I weighed my bag when I checked in to HNL the morning of July 1, 2015. 32 lbs! That's without my camera and lenses! Thankfully no one weight checked my bag at the terminal. Add to that 3L of water (6.6 lbs) and I was easily hiking with around 40 pounds in my pack!
Of course that I carried too much. What would I have done differently?
- 90"x90" fleece. I could have done with something smaller and lighter. The Cabins got hot at night with 12 people and the woodfire stove going. Some nights I did not need a blanket at all (though I wouldn't recommend going without a blanket).
- Baby sized bed sheet. Didn't need it.
- I didn't brush my teeth (gross!). Toothbrush, toothpaste, soft-picks - all could've been left at home
- Q-tips. Didn't use.
- Gold Bond powder. Didn't use.
- Deodorant. Didn't use (gross!).
- Headlamp. Broke the first night! Though it would've been useful.
- Sweater/jacket. Didn't need both. I ended using the sweater and never using the jacket. If it rained...would've been the other way around.
- Sweat pants. I could've gone with something lighter/thinner. Thermal bottoms or windbreakers.
- Gloves. Didn't need them.
- Shorts. Brought two pairs, but really only needed one pair. Though I really liked the lightweight swim trunks I used.
- External battery (USB). Didn't use. Only used cell phone for occasionally taking videos and for reading. Battery was at 70% after four days in zero cell service area (airplane mode).
- Camp soap (liquid). Didn't use. Each camp had an excess of similar camp soap.
- Snickers Almond. Brought too much. Planned on eating 3 a day. Ate about 6 of the 12 I brought. Made for good sharing.
- Salami. Brought too much. Only ate about 3-4 oz of the 12 that I brought. It was delicious, but too cumbersome to deal with.
- Cheese. Brought too much. Only ate about 1/2 of the 14 oz that I brought. It was delicious and transformed eggs and other meals. Made for good sharing.
- Mountain House Dehydrated meals. Only ate three of the five meals that I packed in. Only one of the three were appealing to me (Chicken Chili). I just do not appreciate a soup of bland flavor/weird textures in a bag. Instant mashed potatoes, salami and cheese were more than enough.
- Hot cocoa. Brought too much. Only had two servings of the five that I packed in. The hot cocoa I did consume was delicious (Land O Lakes).
What worked well:
- Sawyer Mini. Water was cold and filtered clean! The filtered better than the bottled water I packed in the first day. Filtering water was (relatively) fast and easy. No boiling and waiting to cool. No funky tasting sanitizing drops/tablets. The Platypus 2L bladder tended to leak when connected directly to the Sawyer mini filter (not a problem with the included 16 oz Sawyer bladder). Next time I will invest in a conversion kit to attach the 2L platypus bladder to the Sawyer mini (and possibly run as a gravitation filter). It was much more efficient to filter the 2L bladder as opposed to the 16 oz sawyer bladder. Otherwise, great setup! Back flushed every morning to keep the filters clear and flowing.
- Walmart Grease Pot. One of the other workhorses of the trip. Used for everything from mixing pancake batter, bathing/showering, mixing Idahoan Mashed Potatoes, making hot chocolate. Great lightweight, little pot. Handle did run hot when boiling water/cooking.
- Gatorade Powder (Frost Glacier Freeze flavor). I brought enough to make 1 liter of Gatorade a day for 3 days (purchased a Powerade for the first day hiking and used the bottle to make gatorade each day for the rest of the hike). Powder was relatively light and made for a refreshing beverage on the trail.
- Russell Athletics 100% Polyester t-shirts. Wicking, dri fast. Worked great.
- Equate Sport Sunscreen. Four days hiking (and sweating) in the grueling high altitude sun. No sunburn!
- Wet Wipes Big Ones. 1-2 a day for a quick and refreshing cleanse.
- Costco Booney Hat. Wide brimmed. Kept the sun out of my face/eyes.
- Canon EOS-M mirrorless camera system. I contemplated taking my 6D/24-104 f/4L camera system on this hike. That combination would have topped the scales at over 4 lbs! I didn't not have the luxury of adding that kind of weight to my pack. Instead I took my EOS-M, EF-M 22mm f/2, and EF-M 18-55mm combo. The EOS-M and two lenses came out to just over 1 lbs, 5 oz. I ended up taking the camera, both lenses, batteries, cases, table top tripod, and wireless trigger which, altogether, weighed in at 2 lbs, 12 oz! For landscape photos, the EOS-M performs marvelously!
What would I like to do "next time"?
- I'd like to spend more time at Holua and Paliku cabins. I would love to spend a couple days at Paliku and explore the surrounding area. I would love to spend a couple days with Holua as a basecamp and check out the lava tubes and explore the Ko`olau gap and venture the Waikau area.
- Kaupo Gap. I have yet to exit Haleakalā via the Kaupo Gap. Next time.