Make A Check List

Use a checklist that includes every item you will require.

Pack Liners and Plastic Bags

A pack liner should be used inside your pack to keep everything you pack dry. Clothing and other items should be kept in plastic bags inside this liner. The sleeping bag in particular must be kept dry under all circumstances, so make sure it is well wrapped.


Dry foods are best packed in individual zip lock bags. Wet foods such as margarine, honey, spreads etc, are best stored in small plastic or aluminium containers and then stored in a plastic bag.

Leave jars, canned food etc at home – they add unnecessary weight.

Packing your Gear

Pack all your gear into your pack. Don’t leave anything hanging on the outside. It may fall off and get lost and will probably rattle and jiggle about annoying both you and your companions.


  • Write out a check list of the things you want to take and check them off as you pack.
  • Use a waterproof pack liner inside your pack to keep everything dry if it rains or otherwise gets wet. If you don’t have a proper pack-liner, use a plastic bag.
  • Use more plastic bags to hold clothes and other things that must be kept dry. Be very careful to keep your sleeping bag very dry. This method of dry bags within dry bags makes absolutely sure your warm gear is kept dry.
  • Put the heavy items towards the top of your pack, close to your body. Lighter things and things you don’t need to get at easily can go at the bottom.
  • Many packs have a separate compartment at the bottom for your sleeping bag.
  • It makes good sense to put things you may need to get at near the top. The top pocket is an ideal place for the things you have the get in a hurry, including your first aid kit.

Don’t let Mum or Dad pack your pack – remember, you need to carry it and know where everything is!

A hiking pack with waterbottles at the top, clothes in the centre and a sleeping bag at the bottom.

How heavy is your Pack?

Your full pack with all food and gear included should not weigh more than 20% of your normal body weight.

Your weight (kg)Max pack weight (kg)