1] Left Shoe. Sticky rubber approach shoes that are loose and comfy. Last years's Sportiva Boulder
was excellent, all of the latest approach shoes are just shit for the mass market.
2] Right shoe. Should match item #1. If you don't believe what I said in item #1, try wearing an old
shoe with actual sticky rubber on one foot, and the new "we'll call it sticky rubber" shoe on the other [I did]. If
you skid off and die, don't blame me, your bitch is with Sportiva.
3] Hat. If it's cold, you'll freeze, and if it's hot you'll fry. Tie a little hank o' string with a
saftey pin on the back of yer hat and pin it to yer shirt collar.
4] Sunglasses. Mom said I'd go blind if I kept doin' it.
5] Pants. Restaurants won't serve you when you are down and hungry if you don't wear pants. I prefer
lightweight long pants to protect my legs from brush.
6] Shirt. Long sleeves are a good idea to protect against Farmer Tan. Tie Dyes look cool. In
cooler weather, put on a light fleece top.
7] Lightweight, waterproof shell jacket. Go for waterproof and compact. You will wear it
everytime you go above 13,000'.
8] Water. I prefer 70 or 100 oz. hydration bladders, which isn't enough.
9] Food. Blood sugar incidents are more profound at altitude. Whatever you take must be
packable, but it is important to try to eat more or less the type of stuff you would anyway. I use nutrition bars for
emergencies, but I like oranges and bagels for my snacks.
10] Emergency Stuff. Wouldn't it be nice if you could light a fire during that unplanned timberline bivy?
Bring a lighter.
Other Stuff. I generally don't bring anyting else. Put on sunscreen in the car before
you go [also, it's nice to have a stash of food, water, beer, ice, clean cloths, shoes,
etc. waiting in the car for when yer done]. Some guys reccomend a roll of tape to patch mangled bodies together.
Most guys like a headlamp for long days and alpine starts. I typically grovel around in the dark [yes, I actually
do practice climbing and terrain running at night, without lights. That's my own damn bussiness].
Todd brings a dick tracy watch and an umbrella, and he's a bad ass. Milo likes to bring a long dog leash for an
emergency rap line. I think that practicing downclimbing is pretty important. If you bring any recreational
drugs, fine, but be prepared to be responsible for yourself [but at least you remembered the lighter].
And, yes, looking back, I realize that I forgot to mention socks and underwear.
Keep in mind this is a list for summerish weather in the sierra.
Don't expect your gear to make up for your shortcomings as a climber!
I have noticed that the more stuff guys carry, the less far they get up the mountain. Locals around here
that actually do the peaks pretty much solo everything. Tourists bring junk like they're spending a day at the cookie,
and typically bail for some reason or another. Point is, a broad base of experience is absolutely important for
success. Do a bunch of hikes and some kindergarden peaks in Tuolumne before you decide that "grade III, 5.4" sounds
pretty easy. Over here, the grade ain't the relevant factor! Pulling 5.12 at the crag is not harder
than 5.2 at 13,000', with loose rock and giant rabbits running around!
WATCH YOUR FEET!