10 Tips to Lose Pack Weight

With a new year on the horizon, many people have New Year’s resolutions on the brain. Losing weight is typically one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions. In 2015, losing weight was the number one resolution.  Some people, however, are more concerned with losing pack weight than losing body weight. For those who only want to lose weight in the backpack, here are 10 tips to help you lose pack weight, and improve your hiking experience.

Eliminate unnecessary items

It goes without saying that you should leave unnecessary items at home. This is the easiest, and most important thing that you can do to reduce the wait of your hiking pack. Think about whether something is necessary, a luxury, or frivolous. Keep all necessities, eliminate all frivolous items, and consider whether your luxuries are worth the added weight.

Modify your gear

Sometimes gear comes with a lot of excess materials that you don’t necessarily need, and that you may never actually use. Trim the fat and cut the fluff. Remove buckles, pull tabs, or extra material. Make your outdoor gear your own, and whittle down your pack weight in the process.

Look for multi-functional items

You can whittle down pack weight by carrying multi-functional backpacking gear. Things like trash bags, multitools, and paracord have lots of different uses, and are lightweight. Also think about other ways to use the items you bring. Eat directly from your cookwear rather than bring bowls or plates, and use a stuff sack full of clothes instead of a pillow.

Plan better

Doing your homework can help you prepare and pack more efficiently. Look at the weather forecast to determine exactly what types and how much clothing to pack. Consider the duration of your hiking or backpacking trip and the number of calories you’re going to consume so that you bring the exact amount of food that you need.

Rough it

Roughing it will make the pack weight will melt away like butter. Rather than try to be as comfortable as possible, embrace the fact that you’re going to rough it for a few days. Pack a smaller sleeping pad, leave the camp furniture at home, and bring fewer clothes.

Invest in a water filter

Instead of hauling 3 liters of water, bring a water filter and re-fill your water bottle as needed. Or better yet, bring water purification tablets or drops to reduce even more pack weight.

Look for lighter gear

It might be time for a few gear upgrades. Look for lightweight backpacking gear, and lightweight hiking gear. Materials like titanium and goose down will be the lightest options available, but they are also more expensive than other, heavier materials. Decide how important shaving pack weight is before making your purchase. For example, 2 pounds is a noticeable difference whereas a couple of ounces might not be worth the investment.

Get a lighter backpack

Material, construction, and size all factor into how much a pack weighs. If you eliminate the bells and whistles, and are willing to pay a bit more for lighter materials, you can save a good amount of weight by purchasing a lightweight backpack.

Leave extra packaging at home

You don’t necessarily need to bring a stuff sack for your tent or sleeping bag. Take all equipment out of any packaging that you don’t need to reduce the weight of your hiking pack.

Hike in warmer weather

Typically speaking, the colder the weather, the heavier your pack weighs. You simply need more things to be comfortable in colder weather than warmer weather. If you really want to reduce your pack weight, wait for warm weekends to roll around.

Stop by and see us for any of your hiking, backpacking, or camping needs! We’ve been providing Northwest Arkansas with outdoor gear for over 30 years!

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