Do we need more “stuff” as we get older? Is it just that as we accumulate more, those things become necessary? Whatever the reason, my pack is too heavy. I got around to having a trial pack last night. 45 pounds.
Based on this, I think that maybe I don’t need 3 pairs of spare trousers, 8 pairs of socks and food for 7 days. I can cope with 1 spare pair, and resupply food every other day. Or can I? What if ‘X’ and what if ‘Y’ ? I am starting to overthink this 🙁
I unpacked everything, and walked away. Time to look at my motivation for walking the Pennine Way and how I would like to walk it.
- I want to walk the Pennine Way, not any other route, because it is my first, and this route was the first National Trail. I like the symmetry in that.
- Being the oldest route, it is less favoured than some of the sexy new routes, so it will be quieter. Quiet is good, I like quiet.
- It is described as one of, if not the hardest paths. If I can do this, I can do any
- I was brought up in sight of the Pennines, They become a part of you, and I would like to get to know them better.
- I am not trying to achieve survival in the face of adversity, pitting my stamina against nature. I don’t want to feel hungry and also some level of luxury would be good.
- I am nearly 50, If not now, then when?
- I would like to wind down. Get away from the rat race, wake up to sunrise, fall asleep with a sunset. Romantic, but valid even so.
So what I need to take is my tent, my sleeping kit, warm clothing, cooking gear, navigation essentials, food and water and some little luxuries to make the trip a pleasure.
There is a compromise I think. On the one side carrying every conceivable gadget to give the most luxurious of overnights, but struggling to drag the weight. On the other side, an Ultra Light pack that is a dream to walk all day with, but lacking any rudimentary comforts or essentials to enjoy the camp.
One “essential” I am going to take is a big down jacket (the one I wore to Stoodley Pike in February). It is quite a bit of weight at 1 1/2 pounds, but I suspect I will be grateful for it.
Other “non-essential, but I am taking anyway” items include a blow up mattress (a good nights sleep will more than compensate for the weight), A pan that fits on the Primus (so much nicer than cooking everything in a mug).
A more reasonable 30 pounds has been achieved, and this time I remembered to put the camera in. There is time to tweak the contents, still, I think the pack will feel quite heavy for the first days.