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Hi, I’m Rachel.

I’m a freelance writer, advocate, and podcast host! I hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2018 and it changed my life. Check out my Podcast, hire me, or read about my adventures!

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This is Trail Name Here.

This is a space where I share life stories, educate, and connect people. I’m glad you’re here to join me by listening to Podcast Here, reading my blog, or looking back at my journey on the AT.

Instagram: @TrailNameHere

Gear: The Complete Collection (Revised)

Gear: The Complete Collection (Revised)

I've made a lot of adjustments to my gear since I've been out here. Because I didn't do a lot of testing or shakedown hikes I've done a lot of gear sorting out here on the trail. I've had problems with my sleeping pad, my pack, my sleeping bag liner, amongst other things. Here's a video I made, and the list version is below! https://youtu.be/cHScaH2JYhA

So here it is, the revised edition:

  • Big Agnes Copper Spur UL 1
  • Big Agness Copper Spur UL1 Footprint

I got rid of my BA tent and got a Six Moon Designs Lunar Solo. This is a Sil-Nylon tarp tent. I like it so far! Super quick and easy to set up and take down, less condensation, more room, and (BONUS!) it's half the weight!

  • Enlightened Equipment Revelation
  • Granite Gear 16L Compression Stuff Sack

I switched out my quilt for a 0* synthetic mummy bag that I borrowed from Michelin during the Smokies. I got my quilt back in Hot Springs. I like it for the most part, but if I could do this again I would get a warmer mummy bag (10*) and a lighter quilt for summer (30-40*).

  • Klymit Static V
  • Fire Light UL Inflatable Pillow

I got rid of my Klymit pad in Hiawassee and got the 'insulated' version. The insulated version wasn't warm enough. After that I got a Big Agnes Q-Core Ultra Insulated pad but that also didn't keep me warm, despite the fact that t was more comfortable. I now have a Therm-A-Rest Neoair XTherm. It's the warmest inflatable sleeping pad on the market and is currently on sale on Amazon if you're interested!

  • Arich Outdoor Foam Pad
  • EMS Techwick Midweight Baselayer Bottoms
  • Semi-Synthetic T-Shirt
  • EMS Techwick Lightweight Baselayer Top
  • Heavy Weight Wool 'Lifestyle' Socks (unsure of brand)

I got rid of my base layer too after the smokies. I wore it at night but that's it. I had both a midweight and lightweight top. The lightweight one gave me a rash so I Hiker Boxed it. I am now carrying a pair of lightweight Under Armour jogger pants, my semi synthetic T-shirt, a fleece quarter zip from EMS, and my midweight baselayer bottoms for sleeping.

  • MSR Pocket Rocket
  • Bic Mini
  • 4-8fl/oz. IsoPro
  • Olicamp LT
  • Sea to Summit X Cup
  • Sea to Summit Alpha Light Long Handle Spork
  • Pampered Chef Pot Scraper

I got rid of my Olicamp pot when I accidentally burned Cous Cous in it before Franklin. It made the anodized coating peel, rendering it useless. Since then I've picked up a much cheaper, more durable, and heavier pot at Walmart manufactured by Stanley. I'm hoping to replace it with a titanium pot eventually. I got rid of my C-Cup because I didn't really like it for the weight.

  • 50 Ft Reflective Chord
  • Ursack

I got rid of my Ursack in Gatlinburg because it froze shut so many times. It was also pretty heavy.

  • CNOC Vecto 2L Dirty Water Bag
  • Sawyer Squeeze
  • Smart Water Bottle
  • Spyderco Tenacious

I love my water set up. It's nearly infallible. It's not heavy. The Vecto can sometimes have a bit of a plastic taste in the beginning but it goes away. I love my knife, too!!

  • Gregory Maven 55

This pack was a bit heavy and once I lost weight the hip belt didn't get small enough. So I ended up with cuts and bruises and extra hip pain from the improper fitting hip belt. It also doesn't ventilate well on the back. I replaced it with an Osprey Eja 58.

  • REI Co-Op Traverse Power Lock Cork Women's Trekking Poles

I love the handles on these poles and they're not very heavy. The straps are very strong and I don't see them wearing out the way the newer Leki poles do. I will say I hate these locks. They're plastic and they're not quite strong enough. I've had to tighten them at every town (every 50-80 miles). The bottom section is constantly slipping during the day. It's annoying.

  • Nike Miler
  • Nike Indy Bra
  • EMS Women's Compass Slim Pants
  • EMS Women's River Short
  • "Nike Pro Women's 8"" Compression Short"
  • EMS Women's Techwick Hipkini
  • Eddie Bauer Women's Ignitelite Hybrid Vest
  • EMS Women's Feather Pack DownTek Jacket
  • Mountain Hardwear Ozonic Stretch Jacket
  • EMS Women's Thunderhead Full Zip Rain Pants

I actually brought an Under Armour bra from the beginning and apparently forgot to change it. I forgot my River Shorts when we left for GA. I actually usually just wear my spandex Nike shorts by themselves. I never wore the vest so I sent it home. That down jacket would never dry fast enough so I picked up a MontBell synthetic jacket at Mountain Crossings (I LOVE THIS JACKET. Dries within an hour every time and just as warm). I sent home the rain pants, never used them.

  • Gossamer Gear Liteflex Hiking (Chrome) Umbrella
  • Smartwool NTS 150 Merino Hooded Top
  • Smartwool NTS 150 Merino Bottoms
  • Prana Nari Dress
  • Bug Net
  • Synthetic hat with DriFit liner (made by my mom)
  • Buff

I Hiker boxed my umbrella in Fontana in favor of a Muscle Roller. I lost my Smartwool top on the approach trail (I know I was mad at myself too...). I tore up my Smartwool bottoms in my first week because I fall a lot. My big net I left at home but I'll get it eventually. My hat is awesome!! I love it!! (Thanks Mom!)

  • Crocs Karen
  • Dirty Girl Gaiters
  • Altra Women's Timp
  • Smartwool Women's Light Mid Crew Socks
  • Fox River Wick Dry Alturas Ultra-Lightweight Liner Socks

I switched to a pair of La Sportiva Ultra Raptors in Franklin, I love them! I never use Gaiters. I might regret not having them later but I haven't yet. They're also not as easy to use with my La Sportivas. The Fox River socks gave me heat spots. I tried out Injinji toe liner socks but they gave me more blisters. I'm now using Swiftwick running socks as liners. I love them right now, we shall see how they go as it gets hotter. These Smartwool socks I got a good deal on but I was not impressed with their quality. I already have a few holes in them and my toe nails have been kept short. I'm considering investing in some Darn Toughs.

  • Anker Astro E1
  • Black Diamond Cosmo Headlamp
  • iPhone 6s
  • Kindle
  • Spot
  • Yurbuds Inspire Sport (women's)
  • Life Proof Case

I love my Anker battery. My iPhone is great is great, as usual, although I do wish it had a better camera. I sent my kindle home and regretted it for a while until I realized I could use my phone and not drain my battery... those headphones are awesome. My Lifeproof case works great but does get condensation from time to time...

  • Travel Toothbrush
  • Floss
  • Toilet Paper
  • Always Radiant Infinity / Playtext Sport
  • Old Nike T-Shirt cut up
  • Bandana
  • PackTowl Nano
  • Timex Women’s Ironman Sport
  • Gold Bond Ultimate Travel Size (transferring to plastic baggie)
  • Old Haircut Kit Comb
  • Deuce of Spades (in case of snow)
  • Dr. Bronner's
  • BodyGlide
  • Granite Gear Air Pocket L
  • Straw, matches, cotton ball, striker, sealed
  • Duck Tape
  • Band Aids
  • Benzoin Tincture
  • Vitamin I (aka Ibuprofen)
  • LeukoTape
  • Electrolyte Supplement Pills

I added some vitamins and switched some stuff around. I got soap sheets instead of liquid soap. But overall the toiletries stayed the same.

I'm sure I'll pick up some stuff and get rid of some stuff along the way bu this is mostly what I expect to be carrying. I'll weigh in again in Damascus. I've gone from 40lbs to 55lbs to 38lbs, hopefully I'll get it down even more!

Days 34-38

Days 30-33

Days 30-33