10 Essentials

Pocket knife
Some sort of swiss-army-knife type knife.

There are cases where you need a dry bag, but they are very rare (kayaking, canoeing). Black plastic garbage bags work great in normal cases… I always keep 3-4 in my backpack just in case I need them (and I often do).

waterproof are nice. I keep a large quantity of wood matches in my knapsack… The key thing is to keep them in a ziplock bag to keep them dry!!

I always have 2-3 cheap ones (<$15 for three pack) in my knapsack and a bunch of spare batteries

Map and Compass
Liquid filled, rotating dial, designed for orienteering. An even better kind allows permanently adjusting it using a screwdriver for declination, but NOT necessity (none of mine support it). A compass without a map of the area is much less useful.

Platypus type systems are fun so you can drink while hiking. But some kind of water bottle is the goal. I am the other extreme – I buy the prefilled bottles. 24 for $5 or so and bring 4-5 on each campout. The most important thing is to have lots of water!!

Sun protection
Hat which protects the face.
Suntan lotion


First-aid kit


Spare clothes

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