What to pack for SOTA Hike?  The “HQD” Load Out Equipment List Summits On The Air
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What to pack for SOTA Hike? The “HQD” Load Out Equipment List Summits On The Air

All right Everybody I was requested to make a video on my loadout on what I carry it for my soda hikes so Taking me some time to give this together just just been a little bit busy, but make some changes since my last video on what I’m carrying out the field and So what I’m gonna do to make this easy for everybody is. I’m gonna actually I got the scales right here It’s just a Maggie Maggie. OH sport. It’s a fishing scale so he goes all the way up to 110 pounds 22 pounds to 110 pounds and also from 0 to 22, so basically it’s 0 to 110 pounds. I also have a Scale here. Just a food scale digital one for the smaller items, but I think the most efficient way This is how I weigh my stuff and how I determined The weight factors on things I started trimming things down and one of my goals is Everything that I carry I tried at least have it have at least two functions If possible some of it obviously isn’t always possible have two functions But where they are I’ll try to identify them as I stuff them in the pack so the first thing I’m gonna start with is the pack that I’m carrying the pack that you carry for the last couple years is the the Osprey? Kestrel 48 liter pack I’ve done overnight trips with this pack, and I’ve also done Most of my day trips are all done this pack this pack is actually really light It’s super comfortable very durable, and I really like the Osprey brand There’s a lot of packs out there. This is the one that I like if I were to do it all over again I would consider maybe close to I think they have a 58 liter But since I’ve scaled my kit back. I think the 48 litre is fine I and actually what a smaller pack does to is it forces you to think about what you’re gonna put Inside of it, and it limits you and if you’re limited well Then you have to make tough decisions on what you’re gonna carry And I think that’s a critical way to Assess whether or not you need something or you want something so anyways without that any more explanation I’m gonna get started on I’ve emptied I believe I’ve emptied every pocket out of here And I’m gonna just take everything that’s on the table in front of me what you can’t see And I’m going to stuff it all in here one thing on here is this little d-ring but for the most part And I didn’t go so crazy is to cut these excess off on straps here Some of the thru-hike do that to figure out what they need they’ll trim off even the extra I’m not that crazy because I feel like the flexibility Do we have here so what I’m gonna start with right now is going to turn the scale on I will tell you how much this pack weighs bone dry With just a little bit of sweat still etched in it. I’m sure so this pack right here as it sits is Three point four five pounds. I don’t know if you can see that or not But it says three point four five pounds so now what I’m gonna do to prove to you that I am Seriously under 25 pounds. I’m gonna start stuffing this thing with everything I carry starting with water so I carried a platypus Bladder this is a three liter bladder right now. I have two liters in it upside down I can see I’m at the two liter mark right there I? Can go three liters I would add extra weight of course if I did do that But three liters is more than I ever use usually it’s two liters two liter and a half So for a day hike two liters good to go our pack weight now Get it stopped moving Seven point two one pounds so we added a couple pounds there so water being one of the most important essentials there follow that by With food so my food kit and yes I’m going kind of fast because I know YouTube likes fast videos so my food kit to include food I generally stuff everything inside of a little stuffs tag this is another Osprey three liter little stuff sack right here, and this is what I’ve stuff in it I Bring a ziploc bag with like about three coffees and three splendas Maybe a little more maybe a little less depending upon who’s go with me my younger daughter likes coffee so sometimes I’ll bring her some but I always I love coffee on the trail so I always bring coffee So we’ll throw that in there. I like these cliff protein bars, so I usually bring two of them I share them with tayo my dog, and I usually stuff those in my side pocket when I go so they’re accessible So we’ll get to the weight here in a second. I have a Titanium 450 milliliters snow-peak cup with a little soft lips on there I bring a little piece of a little bit of foil I use this to use as a pot holder when I’m cooking because there’s a Little handles here get pretty warm so I can pick it off of the fire pretty good But also when it’s really pulled out or windy I open that up and I can make a lid out of it this one doesn’t Have a lid and that’s one less thing to carry I stuff it inside. I’m good to go the other thing I have obviously is this Titanian see two summits deep spoon really nice in these big meals and I like the mountain house meal It’s a whole variety of in this particular. One is a two serving breakfast skillet normally I had the one serving ones, but two serving ones are really good too, so I’m gonna go with the heavier weight Just because so let me throw these items inside of this stuff sack here This I’m just gonna throw it in here, it doesn’t really matter at the end of the video We’ll see how much everything ways the other thing. I carry is just a little So I’ve used a variety of skills I have another video I can link it one of these places over here on Aluminum stove that I made out of soda pop cam it’s actually really sweet. I like it a lot But I’ve been using this one right here. This is another Opie Asst Small this stove it’s like super lightweight right there, and I can shut this thing down it fits right into the bottom of the Way right on the bottom a little deal here, and then there’s different size of these little canisters I Have three different sizes just to show you the difference this is the one that I like this is the small What is this one 400 and? How many milligrams this one this is 247? I think and then I have this right? Here’s the 460 milliliters or 230 grain grams 230 grams here. Oh here it is I weighed this one. This is 201 grams when I weighed it. Fully marked it on the bottom This one fulls 230 grams so for the size I go with a smaller one and then if I’m gonna camp out of the truck I can always bring the big giant one this thing would last like forever 659 grams of fuel Each one these canvases are like five bucks they last a long time and then a way you can tell if they’re there running empty or low as You put them in some water, and you see if they how they flow kind of steaming milk or something Or you can just weigh them out as well, so Putting that little case right there D-ring it shut and if I had to you if my packable stuff I do this little thing like this I could always put this to the outside of the pack if necessary but it’s not how you do it in there, so I’m gonna throw the Other stuff in there so to light the stove I’ve showed this on my other videos before I love this thing here. This is a flint Set up right here. I don’t bring matches because this can be wet and it still works Pretty cool little deal turn that on works. It works on my other stove There’s some smoke. I usually put this in one of my front pockets I like a reliable source of spark, and and this works really good so with that is a Chapstick and sunblock you get these little bottles right here And like REI for like a buck or something. I don’t know put a nice SPF 50 in there I should wear sunblock more than I have been shame on me Chapstick obvious reasons, but also good for kita. White a little fire. You get some wax in there too, and of course There’s multiple reasons for this, but there’s one really important reason and I need not say more I usually take about a half a roll or less and I bring it thin it down I always fits in the pack better I Don’t need a lot of TP, but when I bring my daughter’s I need like eight rolls of toilet paper Just kidding, but anyway so toilet paper inside This stuff I usually put one of the front pockets up here And it doesn’t really matter where it goes right now and interest time. We’re just stuffing in it in a pocket Two other things I don’t always bring them But I probably will start a little bit more is my just just a little Coleman LED light red Lighter and then brighter and then off nice little headlamp thing runs on. I think two triple A batteries Super awesome little light. I don’t bring it all the time less I know I’m going to be in the dark Or I think I’m gonna be close to it, then I’ll bring it So I’ll set that aside for now it’s middle expense and this is a Leatherman squirt I haven’t been bringing this cuz I check I just found it again, but the Leatherman squirts pretty cool And I realized that I think I need it because it’s real pain in the butt to get my SMA antenna off the BNC connector on my DX 8 when I got change antennas, but anyways although this in the pack because It’s important to have Glasses Old guys need glasses so I always try to bring my reading glasses, and I also have sunglasses that I wear But reading glasses is what I do bring so that’s kind of the food stuff there I must I’m gonna kind of move into the next phase of things and I’m gonna call it my my protective gear a Hat one hat or another well. There’s this one or my bald cap whichever it is I have a couple different hats that I wear, but either way. I always like to have a hat I’m gonna throw that in lasting a little bit crunch love This North Face jacket almost goes with me everywhere super lightweight They are kind of spending you can zip it up into its own pocket You can use it as a pillow or you can reverse it for you know emergency signaling if need be and this is actually one Of the shelves for it and you can actually wear It as a coat around town Which I do and I also have the gore-tex version Exterior shell I’ll be paying on what the weather forecast is what my plans are so this always goes with me If you start sweating you get up on a summit It’s windy and your backs all wet and you just get cold And it’s just nice and comfortable to have that Couple other pieces of snivel gear that I don’t usually bring unless it’s winter time like right now. We do have snow a beanie will be one so some of my old military just the wool gloves just to knock the edge off of my hands and This is one of my Harley Davidson neck gaiter things That just basically slide over my neck if I I saw it with my last videos where I? Cover my face Keeps the Sun off of me if it’s hot you get this thing wet and it helps cool you down So it’s good for cold weather or hot weather or even just a sweat rag It’s got a lot of purposes, so I do like bringing with I’ll throw all those in there minimal weight not even worried about the weight on that so I’m gonna move into The radio deer neck actually know what let’s talk about trekking poles. I use the the leaky trekking poles these ones right here I Usually usually carry them often if I’m doing overnight, or steep hikes for sure I have them Obviously they’re good for your knees heavy loads if you’re carrying them, but they also work is impromptu antenna masts and for putting my Shelter up if I need to I use them as tent stakes so they have multiple uses I’ll stuff them in there laughs because they’re kind of 20 objects So now I’m gonna move into one other thing. I always bring my My drone well. I have been bringing my drone lately and my GoPro So it’s a GoPro hero3 Nothing fancy about that, and then the drone the DJI Mavic pro So I’ve got the Mavic in there I’ve got the controller in there And then I have three batteries one is on the Mavic itself and then two in each one of the pockets here And then there’s some extra propellers in here a couple of things this is kind of heavy actually itself I’m gonna take this off for just one second. I’m gonna tell you how much this drone itself weighs The drone all by itself 4.21 pounds just for the drone And sometimes I only use one battery And I try to make it work as much as I can to the foilage will dictate on that That’s four pound potential of dump if I need to Go pro. I’m just gonna stuff that in a pocket on the side because it’s all about just finding out how much everything weighs right now and then with the GoPro I also bring An extra battery, and I bring the charger so I bring these two things here, and then I also have a solar-powered Battery charger thing it actually is in my pickup truck outside that I’ll get in just a few minutes I’ll show you what that’s about and I’m gonna leave the links below if everything that I’m talking about I’m gonna put links for everything that I’ve seen this pack that I can find links for So you know where to get it? how Costin have more details on it them all this really is about as what I’m carryin and the weight that it’s costing me to carry This so I’m just gonna stuff this GoPro battery, you know when these pockets here with the charger I do bring the charger, and then you know what my cell phone Also is one of the items cuz I use my cell phone just an iPhone 6s I use it to log, and I use it to I use it as my GPS with a the GAF GA ia again up with the link down below so This right here. It’s my all-purpose thing. I am able to spot with it sometimes. Talk to the family text message get emails Whatever cell phone use it for all kinds of things but logging the soda go tap for spotting 73 app or the ham log app for logging I should say and that helps efficiently put things online so we’re gonna go ahead and Move it to the next clip Alright, so I went out and I got the the charger thing I was talking about this little bad boy right here again Amazon item Gazoo I’ll tell you about it a little later, but I think it’s uh How many this is 5,000 milliamps and it puts out 5 volts at 1 amp, but this thing is enough? Sorry output is 5 volts at 2.4 amps, but this is enough to charge my cell phone To bring it up and I usually try to leave in the Sun with a cell phone plug in if I need to and It also keeps my GoPro batteries going so this is what I use there But I wanted to get that to make sure an accurate weight stuff that in there so Let’s put the drone here as well and then Alright so with these items in here one more thing before we Close this out so the other thing I bring is you’ve seen this part of my videos That’s sticky because Haley spilled coffee on it Taiyo But anyways it’s just a thermo rest pad. This is a short one and it’s super lightweight I use it to lay on I used to sit on I need you to keep my butt dry and I will strap this to the bottom of the pack here toward the end of the video when we go for the total Wave so I put the trekking poles on there so now I’m gonna move into actually. Let’s just stop right there look at the weight so right now with everything I’ve talked about so far we are fifteen point three Six pounds fifteen point three six pounds all I have left is my ham radio gear That’s it so ham radio gear number one items the a suit VX 8dr With the little antenna on here again I’ll link everything I put a BNC adapter On here because with the GPS on to this I have a hand mic and the GPS thing I think it actually might work for Signal reasons, but I’m able to get spots out with this, and then I use the slim-jim J Pole with this when I get on to the summit So I’m kind of not too worried about this infecting the signal I think the hand mic and that is more of an inconvenience when you’re trying to log and hold things This is working for me right now, but I did change to a BNC SMA adapter because that slim jims a polite habit So I’ll show you a second has a BNC type fitting to it So I just put that on and run it up and I’ll show you in a ten a second And it kind of mitigates everything, but so this is what I carry I strap it right here We’ve seen this in my videos on the front of my pack. I have enough v to zero almost every single time when I’m hiking in and the other band is on the APRs frequency ping in a signal about every three to five minutes One thing I will mention there was somebody that had questions about batteries I bought the external extra capacity battery. I have the original one I lost I don’t work put it so I only use this one is the 1800 milliamp 14 watt hour battery seven point 4 volts with EMI on this is a yaesu battery This thing will last me two days It’s not like I am non-stop hammering down talking But I can do two full soda peak activations with a PRS running and listening to FM radio easy honest And I still do really well on this So not too worried about that That works really good and goes right here on the front of my pack so moving into a couple the other bigger items The other bigger items so I’ve had questions about my My antenna mast this right here is I don’t know what it’s called it again. I the link down there I can’t read the name because it’s got some Japanese writing or something on it, but basically it’s a five point four meter fiberglass telescopic fishing pole That’s it 18 inches long I reinforced the bottom with a whole bunch of electrical tape Just to keep that cap on there to keep from Chaffey keep the bottom for coming out and if I have any electrical tape I’ve got so so that’s kind of why I put some electrical tape on the bottom of the pool here this being the top I put a Some zip ties around it and then some of these other zip ties that have the screw holes through and I use those to fasten down the pole if I have If I don’t a tree to tie it off to anything and I just tied off to a log or tree I’d bring some twine which This is the stuff that I’ve got right here, and I just ordered this there was one of the YouTube subscribers that Suggested that hey buy some of this stuff, and I did so it just just came in kind of expensive Michael I but it’s like a non sticky stuff. I was using just some regular Some line cord, so I’m like chalk line cord, and then I’ve done 550 cord I was using 554 lasting, so I’m integrating this into the system now just to see how it works So I look forward to tell you more about that so this the good thing I like about it is it fits inside my pack, so I don’t have this big giant pole sticking up Outside of my pack very handy, I like that. I’ll show you my other one The other one was a wonder pull It was a Shakespeare wonder pole, and I think this one is 20 feet. Yeah, 20 feet six inches, but this thing man It’s like three and a half feet long So that had to go on the outside of packing would catch on branches when I’m walking and here’s some that cord I was talking about how I used it so I Canada somewhat retired this I’m leaving it more for probably if I just go poor work out the vehicle anyways chickens occur Yeah So we put the cord inside of this pocket right here, cuz it’s all about just finding out the weight and then the slim-jim J Pole so I have these little these are metal wire kind of tie things and just around it to kind of keep it in place I Do like the orange ones so if I drop on the ground I can find them, but just a slim jim rollup J. Pull the guy named Dave Pls set one of our guys in the machine gave me. What a giver. He’s awesome Thanks, Dave, and this little bad boy right here pretty. Good size well. It’s been a coax it’s not a lot, but this thing makes a Significant difference in my ability to get out working so when I first started soda I did some stuff with the arrow beam I’ve done a lot of stuff with just the HT and it all worked so you know if you don’t have one of these They’re pretty cheap You can make one But I would rather do this over a narrow beam any day because look weighs nothing So I’m gonna set this I’m just gonna stuff it in here right now so I’ve already made a video. I’ll link it again right here on my speaker wire antenna That is my antenna and that is all so Here’s a couple of those little things around this to pull it on place I took it off the wire winder because they’re just getting all tangled up that way and I’m gonna show you how I wind this up on maybe another video but this thing is the bomb it cost me probably two dollars to make and It – from 40 to 10 all day long, and it’s I cut it resonant one to one on 20 meters Contacts all over the place no coax necessary this has just some open-ended wire That I just plug right into this wire this requires a regular speaker wire Into a BNC binding post that I’ll show you in just one second in the radio kit so this there’s my antenna That’s my HF antenna 42:10 all day long Tx2 Tunes it up like a champ, so now we’re into the heart and soul of the soda operation This is the Ella craft KX to get the shack on the Box kid. This is a low pro CX Cs6 tea bag that came with the kit when I bought it Inside of a kit I have obviously to kx2 I do have two batteries. This is the electric battery 2600 milliamp 11.1 volts I have one that’s already inside and then have one external once. I have two batteries for it I was carrying the Zippy 4,200 milliamp battery, which is laying over in the workbench I don’t need to carry that anymore because I can get two summits two days. I get a lot out of this I’m not worried about at all. I was carrying their seating so my videos this little mic. Which is still an option but you know I’m I also have the Mh3 my honey. It’s mh3 this telecraft mic so anyways in this bag is the mic a battery inside the kx2 on extra battery And usually I’ve set an iPhone Headsets in here iPhone earbuds. That’s what I use if I need them BNC binding post Other than that inside here. I have this little thumb drive thing here SD card reader, but that’s no big deal, so that’s what’s in here and Close that up I’m gonna weigh this with the heavier microphone, so I’m leaving this thing out, so I’m trying to stack the odds against myself here So right now. We’re at seventeen point zero five pounds. We’re gonna have the K X cube Set up. We are now at around with wall radio gear and there We are at nineteen point five seven pounds right now all I have left to add is my trekking poles that I showed you my hat and my Butt pad if you will so I will put the butt pad anywhere I could find them to hold it okay So I went ahead and put everything into the pack you can see all I did really was throw my hat in there and fastened on my trekking poles and put my butt pad on the bottom, so I’m also gonna. Do this just because Because I’m not my zoom h1 Audio voice recorder is right here in front of me recording this I’m gonna use the audio out of that so I kind of want to make up the difference for even that Miniscule amount of weight, so I’m going to go ahead and add the items I don’t generally bring Both of them usually bring two hammocks, and I’ll always bring this But I have these two things so they weigh about the same as the zoom each one so I’ll put those in here as well And now Everything I’ll put together everything is on there The zoom h1 the GoPros in there if I bring my DSLR that thing’s another 5 pounds I did that on one of my last videos you just saw So I won’t always bring that I’ll probably bring that here and there, but this is my base weight here Here’s where I’m at you spin this around I? Don’t know if you probably can’t see that But let me try to reset this there. We go like came back on and if we’re lucky We’ll see you’ll be able to see this 21.9 Let’s say it’s 80/20 1.88 pounds locked 21 point 88 pounds that’s 2 liters of water? So even if I add an extra liter water gloomy to water bottles out of fridge as if I added two extra liters are two more water bottles which are You know about a liter total in weight make sure these ones are these ones are actually a little heavier I think so this is just worst case scenario loadout So these are the which ones are these? These are 20 fluid ounces these are These are a little more these are like 600 milliliters, so this is like 1.2 liters more Than a carrier, so let’s just throw them in there anyway just for fun And you see how much this place now you can find We’re carrying 3 liters of water remember the drone the radio my lunch my snacks Everything is in here right now stop We’re at Twenty four point six six pounds Let’s just say I bring myself See how much we can go here, this is like really loaded for bear, I don’t even bring this We will put it on here. Just to see what happens Twenty six point three six pounds I Don’t know what else I could bring other than I got a tent I mean That’s that’s pretty much everything so I hope that answers your questions about What it is that I’m bringing? If you have any questions specifically on the gear, please make sure you include them in the comments again I’d appreciate it if you’d subscribe to my channel give me some ideas of things that you want like this video It’s a little bell thing for me, so you get notified There is quite a few people that Hit me with them emails they put some of those emails out there the public comments if you don’t mind so that other people can See the different informations going back and forth. I really appreciate everybody that’s been following me so far I look forward to making more videos and for now I hope you enjoy the video. Thank you You


  • K6ARK - Adam

    Great video, Jerry, thanks for sharing. You can always find more to leave behind. I did an overnight Sierra trip to bag 4 SOTA summits in the Kearsarge Pass area a couple of years ago and used just a 17 liter pack weighing under 13 lbs fully loaded, including the 2 lbs of radio gear. It's all about trade-offs. Your chosen load-out will definitely result in a much more fun and comfortable excursion than my bare-bones pack did 😀

  • Steve wGØAT

    GREAT video, Jerry! 3-things: #1 Always carry a light source…be it your iPhone 6, your headlamp or cheap LED key light (I guarantee you someday you will unexpectedly have to hike or limp out in the dark for whatever reason! It's no fun without a full moon or LED light especially when Mr Cougar is tracking his next meal and you're hearing weird noises in the darkness! …just saying) FYI- cavers carry 3-lights minimum their motto is "Your light is YOUR life"! #2 is carry some kind tarp, poncho, tent or even a sturdy trash (which doesn't weigh much and also can be used for cleaning up other uneducated (I didn't say dumb!) peep's trash) plus some dental floss for guying a makeshift tarp-tent. If you have to spend a (unplanned) night out you'll have another layer of protection from Ma Nature which is priceless …trust me! #3 file a 'flight plan' with a loved one (aka someone who cares and knows where to send SAR! when you're a no show!) …15-years in SAR I've seen a few things and where a light or trash bag and where to look for your warm body would have saved a life!! Sorry one last thing …Practice, putting up your tent, tarp, radio/antenna better yet every item in pack in the backyard first before you're on the windy freezing summit using you bare hands and talking like a sailor wondering WTH why am I doing this? …Most of all have FUN but be safe! …good stuff, Jerry!

  • Christian Claborne

    Given our last conversation, I had a big smile when I saw this video pop-up. You got to < 25 lbs. you're the boss. I can get down to 30 lbs pretty easy. Any less than that and I have to trade in my stupid military style pack for a Osprey or Gregory pack and switch to the 817. I like the scale 🙂

  • KB1HQS

    Another Osprey fan! I use the same pack and find it pretty decent, though I don't care for the lid or straps. I may go back to my UL pack at some point as I like the simplicity of it all. I guess one can never have too many backpacks!

  • A

    Cool set up! I'm gonna watch your antenna video now. I'm using a 9:1 UNUN on a 30' wire and it works good. Do you mainly do voice or data or CW? …oh! Don't forget the Glock! #1 item!

  • RViscara

    Hey Jerry that was me who told you about the “Dyneema” line which is super strong and hard shell so it’s not “Sticky” like had before. Dyneema is also super strong for its size. The Clips are what is known a “S” Biners and those strings you attach to your poles are called “guylines” and guyline flange. Thanks for mentioning me

  • Pete Rowlston

    Hey there! Excellent Channel you own. I am currently just walking across the whole of Spain for charity aand would really like you to look at my videos and subscribe. I dropped you a like in this video additionally 😛

  • hogdriver88

    Great video Jerry. My son is a back country hiker and he bought me a 40L backpack for day hiking. I've been looking at it, thinking of using it just like this for portable radio ops. Not too many summits here in north central NC but plenty of parks. Between you and Tony K9ARV, my wallet is doomed. Saw the KX2 shack in a bag at a recent hamfest and thinking my KX3 needs a companion. New subscriber and btw retired 31 year leo. Keep up the good work. 73 Gregg KE2SX

  • Jeffrey Brady

    Great video Jerry. I recently got interested in SOTA. Love the attention to detail you have in all your videos. Thanks for sharing your awesome journeys! I hope to get some of my own videos up in the near future.

  • Justin Moyers

    Jeezzzz Jerry you planning an apocalypse or what haha? Good stuff. Gives me alot to think about for my pack.

  • Rus Healy

    Thanks for another great video, Jerry. I have an Osprey Kestrel 38. Today I went to the local REI Co-Op store to look at the Osprey Daylite Plus day packs. They're nice–takes the full 11-lb test load that Osprey supplies the stores for fitting packs. However, it is disappointing that the Daylite Plus doesn't attach to the Kestrel packs the way it does with some of Osprey's other packs. Also considering a crammable day pack to go inside the Kestrel but I'd prefer one that actually fits the Kestrel because it would be so nice to just pop it off the main pack for day hikes during camping trips. Know of anything like that?

  • Denis Dunderdale

    Great video Jerry.
    Do you ever SOTA overnight? Is so what do you use for that, hammock? Tent? What additional stuff for that? More water and food, but still all under 30 lbs, I suppose.

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