TGO Gear List 2010

[table id=1 /]

First Published 29/10/2009
Updated 29/10/2009

Irrecoverably Broken in 2011 🙁

7 Replies to “TGO Gear List 2010”

  1. You need to be ready for potentially very long periods of cold, wet and windy weather. I use dry bags to store stuff such as spare clothes, maps and stuff that needs to be kept dry. Many people also use rucksack covers and almost everybody will also have lined their rucksacks with liners or rubble bags or similar. Keeping stuff dry is specially important!
    You don’t need heavyweight gloves, though – I manage with some very cheap thinsulate gloves. They get wet, but they stay warm.
    I notice you’re using a tarp/tarptent. I’m not familiar with makes of tarps and some people do use them, but most will take a tent for the cold, wet etc…. and privacy when on campsites. Note that the ground is usually pretty wet and it may freeze solid overnight.(along with your platypus)
    Take the torch, but you won’t use it much as it doesnt really go dark! You could potentialy save a bit of weight with a very light led headlight.
    Get a cycling bottle and fill it with your favourite duty-free booze. Even if you don’t drink, you can be sociable in bothies etc…
    The wild water is generally safe, but as you’re not from round here (!), you might consider some method of treating it as you may not be resistant to the local bugs – eg a filter or something – often it will be very brown or tea-coloured due to peat from off the moors. It won’t be drinkable if your water source is in spate.
    Don’t forget to reset your GPS to OSGB! (or it will lie to you!)
    Hope this helps…

  2. Thanks Mike, you’re a gentleman!

    Drybags. Check. I have them, just not on the list yet. My Rucksacks also have them built in, I’ve actually tested these in a river and torrential downpours without a drip entering.

    Gloves. Check. I think I may have some of those. If not, I know where to get them.

    Tarptent. It’s actually a tent called a Scarp1. Inner and fly, quite similar to an Atko. I believe Chris Townsend used one on last years Chally 🙂

    Sounds like the footprint might be a good idea.

    Torch. Check.

    Booze. Check.

    Water sounds quite similar to the stuff I was drinking last week in Tasmania. Deep tannin colour. tasted fine. I’ll look into some sort of purification, your words about different bugs are very wise.

    OSGB. Check. I found that already, but I must remember to do it…



  3. Hi Michael,

    Mike Knipe knows his stuff – wise words.

    You seem to have done your research and lightened up by removing the unnecessary items from your kit and ensuring that those you’ve included are both good quality and light. I’m interested in the packs you’ve listed – they seem pretty heavy! If you reduce your base weight you can generally get away with a lighter pack – you’ve less need for fancy load transfer devices etc etc. Though what’s more important is your comfort, and if these packs work for you then there’s no way I’m going to suggest you change to something you’re not totally confident with.

    If you go the trail shoes direction (you WILL be getting wet feet, how quickly do your boots dry out?) you can possibly get rid of the Crocs for river crossings, you’ll want to keep your shoes on if you’re like me. Around camp a pair of plastic bags works nicely to protect your sleeping socks from wet shoes, and is ever so stylish.

    Midge Net!!!!! Might not be needed, but if it is and you haven’t got one you’ll be very very sorry. I use the Mountain Laurel Designs one, though I’m sure you can find a more economic way of getting one.

    Gloves – I use Icebreaker merino liners with Mountain Laurel Designs eVent mitts over the top. Very flexible system.

    Do you need so many spare socks and underwear? I have no experience of coming from abroad to do an evnt like this so maybe they’re necessary for the way home or something? I find a single pair of merino boxers stays smell free for several weeks, and two pairs of socks (one worn, one for sleeping) sufficient. Do you find two sets of thermals necessary?

    Please bear in mind that my metabolism and experience of this climate are different to yours, I’m not trying to tell you ‘how to plan a TGO Challenge kit list in 10 easy steps’, just to get you to evaluate every single item you’re carrying. If you lug it for 300km it need to justify its inclusion in my opinion!!! Could you improvise a pillow?

    8Kg is very respectable though, I’ve met several Challengers who carry ‘evening wear’ for the pub, often consisting of jeans and a shirt…..

    Keep up the research I reckon, drop me an email with any questions and if I get on in 2010 I’d love a look at the Scarp!


  4. Phil. Thanks for the comments and suggestions.

    The packs are heavy, but I’ve never been as comfortable. I’m usually hauling an extra 5kg of photo gear which makes it even worse, but basically my days of carrying significant weight on my shoulders are over. I can do it, but it’s extremely uncomfortable. Nuff said. The Packs themselves are a NZ design that allows you to carry most of the weight on your hips and balances the weight fore-aft with balance pockets out the front. AARN Packs I have the ‘Natural Balance’ but once the gear list is more or less static, I intend to see if it will all fit into one of the smaller/lighter of the range.

    Number of spare socks and crocs go with using boots, if I swap to shoes I will re-assess. Midge Net! Will check that out and the gloves options. Spare thermals are disaster relief if things get horrible wet/cold.

    Like you say, everything needs to be evaluated and re-evaluated. That’s why I have put the list on the web so I can have my assumptions challenged. I need the best & lightest kit I can put together so that I can enjoy the trip and be safe.

    It looks like cool weather testing has just ended with a bang here. A week or so ago I was in Tasmania with cool days and nights and yesterday it was over 30c

    Thanks again,


  5. Hi Michael

    I am also thinking of starting from Strathcarron and heading over to Drumnadrochit via Loch Monar. Might bump into you on the way then. I also have the WM Ultralite, Neoair and silkliner combination. I think they are wonderful items. However I couldn’t imagine taking a 2 kilo backpack anywhere ! I will probably take either a Gossamer Gear Mariposa (500 gms) or Gossamer Gear Murmur (250gms) this year. The added bonus of these packs is you can use a cut down foam pad as back support on the pack, which doubles as an extra layer of comfort in the tent under the Neoair. The Neoair is icecold when you are sitting on it as opposed to lying on it.
    Of course you can also use the foampad during the day for rest stops as well.

    The Scarp 1 looks great, I see Henry Shires is on the TGO list – you may find yourself camping next to the manufacturer of your own tent !

    To save weight consider an ultralight Esbit titanium wing stove (13 gms). Esbit can be posted ahead so your overall fuel weight can be kept very low.

    You may be suffering jetlag if you don’t plan in some recovery time before you start. I know from personal experience how lack of sleep can drain all motivation and enthusiasm at the start of a walk. It’s not just what you carry physically that counts. The mental preparation is also key.

    Best Regard

  6. Hi Geoff,

    Thanks for dropping by. It must be pretty unusual to find 2 people with those same items!

    Rest assured I have decided not to take the 2kg pack. I actually weighed it the other day, and it’s more like 2.7kg. One of the new Mountain Magic packs will be on my list instead. I was very fortunate to be able to use a pre-production sample of this pack on a recent hike in New Zealand and it was excellent. Weight is about 1.3kg – probably too much for you still, but half the weight of my other pack, and the aarn features work even better in this one.

    Thanks for your suggestions. Regarding Jetlag, I have dialled in as much pre-challenge time as I can – the preceding Sunday is Mothers Day (can’t miss that!) I leave on Monday, arrive Tuesday giving me 2 clear days before the Challenge starts. I hope that is enough to clear the fog and begin acclimatisation to the cooler temperatures…


Comments are closed.