What’s in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Checklist

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

What’s in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Checklist

It’s that time of year again! With the weather getting warmer and sunnier, Ben and I are ready to pull our camping gear out of the closet and hit the trail for some backpacking.

After years of trial and error, I finally made a backpacking gear list that I can use each summer.

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

 

Checklist Covers:

  • Gear for one night for two people (optional dog gear at the end)
  • Backpacking gear, where we park at a trailhead and hike 3+ miles to camp.  This isn’t my list for car camping, which is much easier to pack for!
  • Assumes both people start the hike in good sturdy hiking boots and durable hiking clothes

We generally camp in the Pacific Northwest, but our gear list was very similar when we camped in the Southeast.

The Ultimate Backpacking gear Checklist

Basics

Tent
Sleeping Bag
Sleeping Pads (lifesaver!)
Pillow
First aid kit
Bear cannister – for food and other smelly items like bugspray and sunscreen
Bug spray
Sunscreen
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Chapstick
Small shovel – I always pack this just in case I need to dig a bathroom hole…but I’ve never had to use it
Headlamp or flashlight
Ziplock to pack out trash
Extra plastic bag
Small pack of tissues (I’ve been surprised how often I use those)
Ziplock with toilet paper!
Advil

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

Food and Drink

We don’t get too fancy with our food but if you want to there are tons of great ideas online for gourmet backpacking food.
Dinner meals (Mountain House brand is our go-to)
Granola bars
Breakfast meal to share or extra granola bars for breakfast
Tuna sandwiches (for the hike in)
Starbucks via
Snicker bar (optional)
S’mores ingredients (optional)
Cocoa or other drinks for camp (optional)
Water pump purifier
Two cups
Camping pot
Camp stove
Fuel
Foldable sporks
Matches and a lighter
Fire Starter – see below

EXPLORE MORE  The Grand Canyon

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog
Fire starter info: a toilet paper roll with dryer lint inside makes a great fire-starter. We don’t always make a fire, as not all campsites allow it or sometimes we can’t find enough dry wood, but I usually keep one in my pack.

Clothing

Hat
“Buff” – a scarf/hat aka “multifunctional headwear” – Ben and I both have one and it comes in handy for hiking and camping. Mine is similar to this.
Extra wool socks
Yoga pants for sleeping
Jacket
Extra shirt
Sunglasses
Cold-weather clothes if needed
Camp shoes (optional – crocks or flip flops work great and you can clip them to your bag with a carabiner)

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

Extras

Phone
Kindle or book
Camera gear
I bring my glasses and a contact case pre-filled with solution

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

Dog Gear

Our dog Kai is 24 pounds. We always keep in on his leash and harness unless he’s secure in the tent.
Dog food (in a ziplock)
Collapsible dog water bowl
Blanket for Kai at night

What isn’t on my list that you bring along on backpacking trips?

Happy camping!

What's in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Gear Checklist | Road Trips and Skymiles Blog

4 thoughts on “What’s in my Camping Pack: the Ultimate Backpacking Checklist

  1. Marcie says:

    What a great list! I like that it isn’t overwhelming and focuses on the essentials. Hope you’re enjoying our gorgeous PNW weather this summer!

  2. Gabby says:

    Great list! My first time backpacking there was a burn ban, and upcoming trip #2 is in a no-fire area, so I get to save on that weight. Instead of a book, I usually bring a deck of cards!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.