bri with backpack ready to sail away on the horizon line

Travel Preparations: What to Bring With You

Posted on Posted in Sailing, Traveling

bri with backpack ready to sail away on the horizon lineAre you ready for Part 2 of the Travel Prep Mini-Series?  We sure are!  This entry is much more fun, since it means we’re getting closer to a final packing list and farther from those nagging logistical details of leaving our life behind.  (In case you missed Part 1, click here to read “What You Should Leave Behind.”)

Did I mention that Rob had us do a “test pack” on Christmas Eve?  Yup, that was 2 full months ago.  And that’s how excited he is to get the backpack on his back and get out to explore the South Seas.  The test pack weighed in at exactly 50 lbs, which means we should be just under the checked baggage limit (fingers crossed!).  I just laid out everything on the floor again this weekend, trying to see how the hell it will all fit.

The goals of this post include: 1) share our preparation research with other wanna-be sailors/explorers/world travelers; 2) inspire you to cast off all bowlines and simplify some; 3) convince you (and us) that we can fit everything we need for 2 years in one giant backpack each.  See below for our packing list.

abe in laundry basket - pets scared of packing parents as we get ready to sail - on the horizon line
Our dog, Abe, goes to his “safe place” in the laundry basket when he sees us pack. Wish he could come with us!

And — please — let us know what we’re forgetting!  Although, as my grandma just told me on the phone, “I guess you won’t miss what you don’t bring, right?”  Hope not.

The Packing List:

  1. BAGS.  One giant 115-liter waterproof backpack, and one small daypack each.  A small purse/travel wallet for the items in #2.  Several different dry sacks/ditty bags to organize the stuff in the giant 115-liter backpack.
  2. WALLET & DOCS.  Passport, credit cards, ATM cards, license, health insurance cards, scuba certification cards, cash.  We also made electronic and paper copies of all of important travel docs to bring with us and leave with our parents.
  3. ELECTRONICS.  MacBook Air laptop, LaCie hard drive, iPhone (complete with Navionics charts and Bad Elf GPS plugin, and its own life jacket), camera, GoPro Hero 2, recording mic, mini-speaker, iTouch, plus a Joos solar charger to keep ’em all alive and waterproof/durable cases to keep ’em all dry.  *Stay tuned for a Travel Prep post on our communication plan while at sea.
  4. CLOTHES.  3-4 of each of these items: lightweight pants, shorts/skirts, long-sleeved shirts, tank-top or t-shirts, sarongs, underwear, visors/hats, bathing suits.  Rubber rain gear and a lightweight windbreaker.  Small, lightweight puffy jacket.  For Bri: 1 dress and 1 long skirt.  Shoes: Crocs, Vibram 5-Fingers, flip-flops.
  5. SAFETY.  Delorme In-Reach for emergency tracking and rescue (you’re welcome, moms!),
    inflatable Coast Guard-certified life jackets with harness attachments, headlamps, a UV SteriPen to filter drinking water, mosquito net, dive + rigging knives, and a bomber medical kit.  *Stay tuned for a Travel Prep post detailing our medical supplies and vaccinations.
  6. a snapshot of stuff we're taking sailingTOILETRIES.  Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap (doubles as shampoo), toothpaste, toothbrush, comb, hair bands, sunscreen, all-purpose lotion, bug repellent (Rob made natural bug goop), chapstick and towel.
  7. FUN STUFF.  Snorkel and mask, rash guard, fins, books and Kindle, jump rope, yoga mat, fly fishing rod and saltwater flies.
  8. SLEEPING GEAR.  Fleece sleeping bag liners, small travel pillow and silk liner for Bri, a sarong and folded-up-sweatshirt pillow for Rob.
  9. NOVELTY ITEM.  Bri: travel backpacking guitar.  Rob: pole spear.


Click here to read more “Travel Prep” posts!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

6 thoughts on “Travel Preparations: What to Bring With You

  1. Thanks for the advice. Much appreciated. We’ll keep you posted on the SteriPen, Kelley.

    And, D, I should probably clarify that Rob is likely bringing only 1 outfit, period, even though I’m advocating for at least TWO bathing suits… (-sigh-). I’ll try and cut down my wardrobe, too!

  2. Well, first off (and I speak from the experience of 7 months carrying a backpack around central and SE Asia) I recommend cutting your clothes inventory in half–down to 1 – 2 of everything instead of 3-4. Seriously. You will find inexpensive, cool local clothes that you will want to buy everywhere you go, so just bring enough to get you to the first island market.
    For novelties, I really loved having my pocket sized cribbage board and deck of cards.
    Josh, what the hell is a BUFF?

  3. We were going to be relying on the steripen for water as well but a few seasoned sailors told us it would get clogged and useless pretty quickly. I have no personal experience but just wanted to pass along what we were told. That being said, it’s still coming on board with us! I’m going to look into that charger you mentioned – i’ve been searching for something like that.


  4. Recipe for bug goop hitting your inbox, Mark.

    Josh, my BUFF will never be as nice as yours.

  5. Don’t forget your BUFF! More than 12+ uses according to their packaging. I’d lend you mind but it’s waaaaay too valuable.

Join the conversation: