44 pounds. That’s it. Including my carry-on day pack. On most international flights, airline rules limit you to a total of 44 pounds of luggage per person, including your carry-on. Here is the main gear I’m bringing with me.
|Eagle Creek Thrive 65L PackThis may have been one of my most critical purchases. Only time will tell if I made the right decision. I was torn between this pack and a more backpacker-style pack. I realized my style of travel would have me mainly staying in cities or small towns, and most hiking I do will not require me to carry all of my possessions on my back. For a reasonable price, getting both the main pack and the day pack had me sold. The main pack is 45 liters, and the day pack is 19 liters. At 45 liters, it really forced me to pack light, and it was a much more reasonable fit for my short stature.Note: The first day of my trip, the small backpack was stolen in Quito. I replaced it with a sturdy and lockable backpack from a sporting goods tore in Quito.|
|Nikon D60 w/ 3 lenses
– Nikkor 18-200mm
– Tamron 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5
– Nikkor 35mm f/1.8GI’ve had the D60, but I needed to get a better range of lenses for the trip. I chose something with an all-encompassing zoom range to limit the number of times I’d have to switch out lenses. Then I got a wide angle (anticipating the Torres del Paine shots) and a prime lens. This set of equipment may be the most weight in my entire pack.
|HP Pavilion dm3 Notebook PC
– 4GB RAM
– 64-bit OS
– 4.2 pounds
A laptop with enough power to meet my photography needs, but still lightweight. And it definitely fit the budget. So far I’m happy with it. Let’s see how well it stands up to the demands of traveling.
|Women’s Merrell Moab Mid GORE-TEX Hiking BootsI had trouble finding many styles of women’s hiking books in stores, so I ordered 4 pair online, and these were the most comfortable and sturdy, yet still lightweight.|
|KEEN Newport H2 Sandal
I had a really hard time finding sturdy sandals in stores in Ohio in October. So I ordered these online based on a blog post on www.thefourhourworkweek.com.
|The North Face Mercurial Liner BagI was intrigued by this bag because it is super light-weight, and it has three temperature configurations based on which side is up and reversibility. Since I’ll be in warm weather the majority of the time I’m gone, I didn’t want to be weighted down by traditional 3-season bag. Let’s hope I don’t get too cold in Patagonia.|
|Eagle Creek Travel TowelVery compact and dries fast. And the small mesh bag it comes in works very well to tote your shower supplies to the bathroom.|
|Princeton Tec Fuel HeadlampVery useful when in a shared dorm and trying to find things when the lights are off and everyone is sleeping. Also a necessity for trekking/ camping. This one has multiple settings, including three levels of brightness and a flashing light, and the lamp can be adjusted up and down.|
|Other Electronics– iPod charger
– Camera battery chargers
– Travel multi-outlet adapter
– Laptop power cord
– Memory cards – I prefer Transcend 16 GB SDHC Class 10 Flash Memory Card TS16GSDHC10E. I did not start with the appropriate class, and I could tell a big difference when I upgraded to these on a trip back home.
– External flash –
This is not a complete list, but it’s pretty close:- Sterile syringes – I realize this may seem strange, but multiple sources suggested bringing a few sterile syringes because it is not uncommon for other countries to re-use. If you need to get a shot (e.g. a dog bites you and you need a rabies shot), you don’t want to take chances.– Gauze pads, alcohol pads, band-aids, Neosporin, medical tape, iodine tablets- Bug spray with lots of Deet
– Anti-malarial pills – I have malaria maps of each country I plan to visit. If I am going to enter a malaria region, I start taking them two days before I get there.
– Altitude sickness pills – At a few places I plan to go, it is very common to experience altitude sickness. I have heard from enough people that altitude sickness is no joke, and even if you’ve never had it before, it will most likely happen in South America.
– Antibiotics – Just in case. Yes, I probably could get them from a pharmacy if needed, but it’s just as easy to take something with me that I know will work. Also, I’m allergic to penicillin, so I’d rather not take any chances.
|Other Supplies– Eagle Creek Silk Money Belt – It’s important to invest in a silk money belt because when you travel long distances, you will be wearing this and sweating on it for many hours at a time.
– Nylon patches, heavy-duty needles and thread – For repairs to my packs. Can be hard to come by when you really need them.– Mini multi-tool Note: Confiscated by airport security becasue I was careless and forgot it was in my carry-on flying from Mexico City to Guatemala. NOT REPLACED– Mini clothesline- Flat rubber sink stopper – For when I have to hand-wash clothes in a large sink at the hostel
– Safety pins, rubber bands, paper clips, duct tape, scotch tape- Laundry detergent – I knew I could get this there, but I found these really cool strips that are in a packet that looks like dental floss. You use 5 strips (they look like those breath-freshening strips that used to be popular) for a load of laundry.
– Compass/ whistle/ thermometer combination tool to attach to my day pack – When you get off a train or bus and are not sure which direction is North, this will be handy. Of course, the whistle is for safety. And the thermometer will come in handy when I find it impossible to convert Celcius temperatures. Note: Stolen my first day of the trip. The only thing I replaced was the whistle.
– 2 Nalgene bottles Note: One was stolen my first day of the trip. NOT REPLACED
– 1 North Face Khumbu Fleece Jacket – One of the smartest purchases I made. This has kept me warm on many chilly nights, and the zip pockets and inside, hidden pockets are great for avoiding pickpockets.
– 2 pair jeans – I ended up throwing away a pair that had worn holes in inappropriate places, and I saw no need to replace them.
– 1 pair black dressier pants – Note: I ended up sending these back with a friend.
– 1 pair “jungle pants” – Basically, quick-dry hiking pants that zip off into shorts.
– 1 pair shorts
– 2 short-sleeve t-shirts
– 1 long-sleeve cardigan
– 1 long-sleeve t-shirt
– 2 tank tops + 2 very thin tank tops to layer under
– 1 light cotton skirt
– workout gear – 1 pair running shoes, 2 pair running shorts, 2 sports bras, 2 tanks, 2 pair running socks – I’m a freak about working out, so I had to make this stuff fit.
– 2 pair lightweight wool socks
– 10 pair of underwear – I know this is probably too much, but I’m not willing to skimp here.
– 2 bathing suits
– 1 pashmina –
– 2 bandanas (for hiking)
– 1 hat (protection from sun)
– 1 lightweight water-proof jacket Note: Stolen the first day of my trip. Bought a cheap poncho to replace it.Bought along the way…– 1 pair black tights – I discovered these are the most versatile travel clothing ever.
– 1 pair cheap comfy high heels – A necessity for salsa dancing
– 1 cheap winter hat and pair of gloves (to survive the Winter in Buenos Aires and useful again when I traveled to Patagonia and the Bolivian Altiplano)