Originally Posted By: hikermor
I think both Phaedrus and pforeman make some very good points. The very best kits are those you develop yourself, attuned to your local situation, circumstances, and situation - also the need for something that can serve as part of a quick and dirty shelter. This is often a space blanket and they do function decently for this purpose.

i actually prefer a light weight poncho which is even more versatile. For many years I packed a standard US army poncho, used both as rain gear and often pitched as a shelter. Pieces of light weight painters drop cloths also serve adequately.

I agree that a poncho is awesome to have! This is maybe straying a bit afield as I forgot the actual topic was overhauling the forum! blush grin But for the record, my PSK is not tiny nor something that tucks neatly in a pocket where you hardly notice it. My smallest "kit" is around 2.5"x4"x6" and even then I'd have that in addition to hopefully a good warming layer and some other gear. That small kit would be something I'd slip into a day pack. Realistically my day pack is going to be set up as a PSK in and of itself. It will have a poncho, tarp, water, fire stuff, cordage, etc. Almost a camping kit because the needs don't change for an unplanned night vs a planned one.

Originally Posted By: hikermor
One thing to emphasize. If one is embarking an a planned hike, either for just the day or for longer, whatever you are carrying is in effect your survival gear. It is much more than some little box that you open when all of a sudden you are in "survival" mode. Ideal gear components are light weight (or at least not unduly heavy), reliable, and versatile. If you get in a tight spot, you will use whatever you have at hand or can scrounge up from the environment. Your gear should be good for the territory you are in, and for the time of year. My kit for Arizona summers is a lot different from what Phaedrus carries.

I imagine it be different but some stuff would overlap. I've never been to AZ but at elevation I know it can still get cold and deserts get down to very cold temps at night, too. Probably you will carry more water than I would although I usually have at least two x 1 L or 40oz bottles plus Aquatabs to treat more.

Originally Posted By: hikermor
I found the price for the kit - 22 pounds which I think is somewhere around thirty US dollars - that is highway robbery; that kit might be worth about five bucks or so.

I don't begrudge a company making a few bucks but I concur! That's a lot of money for a poor selection of off-the-rack trinkets. Doug's original PSP is still the benchmark for small PSKs IMO.
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