How I pack for mega-minimal travel
This is a Part 2 to last week’s post about how I plan my hikes and travel adventures. It’s not definitive. A guide only. And, if I’m to be honest, I’m not mad on writing these things out, but if it gets everyone out into nature…hey, I succumb. Oh, and also, my computer has died, so much of this post is being done on my phone. Eek!
But direst… In this week’s episode of Wild I hand things over to you guys. You asked me questions and my friend Melissa Hemsley read them out for me while we sat in her spare bedroom on the outskirts of London. It covers a bunch of things asked in the comments section. I touch on some stuff around why I feel I need to move from Australia, which some listeners have had a strong reaction to…
But to packing for hiking…
For a day hike
For half-day hikes, I take nothing but my phone, my credit card (I don’t use ApplePay) and some toilet paper (for ablutions) all of which goes down my sports bra. I apply invisible zinc to my face before I leave. I eat a big breakfast (often on the train), drink plenty of water before I leave (2 litres) and then I’ll often put my mouth under a garden tap near the start of the walk. And eat up big at the end or once home. Make sense?
I wear a big cotton shirt, cap, shorts and sports bra (into which I slide my credit card, phone etc). In hot weather I will wet the shirt in a river or under a tap to cool down. When the sun is overhead, I will wear it over my cap and shoulders for better protection (this tent-like set-up will shade most of my body when the sun is above). When it’s cooler, I wear a thermal layer or two under my shirt and remove as I warm up and tie around my waist or neck. I have no need for lashings of sunscreen on my body when I work it this way. I try to avoid sunscreen in nature, especially around water.
For a full-day hike (anything over three hours), I use the backpack detailed below or my trail-running vest (a recent investment) and carry 1-2 litres of water (I will always research running water/tap options along the route to determine the smallest amount I have to carry), the other items above and some dark chocolate, fruit and nuts.
My hiking shoes
I have worn Salomon shoes for years. I’ve approached them to sponsor me (kick in some kicks or partner on my Wild podcast), because Lord knows I’ve sent a lot of business their way over the years. But I’ve had no such love. I wear shoes not boots, because I find boots require all pivoting to occur in the knees, not ankles (my ankles have more axis than my knees). I wear the toggle-lace style because they really are unbreakable and make adjusting the tightness super easy as your feet swell mid-hike.
For multi-month travel
I researched the lightest and simplest multi-day pack (light enough to be a day-pack, too) on the market. The reviews spat out the