Here’s a quick list of what I took with me for this trip, in case you’re looking for inspiration. For most items, you’ll want to get something that is reliable and light enough.
The backpack : Highlander Discovery RUC181-BK 65L (Amazon FR link)
One of the most important piece of equipment. I picked it randomly on amazon during a flash sale because I’m not smart, but I consider myself lucky since it was a pretty good backpack. I named it Don Gustavo.
Lots of space, and solid. What bothered me the most (and it didn’t really bother me) was the side compartments: they could have been better at holding large water bottles. So yep, it’s a good backpack.
The shoes : Merrell Moab Mid Gtx (Amazon FR link)
The other most important piece of equipement. I also picked it randomly on amazon because I did not get smarter since buying the backpack. They were perfect for me. I recommend them. Only downside: they’re not really waterproof. They’ll handle rain without issues, but if you need to step into a stream for a few seconds, you’ll feel it.
Tent, sleeping bag & floor mattress
The tent was Loïc’s. A MSR Hubba Hubba NX. Very good for summer/warm weather, but when the nights get colder, you better have a warm sleeping bag. Mine was not. I fell sick.
The rain gear is the stuff you wish you won’t have to use, but if you have to use it, you’ll be happy to have it. It’s like a first aid kit in that regard. So, you might want a rain jacket. Mine was good but lacked ventilation and made me sweat a lot, so beware of that.
You’ll also want a rain cover for your bag, unless you like your stuff to be damp and cold.
I took two sports shirts: one tailored for hiking, one that I used for running before. Both were fine, but not suited for hikes in the cold.
Underwear & socks
I used my regular running socks. They did the job and were pretty good, but the trip killed them. Next time I’ll invest in proper hiking socks.
I took some boxers that I knew were good enough for running, and they were good enough for walking too, it seems.
Oh and, leggings are awesome. Seriously.
Unless you’ll be staying in fancy hotels all the time, you’ll need to take some stuff out of your bathroom and buy some other stuff. Don’t take a regular tower: get a microfiber towel. Saves space and weight. Get some soap too. Again, find something that is light and does not take too much space. No, you don’t need that 750ml bottle of soap.
Consider bringing a first aid kit or at least some bandages, mostly for blisters. And earplugs. Loads of them. God, people snore. It’s awful.
I took my usb battery. It was useful for charging phone, kindle, usb headlamp and smartwatch. And yes, I bought a usb headlamp too. To hell with batteries.
A kindle (or equivalent) is a no brainer if you want to read without sacrificing space or taking on weight. If somebody could let Loïc know, it would do his back some good since that idiot was carrying 4 or 5 books.
A pocket knife is useful for eating (a fork too) as well as trimming your mustache. Trust me on this one.
And (pocket) notebooks! You never know when you’ll need to write something (hint: pretty much all the time).