All the hours I spent the past few months watching videos, reading blogs, and not packing my gear…it all adds up the week before you leave!  We finished assembling our backpacks and food drops tonight at 8 PM…roughly 8 hours before we depart from Santa Barbara for Georgia.  The days, weeks, and months we had to get everything ready all meet here, with one 39 pound backpack and two 10 pound USPS resupply boxes.  That should get us through the first week or so…

Below is a rough list of the gear in my pack.  I plan on starting with roughly 24 lbs dry weight, 11 lbs of food, and 4 lbs of water…for a total weight of 39 lbs.  Doesn’t sound like much, but try that on for an afternoon in a backpack, it makes a big difference.

GEAR

Backpack:  REI Flash 65
Pack Cover: Sea to Summit Large
Headlamp:  Petzel Tikka XP
Sleeping Bag:  Marmot Sawtooth 15 Degree Down in Dry Compression Sack
Sleep Pad:  Exped SynMat UL7
Shoes:  Merrell Chameleon 4 GoreTex with SuperFeet insoles
Hiking Clothes:  Smartwool socks (2), Ininji toe socks (2), Under Armour compression tights, REI zip ff pants, running t-shirt, REI Sahara button up shirt, The North Face fleece, The North Face rain jacket
Camp Clothes:  Smartwool sleep socks, tights, Brooks running shorts, running t-shirt, REI thermal long sleeve shirt, MontBell Thermawrap
Camp Shoes:  Crocs
Cold Weather:  OR Gloves, The North Face Fleece Hat
Running Hat and (2) bandanas
Tent:  Big Agnes Fly Creek UL 1
Stove:  MSR Pocket Rocket
Fuel:  Snow Peak
Pot Set: Snow Peak Solo Set (2 pots), with REI Spork, REI camp towel, and a Fosters Beer Koozie…you never know…
Electronics:  Panasonic Lumix waterproof camera, phone (Blackberry Torch)
Water:  Katadyn Hiker Pro Pump Filter
Water Bottles:  Camelbak 2 L, (2) Gatorade bottles
50 feet of paracord / paracord bracelet made personally by my friend Doug
Toiletries/First Aid:  Toothbrush (cut in half), toothpaste, floss, deodorant, gold bond powder, Aquaphore, Neosporin, sun block, nail clippers, hand soap, chapstick, ear plugs, Ibuprofin (vitamin “I”), moleskin, Band-Aids, emergency blanket, Kleenex, body wipes, and 2 rolls of TP (I know it’s only 3 days, but you never know…), and probably more stuff than I need!
Maps:  Maps to Virginia with the guide book
Reading:  Notes, the U.S. Constitution, the AT Companion, and my favorite quotes
Writing:  Notebook for my thoughts, Tiffany & Co. daily calendar (thanks Amy!)

FOOD

Breakfast: Pop Tarts, Nature Valley Protein Bar, (2) Oatmeal Packs, Flax Seed Powder, Coffee (I’m going to try to drop this habit, but we’ll see how that goes…)
Snack:  1,000 Calories
Lunch:  Tortillas, 5 oz of salami, (2) string cheese
Snack:  1,000 Calories
Dinner Option 1:  Pack of tuna and oil, dried snap peas, 1 cup mashed potatoes, Snickers, cup of mocha
Dinner Option 2:  Beef jerky, Ramen Noodles, Snickers, 4 crackers, cup of mocha
Dinner Option 3:  Crackers, snap peas, tuna, Snickers, mocha
Dinner when we are in town: Any ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFET we can find!!!

   Snack Options:  Trail mix, fruit mix, pine nuts, honey roasted nuts, peanut M&M’s…All 1,000 calories

Special thanks to Amy, she planned ALL of the food menus for Ryan and I…we could not have done it without her, and we can’t make it without her!  She will be shipping food to us along the way, so if there is anything you want to send our way…a note, a post card, fresh baked cookies, cold hard cash…just let her know, she’ll tell you where to send it! 😉
That pretty much covers it.  We finished everything late this evening…we leave tomorrow at 4 AM to head to the airport.  From LAX we land in Atlanta tomorrow afternoon, pick up a few supplies, and head up to the trail head.  Amy’s family is planning to meet us there tomorrow night, hang out with us, see us at breakfast on Thursday, and send us off on the trail Thursday morning…only a few months until we are done!

The only thing that comes to mind now is a quote from Hunter S. Thompson…

“Buy the ticket, take the ride.”
Here we go…

2 Comments

  1. Safe travels! We’ll be following you along your journey.

  2. go, beard, go!

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