Labor Day is just about a month away now. If you’re anything like the masses, you’re probably thinking about spending the weekend outdoors. I was reminded of its imminent approach whilst reading the latest edition of San Fransisco magazine recently. Feeling in the mood for yet another response-type piece, I decided to put together the Hike It. Like It. Labor Day Escape in reaction to the SF Mag article. Theirs’ is fine for the car camper and average knuckle head (I jest), ours is designed using the light and simple philosophy. Enjoi!
So, here’s a snapshot of the SF Mag version. It totaled a measly $4246 and only 116 lbs!
And here’s our response, this one tipping the scales at 11 lbs 8.5oz, and leaving the wallet about $1701 lighter. We left a couple things out, like the fire pit, sat phone, and speakers. I know Labor Day weekend might be a disaster without them, then again maybe it will be alright.
There’s a little breakdown below of all these pieces of kit along with weights, MSRP, and links for those who are interested.
- Tent: GoLite Shangri-La 5, 75.5oz ($299)
A family of 4 plus gear will easily fit into this double wall palace. Just the inner can be pitched for a bug shelter or an airy sunscreen on the beach.
- Backpack: Hyperlite Mountain Gear Southwest 3400, 31.4oz ($310)
A bombproof, yet lightweight go-anywhere pack with a reputation for handling loads when called upon to do so. Made in the USA!
- Sleeping Bag: Enlightened Equipment Enigma 30º Down Quilt, 18.5oz ($335 weight/price for long-wide)
Go for a quilt instead! More freedom of movement and no wasted insulation. A 30º Enigma is flexible enough to work in a variety of climates. Made in the USA!
- Rain Shell: ZPacks Challenger Rain Jacket, 5.8oz ($260)
Made from the latest and greatest Cubic Tech waterproof breathable fabric. There’s nothing lighter out there. Made in the USA!
- Stove: MSR Wind Pro II, 6.6oz ($99)
The Wind Pro can work in any conditions including sub-freezing temps, it can boil, it can simmer… and even when fire danger is high canister stoves are allowed. Made in the USA!
- Flashlight: Bosavi Rev2 Headlamp, 2.1oz ($69)
Go hands free with a Bosavi rechargeable headlamp. It can also double as a bike light and a lantern, the latter using its own packaging!
- Lantern: See above!, 0.2oz (free!)
Convert the package from your Bosavi headlamp into a cool origami lantern 🙂
- Speakers: Enjoy the sounds that nature provides instead.
Other campers, hikers, animals don’t want to hear your tunes. Disconnect for a day or two.
- Video Camera: GoPro Hero3+, 1.7oz ($199 weight/price for camera only)
If recording HD video is important, grabbing helmet cam footage and even stills, GoPro is the defacto solution for light, tough, and portable.
- Phone Case: LiteProof fre, 1.1oz ($59)
If you must have your phone accessible, Liteproof can give you some piece of mind. Alternative: leave the phone with the car!
- Sat Phone / Messenger: Do you REALLY need this??
Let’s be realistic, who the heck needs a PLB for a Labor Day getaway?!?
- Brain Lapse: Yeah, I had one.
Just disregard 🙂
- Camp Chair: REI Flexlite, 28oz ($69)
If you have a bad back or perhaps a badass. a chair may be justifiable. If you need to be off the ground, this is about as light as they get.
- Chair Alternative: Gossamer Gear SitLight Pad, 1.8oz ($10 weight/price for medium)
Stuff this sit pad against the front of your frameless pack to give it some support, sit on it while in camp. Two problems solved.
- Solar Shower: Sea to Summit Pocket Shower, 5.3oz ($29)
Sometimes dirty is ok… sometimes it isn’t. This shower is packable even for long trips.
- Fire Place: Do you really need a portable fireplace??
If campfires are allowed, use an existing fire ring, or clear a patch of ground, make a small depression, and have your fire there. Don’t forget to douse and disperse.
- Knife: Opinel No.7 Scout’s Folder, 1.3oz ($15)
My buddy Ken turned me onto this one. A very sharp folder with a rounded tip for spreading your favorite foods.
- Spoon: Sea to Summit Long Handle, 0.4oz ($9)
No more sticking your hand down into the bag-o-dehydrated-grub with this long handled aluminum spoon. Also available in a very blingin’ Titanium version.
- Cooler: Simple Outdoor Solutions Escape Pod,3.6oz ($30)
Keep a 6-pack cool for a day with an escape pod. Lightweight and made in the USA! Alternative: put them beers in the creek!
To be fair to SF mag they did say this could be car camping gear… but that’s still quite the load to haul! The tent they’ve shown is 65 pounds and is more like the kind of thing you’d stay in on an all expenses paid safari. I can’t imagine anyone actually taking one of these out to a campground… well, sadly I can actually visualize some bearded hipster-types in hand tailored jeans and knit shirts unloading one of these… I digress. The fire pit, which is also completely unnecessary was over 11 pounds, call it 12. Take those two out and you’re down to only 39 lbs. Haha!
Well, one way or another you have no excuse to be under prepared for Labor Day, that is if you do intend to brave the traffic and crowds. You might find me with a Tom Collins napping in my hammock… or maybe one of those fancy canvas tents. Hike It. Like It.