Chinook Trail Gear List & Final Preparations For Beginning Of Thru-Hike

It’s hard to believe – in just over a week I’ll be hopping aboard an Amtrak from Bellingham to Vancouver, WA, and hitting the Chinook Trail! I spend a day this week washing my hiking clothing, then spraying them (and my pack) with Permethrin (as I anticipate a few days in prime tick habitat). I packed by bear canister full of 5 days worth of food, enough to get me to White Salmon, and then put everything into my backpack. Somehow, with the addition of food, my base weight climbed from 20 pounds, up to 31 pounds. I’m going to have to go through everything one last time, but ideally I’d like to get it down to about 29 pounds with food.

I have posted my Lighterpack list below – there are definitely some luxury items in this gear list, and I’ll have to take a long look at whether I should take everything listed. This summer I went on a few overnight “training hikes” and I went with two sleeping pads—a foam and an inflatable pad. I like the flexibility, the comfort and added protection for the inflatable pad by having the foam pad underneath. They add up to over a pound though, so I may axe one of them – likely the foam pad.

For clothing I’ll be bringing two of everything – shirts, pants, socks, underwear and hiking boots/Crocs. With a few town stops along the way, I should be able to wash clothing every few days. One vital item for me is knee sleeves. After 18 years of soccer I’ve been able to strengthen my knees through Crossfit (thank you Crossfit X, Travis and all of the other coaches!). However, with some days hitting 6,000 feet of elevation gain/loss, knee sleeves will help, along with trekking poles.

Overall I’m reasonably happy with a base weight of 20 pounds, but I wouldn’t mind dropping a bit of weight. With food my pack climbed up to 31 pounds, and that’s without water and my emergency locator beacon, so I’m going to have to find stuff to remove as I really want to get it down below 30 pounds with food.

Thankfully, there should be plenty of water for most of the trail, so I’ll probably carry 2-3 liters at a time. 

Lighterpack List

Here is my current gear list – it’s an active list so if I swap out anything it’ll show below:

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