Ok so two days to go before I leave for NZ and here are my final pack weight (not including fuel, food and water) comes to 6.95 kilograms. Here is the final makeup of my gear:
I hope a base weight of 6.95 kilograms is enough to make the journey a swift and relatively easy one. That said I am not the kind of hiker that takes risks. I have actually never met a hiker who is all about low-weight. Maybe that will be a goal of the Te Araroa (TA)!
How do you get to a sub-7kg base weight?
1. My starting point was the amazing, gram-counting marvel of Walking with Wired's list. She is my thru-hiking hero.
2. Don't forego the items that keep you going. For me it was a decent pillow weighing in at nearly 400g; medication; paper maps (nearly 250g); ear plugs; a lithium battery (350g) and a 800+ loft down jacket (300g).
3. Be sensible at gram for dollar counting. For example, while my Nalgene bottle weighs at 110g, I am double-using it as a hot water container, including a hot water bottle, when it is really cold at night or I am easing menstrual cramps. I am also not going to spend many more dollars yet to shave off grams yet when the current equipment (e.g. stove, water filter, clothing) is just fine for the time being thank you very much.
Anyway, keep in mind I still need to account for food, fuel and water!
It is a little nerve racking when you think how many steps are needed for over 1700km of hiking.
Urgh! Here is a little pocket of lichen beauty snapped on the Overland Track in lovely Tasmania to divert attention.