Two weeks before the departure, I finally graduated from my engineering school. Afer that, my last 2 weeks were very busy. The assurance, the bank, the equipment… I had many things to prepare and for those who wonder what you have to prepare for a long-term trip, here is what I took in my backpack

My backpack

After buying my equipment, everything could fit in a 30L bag for about 5.5kg. I still decided to buy a 40L bag to have some empty space if I need to carry some extra clothes or some food for example.

Bag

I took the Mountaintop 40L after many reasearch. I choose it because it was pretty, not too heavy, practical, resistant (At least I hope) and because of the size of 40L of course. It was also not so expensive, I bought it for 40€.

Sleep

I choose a sleeping bag stuffed with feathers at Decathlon. It is used for 10°C. It’s not very warm, but I can combine it with a silk liner (Decathlon also) and maybe some extra clothes if the weather is colder. The sleeping bag cost me 100€ and I had already bought the silk liner 3 years ago for about 20€.

For the hammock I just wanted something simple, cheap and light because I’m not gonna use it often. I bought one on Amazon for 15€. I just hope it’s a good value !

I also bought a moskito net, for when I go in the tropic zone. It cost me 14€ and I also changed the pegs for 8€ for lighter ones.

Top

I took 2 merino t-shirts. One from Decathlong (18€) and one from a french brand Seagale. This brand is really awesome and even though it’s more expensive (40€), the quality is much better. After buying them one t-shirt, it felt so good that I also bought me one shirt and one sweater (around 100€ each).

Finally, one cheap rain cover from Decathlon (8€).

I really recommand merino wool. It a natural antibacterial material, which mean it doesn’t smell bad at all, even after wearing it a few days. It is usefull for long-term trip ! Also, even though Seagale is good quality, it’s much cheaper than most of the other merino wool seller (like icebreaker for example).

Pants/Shorts

I have one short, one pant and one convertible pant. Quite simple ! All of them comes from decathlon and I got the 3 for 88€

My pant is a bit warmer, so I can use it if the weather is colder. The short is water-repellant, so I can easily use it as a swimming short.

Finally, the convertible will mainly be use as a short, but it is very practical thanks to all its pockets.

There are 2 light belts with them

Underwear

Again, seagale made me fall in love. The 3 boxer shorts come from them. I got them for 30€ each (expensive but it is worth it). Like my t-shirt, it’s a combinaison of merino wool, tencel and elastane.

I have one pair of short socks and one pair of high socks. (20€ for both)

The two last pairs comes from Decathlon (13€ for both). They are a bit warmer, which is essential when I sleep outside.

Miscellanous

I bought one pair of gloves for the cold nights and a headband for the cold weather, but also for the sun.

I reused a small towel I already had, that I can probably use as a pareo.

I also have two waistbag, mainly use to sort everything in my bag. One is used as a toiletry kit (with some medecine). The other is for my valuable items (bank card, passeport, …)

The shoes

It was very hard and it took me a long tim to find the good shoes to go. I tried many, from hiking shoes, to trail shoes, including running shoes. I finally decided that my #3 criteria (after the durability and the comfort of course) will be the look. I will only take one pair of shoes, so it must catch in every situation. Hiking, dancing, walking, … I finally found these one in a shop near my home and I loved them at first sight ! They were also very confortable so, I choose them. It’s the New balance marisck1.

I hesistated a long to finally buy them on an impulse. They cost me 85€ and so far, they fit me well !

Electronic & Papers

I have a smartphone that I will carry on me (I choose the Redmi Note 5 for its big battery).

Appart from that, I took a small phone. its battery can survive to more than 10 days so it can be useful. I did not forget the chargers (hopefully). I also took one lamp and headphones.

I had to take my passeport and my vaccination record. By the way, don’t forget to get your vaccines way before you leave if you go on a trip. It can save you from some troubles (experience).

A small notebook and a pen (always useful). The famous swiss army knife. A watch. A french flag (why not, it’s so light) and a sewing kit.

Finally, I took a GPS-beacon. I have to say that my parents wanted me to have it, so they pay for it. It is quite expensive (180€ for the beacon, and 220€ for the subscription), but very useful. Since it’s using the globalstar services, it can send my position nearly anywhere on the world, even in the middle of the ocean. So it is reassuring for them to know that I carry this beacon with me during the trip.

And… here we go :

The backpack finally weight between 7-9 kg, depending if I carry water and food.

2 Replies to “The backpack”

  1. Hey François,

    J’espère que le Thumb Tour se passe pour le mieux! J’ai quelques questions pour toi:

    Je me demandais si jusqu’à présent tu n’avais pas regretté d’avoir une bâche à mettre au dessus de ton hamac en cas de pluie ? Je te demande ça parce que je prépare un voyage en stop en Amérique du Sud pour les mois à venir, et je penchais sur l’utilisation d’une tente (tente light de Decath), quel est ton opinion là dessus?

    3 caleçon te parait-il suffisant pour ton trip? Tu arrives à les a les laver suffisamment régulièrement?

    Utilise-tu le drapeau français quand tu fais du stop? Ça aide?

    En proportion, où dors-tu pendant ton trip? Chez l’inconnu, hamac, Couchsurfing, hostal… ?

    Bonne continuation à toi, pour info les Journées Mondiales de la Jeunesse ont lieu au Panama du 21 au 27 Janvier, si jamais tu es dans le coin ça peut valoir le coup d’y passer! 😉

    1. Si, je tavoue que a bache au dessus du hamac est LE truc qui me manque. Ca m’est arrivé a plusieurs reprise de devoir changer dendroit en pleine nuit a cause de la pluie.. meme si ca prends plus de place ou dargent, jinvestirais dans un hamac avec bache au dessus (ce que je vais surement faire bientot).
      Avec une tente tu es plus a labris (dans le sens ou personne te vois reellement) mais par contre ca fait beaucoup plus mal au dos => obligation davoir un tapis de sol ce qui augmente considerablement le poids.
      3 ca suffit. Les calecon en merino ont change ma vie. Prefere 2 ou 3 calecon en merinos que 5 ou 6 en coton normal. Apres il faut juste prendre lhabitude de laver les autres quand tu les changent.
      Pas encore sorti le drapeau.
      Plus le temps avance, et plus jai le culot de demander de plus en plus au gens. Donc principalement chez lhabitant je dirais 🙂
      Oui jy pense enormement a y aller !! Ca depend de si jy arrive a temps. En tout cas, je te le dis si jy vais 🙂

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