The best ways to save weight are by:
- Cutting out the things you don’t need.
- Replacing the heaviest gear in your pack.
- Using one piece of gear for multiple purposes.
A great place to start can be by finding the current base weight of your fully packed backpack. The base weight of your pack is the total weight of everything you’re going to carry on your back, minus food, water, and fuel, which are variable items. Once you know your current base weight, you can set a goal for what you’d like your pack weight to be. A small digital scale will help greatly as you start to compare and contrast various gear choices. And no worries if you’re new to backpacking. You can just start out light from the beginning and save yourself the trouble of blisters and backaches.
Many backpackers bringing a lot of unnecessary items. A lightweight backpacking checklist will help you to focus on essential items.
Next, you should focus on lightening your heaviest gear: the big three.
- Your shelter, backpack, and sleeping bag will generally be the three heaviest items you carry in your pack. They present the best opportunity for weight savings, especially when you’re starting out. We challenge you switch out your traditional big three for a UL big three. You could possibly shed 15 pounds of weight.
- Remember, when buying lightweight gear you’ll often have to choose between adding a few ounces here and there to save a little money or increase in-camp comfort. Those choices will depend on your goals, but be careful. A few ounces here and there can add a lot of weight in the end.