What do you pack for a Two Year Trip? Our Packing List

The purpose of our packing dry run 4 months ago was to see what our packing lists looked like in the flesh.

As I mentioned then, it’s all too easy to fall into the trap of thinking we need to cater for every eventuality – the “oh, that’ll be handy” thoughts that prompt the reflexive action to drop another item on the packing pile.

How are we stopping ourselves from taking everything and the kitchen sink, while still doing our best to adhere to the Boy Scout motto “be prepared”?

Well, mainly by trying not to confuse “being prepared” with “taking everything”. If you have been a Boy Scout, a Girl Guide or have a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, I’m sure you’ll remember that most of the activities we did each week were learning – learning how to use nature and the materials at hand to make shelter, to make fire, to find food, to survive.

In essence, we were learning resourcefulness.

And resourcefulness doesn’t count towards our baggage allowance.

With that I’m mind, here’s the list of things we decided to take that do count towards our baggage allowance:

Andrew’s Kit

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Essentials & Admin

  • Passport
  • Drivers License
  • Copies of Passport, Drivers License & Visas
  • Copies of Travel Insurance Documents
  • Debit Card
  • Credit Card: Halifax Clarity, currently the best choice for overseas spending and cash withdrawals
  • $USD Emergency Cash
  • Spare Passport Photos (for visas as we go)
  • EHIC Card
  • Vaccinations Record Card
  • Travel Document Walletkeeps everything together and organised
  • Couple of books

Kit

  • Rucksack: Lowe Alpine TFX Kongur 65:75
  • Drysacks: Exped Ultralite Fold Dry Sacks (x5: xl, l, m, s, xs) – for easy packing, organising, and keeping my stuff dry
  • Day Sack: Jack Wolfskin Velocity 12great little rucksack for carrying a few essentials while out and about, and it comes with a rain cover
  • Small Penknife: Victoronix Ranger – includes scissors and a bottle opener – essential!
  • Small Padlocks and Retractable Cable Lock for Rucksack – to deter opportunistic thieves, especially while we’re sleeping on trains
  • Water bottle: Sigg 1ltr – A hand-me-down that I’ve had for years, and taken almost everywhere
  • Mug & Spork
  • Cotton Sleeping Bag Liner – handy for trains, and as an extra layer in the cold

Tech

  • Digital Camera: Sony DSC-HX9Vsuperb. 16x optical zoom, good manual settings, panorama, full HD video and GPS/geotagging. Charging cable, spare battery, case, 4 memory cards (2x 16GB, 2x 4GB)
  • Mini Tripod: Manfrotto MKC3-P01 Compact Photo Kitbit of a luxury, but I love long exposure shots, and want to experiment while we’re away
  • Apple iPad Mini: 64GB WiFifor staying in touch, booking places as we go, sorting photographs, and updating this here blog. Charging cable, USB camera connection kit and case
  • Mobile Phone: Cheap Samsung E1120 and UK PAYG SIM – for emergencies and the odd text message. Mains charger
  • Small 8GB USB Memory Stick – contains copies of our documents
  • Torch: LED Lenser – very small and very bright. Spare batteries (3x AAA)
  • Notepad: Field Noteslo-tech, but very handy for jotting down times, what we’ve spent while out shopping, thoughts and ideas.

Clothing

  • 5 normal and 1 long-sleeved t-shirts
  • 2 pairs of jeans
  • 1 pair of hiking trousers
  • 1 belt
  • 1 pair of shorts which double for swimming
  • 14 normal, and 1 pair of hiking socks
  • 14 pairs of underwear
  • 5 handkerchiefs – I do like a clean handkerchief
  • 1 woollen jumper
  • 1 fleece-lined hoody – bought in Riga, as a t-shirt, jumper and jacket wasn’t enough!
  • 1 Jacket: Berghaus Men’s Choktoi II GoreTex Fleeceeveryday jacket, superb – especially when carrying a rucksack
  • 1 Waterproof Jacket: Berghaus Benvane GoreTex Jacketexcellent waterproof jacket with rolled up hood in the collar
  • 1 pair walking shoes: Scarpa Crux – I’ve hardly taken them off since I got them last year. They are the most comfortable and grippy shoes I’ve ever bought. When I wear them out, I’ll be getting another pair
  • 1 pair trainers: Nike Air Pegasus 28 – I’m hoping to get a few runs in here and there, and I’m not really a fan of sandals or flip-flops
  • 1 pair of gloves – they’re liners really, if they aren’t warm enough, I’ll pick up some proper gloves later
  • 1 Tilley Hat of trekkingkeeps the sun off my head and out of my eyes. I also get comments about it when I wear it: “that’s a great hat” an old lady once said to me in Galway. And no, she wasn’t taking the Guiness.
  • 1 beanie hat – also bought in Riga as the Tilley doesn’t keep the wind from my ears!
  • 1 pair of Sunglasses, and case (thanks to Stu’s sister Karen for the case ;o)

Washbag & Toiletries

  • Toothbrush, case, and toothpaste
  • Bottle of multi-wash: shower gel, laundry, and washing up liquid in one
  • Shaving razor, shaving gel, and spare blades
  • Suncream
  • Deodorant
  • Aftershave – the last of my bottle from home, until it runs out
  • Toilet Roll – when you need it, you need it
  • Mosquito Spray
  • Large travel towel
  • Small hand towel – actually a bar towel
  • Small bottle of hand sanitiser
  • Ear plugs
  • Lip balm / chapstick

Julie’s Kit

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Essentials & Admin

  • Passport
  • Drivers License
  • Copies of Passport, Drivers License & Visas
  • Copies of Travel Insurance Documents
  • Debit Card
  • Credit Cards: Halifax Clarity, currently the best choice for overseas spending and cash withdrawals and Santander Zero, also no charges for spending abroad
  • $USD Emergency Cash
  • Spare Passport Photos (for visas as we go)
  • EHIC Card
  • Vaccinations Record Card
  • all kept in Travel Document Wallet
  • Books – just a few…

Kit

Tech

  • Compact System Camera: Olympus PEN E-PM1 – with 3 lenses, flash, spare battery, charging cable and 2 memory cards (8GB)
  • Camera Bagwith rain cover and enough space for all camera related paraphernalia and my tripod
  • GorillaPod TripodHybrid size, so that we get some photos of both of us!
  • Apple iPad Mini: 32GB WiFifor staying in touch, booking places as we go, sorting photographs, and updating the blog. Charging cable, headphones and case
  • Torch: Mini Maglite
  • Hardbacked Notebooks and pens – for diary writing

Clothing

  • 3 normal and 3 long-sleeved t-shirts
  • 2 long sleeved shirts
  • 2 vest tops
  • 1 pair of jeans
  • 2 pairs of hiking trousers
  • 1 belt
  • 1 pair of shorts
  • 1 bikini
  • 1 sarong – can double as a scarf, shawl, light blanket, etc.
  • 10 normal, and 2 pairs of light hiking socks
  • 10 pairs of pants and 3 bras
  • 1 fleecy jumper
  • 1 pair leggings, sports top and sports bra – going to try to do some yoga
  • 1 Soft-shell Jacket
  • 1 Waterproof Jacket
  • 1 pair walking shoes
  • 1 pair Birkenstock Sandals
  • 1 pair flip flops
  • 1 pair of gloves
  • 1 fleecy hat
  • 1 Polar Bufffleecy snood to keep my neck warm
  • 1 pair of Sunglasses, and case

Washbag & Toiletries

  • Large Wash Bag
  • Conditioner, comb, mousse and hair bands
  • Toothbrush, case, and toothpaste
  • Shower gel
  • Soap and soap dish
  • Body butter
  • Moisturiser
  • Lip balm
  • Deodorant
  • Suncream
  • Insect repellentfrom Avon (thanks Dawn!)
  • Large travel towel
  • Small travel towel – for drying my hair
  • Small bottle of hand sanitiser
  • Bottle nail varnish – my one concession to bringing make-up!
  • Nail scissors, tweezers, compact mirror

Shared Kit

Medical Kit

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  • Paracetamol
  • Ibuprofen
  • Rehydration sachets
  • Imodium tablets
  • Selection of plasters, dressing, micropore tape
  • 1 bandage
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Antiseptic cream
  • Antihistamine cream – for insect bites
  • Antihistamine tablets
  • Hydrocortisone cream – for eczema
  • Ibuprofen gel
  • Water purification tablets

Too much? Too little? What do you think we’ve missed, or what wouldn’t you be without? Let us know in the comments.. :o)

4 thoughts on “What do you pack for a Two Year Trip? Our Packing List

  1. Doc

    Nice kit!! I have paid particular attention to your “medical kit” – not bad, but I think you have missed some integral items – no rubber gloves, triangular bandage, aspirin, sore mouth gel (wonderful stuff for getting rid of tooth ache). That said you do have to carry it all.

    Reply
    1. Andrew

      Thanks Doc, I was hoping you’d give us your diagnosis on the medical kit. I haven’t heard of the sore mouth gel before, I’ll keep an eye out for it :o)
      Are rubber gloves essential too? (they don’t weigh a lot, or take up much room, so we could easily add them)

      Reply
  2. Doc

    Difficult maths for this post!! Rubber gloves are not entirely essential; wouldn’t need them if you were only planning on looking after Julie and vice versa, but how would you feel if you came across someone in the wilderness, who was exsanguinating and you felt compelled to help? They may have goodness knows what – rubber gloves in my mind are a must.

    Reply
    1. Andrew Post author

      ‘Exsanguinating’ – good word!
      Yes, we would be compelled to help in any way we could and rubber gloves wouldn’t add very much to our medical kit. I think they’d be useful anyway, say if we’re unable to properly clean our hands before changing a dressing.

      Reply

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