mountain camping checklist

Pro packing: Our comprehensive mountain camping checklist

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Mountain camping in Patagonia requires some extra planning compared to a regular weekend in the country. There are several things that you’ll need to take into account when preparing a mountain camping checklist – perhaps most importantly, it’s finding the right balance between safety and weight. Furthermore, what you take will depend on the length of your trek, the number of campers, and their varying abilities. In this article, we run through our essential checklist, which can be adjusted according to your needs. To help you keep organized, we’ve divided the list into four key sections: safety, sleeping, cooking and clothing.

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Safety: The most important section on your mountain camping checklist

If you’re tackling challenging hikes like the W Trail or the Q Circuit, the most important thing to consider is your safety and well-being. To make sure you stay safe in the wilderness, we recommend these essentials:

  • First Aid Kit – including medications, band-aids, dressings and antiseptic
  • Sunscreen
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Swiss Army knife
  • Head torch
  • Mobile phone and portable charger – you might be heading off into the wilderness to get some space, but keep it available and charged just in case

Sleeping: Getting a good night’s rest

mountain camping checklist

Conserving energy is vital for demanding hikes. Therefore, making sure your tent is comfortable is important. However, when going down your mountain camping checklist, be realistic about what you really need to make sure your backpack isn’t too heavy. Here are our suggestions – which you can adjust according to your endurance levels:

  • Tent – generally, it’s a good idea to take a tent with a greater berth than the number of travelers so there’s room for bags
  • Spare pegs
  • Lantern
  • Sleeping bag – make sure it’s a high quality, multi-climate mummy bag
  • Sleeping mat – if you’re prepared to carry one, they can make all the difference
  • Earplugs – handy to have in case the wind picks up, or if other campers are a bit noisy

Cooking: Making yourself at home

After a long day’s hike, it’s important to make yourself comfortable and eat a good meal. Therefore, you’ll need to have the cooking essentials to rustle up a tasty snack without weighing you down. The basics include:

  • Water bottle
  • Small gas stove
  • Compact pan set – what’s more, you can use your pan to eat from too
  • Cup
  • Utensils, including cutlery
  • Tin opener – no good having supplies that you can’t open!
  • Matches or a lighter
  • Bin bags – leave no trace
  • String – handy in all sorts of situations
  • Duct tape – an easy solution for many different repairs
  • Windbreaker – a wind guard can be useful for privacy and protecting the campsite from the elements

Clothing: Prepare yourself for the elements

mountain camping checklist

When it comes to clothes, your Patagonia mountain camping checklist should include items for all elements. Be sure to pack the appropriate number of changes for the length of your stay:

  • Waterproof outer layer – keep in your backpack in case of rain
  • Insulating fleece, windbreaker or down jacket
  • A breathable base layer made from a sporty material – surprisingly, you’re best off avoiding cotton
  • Walking trousers in a quick drying material – even better are convertible hiking pants, which you can zip off into shorts if you get too hot
  • High quality, warm socks
  • Hiking boots – make sure they’re broken in
  • Watch
  • Microfiber towel – a microfiber towel is a great compact alternative to a bulky towel you’d use at home

And all the rest…

This list is a selection of basics for a mountain camping checklist. From here, you can decide what best suits your needs. This will depend on your preferences, stamina and the size of your group. Once you’re all packed, all that’s left is to start the adventure.

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