The blog of Andrei Ciuculescu

Basic gear guide

07 Aug 2019

Yuhu, so you want to take a short trekking trip! And you never went on one before!

About your 2 day trip in Romanian summer: travel from Bucharest to the mountains; light trek first day; sleeping in tent; light trek second day; travel from the mountains back to Bucharest.

Here’s what I will bring on a trip like this.

Day 1

My checklist for the first day applies also if I would just do a same-day return trip.

I use Salomon and my feet are happy ‘cos they fit my feet really well. Your foot is different, test first. Buy 1.5 size bigger than regular street shoes.

  • socks x2

2 pairs of synthetic trekking socks. ‘cos they don’t break and keep my feet happy. cotton works as well

  • underwear x2

2 pairs of synthetic stretchy boxers. ‘cos they don’t break and keep me happy. cotton works as well. Also useful if I meet a bear.

  • pants

Long thin pants. thin cotton pants work as well but also bring shorts in case you get too hot. pro tips: can turn to shorts, have elasic/string near ankle, fast dry, reinforced knees and butt, UV resistant, breathable

  • tshirt x2

Fast dry tshirt, the kind you use in the gym, I used cotton for years so it works as well. pro tips: regular fit not slim fit, I use a short sleeve shirt which also has 2 useful pockets, and I can also unbutton it to control heat.

I use a thin jacket which is waterproof and breathable, from Milo. I used rain coats (the ones long to the knees from decathlon) instead and they do the job as well. pro tips: have armpit zipper for heat control, have an adjustable hood which you can wear it and still see.

  • long sleeve merino shirt

I will bring a thin merino wool long sleeve blouse. I can use this in daytime walking to prevent sunburn - but usually don’t cos it’s still hot; helps with dusk-nighttime chill plus it’s super cosy.

  • small gear

hat, bandana

  • small tools

knife, headlamp, external battery, phone charger

  • health kit / emergency kit

toothbrush, paste, soap, toilet paper, wet wipes, blister patches, crayon, paper, backup lighter, cotton wad, needle, thread, elastic wrap for sprains, sunscreen, medicinal alcohol or an iodine solution, whistle

  • water

2L per person per day minimum for me is the rule. If there is no water source double that.

  • food

Morning 2x sandwitches.

2x snacks before lunch: nuts of all kinds, banana, dehydrated fruit (plum).

Lunch: some hard cheese, bell pepper, olives, more fruit

snack after lunch: chocolate bar, peach.

dinner: hopefully meat, bread, potatoes over the fire

All the above will fit in a 40L pack with spare room. The link is the closest match I could find to what I have. Mine also has a useful zipper on the side, love that.

  • large dollop of happy thoughts

Can’t say where I get these from, I like to think they just come along by themselves.

Day 2

Day 1 items plus some more, according to weather.

  • tent

We have an old 3 person dome tent which has seen better days but it works. At some point it’ll get an upgrade, but it’s perfect for 2 people with packs.

Has served me great and is super lightweight. Also, my body takes cold better than heat, I’ve also used this in the winter time… with a lot of extra layers and some shivering :))

My Mammut fleece is looking just a bit worn but still awesome even after about 3 years of constant wear.

  • fleece pants

They work great for chilly evenings in front of the tent as well as in the sleeping bag.

I will usually think twice about bringing this, then bring it anyway. Ternua have awesome gear and this packes super small. A rule for any down jacket is the more sowing lines it has, the less warm it is.

Final thoughts

  • I have special mountain gear which I can tear, stain, wear extensively, wear broken, know multiple ways to wear. My gear helps bring a huge freedom benefit to my mind.
  • My checklist is usually ordered from low (boots) to high (hat)
  • Pay attention to how you pack your gear and what you need on top (rain jacket, water, fleece) and what you need on bottom (night gear).
  • Function over form; reuse and recycle
  • Enjoy nature, sunny trails!