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Budget Travel Gear Yo Nellie, which backpack should I git? Questions and answers on gear related topics (i.e. backpacks, sleeping bags, tents, hiking boots, stoves, etc.).

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Old 12-13-2004, 08:16 PM   #1
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In June, I'm going to be camping out near Lake Turkana in Kenya for about 6 weeks.

I have, unfortunately, never camped anywhere besides my back yard.

Do you have any tips on what equipment to buy? I'm mainly concerned with the tent and accessories. I need something that will fit me and my pack comfortably with enough room to still be able to sit up and get some work done by flashlight at night. It should also be something thats easy to carry with me as I'll be moving around...

Any suggestions?

Also, what capacity pack do you think I should get? (Keep in mind that I'll also have to lug around some school-related things as this is a fieldschool program). I was looking at The Eagle Creek Ultimate Exlporer
Is this one missing any features that prove to be rather essential for backpacking? I'm hoping to get one that will last me far into the future.

Thanks!
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Old 12-14-2004, 01:09 AM   #2
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Ok, here's my camping gear list.. I'm pretty happy with everything, unless otherwise mentioned:

1-2 person tent like this one, Jansport Rockies backpack, flashlight/lantern combo, emergency poncho, garden trowel (folding army shovel if I have room for more weight), toilet paper, lightweight cookware/mess kit, assorted Nalgene bottles, Camelback/Platypus hydration system (3L), MSR multi-fuel stove, military MREs, Clif bars, compact first-aid kit (with Moleskins!), low-topped trail shoes (I hate hiking boots), biodegradable soap/detergent/toothpaste, tons of plastic bags & zip ties, water purification, lightweight chamois-type towel, leatherman/swiss army knife, sleeping bag

I think that about covers it...
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Old 12-14-2004, 09:42 AM   #3
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Thanks! That's a great list.

I was actually looking at that tent the other day.
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"Alas," said the mouse, " the world is growing smaller everyday. At the beginning it was so big that I was afraid, I kept running and running, and I was glad when at last I saw walls far away to the right and left, but these long walls have narrowed so quickly that I am in the last chamber already, and there in the corner stands the trap that I must run into." "You only need to change your direction," said the cat, and ate him up.
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Old 12-15-2004, 07:17 AM   #4
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That sounds so awesome Virginia! WOW!

Gear depends on how much you want to spend....
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Old 12-15-2004, 09:38 AM   #5
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Well, i'd like to keep the tent to $150-200.. The tent that Omisan suggested looks really good and I like the fact that it packs small.. That's a big deal because I'm going to be lugging the thing around.

I also made some calls, and there's this store in manhattan that told me they'd give me eagle creek ultimate explorer for $189 when the list price is $250, so I'm probably going to take them up on that offer.

So those are the two major things.. now all that left is some sort of sleeping pad/bag.

Have any of you used the Eagle Creek packing system/cubes? Are they helpful?

And the ICODEI volunteer program that I've been looking at seems really good. But.. if I do that on top of the paleoanthropology program, that's 2 and a half months away from home.. It's starting to seem like a lot..
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"Alas," said the mouse, " the world is growing smaller everyday. At the beginning it was so big that I was afraid, I kept running and running, and I was glad when at last I saw walls far away to the right and left, but these long walls have narrowed so quickly that I am in the last chamber already, and there in the corner stands the trap that I must run into." "You only need to change your direction," said the cat, and ate him up.
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Old 12-16-2004, 08:23 AM   #6
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As far as sleeping pads, check out Therm-a-rest. For sleeping bags, I assume you are not looking for something that needs to provide much warmth, so there are a ton of cheaper bags that pack ultra small in that category. Vango sleeping bags are what I stick too, and I have had 3 of them and they have a number of them that pack ultra small...but you pay for what you get, so they are a little pricey.

2 1/2 months would be awesome...you only live once!!!
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Old 12-16-2004, 05:08 PM   #7
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Yeh watch out some cheep bags are really not good in high heat, they make you sweat your own body weight. i would spend the money and get a good one, i dont know but i find a sleep sheet good when its hot but you may want a bag as well. you may also want to think about a mosquito net of some kind. Always good to have a good knife as well keep those animals away.

Have fun
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Old 03-02-2005, 07:08 AM   #8
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I don't have too much to offer on the gear list. But dude, 2 and half months is worth it. I was worried at first, being away from home for so long. But, i have been in europe for 2 months, with 3 and half more to go, and i think the end is coming too soon. I just wanna stay longer. Its such an experience, and as kingcrazylegs said, you only live ONCE. i will say, in my camping experience, layers is more important than heavy clothes. I don't suspect you will have worry about cold weather, but if you think it might be an issue, LAYERS!!
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