Mountain Laurel Designs Burn Backpack | Confluence of the Green & Colorado Rivers, Hayduke Trail, Utah, USA, 2012

Keep it Simple: Research the terrain and conditions you are likely to encounter, and then take only what you need (see Gear). Emphasize necessities over superfluous luxuries…………your shoulders, back, knees and ankles will be grateful. The essence of Going Lighter is all about taking a simpler, less cluttered approach to your time in the backcountry.

Light & Safe: It is great to go as light as possible, but never do so by compromising safety. Everyone is different. Find a balance which is right for you. Experience in the wilderness will ultimately be your best teacher in regards to what you can and can’t do without. (see Going Light).

At Home: Keep all your hiking equipment in one cupboard. Make a gear list and tape it to the inside of that cupboard. Same principle applies for your hiking clothes. This will save a lot of last minute rushing around trying to locate everything. Speaking from personal experience on this one.