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Whether your packing for day hikes or deep exploration in the backcountry, packing our suggested essential items is always a good idea.  True, during a routine trip you may only use a few of them.  Yet, you'll probably never fully appreciate the value of our suggested essential items until you really need them. 

Our suggested essential items were drawn straight from our experience in the backcountry.  No matter how long the duration of your trip may be, the following list is essential to bring with you.

Simple List of Essential Items

  1. Extra water (hydration is key)
  2. Nutrition (extra food)
  3. Bear spray 
  4. Insulation (warm clothing)
  5. Thermo blanket
  6. Fire (water proof matches, lighter, flint)
  7. Illumination (headlamps, flash-lights)
  8. First-aid kit
  9. Knife
  10. Map & compass

For over night stays, shelter and water purification tools are critical.

I completely understand the concept of "light and fast", however; a tarp, bungee cords, fly rod and beer almost always find themselves added to my essential list of supplies.  

The tarp and bungee cords have saved my ass on more than one trip.  In fact, i can think of a few times i was just making it to my destination when the down poor began.  Finding myself and gear sitting under the tarp watching the mountain monsoon sweep across the valley made the extra weight well worth it!