Wild camping kit
Dessie1, where wild camping is concerned, it depends a lot on the nature of the trip we are making. In Oman we took all our kit in a 90 litre North Face Bag. This included our 2 person Vaude tent (nearly 4 kilos with a ground sheet), WalkStool (800g each), 700g Salewa down sleeping bags, Thermarest Pro Lite sleeping mats (700g) and pillows, MSR multi fuel stove, aluminium kettle from Tescos (for 7 euro this is one of the best bits of kit we have bought!!), MSR pan, lightweight plastic crockery, knife, titanium mugs, sporks etc. and a small lamp. As we were never far from our vehicle, the rationale behind what we took was dictated purely by the weight and volume of the luggage on our flight.
When we trekked up Jebel Shams we took just our groundsheet, sleeping bags and mats, pillows, a Rab generator vest (that stuffs down small), head torches, stove, kettle, 3 packets of freeze dried food and personal items/first aid kit. Water was the heaviest thing to carry (there is no supply en route). We consumed 8 litres over 1.5 days. Our kit and provisions were very comfortably carried between us in an Osprey Aether (70 litre pack) and an Osprey Aura (35 litre daypack), about 18 kilos in all.
This weekend we took a gas stove, kettle, MSR pan, titanium mugs, plates, tent (including the groundsheet), heavier sleeping bags (Rab Andes and a Rab Alpine), sleeping mats/pillows, provisions (including a disposable BBQ), a sterilising pen and a plastic bottle to purify water. I used an Osprey Ariel 65 litre pack, Martin had his Aether. We carried about 21 kilos between us comfortably over 18km. Climbing Ballinafunshoge and Sleamaine on the way, we averaged around 4.5 kms per hour.
We also have Rab bivvy bags (c800g) which we can substitute for the tent, making everything considerably lighter, and come summer we will use lighter weight sleeping bags. We could immediately reduce the overall weight we carry by at least 5 kilos. It pretty much depends on what you are prepared to carry and there is a bewildering amount of lightweight kit on the market at varying prices, most reviewed by the likes of Trail magazine. Every so often we have bagged a bargain at TK Maxx and the Rab factory shop at Somercotes near Nottingham.
Basically, a good sleeping bag and mat, small pillow, lightweight gas stove, titanium pan and cup, spork and a bivvy bag/lightweight tent would make my list. Our kit has already paid for itself over and over in saved hotel/hostel bills. Tips for packing - place most things inside drysacks and distribute the weight evenly. Sleeping bag in the bottom section, frequently needed things close to the top or in one of the pockets.
I will always opt for camping if possible, as it's much more fun and once youíve done it, itís hard to resist the call of the wild!!