For this month's Ambassador Gear List, we return to Heather "Anish" Anderson and her recent hike of the Oregon Desert Trail.

Trout Mountains, Oregon Desert Trail

About the Oregon Desert Trail:

The Oregon Desert Trail is a conceptual route created in 2011 by the Oregon Natural Desert Association. It connects some of the most spectacular scenery Oregon has to offer including the Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge, the Steens Mountains, the Pueblo Mountains, and the Owyhee Canyonlands. The Western Terminus is in the Oregon Badlands Wilderness and the Eastern Terminus is in the Lake Owyhee State Park near Ontario, Oregon on the Idaho border.

Since the Oregon Desert Trail is a route, there is very little "trail on the ground," no ODT markings, and much of it follows old jeep roads or is cross-country. Users are encouraged to make their own route choices through public lands, following the GPS track and waypoints developed and provided by the Oregon Natural Desert Association. You can read more about the ODT as well as many Eastern Oregon natural features at

Sunset over Hart Lake

Trip Stats:

Distance Hiked: 715 miles Start: Tumulus Trailhead Finish: Owyhee Overlook, Lake Owyhee State Park Time: 22 days 22 hours Daily Average: 31 miles


This route wasn't as physically demanding as it was mentally demanding. Because there was little marked trail and a lot of cross country navigation was nearly constant.

Honeycomb Rock of Dago Canyon

Because there are extensive dry sections one must also be aware of water sources and availability. I carried up to 2 gallons of water.

Canyon in the Trout Mountains

Since I went in the spring following a wet winter snow was an issue at higher elevations and the water crossings in the Owyhee Canyonlands were treacherous.

Riverside camp along the Owyhee after a thunderstorm

Since it was spring the nights were still cold (at or below freezing), and daytime temperatures were relatively comfortable (70-80 most days).

Confluence of the Little West Owyhee and Owyhee Rivers

Item Notes Weight (oz) Worn (oz)
Backpacking Buddy Pinky 0.5
Gossamer Gear Silverback Size small with small hipbelt backpad replaced with nitelite pad 33
Gossamer Gear Shoulder Pockets (one of each size) 2.8
Compass 1.75
Beta 3
Gossamer Gear Pack Liner 2.5
Loksack Opsack one large and one medium 2
Swiss Army Classic knife 0.8
Toothpaste 1
Hot Hands (2) hand warmers 1.7
Sewing kit 0.1
.5 oz Neosporin 0.5
Immodium, Benadryl, Aleve 0.3
gauze bandages 0.1
mini floss 0.1
toothbrush 0.3
Cuben Q-Storage stuff sacks 0.5
Leuko Tape 0.3
Wet Wipes Individually wrapped. one per day 0.2
hand sani 0.3
Sawyer Sunscreen 0.5
picaridin bug spray by Sawyer 0.3
eyedrops/extra contact lenses 0.6
Bamboo spoon 0.7
Imbue Patches 1
Gossamer Gear Crotch Pot For hydration of food 0.5
Sleeping System
fleece pants 3.7
fleece shirt 4.7
Nightlite Torso Length sleeping pad 4.6
Point 6 compression socks 2.6
Thinlite Foam Pad sit pad in day/extra padding at night 2.4
Montbell 0 Degree Down Hugger 800 Sleeping bag 46
Luna Tabu Booties camp shoes 2.5
Gossamer Gear The One with carbon poles 25
Gossamer Gear Polycryo Groundsheet 1.6
Gossamer Gear LT5 Trekking poles Straps removed 4.6
Hats, Gloves, Buffs, Bandanas, Sleeves, etc
Backcountry Ninjas Hat 2
Sunglasses 0.8
Half Bandana 0.6
Seirus Warm Mitts 5
Fleece Gloves 1.4
Jackets and Rain Protection
Montbell U.L. Thermawrap Jacket 7.5
Montbell Versalite Rain Jacket 6
Montbell U.L. Stretch Wind Parka 3.5
Montbell Stretch Full Zip Rain Pants 10.5
Hiking Clothes
Point 6 Socks 1.5
hiking dress 4.3
Ibex Balance Bra 1.7
Socks and Shoes
2pr Point 6 extra light mini crew hiking socks 3
Altra Trail Gaiters 1.6
Altra Lone Peak 25
Ultimate Direction 70 oz hydration bladder with Sawyer All in One In Line Filter 10
Ultimate Direction Body Bottle Plus 1.7
backflush syringe 1.1
Sawyer 64 oz pouches (2) 2.8
Suntactics 5 cell solar panel 8
Smart Phone with charger cord and wall plug 10
External rechargable phone charger 3
OR Sensor Dry Envelope 0.8
Black Diamond Spot headlamp 2.9
Extra Batteries Lithium AAA 3
Total Carried (oz) 233.85
Total Worn (oz) 36.9