Lightweight backpacking is about making the most out of the gear you bring with you. Finding multiple uses for your gear is one of the most cost efficient and ingenious ways to save weight. With a little creativity you can find that you really don't need to bring items that serve small jobs. Ditch that backcountry pillow and use a fleece lined stuff sack instead or invest a shelter that uses trekking poles for support.

trash compactor inflate sleep pad

One piece of gear will serve multiple purposes, but will also impress your camping companions and save you from passing out after a long day hiking. It never fails when I bust this move at a crowded shelter on the AT that someone doesn't take me aside and timidly say, "Hey, could show me how to do that?" While it takes a bit of practice, anyone can do this. A trash compactor bag is a cheap and genius way to keep your gear dry and serve another purpose. Intrigued? Take a gander at the video below! This tip was sent to us by Gossamer Gear customer Rigatoni Noodlehead.

March 30, 2015 — Brian Fryer