The list below includes all our Appalachian Trail gear. To this we add food, fuel, and water as needed.

General Item Specifics Weight (oz.)
Shelter Big Agnes Fly Creek UL2, stakes replaced with 6 Vargo Titanium Ultralight hooks, no stuff sacks 37.4
Stove and windscreen Caldera Ti-Tri 2.5
Fuel bottle Grocery store water bottle with Sriracha squeeze top 1.0
Lighter Mini Bic lighter 0.4
Pot, also our eating container Evernew Titanium Non-Stick 1900ml Pot 8.6
Pocket knife Spyderco Ladybug 3 Serrated Edge Knife 0.6
Pot scraper GSI Outdoors Compact Scraper 0.5
Water purification backup Potable Aqua Iodine Tablets 1.0
Toiletries In Ziplock bag – Sunscreen, Natrapel insect repellent, lip balm, travel toothbrushes, toothpaste, Campsuds biodegradable soap in tiny bottle, Diva Cup, contact solution, Wet Ones, hairband, ear plugs 8.0
First aid and gear repair kit In Aloksak – bandaids, hypafix, moleskin, gauze pads, alcohol wipes, antibiotic ointment, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, duct tape, needle and dental floss, safety pins, type A patches 2.0
  External battery and cable PowerGen PGMPP9000 Battery Pack (7.1 oz) and iPhone cable (0.7 oz) 7.8
Charger for town Universal Battery Charger (charges Anna’s camera battery via battery pack or wall socket) 3.0
Bear hang rope Aircore Pro Dyneema rope (50 feet) 2.7
Food bag Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Nano Dry Sack 20L 1.3
Map AWOL’s AT Guide and ATC GPS waypoints 2.0
Compass Suunto compass M-2D 1.1
Extra Cheep Cheep 1.0
Total Shared Gear Weight 80.9  
    Total Shared Gear Weight/Person, oz. 40.5
General Item Specifics Weight (oz.)
Backpack Gossamer Gear Gorilla, shoulder straps trimmed to reduce width – Small 23
Sleeping bag Mountain Hardware Lamina 20 (synthetic fill) 46.8
Sleeping bag stuff sack Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Compression Sack, 10 L 2.6
Sleeping pad Thermarest NeoAir XLite – Small 8.0
Waterproof backpack liner Husky 18 gallon trash compactor bag 2.3
Warm hat SmartWool Cuffed Beanie 1.9
Mosquito Headnet Sea to Summit Insect Shield Mosquito Head Net 0.9
Insulating Jacket (also pillow) Montbell U.L. Thermawrap Jacket – Small (synthetic fill) 7.8
Rain Jacket Marmot Crystalline jacket – Small
Rain Skirt ULA Rain Kilt – Medium 2.7
Gloves SmartWool liner gloves 1.1
Tights (also sleeping bottoms) Asics running tights with neon stripes! 4.9
Underwear, 1 extra Patagonia barely hipster briefs 0.6
Socks, 1 extra pair Wright Socks – Medium 0.9
Bandana half bandana 0.5
Headlamp Petzl e+LITE headlamp 1.0
Water container Platypus Hoser Hydration System 2.0L 3.6
Water purification Sawyer 3-Way Inline Water Filter 2.0
Eating Utensil MSR Alpine Collapsible Utensil Spoon 0.5
Camera Canon S90 (improved version is Canon S110) 7.0
Camera accessories Aloksak (as a waterproof case) and extra battery 0.9
Cell phone iPhone 4S in Incipio silicrylic case, plus Aloksak for rain 5.9
Eye Care Glasses, glasses case, contact case 3.1
Miscellaneous Cash, credit and debit cards, picture ID 0.5
ANNA’S GEAR SUM (shared + personal), oz. 175.2
ANNA’S GEAR SUM (shared + personal), pounds 10.9
Backpack Gossamer Gear Gorilla, hip belt removed – Large 22
Sleeping bag Western Mountaineering UltraLite Sleeping Bag, 20 Degree Down, 6ft 29
Sleeping pad Thermarest NeoAir XLite – Small 8.0
Waterproof backpack liner Husky 18 gallon trash compactor bag 2.3
Warm hat SmartWool Cuffed Beanie 1.8
Mosquito Headnet Sea to Summit Insect Shield Mosquito Head Net 0.9
Insulating Jacket (also pillow) Patagonia Nano Puff – Small 9.3
Rain Jacket Rab Pulse – Medium 7.1
Wind Pants Montbell Dynamo – Medium 2.7
Gloves SmartWool liner gloves – Medium 1.4
Underwear, 1 extra ExOfficio Boxer Briefs – Medium 2.8
Socks, 1 extra pair Wright Socks – Large 0.9
Bandana half bandana 0.5
Headlamp Petzl e+LITE headlamp 1.0
Water container Platypus Hoser Hydration System 1.0L (3.2 oz) and Gatorade bottle (1 oz) 4.2
Water purification Sawyer 3-Way Inline Water Filter 2.0
Eating Utensil MSR Alpine Collapsible Utensil Spoon 0.5
Camera Canon 5D Mark III with 24-105L lens and B&W Kaesemann Slim-Line circular polarizer 59.5
Camera accessories Extra memory cards (2.5 oz), extra battery (2.7 oz), battery charger (4.5 oz), ThinkTank Digital Holster carrying case with extra straps removed (12.1 oz), Think Tank Steroid Speed Belt V2.0 (11 oz), folding mini tripod (1.7 oz), AirStash (to transfer images to phone, 1.4 oz) 35.9
Cell phone iPhone 4S in Incipio dermashot case, plus Aloksak for rain 6.1
Eye Care Glasses, glasses case, contact case 3.0
Miscellaneous Cash, credit and debit cards, picture ID 0.5
CHRIS’ GEAR SUM (shared + personal), oz. 241.9
CHRIS’S GEAR SUM (shared + personal), pounds 15.1
General Item Specifics Weight (oz.)
Shoes Brooks Cascadia with blue Superfeet insoles 25.8
Socks Wright Socks – Medium 0.9
Shorts/pants prAna Sage Convertible pants – size 2 11.9
Underwear Patagonia barely hipster briefs 0.6
Sports Bra Nike Pro sports bra 3.5
Shirt Nike Legend V-Neck Dri Fit shirt 4
Trekking poles Gossamer Gear LT4 Trekking Poles – Short 7.5
Shoes Brooks Cascadia 28.3
Socks Wright Socks – Large 0.9
Shorts prAna Mojo – Medium 5.5
Underwear ExOfficio Boxer Briefs – Medium 2.8
Shirt Patagonia Capilene 1 Silkweight – Medium 4.1
Trekking poles Gossamer Gear LT4S Trekking Poles – Regular 8.6
Warmer Insulating Jacket Montbell U.L. Thermawrap Parka – Medium (synthetic fill) temporarily replaces Montbell Thermawrap Jacket 10.8
Warmer Insulating Top SmartWool Women’s Midweight Crew – Medium 6.5
Warmer Socks SmartWool Crew Socks 1.7
Warmer Insulating Top SmartWool Men’s Midweight Thermal Crew Top – Medium 8.3
Warmer Insulating Bottoms Patagonia Capilene 3 Midweight Bottoms – Medium 6.8
Warmer Socks SmartWool Crew Socks 1.7

A special thanks to our gear sponsors:



  1. North Star and Shutterbug,

    I am sorry that I did not have the opportunity to meet you this past summer. I’m the guy that suggested you check out Taos for the amazing above tree line hiking – way back in February. It would be fair to say that we have all done a bit of high altitude hiking since then.

    Glad to hear you are setting your sites on the AT in 2013. My wife and I have a summer cabin on a lake approximately 40 minutes from Salisbury, CT. – the AT goes through Salisbury. If you are interested and should your schedule permit, we would be happy to pick you up, host you for the evening and grill up a feast.

    Again, congratulations on your PCT thru-hike and best wishes in your preparation for the AT.

    I look forward to owning a copy of your photo essay on the PCT.

    Gman – age 59
    PCT Class of 2012


    1. Hi Gman,

      Yes, we remember your comment! We saw your name in trail registers along the PCT, but somehow we never crossed paths with you. What an amazing experience we now share. There’s nothing else quite like a thru hike of the PCT.

      Thanks so much for your kind offer to host us on the AT! We would very much enjoy meeting you and your wife, if the timing is good.

      Congratulations to you as well! We’re working hard on the book, and hope you will enjoy it.



  2. Saw your question/comment on Andrew Skurka’s blog and especially curious what you will go with for a shelter on the AT. We used a Tarptent on the PCT, but I have always wanted to try a true tarp. As one who also backpacks with a partner we continually negotiate regarding having a fully enclosed shelter (like your BA Fly Creek) vs. trying to go with a lighter weight more flexible set-up. Looking forward to reading about your evolving thoughts on shelter and also on sleep system — will you stick with your synthetic sleeping bags? Ever thought of a quilt system? Well, particularly interested in your approach to lightweight backpacking as a two person unit as most of the other bloggers out there are focused on a solo approach and thus have solo solutions. Cheers & as always, love reading.


    1. Hi Shivers! Here are some quick thoughts. We are considering a rectangular tarp for the AT, since that would save weight over the Fly Creek UL2. It would also allow for more airflow, reducing condensation. Down quilts are very enticing for their simplicity and lightness. It’s likely that we’ll end up with a two-person quilt and tarp combination on the AT. We’re looking into all of the different variations available from small manufacturers.


  3. Cool — so interested to learn more as you make decisions. BAM and I sewed a Ray Jardine double quilt before the PCT but didn’t end up going with it. Really like the looks of some of the down double quilts out there like Joe of Zpacks double option. Approx 2 lbs for a double in the long size and 20 degree temp rating.


      1. Just to chime in – My wife Becky and I thru hiked the AT with a tarp and a Ray Jardine quilt that we built. It was a great solution. We only got wet once in 5.5 months (in the whites – long story…). Totally recommend both the quilt and the tarp for the AT.


  4. For the AT, I can suggest my tent. The Rainbow by Tarptent dot com is freestanding. It fits inside all the shelters except the Hilton.
    You can dry your wet clothes by putting them on the wooden floor of the shelter beneath your tent. The ancient wood, ever protected from rain & snow is incredibly dry. It acts as a desiccant to wick away moisture as you sleep.


  5. Anna and Chris –

    I’m Grace, I met you both at the gathering at Rich’s house while you were in Cincinnati (I was on the Alaskan trail crew). I’ve been keeping up with your blog for a while without commenting, so I’d like to pop in now and say hello! As others seem to be, I too am very interested in the type of gear you two are wandering with. A number of my own gear selections have been made after reading about your experiences and explanations (shoes, smaller backpack, etc). I love that you are exploring the products of smaller manufacturers, and I plan to do the same (especially made in the USA)! A somewhat expensive venture, but absolutely worth it. Thank you for the time and dedication you put into this portion of the blog, it has been incredibly helpful.

    Looking forward to reading where your wanderlust takes you in the days to come!


    1. Hi Grace, thanks for dropping us a note! It was good to meet you. We’re glad you’ve found our equipment information helpful. There’s a lot of great gear out there that’s not heavily promoted, so most people don’t discover it. It’s fun to share our experiences with that kind of equipment. Best of luck with your own adventures!


  6. Good Luck on your A.T. thru hike. In 2012 I completed 680 miles from Amicalola Falls to Pearisburg, VA. Some thoughts (in no paticular order). Highly recommend the Hiker Hostel in Dahlonaga, GA. A great hostel run by husband and wife thru hikers (you will need to make reservations). The evening prior you’ll get in a food run and they will shuttle you to Amicalola or Springer trail heads the next morning after a big breakfast. I started with a Henry Tarp Tent but swithced in Franklin, NC to a Big Agnes Copper Spur 2- I definately prefer a side opening tent hiked solo. Lot’s of people had problems with single wall tents due to heavy winter/spring rains. Lots of people had success with hammocks. I used a ULA Catalyst and was extremely pleased with it. Very comfortable at 35 pounds (including five days of food and four liters of water). RE: cell phones verizon works well in the southern portion of the A.T. I used AT&T and had poor coverage outside of town until Virginia.

    I’m planning to thru the Colorado Trail this summer. Are you planning doing the Continental Divide Trail at some point in the future? After the PCT you will find the A.T. to be an amazingly social and heavily traveled (in a good way) trail.


    1. Thanks Millhouse for all the recommendations! It’s especially good to hear that Verizon is solid since that’s our current carrier. We’ll check out the Hiker Hostel as we’ll need a place to stay and a ride to the trailhead is a bonus.

      We are planning to thru hike the Te Araroa trail in New Zealand after the AT, so the CDT would be in the distant future if we decide to do it. We hear the wildlife is awesome. Have a great time on the Colorado trail!


  7. Hey there guys…
    Here are a few general items (non-AT specific) that I carry and don’t see mentioned often. I keep them in my first-aid/repair kit and usually find useful…

    1) credit card sized fresnel lens that is a combo map reading aid and straight edge. Also, in the spirit of multi-use, I often used it as a fire starter (on sunny days, conserves on matches or lighter butane). Takes only moments to get flames, especially at altitude. Mine is a 3x power and weighs in at 2.2 grams.

    2) X-ACTO blade. In past have used for emergency back country minor surgery like cactus needle removal, fish hook removal (yeah, I know). Very sharp. Weight = 1.3g (I used to carry a razor blade, but those don’t work as well)

    3) Small hot melt glue stick. All kinds of useful. Tent, pack, shoe, ground-cloth, thermarest repair. Waterproof and tough… Use with a lighter to drip glue like from candle. Comes in handy on almost every trip. For the truly tough mountain-main with a dental emergency it can even be molded into temporary replacement filling or crown. Weight = 4.0g

    4) Nylon cable zip ties. I carry a few, and have actually used them to repair broken backpack
    suspension once and to hold split tent pole splice in place where duct tape just won’t do. Weight = 0.7g each.

    I am a west coast hiker but did do Amicalola to Hot Springs (~300 miles) in 2007. Biggest differences over PCT. Much wetter and things don’t dry as fast if they happen to get wet. Could be just my imagination, but it seems the AT ups/downs were much steeper. Almost like the trail was made tough on purpose. In the Sierras the trails were made with pack animals in mind so the grade seems easier. (but the elevation has it’s own challenges.)

    Have a great time on the AT.


    1. That’s a great list of lightweight handy items for the backcountry, Chuck. I especially like the cable zip tie and exacto blade ideas. Thanks for sharing! We’re almost set with our AT gear, just waiting for a few more things to arrive in the mail before we finalize our choices and write up a blog post.


  8. I see that your using the Sea To Summit nets and have a suggestion for a far better head net/bug set up. Having experimented with many of the different offerings I have found that the Peters HeadNets are superior in every way. That combined with 3M UltaThon and a windshirt makes for a happy camper! I know you guys are pro’s but I think the above system would be an improvement to your insanely good set up. Good luck and have fun. Thx for the blog it’s great.
    No affiliation in any way just a happy user of product.


  9. Hi there, Your blog is such an inspiration as well as very helpful for me and my partner, who will be doing our first long hike the Hadrians Wall Path for a charity out here in “sunny” England, a teeny 84 miles compared to what ya’ll are doing! I digress….my question is and it’s so silly, what size water bottle did you use for your fuel? And on average how many days worth did you carry before resupply. (Forgive me, if this is in your blog, I haven’t had time to sit and properly read it through and through) We were just going to use a sriracha bottle at 455ml. Since maximum we will be out for only 6 days with a caldera set up. Thanks so much for your advice. Kelly


    1. Thank you Kelly! Our fuel bottle held about 500 mL of alcohol, which was enough for our longest stretch of 11 days between resupply points on the PCT. We cooked a double portion meal once a day and tended to use a little under 50 mL of fuel per day. Cooking styles vary so doing a test run at home is helpful. Also, if you desire tea or other hot beverages you may need a bit more fuel. Good luck with your Hadrians Wall hike!


  10. What’s missing from your list is EAR PLUGS. You might want them very badly when sleeping in the shelters. Have fun!

    You’re giving me case of Springer Fever. Just got the book, great job.



  11. Hey guys, I’ve been lurking about and checking on your progress. It’s awesome that you are able to share these incredible experiences with all of us. I see that you switched back to the UL2. I’ve been looking to purchase this tent and was curious if you guys are using a ground cloth or tarp? I didn’t see it in your gear list or comments and was just curious.


    1. Thanks, Grumpy. We love the UL2, especially in the cold rain, high wind, and snow we’ve been experiencing on the AT. Even though the fabric is lightweight, it’s strong and waterproof. On the PCT we got a few tiny holes in the tent floor which were easily patched. We haven’t needed a ground cloth.


  12. Great to meet you and talk at the Franklin, NC recreation park on Tuesday, March 26. Wish you well on your journey. Enjoyed reviewing your gear. I wish I was back on the trail again but I’ll keep up with your progress instead. Hope you realize how lucky you are to be out there. Incidently I purchased three solo tents before I settled on the Big Agnus. Still can’t figure out how they made the two person lighter than my one person. Mine is several years old so maybe lighter material. Stay safe, Zephyr from Franklin, NC ’12


    1. Hi Zephyr! It was good meeting you too. We’re pared down the weight of our Fly Creek UL2 by leaving extra lines, stakes, and stuff sacks at home. We’ve also swapped out the included aluminum stakes with thinner titanium ones. All those little weight savings definitely add up. Hope you have some good opportunities to enjoy the AT this season!


  13. Just catching up with your walk on the AT.

    Pesky knees. Good to read Shutterbug’s are healing and your back on the trail.
    Mine forced me off the PCT last year in southern Oregon after 1700 plus miles. Will be back to finish this year.

    Noticed you started the AT with a tarp. What kind? And what kind of ground cloth were you using with it?

    Happy trails.

    – Backtrack


    1. Hi Backtrack, the tarp was a Gossamer Gear SpinnTwinn and we used a Gossamer Gear Polycryo ground cloth. Both are light and work well. We switched to a tent because we wanted more privacy on the highly travelled AT.

      Thanks for the good wishes, and all the best to you on your completion of the PCT.


    1. We still prefer the sCharger-5 solar panel over a battery pack. However, the Appalachian Trail is almost completely forested. There wouldn’t be enough sunlight filtering through the trees for a solar panel to work reliably so we carried a battery pack. We plan to bring the Suntactics solar panel on any future hikes with a more consistent clear view of the sky.


  14. First off I want to say congrats on completing the PCT and sorry to hear about the illness during the AT. Hopefully a quick full recovery and you guys will get do complete it in the near future.
    I had a couple questions about your gear as I get ready to attempt the Te Araroa soon.

    Did you guys use the footprint for your tent or did you leave that behind?
    Why did you both pick the small size on the sleeping pad as that’s only 47 inches? Was it due to saving a few ounces and didn’t mind being to long for the sleeping pad?
    And lastly, For when I click on the link for the Ti-Tri, which pot size on there would I choose for the same one you used? I noticed there were a lot of options and I prefer to see in person to make my choices but cant do that online. :)

    Thank you very much and keep up the great work you both do!


    1. Thanks Aaron. We’ve never used a footprint for our Fly Creek UL2 and never found a need for one. The fabric on the bottom of the tent is plenty strong and waterproof for us. If you get a small rip you can easily patch it. Carrying a few patches is lighter and less bulky than carrying a footprint.

      We use the small NeoAir pad to support our torsos, place our packs under our feet, and put our puffy jackets under our heads. The combination is comfortable, and using gear for multiple purposes saves weight.

      Each Ti-Tri windscreen is sized to a specific pot. We use an Evernew 1.9L shallow pot with the Ti-Tri windscreen designed for that exact pot. This size is good for two people but too large for one person. Evernew pots have been hard to find recently so make sure the one you want is available before ordering the windscreen.

      Enjoy New Zealand!


  15. I have a question about the Fly Creek UL2. My husband and I are planning a PCT thru-hike starting April 2014. I want to be able to keep our gear inside the tent with us, but from the looks of the Fly Creek UL2, it seems too small. Are both of you able to fit inside the tent with your backpacks and have nothing touching the walls, or do you leave your packs outside? I noticed with the rain fly on there is a vestibule. Do you keep your packs there? If so, do they stay dry in inclimate weather?

    Thanks, and great blog!



    1. Shoes were kept in the vestibule. Food and other scented items were stored in our bear cans a good distance from the tent. Our packs and all the rest of our gear were kept inside the tent. Everything stayed dry in the tent during our entire PCT hike (with the occasional exception of a few condensation drips, but that’s pretty minor).

      We used short sleeping pads which extended roughly from our head to our knees. Our mostly empty packs went under our lower legs. Both the shorter sleeping pad and the smaller than average tent were significant weight savings. Hope that helps and good luck with your PCT prep!


  16. Hey guys! Your blog is rad. Thanks for sharing invaluable information.
    I have a question about the tent. Are the stakes that go with it that bad that you had to replace them? Should I do the same? I just ordered Fly Creek UL2, can’t wait it coming.

    Congrats on your engagement!

    –Tony HeliumLight


    1. Thanks Tony! The stakes that come with the Fly Creek UL2 are good and grip in all soil types well. We used the Vargo Titanium hooks instead because they are lighter. The only downside of the Vargo Titanium hooks is that they can more easily pull out in strong winds and in loose soil. A useful tip for difficult staking situations (granite slabs, crazy wind, etc.): wrap the rainfly cord around rocks rather than staking, or place a large stick or trekking pole through the cord loop on the rainfly, then place rocks on either side of the stick/pole. Enjoy your new tent!


  17. Hey guys! Thanks for all the information on this sight…Hey I’m just curious why you guys decided to go with the Gorilla pack over the Mariposa. I was looking at buying a Mariposa for thru-hiking but would the Gorilla pack the better choice?


    1. Hi Andrew! The Gorilla is smaller and a bit lighter than the Mariposa, but otherwise the two packs are quite similar. We chose the Gorilla because it is sized just right to carry all our gear. Your choice would depend mostly on the total volume of your equipment. A bear canister will fit in either pack.


  18. Hey Guys, this is a very nice blog with a lot of useful Information. I have one question though: what do you wear or do with your shoes when it rains? Since the shoes aren’t waterproof, I wonder what you guys do in such cases. Cheers!


    1. When we encounter a creek crossing without rocks or logs to hop across, or there is a big rain, our shoes do get wet. But since the shoes are mostly mesh, they dry out quickly (especially compared to waterproof boots, which still get soaked if the creek is ankle-high or higher). If your shoes are wet at night time, take out the arch supports and loosen the laces to help them dry a bit faster. The lightness of trail running shoes overcomes any annoyance caused by occasional wet feet. Plus, on hot days, mesh running shoes are more breathable. Sweat evaporates easily, so our feet stay dry.


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