How lightweight can you go, but still get all the way? We checked the backpack of Jimmy Odén, Elevenate’s founder and IFMGA mountain guide, to see what he packs for a fast summer hike.
The more you know, the less gear you need – at least that’s how the saying goes. As a mountain guide, Elevenate’s founder Jimmy Odén has done thousands of treks, so he carries practically nothing on a fast hike, or…?
“Actually, no. If you’ve done many kilometres at high altitudes, you’ve also seen enough to know that accidents happen. It’s good to have the gear there if you need it,” he says.
So what should we take along on that fast lightweight hike? And what does he wear? We peeked into Jimmy’s backpack to give you some tips:
HYBRID SPRING JACKET
“You should always have a warm garment with you, even on short outings, and the Hybrid Spring Jacket is designed to be warm and allow freedom of movement. It’s also hardwearing, with stretch fabric in areas where the jacket can rub on rocks, like when you’re scrambling. If I’m going to be at higher altitudes for a little longer, I always pack waterproofs, such as the Chemin Jacket and Pants.
ZEAL MERINO TEE
“Lightweight functional clothing is important when you are moving quickly, so Merino wool is a great choice. You don’t want to sweat while you move, as you’ll just get cold. Zeal Merino Tee is perfect, or the Dynamic Tee if you prefer synthetics. Then you pull on a warmer layer when you stop.”
“I always carry bandages with me, so I can stem bleeding and stabilise a broken arm or leg – either until help arrives or so that the injured person can get off the mountain. A bivvy bag is another must, to avoid hypothermia if you have to wait for help.”
“I also always have a map, compass and altimeter – the weather can change quickly in the mountains, mist can suddenly roll in and you have no chance of knowing where you are. I also have a fully-charged phone so I can call for help if I need to.”
“I like wearing shorts, but that’s rarely practical in the high mountains because cooler the higher you go. Versatility Pants are a favourite: flexible, hardwearing and with the right functions. When you get down to lower altitudes you can roll the legs up to the knees – that’s a classic trick.”
DRINKS & SNACKS
“I have to have something to eat and drink in my backpack, but how much depends on how long I’ll be out. On a short trip, 500 ml of water might be enough. For alpine trips I take a thermos of tea, and sports drink is good in hot weather, as it provides energy too. For snacks I’ll have anything from an energy bar to sandwiches and chocolate.”