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#217135 - 02/15/11 05:28 PM Pre-hiking partner checklist
TeacherRO Offline

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2396
Springtime here - thinking about hiking/ camping again.

One idea -- before I go out in the woods I'll do two things;
Show my hiking partner where everything is my pack and note any important info he might need to know (contact info, allergies, etc.)

#217138 - 02/15/11 07:23 PM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
dweste Offline

Registered: 02/16/08
Posts: 2463
Loc: Central California
I like it. Maybe a printout reference to go over? [I hate un-packing and re-packing!]

Request partner do the same, i.e., prepare a list /pack map ahead of time?

Keep a laminated version in an easy-to-get-to part of your pack?

#217144 - 02/15/11 10:18 PM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
dweste Offline

Registered: 02/16/08
Posts: 2463
Loc: Central California
I would vote to widen the idea beyond hiking to become a pre-outdoor activity checklist.

#217153 - 02/16/11 12:00 AM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: dweste]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7153
Loc: southern Cal
I think you guys are making this waaaay too complex. I am interested in my partner's gear to the extent that I know he has his share of the group equipment (We are using your tent, right?), but I certainly don't need to see where he has packed his spare socks and toilet paper. If there is an emergency and my partner is incapacitated, I will be into his pack soon enough, as I would expect him to be into mine, if the situation were to be reversed.

For longer trips, a gear list is often a good idea - I was just looking at one I made many years ago for a two week excursion to Mexico to climb the high volcanoes, but for less involved hikes, a gear list is overkill. Generally, what you carry will vary significantly from one trip to another, although there is a core of gear, the so-called "ten essentials," which will go on nearly every trip. The gear carried on a sea kayaking excursion is not at all what is packed on a technical climbing trip, and certainly is different from a casual day hike.

Of real importance is having good agreement on objectives, the acceptable level of risk, emergency procedures, and the like. This is one reason that good hiking companions are somewhat hard to find, and are cherished when they do turn up. If she happens to be a hottie, so much the better.
Geezer in Chief

#217159 - 02/16/11 12:54 AM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: dweste]
Teslinhiker Offline

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1400
Loc: Cranbrook BC (Finally)
I hike with the same people on a regular basis. After many trips together, whether for a day hike or a multi-day trip we know what gear each has without having to resort to a checklist. That said, the one and only firm rule is that each person carries at a minimum, their own 10 essentials.

On longer trips, a personal gear list (nothing like forgetting to pack toothpaste) does help but not to the extreme point of showing my partners my gear list....just in case. We share some group gear such as stoves, cookware, shelter etc, other then that I don't really care what my comrades are packing. The expectation is that if you forget something and someone else has extra to spare, you share with them. Of course there are some personal items that you just don't share...
Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

#217203 - 02/16/11 05:09 PM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
comms Offline

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Yeah, I mean even for short day hikes I leave a pretty detailed GOTWA (where GOING, OTHERS going with me, TIME i will be back, WHAT to do if i don't come back on time, ACTIONS i will most likely take if i am stuck)with my family but I don't fret much over my partners(s) gear.

If its a day hike on an established trail, we might gab on what we brought while were going out but as long as we each have water, food and a couple other items big deal.

If its a multi-day trip, there is generally a zero day before hitting the trail where we all split up gear and help each other decrease pack weight, but I don't need to know where he puts it all.

That is very much a throwback to the military mentality of if you make contact and need to grab a ruck and go, you know where everything is at without looking. It also is a tool by Drill Instructors and Plt Sgt to standardize equipment.
Don't just survive. Thrive.

#217256 - 02/16/11 08:30 PM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
MostlyHarmless Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 982
Loc: Norway
Originally Posted By: TeacherRO

One idea -- before I go out in the woods I'll do two things;
Show my hiking partner where everything is my pack

I like the idea - or rather: The philosophy behind the idea, but I abstain.

Originally Posted By: TeacherRO

and note any important info he might need to know (contact info, allergies, etc.)

Highly relevant, and a point well taken.

My reason for abstaining:
I mostly hike with people I know fairly well - essentially my friends and family. I won't exclude that some might have issues they haven't chosen to share with me, but I've got a fairly good overview.

Your two-part routine seems most suited for situations where you hike with someone you hardly know at all - at least don't know in a wilderness setting. It does make sense to get to know them better AND give them a rudimentary breakdown of your preparedness attitude. They might be on the same boat (great!) or not (in which case you've might pushed them in the right direction without being overly pushy - you're showing them YOUR gear, not being messianic about THEIR gear or lack thereof, right?)

While I think your reasons for your routines are sound and a good example I abstain mostly because I don't think it is nescesserary (at least in my situation). I don't think the benefit outweights the slight cumbersome routine of going through the pack. Except for the contact info/medical issues part - that is a very good idea.

Edited by MostlyHarmless (02/16/11 08:37 PM)

#217345 - 02/17/11 03:38 PM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
TeacherRO Offline

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2396
Its a bit more limited than that; I show the Meds, FAK and electronics - so they are aware that we have them to use. ( though showing / comparing everything in both packs will show any duplication and lighten the load)

#217572 - 02/20/11 11:54 AM Re: Pre-hiking partner checklist [Re: TeacherRO]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3601
Loc: Ontario, Canada
i'm not advocating this for most situations but, when we go out on a scouting adventure, we have a dedicated group pack, that is usually carried by a parent. we use it for all sections, and it's sort of their own right of passage. As a general rule, the youger the kids and the newer to scouting the families are, the less prepared the parents, and the more they rely on the leaders to take care of everyone. except for camping, they show up with a "tag along" attitude, and we try to gently but proactively change that attitude. the non-prepped parents take turns carrying the pack, and we have them check the contents when it's their turn. after each trip, we thank the parent, and then take them aside, point how simple it is, and then suggest they make their own similar pack for their family.

"The Blue Pack" has a robust fak, extra lanyards and lights, rope, a tarp, extra hat/mitts/socks, a couple of disposable ponchos, hot chocolate, snacks, a fire kit, extra water, map and compass, emergency contact lists and our 2-way radios. it's not very heavy and pretty comfy so usually makes them see how easy it is to be prepared.
Mom & Adventurer

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