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jillpine
distinguished member(714)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/17/2021 06:23PM  
So, now that many of you have shared your mistakes, what are your successes?

Reaching age 56 next summer and doing most of my tripping as a solo now, I would count the following: InReach, UL hammock system, UL canoe, comfortable PFD, carbon double-blade, Crocs, home-prepared dehydrated / delicious food, a Plano Prolatch stowaway for all tackle, and until this past summer, the Ursack. I like my Jetboil a lot too but recognize and am re-thinking its weight. Hmmmm....

You?

 
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Jackfish
Moderator
 
10/17/2021 07:22PM  
Two things come to mind immediately: Basketball nets for making canoe anchors with a rock… and the CCS tarps. One is smart creativity and the other is smart engineering. They’re both used on every trip.
 
10/17/2021 07:47PM  
My EE Quilt. My wife would say my InReach on my solo trips.
 
4keys
distinguished member(855)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/17/2021 08:49PM  
I'd have to say the CCC tarp I pushed my husband to buy, my hips appreciate the thicker exped, my knees appreciate the Helinox chair, and my husband appreciates the lighter canoe. My best success is bringing my husband along.
 
TipsyPaddler
distinguished member (308)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/17/2021 09:00PM  
Great items on the previous posts. My additions:

* Helinox Chair Zero
* Mountain Hardware Ghost Whisperer Down Jacket
* Prana Zion Convertible Trousers
* Gaia GPS App (on my iPhone)
 
tumblehome
distinguished member(2225)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/18/2021 07:14AM  
Pocket Rocket stove or the Chinese knock-off and butane container. No need for a fire for coffee or cooking when wet.

Merino wool base layers.

When I close my eyes and think of myself in camp, these two come to mind.
 
10/18/2021 08:35AM  
Best thing I ever did was switch over to bleach for water purification. 4 drops per quart out of my small dropper and 30 minutes later, boom.

Bucket with a gamma seal lid for food. I still hang it, but the bucket is great for keeping stuff organized, and it's always nice to have a spare table and seat wherever I may be during meal time.

GCI seatbacker was amazing on my solo trip. I am not ambitious enough to lean forward while paddling 90% of the time, so this made it really comfortable to sit back and watch the lakes slowly slide by while I got my leisure paddling on. Also made fishing a LOT more enjoyable.

 
MossBack
senior member (89)senior membersenior member
 
10/18/2021 08:57AM  
If paddling a tandems, we use bicycle seat bags on the thwarts. Small light, just enough space for the essentials. Zippers work one handed and they are nearly waterproof. They detach and stow in seconds when portaging.
 
EddyTurn
distinguished member (152)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/18/2021 11:19AM  
Piece of rope attached to both ends of the front thwart as an alternative to gunwale grip. Picaridin as a replacement for DEET. As of this year, Platypus QuickDraw MicroFilter System - makes a liter of clean water under 30sec. Alite low clearance chair (out of business unfortunately) - perfect for using ground as a table or desk for repairs. Astral TR1 Merge shoes for wetfooting. Vargo Dig Dig Tool - both light and sharp for cutting through grass roots. S2S Aeros Pillow. GSI Infinity Mug - sturdy enough to take your coffee on a portage. TOAKS pot and wood stove - feather light and serves the purpose. Cooking cozy. Speedy Stitcher for heavy duty jobs. Silky saw and 18" loppers for clearing trails.



 
10/18/2021 11:23AM  
Good thread, jillpine!

In the late '70s our single-portage loads were in the 70-80 pound range for a 10-day trip. On our Algonquin trip this summer our loads were in the 55 pound range. Moving from aluminum to fiberglass to Kevlar canoes made significant reductions, as did lighter tents, etc.

Our most recent "smart" equipment would include remote canister stove, carbon paddles, 1.1 oz silnylon tarp, and gravity filter. Next year's trip we'll have insulated Klymit V Lite sleeping pads to replace aging Thermarests.

TZ
 
10/18/2021 11:32AM  
tumblehome: "Pocket Rocket stove or the Chinese knock-off and butane container. No need for a fire for coffee or cooking when wet.


Merino wool base layers.


When I close my eyes and think of myself in camp, these two come to mind."


+1 - on merino wool base layers. So much more comfortable than synthetic and still functional if damp or wet. Much more pricey than synthetic but worth it.
 
10/18/2021 12:02PM  
1. Dragonfly stove. Not the lightest but one of the most usable burners with a very wide pot/p[an base.
2. 800+ fill sleeping bags. Long lifetime, excellent packing and weight, wide comfort range, but initial costly.
3. Chinook solo tent from Big Sky International. 2 to 3.5 pound depending on the configuration of the modular design, very weather proof and windproof. Was a stretch for me as BSI is hard to research so I took a leap of faith that has paid off much better that any tent/shelter I own.
4. The switch to using fly-fishing gear. Lighter weight less to pack and more fun to use!

butthead
 
4keys
distinguished member(855)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/18/2021 01:46PM  
Sawyer mini filter / gravity filter is a huge improvement over boiling, iodine, or using a pump. Over the years we've used those and always thought that there had to be a better way.
 
10/19/2021 10:27AM  
Thoughtful query.

My list, for soloing:
1) 24 lb canoe
2) ZRE paddle
3) Hammock/DCF tarp/EE quilt shelter/sleep system
4) Dog saddlebags/life vest combo (Semi-DIY)
5) DIY Dog tent
6) Chair Zero
 
10/19/2021 10:54AM  
Smart equipment will obviously vary from one person to another, and sometimes from one trip to the next. The biggies:

Gravity water filtration and personal water filtration bottle.
Jetboil canister stove integrated system along with switch to dehydrated "add water only" meals rehydrated in a cozy.

These are things you use every day, multiple times. Therefore, convenience and ease of use are important, and sometimes worth a couple of extra ounces.

Lighter and better sleeping bag, pad, and tent. Better stakes for tent.

CCS tarp and Ridgeline stuff sack, pre-strung makes setup easier solo.

Sea-to-Summit eVent compression sacks for sleeping bag and clothes.

Headlamp vs. flashlight/lantern.


 
10/19/2021 05:03PM  
Lots of good stuff above. I will add a battery operated bug whacker for each tent. Come at them from below for best results. Sleeping with that one mosquito which you could not kill is not my idea of fun. No mess on side of tent either. Keep it very dry as I have had them to fail if very damp or worse. One for each tent for obviously, as opening the tent to pass one around defeats the purpose. Kids seem to enjoy doing the deed.
 
LilyPond
distinguished member (358)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/19/2021 05:10PM  
I probably wouldn't be paddling or camping at all today if it weren't for the tremendous improvements in gear since I started 50 years ago. Better gear materials and designs allowed me to compensate for pretty severe premature arthritis in my shoulders and hips starting at age 50. Namely:

--Thermoformed plastic shaved 12 lbs off my kayak
--All-carbon paddle
--Helinox cot, chair, and table (all fit in my hatches)
--All-mesh tent to compensate for warmer nights
--Exped mattress (Synmat 3D-7)
--Down sleeping bag
--Simple, light lanterns
--Ceramic and titanium shoulder and hip joints and improved joint replacement methods

Those things are expensive and I'm far from wealthy, but the outdoor experiences are priceless. Thanks to the above improvements in technology, I'm relatively mobile, pain free, and comfortable paddling and camping. Without them my fate would have been far different---rocking chair or wheelchair. Very grateful to the creative minds that came up with this "smart gear."


 
Hammertime
senior member (51)senior membersenior member
 
10/19/2021 11:13PM  
Haven’t read all of the responses so I’m sure many of these have already been said. For me smart gear is gear that makes me more comfortable, eliminates a camp chore, or is lighter weight.

A few big hits in those area for me are:
- GCI Sitbacker chairs
- Helinox/flex lite chairs or similar knockoff.
- Platypus gravity water filter
- Mountain house freeze dried meals
- Nemo bug out screen tarp
- Hammock sleeping rig
- Basketball net anchor rig if you fish
- Bait king leech container if you fish
- Camp table (if you have the people to carry it, very smart. Small group probably not)
- Collapsible camp sink
 
10/20/2021 08:20AM  
For those of us who fish, portable fish locators.

LED headlamps

Digital cameras
 
10/20/2021 11:11AM  
Leatherman or other quality multi tool
Twig stoves
DIY lap table
All the lightweight, super-efficient light sources, LED headlamps and pen flashlights etc.
GPS-- not for navigating in the BW but to get passed the never ending road work between Deluth and Grand Maris
 
10/20/2021 11:37AM  
Gravity filter
 
PeaceFrog
distinguished member (175)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/20/2021 12:09PM  
Dry socks for camp. Always feels good after wet footing all day
 
DMan5501
member (15)member
 
10/20/2021 01:08PM  
Here's My 2021 List
Tentsile UNA With Kammok Ponga Pad!
Outdoor Vitals StormLoft Quilt
Pack-A-Pull bear bag hanging system
InReach Explorer +
Schwarze Biene Best Buddy Table
 
doorbluff84
member (22)member
 
10/20/2021 03:40PM  
Quick thoughts:

1. Kevlar solo canoe
2. Lightweight tarp
3. Gravity water filter
 
10/21/2021 05:30PM  
The Schwarze Bien Table looks like a winner … especially for a hammock camper. Expensive but ultralight and quite functional.



 
DMan5501
member (15)member
 
10/21/2021 09:17PM  
Wally13: "The Schwarze Bien Table looks like a winner … especially for a hammock camper. Expensive but ultralight and quite functional.

Yup.. Great folks to deal with to.. Here's a shot for last weekend.. Shown with the optional carrying case (baggy) that turns into a gear holder. Lots of other cool add ons available.. Not Shown... Shug has some great info on it in YouTube




"
 
10/21/2021 10:08PM  
DMan5501

Like your set up.
 
tumblehome
distinguished member(2225)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/22/2021 08:16AM  
Not so sure about hauling in a table.
That would go in the other thread if it showed up in my pack
 
LilyPond
distinguished member (358)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/22/2021 09:14PM  
tumblehome: "Not so sure about hauling in a table.
That would go in the other thread if it showed up in my pack "


Not even a Helinox Table One at 1 lb 8 oz? It can also be used as a foot rest.
 
OCDave
distinguished member(606)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/23/2021 10:30AM  
The single most transformative piece of equipment I ever added to my gear was my first down hammock underquilt .

I had been hammock camping with a Thermarest pad for a couple years before investing in the underquilt. The difference in comfort was profound. I have now been hammock camping for more than a decade. I camp more often and take longer trips partially attributable to my enjoyment of slumbering outdoors wrapped in my envelope of fuffy down.

 
StLouisPaddler
member (13)member
 
10/23/2021 11:14AM  
1. Darn Tough socks
2. Silky Big Boy saw
3. Pack-a-pull pulley for bear hang
4. BDBs
 
ockycamper
distinguished member(711)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/23/2021 04:11PM  
LilyPond: "tumblehome: "Not so sure about hauling in a table.
That would go in the other thread if it showed up in my pack "



Not even a Helinox Table One at 1 lb 8 oz? It can also be used as a foot rest."



I have been taking the Helinox Table for many years. Very light, easy to fold up and way more table surface then Shug's table.
 
ockycamper
distinguished member(711)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/23/2021 04:13PM  
StLouisPaddler: "1. Darn Tough socks
2. Silky Big Boy saw
3. Pack-a-pull pulley for bear hang
4. BDBs "


You can never have enough bungee Dealee Bob's. I bring a zip lock bag full every trip.
 
10/23/2021 05:25PM  
Can u put a cooking stove on a fabric Helinox Table surface ?
 
ockycamper
distinguished member(711)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/23/2021 05:49PM  
Stove, yes. But nothing hot. Simple fix is put a hot pad or ultra thin cutting board down first. The table is VERY stable. Also has two cup holders that work well for utensils as well.
 
RunningFox
distinguished member (144)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/23/2021 06:12PM  
1) REI Camp Boss Chair - significantly more comfortable than Helinox Chair One
2) Seattle Sports Portable Sink (bucket) - better than Sea to Summet because the sides stand up so water doesn’t run out
3) ccs tarp
4) Nemo Fillo
5). Boreal 21 inch folding saw
6) Trekology table (medium from Amazon $37.99)

 
mjmkjun
distinguished member(2960)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/24/2021 08:29AM  
Sunset chair
Hammock system setup-it's only marginally lighter than the tent setup but my back and joints give it a big thumbs-up!)
Sangean DT-400W pocket weather bands/radio
what's missing: a dog of medium size and demeanor for solo companionship.
 
bottomtothetap
distinguished member(893)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/24/2021 06:32PM  
Many of my fav's have already been mentioned but one I don't see on these lists is a Pocket Bellows for the fire. Very compact and lightweight and VERY effective for helping with stubborn fires. My frequent trip partner Craig, whom I respect for his fire building and tending skills, liked it so well he bought one for himself and another as a gift for his son-in-law.

Also like my Kings Camp low cot. Perhaps not as top-shelf quality as a better known brand but still quite good enough: sturdy as I need it to be, packs down to a size less than a loaf of bread, under 5 pounds total weight and is fairly easy to set up. at about one-fifth of the price I've seen for some similar cots this was still WAY worth it to get up off the ground by just a couple of inches.

This year I brought an upgrade from my Sven Saw--a Boreal 21 and it performed quite nicely as well!
 
HappyHuskies
distinguished member (408)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/25/2021 07:09AM  
Fun thread. Like others have mentioned I really value lightweight merino wool base layers. Comfortable when damp and don't get quite as smelly as synthetics.

Also really like Prana Brions. I like Zions ok too, but don't really need the extra pocket.

The Trail Designs Fissure Ti-Tri stove goes with me on every 3-season solo trip when there isn't a fire ban. Love the that stove. Stows small, good efficiency and very light.
 
Jackfish
Moderator
 
10/25/2021 08:27AM  
Jackfish: "Two things come to mind immediately: Basketball nets for making canoe anchors with a rock… and the CCS tarps. One is smart creativity and the other is smart engineering. They’re both used on every trip. "
I don't know how I forgot Bungee Dealee Bobs and my Helinox chair. Man, those two have been huge additions to our canoe trips.
 
ockycamper
distinguished member(711)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/25/2021 08:37AM  
RunningFox: "1) REI Camp Boss Chair - significantly more comfortable than Helinox Chair One
2) Seattle Sports Portable Sink (bucket) - better than Sea to Summet because the sides stand up so water doesn’t run out
3) ccs tarp
4) Nemo Fillo
5). Boreal 21 inch folding saw
6) Trekology table (medium from Amazon $37.99)

"


I like the idea of the Trekology table, but it is 2-3 lbs depending on size. The Helinox is 1 lb. and the same size as the medium Trekology which weighs 2 1/2 lbs.
 
Lawnchair107
distinguished member (126)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/25/2021 03:36PM  
Kelly hobo twig stove & billy bellow.
 
giddyup
distinguished member(687)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
10/27/2021 03:14PM  
Luci lights
 
Grandma L
distinguished member(5539)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
 
10/27/2021 04:32PM  
The best equipment, I take on any trip, is my paddle partners. My age and structural defects and thus inabilities make me a dependent traveler. The "kids" who "Sherpa" for me are the only reason I still get to go! they are the best "equipment" on my trips.
 
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