Step 3 – Know Your Budget

Your personal budget will determine in large part the type of gear you acquire. 

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 In general, gear prices increase as gear volume (size) and weight decreases.  

The volume and weight of your gear will determine the size of your pack; thus the reason I recommend that you do your research first, acquire the bulk of your gear second, and save your pack purchase for last.  

My first pack was much too small for my gear. So what do you think I did to accommodate? Yep, just like most folks I attached stuff to the outside. What happens then? The pack becomes unwieldy with the center of gravity out of balance and repacking becoming a nightmare. 

Trust me, this setup sucks!

Trust me, this setup sucks! (Shared with permission from Eric B. Fuller, unsuccessful PCT attempt 2012)

While buying the right gear the first time can be daunting especially for those on a tight budget, it doesn’t need to be stifling.  The reality is it probably won’t be your final purchase. Consider it your starter gear. I can almost guarantee that you will make changes once you figure out through trial and error what really works for you. Remember there is no magic answer, everyone has preferences and what I call “choose your pain” points (those items you can’t live without). There is lots of gently used gear on the market, so once you’ve done your research, you can start shopping for bargains. I’ll be providing some links to help in that regard.

Step 4 – Select Your Gear

2 thoughts on “Step 3 – Know Your Budget

  1. I think that is great and applaud your efforts. It will be extremely helpful if people can see it and use the knowledge contained therein. There is no doubt in my mind you will do an outstanding job.
    Glad to see Rockin about ready to restart the PCT. Love her blog.
    Side note on gear. Twinkle Toes made his own tent and backpack http://stevenjshattuck.wordpress.com/2014/06/ and a retired doctor made his own gloves which is beyond my ability to comprehend. SloBro http://postholer.com/journal/viewJournal.php?sid=13977927f5febddd466e25e4c6f9026d&entry_id=46831 “What a country”

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