Simple Checklist

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Feb 1, 2013
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That list is a good starting point. As you gain experience, you will develop your own list of things to bring. Are you thinking of doing a trip this summer?
 
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I'm actually QUITE new here. Trying to go through your website issues and straighten out behind the scenes. Hence the picture links, book links, etc. ( validation of execution items. Boring stuff). But delving further into all of this, I used to LOVE camping and such when I was younger. You know the story. Get a car, get a girl, get lost in it all a bit. Now I'm a little older and recalling fond memories of fishing trips and camping with friends. I feel I really want to get back to it. Hence why a large portion of this site is piquing my interest.

A lot of the things on the list are common, but need to be fine-tuned. Matches for example. My buddies and I used to spend hours dipping the heads of matches in candle wax before our trips to ensure that if we got wet ( fine, pushed one another into the lake as we horsed around while walking) they would still fire. Meals/snacks is a bit broad. I've had MORE than enough MRI's in my life to care to remember. Things like that and so forth are in my thought process. Good starter checklist, though. How to fit it all in a canoe or more accurately, save valuable space/weight is where my thought process is. Seems like a bit much, but what do I know.

Just getting back into the swing of things, as it were. :)
 
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Try an overnighter close to your vehicle. Take minimal gear, and then you'll be able to add or subtract for your next trip. Minimum would be tent, sleeping bag, something to put sleeping bag on, one pot, maybe stove if you don't cook over fire. Waterbottle, cup, spoon, couple of lighters, booze, axe if there is firewood to be processed, TP. Fishing rod if you desire, camera if you want, bug spray, sunscreen, hat, change of clothes. Rain gear. Of course, your canoe, paddles, PFD. Food. Everything should fit in one pack easily, unless you're packing a ten man tent and a five star Woods sleeping bag.
 
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mem offers good advice.
For what it's worth, I started out car camping, probably like everyone else. Then I graduated to flowage camping (in northern Wisconsin), and only after several flowage trips did I feel like I had the canoe-camping thing fairly well worked out. I got lots of good advice from a friend who's been going to the BWCA and Quetico since the mid-'70s, but I still had to work things out for myself.
Nonstick, where are you located? What wilderness-y places are reasonably close at hand?
 
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I'm actually relatively close to Robin here in CT. I've lurked on a few other threads of where people were from, etc. There's a few of you guys near me.

Weather getting more agreeable and the boy-child is getting of age where I want to take him out camping with his old man before I lose him ( he is 14. 15 in July) to those pesky know-it-all years. Good to build memories that he'll look back on once he figures he didn't know as much as he thought he did.

We fish together regularly and like it. I figured this was a REALLY good time and opportunity to at least camp and fish at the same time while opening up to something new for him. Trust me, I'm consuming the advice in this place like a sponge. ALL helpful and valued by me personally. I thank you all for it and thank you in advance for it.
 
Joined
Aug 22, 2013
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924
Location
Red Lake, Ontario
Uggh, my ever changing and evolving list. Saturday we attempted to go ice fishing with an argo but the corn snow in the bush was still too deep so I came home and packed up my gear for ice out, hopefully in two weeks and I pack and re-pack and tweak and tinker. I would love to be able to just have my pack there and ready to go but reality is I pack according to activity. Sometimes I will just go out for the day or overnight or for a week. Sometimes it's a fishing trip sometimes it is a hunting trip and sometimes it is a soul searching solo trip. Sometimes I'm alone, sometimes it is with my kid sometimes it's the whole family. Then there is the seasonal differences. Cold, bugs, heat can all affect the way I pack.

Best advice I could give for making and maintaining a list, of which I have several, is to make sure you bring a notepad with you or better still a journal. In it write down what is working and what isn't and ideas for improving or different equipment you think may work. Then refer to it before your trips. Some of these ideas are forgotten about until you get back under the tarp and go "Damn, I remember now I wanted to bring beaners to hang my wet shoes from under the tarp"

For me the getting ready for a trip is just as much fun as the trip (sort of)
 
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Welcome Nonstick. You got a car, a girl, a family, and finally a hankering to get back out into the great outdoors. None of those are mutually exclusive. You can have it all, but you can also juggle trip places, faces, and make any canoe trip whatever you want it to be. Start with what gear you can easily borrow and/or buy, and make paddle in sites your first port of call. Learn and love it as you go. Get that young teen to help out. The cooperative learning and sharing is a great way to bond and grow. The know-it-all years will come, and with any luck, they'll also go. There's more to learn, than how to camp, canoe etc. Check lists can be similar, and you'll alter yours as you go along. Everyone has their own preferred plans figured out. You'll adopt some, and reject others. That's fine. Of course, lists will be amended to suit whatever trip you'll do at any given time. Safety of course is a constant. There's lots of good people with good advice here. I'm learning all the time in this forum.
 
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Mar 3, 2014
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I once had lists galore. Now I get up early the day I am leaving and throw a bunch of gear etc in the truck and go. I always forget something.
 
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Jul 25, 2012
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Hi Nonstick, Welcome to the site and thanks in advance for all the magic things you do to the site/computers/electrons and what not!

Ah.....lists and gear. A never ending tug of war between volume, weight and comfort. And then throw into the mix (for me at least) the very real love that has developed for this stove and that axe or what ever.

Lists are great, it's always interesting to contrast and compare what somebody's bringing with what I've chosen to pack. Over the years I notice that I pack in necessary "clumps". By that I mean that I have gathered together all the things that are needed for one particular thing.
My somewhat over large fly and all the lines needed for it are all in one bag.
The tent and everything necessary for it is all in one barrel.
Two wooden boxes; one, the kitchen/fire box and the other the food box.
Now that's fine and dandy as far as it goes but I find that life doesn't let me get too fixed on any absolute system and there's a certain tidal wash of bits and pieces that seem to migrate with a will of their own.

In all this talk, there is one piece of advice that I'd really regard as important: test it out at home. Not only will you entertain your neighbors but you will uncover all kinds of little problems (sometimes not so little) that can be addressed easily with the resources at home. Inspect everything looking for things that are worn or don't work. Learn how the tent goes up when you're not under the duress of wind and rain at a lonely campsite. Find out how laughably optimistic the temperature rating for the sleeping bag really is, and how darn uncomfortable that light weight pad turns out to be. That cute little stove that looks like a lunar lander? Turns out that it hisses and flares at you and burns off your eyebrows! Home is the place to find all these things out. The remedy is close at hand. (comparatively)

You asked if all the items on the list will fix in your canoe? Try packing the canoe several ways at home and then when you have hit on something that looks workable test it in a pond at home. What you're looking for is level or just slightly up bow. (trim is subject to a lot of discussion)
Memaquay's idea of short initial trips is a darn good one, and I'd really work to include your son as a partner if he's willing. I know that I'm inclined to bull ahead and start telling people what to do and that's the last way to make folks feel included and valued. Not for nothing do I find myself going solo!

Best Wishes, Rob

That's probably more than enough blab for now.
 
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Wow.... a lot of thoughts on this matter. Winter pack to Summer pack. Short trip to long trip. ALL great stuff. I can see this will take some thought.

What's your opinion on cookware like this? >>> http://www.amazon.com/Texsport-Stai...oor-recreation&ie=UTF8&qid=1398711056&sr=1-24

I've always used the lightweight "scouting" style. I'd like to not go heavy. If it were up to me, I'd use minimal if any ( prior training, creature of habit type of heavy cookware avoidance. Good knife or combat hatchet will cure most needs type of thought). The boy doesn't have my or my father's background though, so I don't want to scare him off too quickly with survival training.

No matter what list, I would imagine the first thing packed and pinnacle is safety/life items. Pretty much agreed?
 
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Wow.... a lot of thoughts on this matter. Winter pack to Summer pack. Short trip to long trip. ALL great stuff. I can see this will take some thought.

What's your opinion on cookware like this? >>> http://www.amazon.com/Texsport-Stai...oor-recreation&ie=UTF8&qid=1398711056&sr=1-24

Looks like good stuff to me. Compare with the first picture on this page:
http://codabone.net/canoeing/bwca/BW1106_1.htm

It's a Coleman all-stainless set and far more durable than aluminum. Heavier, yes, but the weight difference can't be more than a pound or so for the full set. When going solo I use the smallest pot, one bowl, an Esbit stove and a windshield for the stove, all of which fits in the small pot. When tandem I bring the 2-qt. pot and another bowl. If using the Coleman stove I'll also bring the wind shield for the 2-qt. pot. I've been using this kit for over 20 years and it's as good as new, and it cleans up nicely from the condition shown in the 13th picture on this page:
http://codabone.net/canoeing/bwca/BW1106_3.htm

The Texsport kit is similar, except that the lids don't double as frying pans.
 
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"Wow.... a lot of thoughts on this matter. Winter pack to Summer pack. Short trip to long trip. ALL great stuff."

(How the heck do you do the neat quote thing like in the above posts?)
Another major consideration, possibly the most critical and the one for me that dictates which list I even start with: does this trip involve portages or not? A canoe will carry damn near anything and everything within reason and I have seen some loaded outside of reason, also. BUT, if you have to portage you have to be willing to manhandle (or woman handle) everything that is in your canoe as well as the canoe.
Regards,
Dave
P.S. Duh! I just saw the button labeled "reply with quote".
 
Joined
Aug 22, 2013
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924
Location
Red Lake, Ontario
Cookware - I have amassed 4 or maybe even 5 sets of pots. Some are for the car, some are for going real light but mostly they never get used except for a GSI set that has a pot, frying pan, plastic strainer lid, and a tub that fits everything inside to wash the dishes in. Tried finding one online to show you but models have changed almost like a Bugaboo and Bse Camper cross set. Came with cups but they never get used and usually are left behind in favour of a proper travel mug. I suppose I could have just settled with the larger set but when I'm solo I consider every pound I take. I don't travel light per se but if I can save some weight here it means adding a luxury there.

That's a nice set nonstick but they look kinda small. I like to have one decent sized pot to boil water in. The GSI and MSR sets are nice and if you get them with the anodized cook surface it helps with the uneven heats that you sometimes get cooking outdoors. Even though I have so many already, I do have my eye on these http://fourdog.com/anodized-aluminum-camp-cookware/

Sometimes for me it is making them all fit together into a nice compact and lightweight unit that is easy to pack and carry yet strong durable and functional for my style of camping. I know Hoop prefers to cook on a fire and therefore his cook wear is geared towards that. Me I like the ease of the stove. Fire is always a back-up if the stove fails.

Allot has to do with you cooking style too. Are you a boil in the bag freeze dried and MRE type of guy or do you the glamping approach of the outdoor gourmet?

Me, I like easy. But I like healthy too so I've been trying to develop a way of creating my one simple one pot just boil up type of meals from scratch using my dehydrator at home. I know guys (and gals, let's not leave them out) who will pack along whole cabbages, onions and frozen steaks. Sounds yummy but way to much weight for my aching back.

Really for my I attempt a double or triple carry. Big main pack on the first trip, canoe and food barrel on the second trip. My main pack is likely close to 75 pounds, the food barrel starts out around 50 and the canoe is 55. The voyageurs carried 90 pound bales, 2 and even 3 at a time over the portages. Some say those sashes they wore was a cultural thing but as I understand it they were used to keep their hernias from bulging too bad. I have a small hernia and don't want any more so that is why I like to consider the weight. I'm not quite ready to wear a sash yet.

Everybody is different, and we all have our own tolerance for weight discomfort, luxury discomfort and food preferences. Thing is you learn a little bit from everybody, sometimes what you learn is what not to do, but you still learn from them. Tell us about your trips and talk about what didn't work and what you found did. Even the most seasoned of traveller can learn from a novice.
 
Joined
Jul 25, 2012
Messages
838
Well, you've got some great responses here from you cooking pot question. If I may, I'd like to offer another option; go to a cooking store and look at the pots and pans. You must have done some cooking before; so what pot and skillet would do for your style of cooking? No doubt you'll need to fabricate a bail handle on the pot and if the pot lid has glass it will need to be replaced. If you're cooking over the campfire probably the handles will need to come off and maybe be replaced with a metal substitute. Yep, a little DIY fussing here.
I find all kinds of treasures in thrift stores and lids most times can be found there, no problem.

So, in the end I've wound up with two cooking sets: One a dandy stainless steel and the other a sturdy Teflon coated aluminum. The s/s has a great heat transferring thick copper bottom and the Teflon does a good job with the heat and is a delight to clean up.

Now, they don't nest particularly well, and they are heavier than most of what you see offered in the camping kits. But they both do a good job of cooking the food.

In my opinion those cute, nesting, multi-purpose kits with the fry pan lids are great for dog water. (I'm no longer anywhere near fair about them, I've ruined too much food trying to cook without burning)

Another pot to consider is the Zebra Billy Pots, well made and sturdy. I bought all three sizes because they pleased me so much with their quality. One day I'll have to take them camping!

Best wishes, Rob
 
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Let me catch my breath...Okay, I just had to go down to the basement to dig out my new and untested pot set, to remind myself what the heck it was called. It's a GSI anodized set. It's beautiful. But, it isn't recommended to be used over open fires. I'm wanting to move over from gas stoves to small fire cooking. As stylish as this set is, it won't do it for me. My beat up old aluminum set will, but with no style whatsoever. My son must've overheard me mumbling to myself "...mmm, must look around for a new pot set one of these days..." and latched onto the perfect gift for me. It's still much appreciated, if not in use...yet. Also, I have fondness for bail handles. I find them perfect for hanging pots above fires, and securely lifting & carrying full pots. That's just me though. Also, lids with no other clever function, other than being lids, irritate me a little. Unlike my new pot set, my old ones have lids that also serve as pans and/or bowls. I like that. But then again, that's just me.
That Fourdog stuff sure is interesting, thanks for that link Red. If I hadn't so much self-control, I could easily start a pot set collection. Your suggestion Rob, about perusing the kitchen aisles in department stores and thrift shops, is a good one. My own forays into the culinary arts here at home, lead me to linger in the kitchen sections from time to time. It took me a couple failed pan purchases, before finding the perfect omelette pan. As far as the culinary arts go, I'm still at the safety scissors and pretty paper stage, but I'm having fun with it.
My point is, when you read, listen, and apply a hands on learning approach to things, it's amazing where it'll take you. Nonstick, you'll experiment, discover, and form your own preferences and opinions on many things. Keep your options open as well as your mind. If you're anything like me, these will change as you go along.
As for me, my anodized set will pack away with my stove, for stove only trips. My beater set will pack away with my twig stove, for those kind of trips.But, I'm still pondering the possibilities of another pot set. Hmmm. I wonder if my wife would notice if the new omelette pan went on a trip?
 
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Joined
Feb 22, 2012
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Rochester, NY
I have used GSI hard anodized pots on an open fire. Doesnt hurt anything. The only issue is the narrow profile of the pot makes it difficult to balance between logs. A fire grate eliminates the issue.
 
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... In my opinion those cute, nesting, multi-purpose kits with the fry pan lids are great for dog water. (I'm no longer anywhere near fair about them, I've ruined too much food trying to cook without burning)

Just for the record, the pots in the Coleman s/s set I mentioned earlier have thick bottoms and have been used on open fires with no distortion.
 
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