I think of myself as an average outdoorsman…with skills that rivaled those of Jerimiah Johnson or of Daniel Boone – (in my head anyways)
and would like to believe that I do not need a lot of gear to brave the wild or not so wilds!
Not long ago, I was going through my stuff and I came to the realization that I was either becoming a hoarder or I had a serious dependency on outdoor gear.
Until that moment I did not realize the problem I had or currently HAVE… (gasp)
Did I really need all of that stuff?
Did this Chevy truck sized pile of gear give me a false sense of security? …(most likely)
Every time I planned on camping “off trail” , anxiety seemed to be my partner as we geared up for the trip. This anxiety probably came from the shame I had for not taking most of this “stuff” I had acquired specifically for these types of outings I was going on more and more.
The gear had a hold on me- (damn you gear!)
MAN this STUFF was really getting to me- (funny but not funny)
Soon my emotions had me challenging myself against the the wilds in which I held with utmost resect.
I started by taking next to nothing with me on solo hikes and overnight camps to prove that I did not need the extra stuff.
Looking back this had only proved 3 things…
1.That I could endure the suck factor and survive the night- (yay)
2.That I could have enjoyed my experience much more if I only had a few items with me at the time– (duh)
3. What I really needed was to learn how to enjoy camping again- (truth)
Why did I keep trying make perfect day and night afield less than perfect?
I’m certain it was the guilt I experienced for keeping all that gear around and never using it and looking for a way to build up my confidence to lessen the need to carry all that STUFF! – ( man that stuff really had me messed up!)
Just like the late great George Carlin describes the “stuff” in his comedy skit below.
Click on the picture to watch-
WARNING ADULT LANGUAGE AND HUMOR!
His description of “stuff” resonated with me.
His funny but true scenarios about stuff made a lot of sense me then and will hopefully bring clarity to more folks who see this brilliant skit-
I thought I had too much stuff/ too much gear…( I do really but that’s besides the point now)
My solution was to just bring enough and not be weighted down by unnecessary gear- (K.I.S.S)
Make every trip an adventure by simply using more wits than gear!
Below is a basic checklist of helpful ideas to help you plan your next outing…
- Wear comfortable clothing and footwear
- Bring something to eat & drink
- Take lightweight shelter or cover element
- Carry a few handy tools (This could be a pocket knife, multitool or what ever makes you feel more at home away from home)
- Capture it all by journaling or photographing your experience!
- A comfortable bag or pack (to carry it all)
Take note of the items you did not use. This will soon be a short list of gear that you leave behind on the next trip.
Remember be safe and always have fun!