What's in your daypack for that unplanned overnight on the mountain?

tstowater

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
1,203
Location
Iowa
We got into a discussion on the epic pack out thread about those unplanned nights away from your camp. Don't know if this issue has been hashed over before, so I apoligize if it has and just refer me to the thread. My personal experience was on my first sheep hunt in Canada and it was midnight and 2 hours from the horses and an ugly ride out from there with very limited food, no shelter (except a small tarp that didn't do much good) or sleeping bags, no way to start a fire and one of the hunters was unable to go any further.

The question I have is what do you have in your pack when you get too far to safely get back or for other reasons that you are not able to make it back the "comforts of your camp? I'm not asking about those times that you expect that the chances are pretty good that you won't make it back and pack accordingly, but just the unplanned ones. This may mean a tarp, sleeping bag, food, etc. What's on the list and roughly the total weight (within a lb or 2)?

Thanks, Todd
 

ohhiitznik

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
1,752
Location
Rochester Hills, MI
I'll be bivy hunting this year so I'll be carrying everything with me, all the time. But if I do set up in a basin and decide to hunt it for a few days I'll carry my shelter, sleep system, and food for the day + all the normals you would carry on a day hunt. That would be kill kit, survival essentials, extra food, etc.
 

2rocky

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2012
Messages
1,047
Location
Nor Cal
Daypack:
Fire starter Kit: Fire Stix, Magnesium block, Kotex Pad, "waterproof" matches, Bic Lighter, whatever TP or Wetones.

Foil Blanket, & Rain gear, Grabber Mycoal Chemical body warmer, spare pair of Merino blend socks.

Cliff Bars and stripped down MRE.

It ain't gonna be fun, but I'll survive until Daylight...
 
OP
tstowater

tstowater

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
1,203
Location
Iowa
I'll be bivy hunting this year so I'll be carrying everything with me, all the time. But if I do set up in a basin and decide to hunt it for a few days I'll carry my shelter, sleep system, and food for the day + all the normals you would carry on a day hunt. That would be kill kit, survival essentials, extra food, etc.

Not really what I had in mind. I'm thinking more of operating out of a fixed camp (not bivy or spiking out for a couple days) and end up in an unplanned night out. You response is for an expected night out, or highly likely. What do you have along for the "just in case" events?
 

ohhiitznik

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
1,752
Location
Rochester Hills, MI
Just in case events I would be carrying food for the day + 1 day extra. I'd carry water purification, and my sleep system along with any applicable clothes. I'd also have my cook kit if that was needed. And the of course your kill kit + possibles bag (survival, first aid, fire starting). And any calls or optics you would need.

Because I'm bivy hunting I'll be carrying it all with me. If I was at a fixed base camp, I would carry almost the same amount of things except less food and no comfort items like crocs/field chair/etc. That's why it makes more sense for me to just bivy hunt as I'm just carrying 6-7 more lbs for 4 days of food and that allows me to cover a lot more ground.
 

Rob P

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2012
Messages
117
Location
Sacramento Area
Kotex Pad? Now I can appreciate that it may be useful for starting a fire, although I've never heard of anyone doing so. However, there has to be sometthing else u can throw in the pack without having to explain why u are carrying a kotex. maybe someone can repackage them and call them emergency tinder or something.
 

Matt Cashell

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
4,174
Location
Western MT
My day gear includes:

Water/Water purification system (circumstances determine which method).
Food
kill kit
first aid (this is pretty thin usually like duct tape and Aleve)
spotter/tripod
RF
camera
ponchotarp
extra layer (puffy usually)
GPS
TP

On my person:

SPOT2
wetfire or trioxane, bic, matches, handkerchief,
 
Last edited:

Yellowknife

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2012
Messages
1,707
Location
Fairbanks, Alaska
I always have an emergency kit with me with, so things like fire starter, sat phone, first aid kit etc are a given.

When mountain hunting, I typically carry my sleeping bag, e-bivy, + one days extra food. Total weight about 4 extra lbs. I haven't had to use it yet, but have come very close a few times. For instance, this year I stalked a sheep a couple mile from camp very late in the day. I blew it and ended up back at camp just after dark, but if I had connected, I was counting on just spending the night on the hillside. Wouldn't have been fun (it was raining off and on), but not a big deal either. A sheep cape would have made a nice mattress I suspect.

When day hunting within a few miles of a fixed camp (for moose etc), I've always got an extra layer, a little extra food, and a 5x8 tarp in my pack. If needed, I'd hole up under a tree for the night and be back in camp for pancakes in the morning. Total weight maybe 2 lbs.

I also do a lot of remote field work every summer, usually commuting by helicopter. If the helicopter doesn't make it back due to mechanical or weather reasons, I've got the same kit I use moose hunting + a brush axe (or saw) a small stove, and some via coffee. There is usually some Ramen noodles somewhere in the bottom of my pack also. I mean, just because I'm stuck out there doesn't mean I have to be miserable right?

The tarp I carry, is a "Sport Utility Blanket" made by SOL at 11 oz. It's not nearly as light as the silnylon versions, but has orange and reflective sides, which for my purposes is far more important than weight.

http://www.adventuremedicalkits.com/product.php?product=258

Yk
 
OP
tstowater

tstowater

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
1,203
Location
Iowa
ohhiitznik: for a bivy hunt, your set up make perfect sense. From a personal safety point, we were kind of between a rock and a hard place. I haven't found a minimal sleep system (one of the guys had one of those "space blankets" and about froze) that doesn't weigh much or take up a lot of room and a way to get out of the elements. The food, possibles, kill kit (Rokslide kit now) are no-brainers. I always carry extra socks and some clothes (usually including rain gear where appropriate at all). Just trying to nail down what I should really give serious consideration to taking along all the time.
 

Snipershirt

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2013
Messages
228
PLD, kill kit w/ tyvek tarp, GU packs/Cliff type bars, water tabs...Ranger 101; spare pair of socks, duc tape/glue (field exp first aide kit), stripped down MRE. Fire starter w/ cotton balls or kotex. Most of my items in my daypack have multiple uses to aide in an overnighter.
 

Yellowknife

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2012
Messages
1,707
Location
Fairbanks, Alaska
From a personal safety point, we were kind of between a rock and a hard place. I haven't found a minimal sleep system (one of the guys had one of those "space blankets" and about froze) that doesn't weigh much or take up a lot of room and a way to get out of the elements.

After trying them a few times, I decided I'm not a fan of the mylar space blankets. Better than nothing, but not by very much.

There are a number of bivy out systems that should work well depending on where a guys hunts. Luke now carries a puffy suit + tarp shelter + quilt + pad which is pretty high class and basically a mini camp. I am perfectly comfortable carrying my < 3lb synthetic sleeping bag with me every day. It's not that heavy and my pack is plenty big enough to swallow it. Since I'm carrying it in the base camp anyway, I'm not doubling up on anything getting that far. The possibility of a bivy out is also the reason why I use a sythetic bag, even though down would work find most of the time.

Yk
 

sk1

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2012
Messages
1,203
Location
SE Wisconsin
i always have a few things with me

rain gear
silver emergency sleeping bag, i think it weighs 10oz (hopefully this with a fire keeps me warm enough)
first aid kit which includes duct tape and a package of hand warmers
trioxane for fire starting with a bic and waterproof matches
water purification tablets
spot2 for real emergencies
and i usually have 2 extra cliff bars floating around my pack
 

Matt Cashell

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
4,174
Location
Western MT
You can stuff your gamebags with duff or other dry natural insulation in a pinch.

The number one need for an unexpected overnight is fire.

If things get seriously F'd you can break the p-cord out of your kill kit for a tourniquet.
 

jmez

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2012
Messages
6,073
Location
Piedmont, SD
2 game bags
Knife
Compass
GPS
Map
Calls
Personal Locator Beacon
Sol survival blanket
Waterproof matches
Bic lighter wrapped in duct tape
Magnesium fire starter
Vaseline soaked cotton balls
Toilet paper
Vest
Rain Gear
Food for 1 day
Extra socks and extra pair of gloves
MSR Sweetwater pump
25 foot para cord
 

todd kelly

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2012
Messages
749
Location
B.C.
There are a few items that I never head out the door or leave camp with out. I always have a headlamp, GPS, SPOT, and minimum of two bic lighters on my person every trip out. Unless I am hurt, I don't see there is any reason to stay on the mountain overnight, that's where the headlamp and GPS come in. I almost always keep this stuff on me and not in my pack. I would hate for something to happen and not be able to find my pack with my SPOT in it.
 

hunthard

Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
58
Location
Belgrade, Montana
fire striker, vasaline soaked cottonballs in a old 35 mm film can, iodine tablets, space blanket, extra cliff bar, small first aid kit, knife carried on me and one in my pack.
 

luke moffat

Super Moderator
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
13
http://vimeo.com/channels/backpackinggear/51714409

This is how I roll :D

Granted its a lot of "extras" for sure such as you coudl easily cut out the stove/fuel, puffy pants, quilt, and just take a single CCF pad, but I've found the extra weight and these creature comforts make going on a stalk way late in the day knowing that you likely be stuck out on the mountain a night a bit more inviting. When hunting well above treeline where a fire isn't possible the stove is a life saver though to just drink hot water in teh middle of the night to warm up is a nice feature to have as well.

Those in the lower 48 with trees up to 10K don't really got to contend with the no wood to burn scenario nearly as often as we do up here in AK where the treeline is roughly 2000-2500'. On hunts such as these we pack with the mind set we can't build a fire.

Like Yellowknife says I take a minicamp along when going with my wife. When going solo I go a bit more minimalist certainly and usually carry my whole camp with me all the time, but its just a matter of finding a balance in what to bring and what works for you.

Certainly no wrong way about it...except for maybe how I do it. :D
 
Last edited:

shootnrun

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2013
Messages
56
Location
United States
I always pack enough food and water for the day plus an extra MH jus in case. Then the basic fire starting essentialls and space blanket, kill kit, etc.

I ended up using this stuff a couple years ago and the hot meal was awesome, the fire kept us alive, but the space blankets were all but useless. I had very basic gear then, but in the future I plan to pack my quilt since it is so light. Something to keep the earth from direct contact with sleeping system would have probably kept us a bit more comfortable as well..
 

ohhiitznik

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
1,752
Location
Rochester Hills, MI
I don't bring along a space blanket because they are worthless. Kifaru Woobie is a lifesaver and is very light. Also look at the hill people gear mountain serape. Has many uses and is a great piece of gear with great reviews.
 
Top