“Carry as little as possible but choose that little with care”

- Earl Shaffer

When it comes to packing for your running or hiking there is no lack of items to browse before taking off on to your next training, race or adventure. The idea is to go as light as possible and some products can be very beneficial.

Hiking, Trekking, Ultralight Trekking, Fastpacking, Trailrunning every adventure has its name and…..its pack. No matter which adventure you’re heading out for, they all have different requirements. Yet there is one thing they all have in common: WEIGHT! *
The aim is to be able to enjoy an adventure outdoors with as little discomfort as possible. Exact weight specifications vary of course, but as a rule, one speaks of:

* Base weight: the weight of a backpack + inside & outside gear, excluding food, water, and fuel, which vary depending on the art, duration and style of adventure.

For instance, during a trailrun, I carry about 2 or 3 Kg. My fastpacking adventures run between 4 and 5,5 Kg. My hiking trips run around 12 up to 13 Kg. To have an idea, people who are walking the Camino aim for around 11/13 Kg.

 

Hiking (example 80Kg = 16Kg)
Normal Trekking or Hiking
Light Trekking
Ultralight Trekking

However....., Years ago, during a trailrun, I once met a guy who was trying out his pack for the Camino. On his back he had 26 KG!!!! When we met I asked him, if he was carrying his mother in law with him or his fridge. Because instead of dragging her with him, maybe it would be easier just to dig a hole somewhere, or leave his fridge at home. I just couldn't believe the weight was for the essentials he needed along the way. He saw the humor in his situation and answered very dry, and with a serious face, that he was using the Camino just as an excuse to walk around with such a huge backpack. Because in fact had put his mother in law ín his fridge, and was now looking for a good spot to get rid of the fridge. We both lost it and tears were rolling over our faces from laughing. Hilariously funny guy and I know he has made the whole journey from Belgium to Santiago de Compostella. In fact he even went to Cabo de Finisterre. Talking about adventures, right? Awesome!

My Personal Gear

Trailrunning

Total weight of my running-pack is 2,2 Kg. Of course, lots of it depends heavily on the weather, the area and the length of the trail.

Fastpacking

Total Nett weight of the pack is 4.6 Kg. Of course, there are items without knowing the weight. (I know, but I am just to lazy to check them on a scale.) But if I calculate an extra 1 Kg for these items, which will be well within reach, the whole pack will come to a Gross weight of 5,6 Kg.

A pack with 5,6 Kg weight is for me completely acceptable. Knowing I’ll be able to reduce this weight at least 1 Kg within due time.

Hiking

Total Nett weight of the pack is between 7,6 Kg and 9,2 Kg, depending if I will sleep in my tent or my hammock (sleeps awesome!) Of course, there are items without knowing the weight. But if I calculate an extra 2,5 Kg for these items, which will be well within reach, the whole pack will come to a Gross weight of around 10,1Kg 11,7Kg
Either way, a pack for Hiking with 11,7 Kg weight is for me completely acceptable. Also here I’ll probably reduce this weight within due time.