Sh-t I took

The journey around Torres Del Paine, and adjoining parks is to take nearly two weeks. The vast majority of them will be on foot, thus consideration must be given to the weight of the total pack(s), as there are (unfortunately) going to be no sherpas.

Weather report for this time of year, idled within 2-3ºC below 0 for the night, and a few degrees higher for daytime. Which necessitated the number of thermals throughout the trip, coupled with the self-imposed weight restriction as well as possible lack of showers; more thermals = less smelly experience.

There are many lists online of what people have managed to bring with them along for their trek. To add to the noise, I wanted to provide an OCD technologist’s view.

Main pack is the Genesis 70, which comes with a very useless daypack, or one you can use to place your hopes and wishes into. Hence you see me bringing the Kata bag instead. Not only is the latter going to be used for housing the camera equipment + laptop, but also re-purposed as a daypack.

Here’s the complete list of the crap thats coming with me. Most is self-explanatory:


  • backpack 1 - MacPac Genesis 70
  • backpack 2 - Kata Sensitivity V
  • medical kit
  • 2-man Tent
  • Mattress
  • Sleeping bag - Mountain Hardwear Phantom


  • 1 x Merino - 280 GSM Midlayer
  • 2 x Merino - 150 GSM Underlayer
  • 3 x Merino Long-johns
  • 1 x compression socks (for flights)
  • 8 x sets of thin socks
  • 8 x undies
  • 1 x Goretex wind/water jacket
  • 1 x REI Waterproof pants
  • 1 x glove inserts (for warmth)
  • 1 x gloves, thin but water + wind resistant
  • 1 x boardies
  • 2 x bonds top
  • 1 x jeans
  • 1 x t-shirt
  • Boots, Salamon Cosmic 4D GTX
  • Runners, Ascics
  • Sandals, Keen
  • 1 x Bose QC 15 (not for the hike itself…)
  • Polarised glasses & hard case
  • 2 x Pocket Handwash - Sea To Summit
  • 1 x Body Wash - Sea To Summit
  • Sunblock & Insect Repellent in one - Sawyer
  • Multifunction Knife - Leatherman Kick
  • Firestarter - exotac nanoSTRIKER
  • 20m Parachute cord
  • Katadyn MyBottle
  • 1 x Micro-fibre Towel
  • 25L waterproof bag - used to house all the clothes inside the backpack
  • 6 x Gladwrap sandwich bags for waterproofing some electronics
  • 1 x QuickDraw Set
  • 1 x Whistle (hey… you never know)
  • 1 x Washable Electric Shaver - Braun 7 - highly recommend it


  • 2 x HDD 320GB iomega
  • 2 x HDD 500GB Western Digital Passport
  • 1 x HDD OCZ Vertex 2 SSD, great for the Lightroom catalog, and currently working-on photos
    • Workflow:
      1. Each evening, the photos from my and Rob’s cameras get copied to one of the marked hard-drives
      2. Then copied onto the replica drive
      3. Only then are the CF / SD cards cleared within the cameras
      4. Any work, sorting, adjusting of photos is then done in Lightroom against one of the drives
      5. Upon completion, the drives are once again synchronised
      6. The two drives remain completely separate from there on, at no point do they sit in a single backpack, or room (apart from when I’m there)
      7. Fortunate to have a base in Buenos Aires to go back to, so the iomega’s get dumped to the WD’s upon return. One of the WD’s gets taken with, other remaining
    • No one likes losing photos, especially me
  • USB Cables 2.0 + 3.0 (+duplicates of all)
  • Power cables (+duplicates of all)
  • Power adapter (AUS->US)
  • Apple Charger
    • One trick is to get rid of the standard two-prong cable, or extension from the brick, and re-use the one that comes with all the Canon battery chargers (… as long as you get a duplicate!).
  • MacBook Air 13”, i7, 250GB SSD
  • 1 x USB->RJ45 (Ethernet adapter for the MBA)
  • 1 x iPhone cable
  • Headlamp
  • 3 x BL-5c, GPS Logger QStar BT-1000P - reviewed it here


  • 4 x Canon Batteries, LP-E6
  • LP-E6 Charger
  • 2 x 4 x AA
  • 2 x 2 x AAA


  • Canon 50mm f/1.4 USM
  • Canon 17-40 f/4 USM
  • Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS USM MKII — heavy!!
  • Canon 5D MKII
  • Canon 430EX II Flash
  • Off-Shoe Flash Cord, OC-E3
  • Sigh-Ray Filters
  • 1 x ND-2G-HS
  • 1 x ND 2G-SS
  • 1 x ND-3 Rev. Graduated
  • 1 x ND-3G-SS
  • LEE Filter holder
  • Lens cleaning solution
  • Lens & Screen cloth
  • Lens cleaning tissue paper
  • 4 x 8GB CF, SanDisk Extreme III
  • 1 x 72mm Circular Polariser, Hoya HD
  • 1 x 72mm ND400, Hoya
  • GorillaPod - had to leave my Manfrotto 055-XPROB at home, as I didn’t feel it could accompany me comfortably. Suggestions welcome for a light and manoeuvrable tripod for trekking
  • Black Rapid RS-4 camera strap
  • Book, The Last Don by Mario Puzo - during those down times such as airport transfers, and lunch breaks. Would happily replace it with a Kindle if I had one - only due to the weight of course!

Then add food, water and toiletries and you end up with a very nice ~20kg pack.