10 Essentials for Backpacking
- Sleeping Bag
- Water / Filter
- Swiss Army Knife
- Fire Starter / Lighter
- First-Aid Kit
- Map / Compass
You might also wish to bring:
- Cook Stove
- Insect Repellent
- Repair Kit: cloth tape, ripstop tape, safety pins, pliers
- Toilet Kit: toothbrush & paste, soap, small towel,
- Other: fishing tackle, notepad & pencil, etc.
The most important essential , however, is not on the list--"Common Sense". Having the right gear is one thing, knowing how and when to use it is quite another. Most often, it`s not a person`s equipment that saves their bacon. It`s their experience, know-how, and good judgment.
Conversely, it is generally inexperience and lack of good judgment that gets people into trouble. Not only must we have the proper equipment -- including the ten essentials plus four -- and know how to use them, but we must also cultivate knowledge and wisdom related to the backcountry activities that we engage in--thru self-study, courses, and leveraging off the experiences of others.