Here is what I packed to run Kungsleden late September, a 440km trail in the Swedish mountains of Lapland. I feel it represents a good guide of what to take if you want to travel reasonably light and fast. This list may look slightly different if you choose to do this adventure earlier in the summer, and will certainly look a lot difference if you go in the winter. And, some items will not apply if you are a man! 🙂 Read the blog about Kungsleden here. Choice of material is extremely important due to the weather conditions. My choices were dominated by merino wool, light weight fast drying Polartec fleece, and Gore-Tex. Because the specific requirements for this environment, not all items were available from my existing sponsors. I was very happy with all choices, so unless there is a comment against anything I would take it again. The total starting weight including food was in the region of 6kg. As we bought food along the way, the weight probably stayed around this for the entire trip.
- HOKA ONE ONE Mafate Speed 2 (Vibram outsole provided good grip)
- Haglofs L.I.M +1 Sleeping Bag
- Thermarest Prolite XS inflatable sleeping mat (also serving as back padding in my backpack)
- Raidlight Responsiv 20L (very comfortable, extremely light, and perfect size)
- Haglofs L.I.M III Jacket (Gore-Tex Paclite)
- Icebreaker Merino women’s Sphere T-shirt
- Haglofs L.I.M Mid Hood light weight Polartec base/mid layer (link to non-hood version)
- RAB AL Pull-On Polartec® Grid® stretch long sleeved shirt
- Raidlight Trail Raider long running tights women
- Yeti Companyon Cirrus Down Jacket (men’s version is the Strato)
- Gore overshorts (Gore-Tex – lent to me by Sondre)
- Haglofs Gore-Tex Active shell trousers (older model)
- Tierra Nallo Polartec® Power Grid™ light weight fleece pant
- Black Diamond Stance Mitts (Pertex Endurance with Primaloft filling)
- 2 pairs of Merino liner gloves from Aklima and Hestra
- Haglofs Gore-Tex Shell Mitts (excellent but no longer part of the range sadly)
- Hestra Nimbus shell glove
- Aklima merino beanie
- Smartwool PhD Outdoor Mountaineer Merino socks – 1 pair
- Smartwool PhD Outdoor Light Cushion women’s socks – 3 pairs of which 1 binned after 2 days. (I double socked after 2 days which worked better for me and always kept one pair of socks dry and clean for the evening)
- Underwear: Calvin Klein Invisibles thong (extremely light, laser cut and chafe free!) – 3 pairs, one binned along the way.
- Shock Absorber N109 Sports Bra
- Raidlight buff
- Fleece buff (old, have had for ages)
- myRaceKit cap with visor (not taking the neck flap)
- Head Torch Petzl Actik Core with 2 x Core rechargeable batteries (option to put in AAA batteries which could be purchased along the way if required)
- iPhone 7 (water resistant) with protective cover
- Wikiloc app in the phone with Sweden offline maps to have detailed too maps available if required
- Telia SIM card
- Garmin Fenix 5 with gpx route loaded
- Charger KASE 8000mAh (smaller would have sufficed)
- Charge cables and 1 x wall plug with USB socket
Personal care and various other items
- Sea to Summit multi-purpose soap leaves
- Small first aid kit, a variant of the myRaceKit Footcare Deluxe Kit
- Gurney Goo x 3 small tubes
- Victorinox Alox multitool with scissors and knife
- Tiger Balm (decanted into zip lock bag)
- Pain killers and personal medications
- Small travel toilet roll
- 6 x feminine hygiene wipes
- 5 x Wemmi Wipes (not needed, gave to Sondre)
- PackTowl body towel
- Hand Sanitiser
- ID and credit cards
- Cash, approximately SEK 4,000 (all was not required)
- Raidlight Collapsable cup
- MSR Titan Kettle (without the lid)
- MSR Folding Spoon
- Ear plugs
- Sea to Summit Ultra-Sil Nano dry sack 20L used as backpack liner
- Zip-lock bag for electronics
- Raidlight Eazy Flask 600ml with tube. Used one and had one spare.
- Water filter (carried but never used – would not take again)
- Black Diamond Distance Carbon Z-Poles
We brought two days worth of food to start out with and purchased the rest along the way. Mostly this can be done in the STF huts which stock freeze dried and tinned meals, but we also passed one supermarket, one general store, and four restaurants of which we ate in two.
I had two Chicken Tikka from LYOFOOD (there are one of my favourite freeze dried meals), and two breakfasts consisting of Nature Valley oat breakfast bars and Ultra Fuel. In hindsight this was way too sweet for me and I should have opted for something else. I also had a mix of bars and sweets for the long days on the trails, amounting to about two or three day’s worth. I also had instant coffee as I can’t start a morning without it and I had Berocca, one per day. It cheers me up in the morning 🙂
My food was repackaged into plastic bags to save some weight and the reason I brought the MSR titan kettle was so that I could prepare food in it if needed. In reality I never had to do this as the huts have equipped self-serviced kitchens, but we used it to heat water once or twice so it came to some use.
Sondre carried a light weight tent, a lighter / matches and a satellite tracker. These served us both.
I would consider opting for a lighter sleeping bag and a bivi as an emergency overnight solution. I would also consider not taking a sleeping mat or an even smaller one. These considerations are for saving weight, assuming I would sleep in huts and with compromise on comfort should it be necessary to sleep outside.
I would also consider bringing a pair of very light flip flops. The shoes get soaked every day and if you walk anywhere at night it can be nice to have something else touching into while your shoes are drying out.