How do you travel with HMG?
It's rare for me not to have some piece of HMG gear with me when I travel, and I am curious what everyone's favorite products are to travel with? As a solo female who is usually bouncing around locations accessibility and utility are high priority for me, so I don't go anywhere without my Versa (which I wear as a crossbody) and a Pillow Stuff Sack (for long plane/train rides and flat hostel pillows).
What's your favorite HMG piece to hit the road/skies with?
MARK SIREK Administrator Posts: 218
@sonricker We hear a lot of positive feedback about the 3400 Southwest as a do-it-all for everything from backpacking to traveling - mostly because of the tough, fully-enclosed outer packets that eliminate some worry about showing the world what you're schlepping around. Of course, you won't want to keep your laptop and wallet in one when you're stuck in a crowd in an airport, but you get my drift! Also, some users remove the aluminum stays to increase squishability in overhead compartments on planes. It's pretty cool to have one piece of favorite gear that you really can take anywhere for anything! And of course, Pods make organizing what's inside your pack nice and easy.2
I love my 2400 Windrider and I also love my ultamid 2 with the half insert or the hyperlite def floor! I love having all of the space and being able to stretch and not worry about hitting anything. I also love my zpacks Nero. It has been amazing to use all of this gear and to learn how much I rely on it!1
I always have at least one Pod and two drawstring stuff sacks in my kit when I travel. They're fantastic for organization and I can move them from a suitcase or duffel to pack and back and never worry about them. I also usually travel with a mirrorless camera, and that always goes in a Camera Pod.1
I'm a total nerd and very organized. It is important to me the be highly organized and give each item careful consideration where it will go and always have contingency plans for everything.
Gender matters; so does age. Sorry, but it does. Ultra light gear critical.
Total weight important.
Generate a list for everything.
Here is what I learned after 6 decades of camping, hiking, cycling and kayaking in the WORST weather ever in Texas, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, places I can't remember...Middle East, and Europe. This system works for me.
- Everything gets wet and/or funky
- Always spring for the best, usually the most expensive, item
- Theft is real; there con-artists, racists, sexists and meanies. So are generous, kind, generous, and honorable humans.
- Carry American cash in small denominations on you. hidden.
- If you journey overseas, get money the U.S. before hand.
- Carry a credit card--call your loan institution and share you will be overseas to make sure your credit card works!
- Carry copies (xeroxes) of important documents, or take a photos front and back and carry on your cell; i.e., license, passport, insurance docs.
- Go to a local attorney. Hire him/her to prepare four documents you carry: Will, Power of Attorney, Medical POA, Statutory Power of Attorney. File those docs with your lawyer; carry copies. Tell your hiking mates where to find documents so THEY can get you into ER and check (if they are inclined) on your disposition. Give each of them those documents. If you put those documents in a cool Pod, they are much more amenable to your request, so be generous.
- Have your Versa fanny pack within reach: waist or on chest. It's not water proof but water resistant. I use my Versa frequently and usually have it open as an extra "pocket".
- Carry Aqua Mira A and B
- the Shoulder Pocket is very handy. Invest in the big one.
- The Essential Umbrella is very handy: keeps sun off when it's hot keeps water off when rains.
- the Draw String sacks aid your ability to stay organized (It really gets dark!)
- If you want a hot meal try a RePack.
- Nik-Wax for down hard to beat.
- have repair kits or extra parts for everything; including you. Carry Items in a baggie then in small Draw String bag in your pack.
- There is probably more.... next?
Lots of good tips above, here are a few of my own.
I love to carry my stuff pack when I'm traveling. If I'm not bringing a computer, I can use it as my carry on bag as long as camera gear is in my checked luggage. If I'm not using as a carry on, I still like to bring it because it's useful, light, and packs down reasonably small. Pro tip: I like to use a Z-rest sit pad as a back panel for this pack both on and off trail. It was super useful on a recent 20 hour layover in Singapore.
When I'm traveling with a bigger pack, I highly recommend putting the waist belt into "airplane mode" where I clip it around behind the pack. This helps shorten the straps, and also protects the hip pockets.
I've also appreciated the additional assurance of the camera pod when I'm traveling as a way to protect my camera while it's in my luggage.
Lastly, I'd like to put in a plug to bring back the larger HMG duffel. Would love to see that make a comeback!1
I absolutely love my stuff sack pillow it comes in handy in so many situations for plane journeys, camping, bike packing and hiking journeys! I also love the stuff sacks they come amazingly in handy for my climbing gear!0
I’ve traveled a few times with my Southwest 2400 and love it. It’s the perfect carry on. I also use the pods and drawstring little bags to pack smaller items (hygiene products, undergarments) that I can find easy! I also love my Versa- I use it as a crossbody sometimes too. It’s the perfect item to keep things handy and easily accessible (passport, license, etc.).0