a more deluxe model. If you’re determined to minimize weight, look first at ultralight tents, sleeping bags and sleeping pads. Learn more by reading Backpacks: How to Choose. You can also check out our staff picks for the best backpacks. See more details at shoe holder for backpack.
The Pure is designed to have high breathability so it makes for a great spring and summer carrier, offering a front panel that can be unzipped and rolled up to reveal a highly breathable mesh that helps keep your baby’s back nice and cool. In our testing, it also helped keep us cool in the 100+ degree weather (with 75% humidity) we had this summer! The panel tucks away really nicely without any issues with it being bulky or accidentally falling down. The straps and waist are super thick and comfortable, and we loved the adjustable webbing on the waist and the new buckle. The buckle requires a two-step process to open, but we thought it was super easy to open with one hand and prevented the possibility that a curious older sibling could reach up and unbuckle the strap, or that it could accidentally unbuckle (partially or fully) when bending down. We were worried about the two-step buckle but were pleasantly surprised with its ease of use. This is a simple carrier that is lightweight and highly breathable, it’s a great option for summer hikes and journeys, and for easily packing/stuffing away into a suitacase or backpack.
Lowering backpack weight tip : Ultralight gaiters. Get some of these. They are like those elastic book sock covers from school. Great to keep out any debris from your shoes and much lighter than other gaiter options. Leave your puffy jacket (if it’s not too cold). Even in freezing temperatures on the Appalachian Trail, I was always shedding layers and still sweating buckets while hiking. You can always bundle with your sleeping bag on breaks and at camp. See ultralight down jackets. Wool socks. Wool naturally fights odors and still insulates when wet, unlike cotton. Read additional info at https://ilouxnei.com/.
Today technology has made hiking much easier. Smartphones allow you to map and overlay weather in real time. LED bulbs are bright and last thousands of hours. There’s a lot of great technology out there that’s helpful. That is, until it fails. So when I pack the ten essentials, I generally include two options, a high-tech version that works great, and an old-school version that works if the high tech version fails. The small size and low weight of hiking gear today makes this possible. Ask yourself what the worse conditions could be on the hike, and then pack for that. And if you’re in the desert or at altitude, remember that it can get very cold at night.