Backpacking Gear Ideas

Backpacking season is just around the corner, so I thought I’d put together a list of some of my favorite gear for my backpacking trips.  I have some of the “big stuff” as I call it and “the gadgets”.  The big stuff are some great ideas of what you should have if you are to go out for an overnighter.  The gadgets are some of my ideas for extras on the trail that you may end up loving and taking on the next trips to come.  Some of these items are also good for hiking, camping and travel trips; they are not just for backpacking.

I recently updated my gear list that’s in my garage.  Check out “What’s in My Backpack?”

***Notice: Affiliate links below.  Click on links to buy items.

The Big Stuff

Osprey Aura Ag 65 Women’s Backpacking Pack

I’ve had this backpack for over 7 years.  I love the compartments and it is very comfortable to wear.  Plus it’s my favorite color.  The top can be taken off to be worn as a fanny pack, which is perfect when we leave camp to go fishing or on a day hike.

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Garmin Inreach Explorer+ Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation

I have the Garmin 64st still, but we bought this one a couple of years ago as the 64st does not have communication capabilities.  The Inreach has a few extra things that I like about it.  We can communicate through text – if you download the app before you go out then it is easy to text.  We can also check the weather on it, which is nice to be ready when you are out there.

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Garmin Fenix 5X Plus Watch

I recently just bought this watch, yet to use it on a hiking/backpacking trip.  But I have used it daily for workouts at the gym, bike rides and runs.  I’m quite excited to try this out on our next hike or backpacking trip, whichever one comes first.


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Big Agnes – Copper Spur HV UL2 mtnGLO Tent

We bought this tent last year for summer backpacking trips; ended up using it over Labor Day.  It is so lightweight we don’t have to split up the tent, one person can take it.  Another thing I like about it is that we can fit our packs in the tent too and sitting up is much easier that some other tents.  If it’s rainy, probably won’t hold up and if it’s windy it is quite loud.  A very good tent for summer.

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Therm-a-Rest Z Lite Sol Ultralight Foam Backpacking Mattress

Best buy ever, you can use it for sleeping and for hanging out too.  When we take breaks on the trail, instead of sitting on the ground, we pull this out and sit on it.  I recommend it for anyone who wants to go light on the trail.

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Sea to Summit Aeros Pillow

This pillow is perfect for backpacking.  I usually wrap my down jacket around it when I sleep.  I recommend not blowing it up all the way as it will be too hard and not so comfortable.

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The North Face Cat’s Meow Sleeping Bag

Another gear item that I have had for years.  I love the fact that the zipper glows in the dark.

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ENO – Eagles Nest Outfitters DoubleNest Hammock & ENO – Eagles Nest Outfitters SlapStrap, Hammock Suspension System

Not so lightweight, but I take it on every one of my backpacking trips.  It’s nice to wake up in the morning and jump into the hammock with my sleeping bag.  I also use it at home and the beach sometimes.  I recommend this for anyone.

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LifeStraw Mission Water Purification System, High-Volume Gravity-Fed Purifier

This water purifier was a great buy as well.  Before when pumping water, you would have to go down to the lake or stream and pump, took about 20 minutes sometimes.  Now, with this guy, we fill up the back, hang it up and it does it on its own.  You can do other things while your water is purified.

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Osprey Hydraulics LT Reservoir

Osprey has some great reservoirs, I would go with 2.5-3L which is about what you should drink on about a 5-8 mile hike in with your backpack.

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Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

This headlamp has a ton of settings that you will like when you are out on the trail.  I particularly like it because it’s very comfortable.

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ENO – Eagles Nest Outfitters ProFly Rain Tarp

This rain fly can be used over the hammock or your tent.  It can also be used for a shelter from the wind or a sunshade.  Always nice to have an extra area where you can hang out to make your lunch or dinner.

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REI Co-op Flash Carbon Trekking Poles – Pair – Women’s

These hiking poles are lightweight and very strong.  I have had mine for over 5 years and used them for hundreds of miles.  I do recommend taking a multi-tool with you to tighten if needed, this won’t really occur until you have used the poles for a while.  I never used to use poles, but it definitely helps my knees on the downhill and pace on the uphill.

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Jetboil Zip Camping Stove Cooking System

This is by far the best camping stove I’ve ever used.  It take less than 3 minutes depending on altitude to boil water and enough space to cook a soup.

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The Gadgets

GSI Outdoors Spice Missile

If you are a cook out there, I recommend this Spice Missile.  I use it every trip and I put salt, pepper, garlic powder and paprika powder in it.  Those are the 4 perfect ingredients to make any backcountry food taste better.  If you like your spices, buy this!

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Goal Zero Switch 8 Solar Recharging Kit

I recommend that if you have a camera or phone out there, take a solar charger.  I’ve used this one for a long time and if I charge up the stick, I can charge two things at once.  Ideally you would charge your electronics while stationary and not while hiking as you will be in and out of shade all the time.

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Snow Peak Titanium Double Wall Cup

A cup is nice to have out there for your morning coffee.  I use this cup even for soups that I make in the jetboil.  It’s great because it has handles and it is lightweight, doesn’t add much weight to your pack.

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Snow Peak Titanium Spork 

I think this was my first Snow Peak buy.  Having this titanium spork is perfect for almost anything you will eat on the trail and it is so lightweight.

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GoPro HERO7 Silver

GoPros are awesome.  Just get one already for your adventures if you don’t already have one.

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Sea to Summit Pocket Shower

Honestly I’d rather just jump into the water, but if you were to use soap you should not do it in the water.  It should be done at least 100 feet away from any water source.  So what better way to get your shower in with this item.

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MPOWERD Luci Inflatable Solar Light

I recommend this colorful solar light because you can change to the color of your choice.  No but really, it’s an inflatable light and it’s solar.  Charge during the day and use at night.  In the tent I usually pick the blue or turquoise color as it’s not as bright.

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Sea to Summit Pocket Towel

I recommend a good lightweight towel if you are going out backpacking.  Even if you’re just doing a day hike to a lake this is a perfect towel to use after you take a dip.

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Mountain House Chicken Breast & Mashed Potatoes

And last but not least, my favorite mountain house meal.  I’m not sure why it’s not sold at REI, so I stalk up from Amazon before our trips.  I like to add my spices to this pack while it’s sitting in boiling water.  Super super yummy!

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2 thoughts on “Backpacking Gear Ideas

  1. Good advice and choices – not sure some of them would be suitable in our consistently awful weather here though. I particularly liked that your rucsac unzips to give you a bumbag as well (we can’t say the other word – it means something very rude here! LOL).

    Found a great sleeping bag on the hill the other day but had too far to walk and no way of carrying it. It’s been there a while but is still in great condition and far lighter than mine. Next time I’m parked near there, I might rescue it and have it cleaned.

  2. Haha, yea. Some of these are more for our weather out here in California. Oh that’s cool about the sleeping bag, rescue it 😉

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