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Backpack Gear List

Below is a list of items that we think you should consider bringing on your hikes. Please note that there is no absolute list. Every hike or backpack brings its own challenges, and may require different types of equipment. But we hope this list will help you think through what you think you may need to have a safe and enjoyable experience.

Make sure to bring your “Ten Essentials”.


The Ten Essentials

  1. Navigation (map and compass)
  2. Sun protection (sunglasses, sunscreen, hat)
  3. Insulation (clothing)
  4. Illumination (headlamp, flashlight)
  5. First aid kit
  6. Fire starter (matches, lighter)
  7. Repair kit (knife, tools)
  8. Nutrition (extra food)
  9. Hydration (extra water)
  10. Emergency shelter (raingear, poncho, space blanket)

How to Pack Your Backpack

Start with your sleeping bag in the bottom for a solid foundation. Put the heaviest items like your clothing, food, and cooking gear in the main compartment, keeping the weight close to your back, nearest your center of gravity. For men, this is higher, and for women it tends to be lower, towards the small of the back.

Download Backpack Tips Here - Including Backpack Gear List and Backpack Layout


Backpacker's Checklist

Pack & Sleeping:

  • Backpack
  • Tent & Stakes
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Sleeping Pad
  • Day Pack

Clothing:

  • Boots, well-sealed
  • Hiking socks, Liner socks
  • T-Shirt
  • Shorts
  • Warm Shirt
  • Long Pants
  • Extra underwear
  • Thermal Underwear
  • Warm Jacket/Fleece
  • Rain Gear
  • Gloves Fleece/Wool
  • Hat with brim
  • Warm Hat
  • Camp shoes and sandals (luxury)

Miscellaneous:

  • Medication
  • Bandana
  • Bowl and Plate
  • Insulated Cup
  • Spoon and Fork
  • Personal Toiletries
  • Camera and spare batteries
  • Lip Balm and Lotion
  • Lightwieght Towel
  • Extra Water Bottle or Hydration System
  • Stash Bags
  • Lightweight Camp Chair
  • Hiking Poles
  • Binoculars
  • Note Pad and Pencil
  • Reading Material

Group Equipment:

  • Stove
  • Wind Screen
  • Small Lantern
  • Fuel and Funnel
  • Matches/Lighter
  • Water Filter/Chemical
  • Insect Repellent
  • Toilet Paper and Towel
  • Trash Bag, Repair Kit
  • Large First Aid Kit
  • Water Storage Container
  • Bear Canisters
  • Biodegradable Dish Soap

Other Exciting Opportunities

Are you a part of our WBC 2017 class?

See our Outings Calendar for other outdoor adventure opportunities. 

Join the Sierra Club

Our bus trips are open to all Sierra Club and non-Sierra Club members, 18 years of age and older. We encourage you to join the Sierra Club and help keep our wild places for future generations.