My not-so-secret secret to getting outside regularly involves two precepts:
- Get organized – If everything is in its place, you pack much more efficiently, and you have more outdoor time.
- Pre-pack – Have items ready to go so you can get out the door with minimal fuss and be prepared for when the gift of time presents itself.
The means except for quilts, our backpacks are mainly packed, the daypacks are all set to “grab and go,” and we stage our truck for quick camping trips on the fly. We organize our food for quick packing as well.
Joan and I often leave on a Friday, camp out, and then go backpacking the rest of the weekend.
Part of these quick trips always has some warm clothes basics. A duffle bag that’s always packed and thrown into my flyers kit bag. I don’t have to think about what to pack, and I know I’ll have it available. Be it on quick camping trips or road trips, I’m warm and have the appropriate clothing at a dispersed site somewhere in a remote area.
And if backpacking the day after, I don’t have to unpack and repack my backpack to get at the clothing already there. We can get to the trail earlier in the morning.
And what’s in this duffle?
- A 100-wt fleece I also use for ski touring as it is oversized and allows ventilation.
- M-65 liner “puffy” pants
- Warm-up/wind pants. Perfect for putting over shorts when in camp.
In a stuff sack –
- A top and bottom pair of surplus LWCWUS thermals.
- Thick wool socks
- Thick fleece beanie
- A heavy balaclava that pairs well with my down parka below
- Fleece mittens from Etsy that are simple, warm, and inexpensive.
- A pair of liner gloves
- Some old shell mittens
- Fleece-lined “hut slippers” lined with Reflectix with a light rubber sole I bought at a discount store.
With these items, I find I’m warm well into late fall for camping, road trips, and the night before a backpacking trip.
A simple duffle bag always packed lets me spend less of my time bank funds for packing and enjoy the outdoors more easily.