10 Tips For Lightening Your Pack

We asked Facebook for tips on cutting weight out of a backpack. Nearly 80 hikers chimed in with some really great advice for all experience levels. Considering that 10 percent of the tips involved sneaking supplies into a partner’s pack, we’d also like to remind everyone to stay vigilant during uphill water breaks. And now for the Verticulture Top 10!

10. Remove all tags and zipper pulls. You could save an ounce or two for free. —Kevin S. and Chad C.

9.  Upgrade your puffy to the Men’s or Women’s Down Filament Jacket (only 7.3 oz) —Outdoor Research

8.  If in doubt, leave it out. —Ash S.

7. Separate a section of toilet paper from the main roll and/or remove the cardboard tube. Don’t bring the whole roll just because it’s handy. —Chris P.

6. Upgrade your hard shell to the Men’s or Women’s OR Helium II Jacket (only 6.4 oz) —Outdoor Research

5.  Replace Nalgenes with disposable bottles, like SmartWater. (Saves 4-5 oz per bottle.) —Chris P.

4. Sort your gear and label everything as a need, a want, or a luxury. You can potentially cut the latter two. —Charlie P.

3. Take all food out of its original packaging. Repackage in Zip-Locks. Write cooking instructions on Zip-Locks. Reuse them as trash bags. —Sue G

2. Trail running shoes instead of boots, whenever appropriate. One pound of boot weight is roughly equal to five pounds in your pack. —Arjun A.

1. Invest in a lightweight pack, shelter, bag, and pad. These are the four heaviest items you will carry with the most weight saving potential. —Brendan W.

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