First-time trekkers' list

Whether new to the forum, or completely new to the community, herein you will find the best information to-date to help you get started on the right foot with that dangerous business of going out your door.

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Greg
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First-time trekkers' list

Post by Greg »

Since the 1930's, hikers, Boy Scouts, and a myriad of other folks have looked to a list of ten items to outline their needs for going into the wilds: The 10 Essentials.

The list has morphed from ten specific items into a list of ten "systems" to have present. What used to say "1. Map 2. Compass 3. blah blah blah" now starts "1. Navigation System 2. Sun Protection System 3. Insulation System", etc.

We have had several topics asking for advice for first-time trekkers heading out into the woods in Middle-Earth gear, so I'd like to jumpstart a quick reference thread, beginning with this new updated list of systems used by mountaineers, rescue teams, and serious backpackers the world over to keep themselves alive...with a parallel list showing the same systems in Middle-Earth basics, so we're all staying safe while staying authentic.

This isn't the end-all you-have-to-carry-this-stuff list, but it's a good starting point. We've got a billion different threads talking about all sorts of kit, from sewing to cooking to fishing and arrow repair...this pares it down to necessities versus extras, to help new trekkers prioritize their functional gear versus things that can be done later, etc. This is a list for a 100% authentic Ranger persona, and should be adapted to other cultures as well as your own needs (ie. you may add a compass if you aren't confident in your skills with the stars, as well as a modern map of your actual area for security, etc.)

1. Navigation (map and compass)
Map of Middle Earth, Knowledge of reading shadows/the stars for direction

2. Sun protection
Facial shade (ie. hood, etc.), clothing that can protect (bring something with lightweight sleeves if you don't normally wear them, etc.)

3. Insulation (extra clothing)
Additional layers (plan for the worst weather feasible for your region/season), sleeping blanket, ground separation of some sort.

4. Illumination
Candles, Small Oil/Tallow Lamp, etc. Torches are an option, but they aren't subtle/can't be put out as easily or used indoors, etc...your call.

5. First-aid supplies
Linen Bandages, salves, stitching supplies, cordials, etc.

6. Fire (waterproof matches/lighter/candles)
Fire kit (flint and steel, tinder, charred materials, etc.)

7. Repair kit and tools
Thread, needles, awls, wax, etc.

8. Nutrition (extra food)
Stock beyond your specific dietary needs/menu per day (think about your need-wallet, etc.) Cram, salt pork, nuts/trail mix...think shelf-stable (and read this thread).

9. Hydration (extra water)
Water bottle of some sort, and carry the ability to generate potable water (a filter, tablets, etc.)

10. Emergency shelter
Shelter tarp, rope/twine, etc.

From here, anyone that has a piece of kit that they have found to be indispensable that does (or does not) fit into these categories, feel free to add your two cents. We have tidbits of this information everywhere...now it'll all be in one place, and it won't get lost.

Cheers, and happy, safe travels.
Last edited by Greg on Mon Nov 09, 2015 4:24 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Manveruon
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Manveruon »

Love this idea! You've got a great list here. Very well broken down.
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Rifter »

Agreed, very useful for first time full outers.
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Greg
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Greg »

Feel free to also show examples that fit these descriptions.

To wit:
image.jpeg
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Last edited by Greg on Fri Dec 04, 2015 5:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by RikJohnson »

I find that things get much simplier when you break things down to the basics:
BED: what do I need to sleep?
KITCHEN: what do I need to cook & eat?
BATHROOM: What do I need to <bleep>?
WEAPONS: what do I need to defend myself?
TOOLS: what do I need to repair my gear or do basic work?

ex: Bathroom means a poop-tube (no one digs real cat-holes and I get tired of looking at everyone's previous 'deposits' on the trail or in the only perfect camping space in the woods) and TP.

Weapons means Bow, arrows, sword, knife.
extras may include: hatchet, dagger, battle-axe, etc

Tools may include sewing kit to repair my clothes, fletch kit to repair my arrows, etc.

Actual Lists are great but I find that I need to create a list of all my lists<g>.
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Taurinor »

I think hygiene is worth considering, especially for longer treks. A horn comb doesn't weigh much and is good for getting sticks/bugs out of your hair. A small bar of soap and a bone toothbrush also probably aren't essential, but again don't weigh much and can make you feel a lot more comfortable.
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Ringulf »

Greg wrote:Feel free to also show examples that fit these descriptions.

To wit:

image.jpeg
Is this the custom made map you mentioned? I would enjoy getting one of these and perhaps one of the Shire. I have done some of this on leather pieces, like my tobacco pouch and coffee mug, but to have a real map is most definitely the right thing for orienting and planning. I have penned my own and it is a great undertaking to do properly, that map is lovely! :mrgreen:
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Greg
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Greg »

Indeed it is. I love it.
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Re: First-time trekkers' list

Post by Le-Loup »

Greg wrote:From here, anyone that has a piece of kit that they have found to be indispensable that does (or does not) fit into these categories, feel free to add your two cents. We have tidbits of this information everywhere...now it'll all be in one place, and it won't get lost.

Cheers, and happy, safe travels.

Well done Greg, excellent list choice. One extra item I included in my medical kit, an eye wash glass. I actually found a short stubby glass bottle with a cork that works well. Nothing is quite as debilitating as getting something in your eye/s.

I also suggest that one thinks of the oilcloth or canvas shelter as a main shelter & not just for emergencies. The oilcloth is very versatile & it is easy to set up as a lean-to. Pack it separately from your blanket roll unless you are travelling on water, in that way you can easily remove it from your pack to use as a rain cover over yourself & your pack if you are caught in a sudden downpour. Carry your spare clothing in your blanket roll. Wool spare clothing is good for winter nights. Put it on over or under your normal clothing.

If you get hot & perspire on the trail in winter, make sure you dry your clothing before lying down at night, or you will freeze.
Keith.

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Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost.

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