Trip Gear

For the success & safety of your trip please bring the required items on the list below.  This list is designed to keep you warm & dry in variable conditions, while keeping the weight you will carry to a minimum.  Our goal is for you to have everything you need to be happy and comfortable in camp and happy and comfortable while carrying it on the trail. If you have any question about any items, feel free to email us. You can expect daytime temperatures to be warm. Nights will be cool or cold. Weather in the mountains is very changeable even in summer.  It may be very warm or it may snow!  This list will prepare you for all types of weather.  Please follow it!

A few words about cost.  We here at Sierra Spirit are not in the business of selling gear. You do not have to break the bank to outfit for these trips -good wool items may be found at your local thrift store.  If purchasing new equipment give us a call and discuss the pros and cons of the variety of equipment available. Down sleeping bags are preferable over synthetic and Thermarest and inflatable pads are preferable to foam. Prioritize your money for  your sleep system. Packs, sleeping bags, & pads can be rented at your local backpacking/mountaineering store. Other items like pack covers have been returned unused.  If you have any problems obtaining equipment please email us.

Guides will provide: Tents, stoves, pots, pans, water treatment, a group first aid kit, bear canisters & all trip food.


Backpack:  (4000 - 6000 cu in.) One that fits YOU & doesn't hang on shoulders. Gear shops will fit them for you.
Waterproof Pack cover

Sleep System
Sleeping bag (rated down to 20oF or lower, down preferable)
Sleeping pad: Thermarest or inflatable's are best. Foam pads make for a rough night.

Personal Gear
Rain top & pants, lightwt, waterproof & breathable
1 T-shirt - synthetic is best
1  Hiking shorts - shorts from zip-offs are best
1  Mid-weight thermal top and bottom (synthetic)
1  Midweight fleece jacket or wool sweater OR down jacket
1  Long pants, quick-drying, lightweight (zip-offs are best),  no jeans
2 changes of underwear  
Hiking socks, 2 pairs; liners optional
2 pairs of synthetic sock liners to prevent blisters
Sun hat - baseball hat is fine
Warm hat for chilly nights and mornings
Warm gloves
Hiking boots: waterproof a plus.
Lt. wt. camp shoes that are water-worthy for creek crossings
Grippy gloves for the Half Dome Itinerary
Light daypack for Creek, Inyo, & Hetch Hetchy Itinerary. Small fanny pack for HD.
Trekking poles (highly recommended for stream crossings, down hill, & rocky uneven terrain)
FULL One 1-quart water bottle, even if you have a hydration system, 2 Full for the HD Trip (no water in bkpkers camp).

Headlamp with new batteries
Plastic bowl, spoon, fork, mug
Sunblock, min SPF 25
Lip balm
Insect repellant (small)
Toothbrush & trial-sized paste (consider sharing)
Individual First Aid Kit. See below.
Moleskin for blister treatment
Orange plastic trowel
Sanitation System:  In a gallon Ziploc Bag:
       Toilet paper (not a full roll) & 1 Ziploc quart baggie,
        orange plastic trowel, Small Hand Sanitizer, 6 Feminine
        Wipes, Pantiliners for women. Guys like them too.
1 large plastic garbage can bag

Optional Items for fun and enjoyment
Down vest or jacket (highly recommended, especially for Sept. trips or if your run cold like Karen)
Small light travel pillow
Mosquito Head net for July trips
Swim suit (for bathing & swimming)
Compass - one with a declination key is best
Detailed topo maps are provided for all trips.
Valley Trip: Tom Harrison's Yosemite High Country Map
High Country Trip: Tom Harrison Tuolumne Meadows Map.
Ear plugs for folks that have snorers in camp
Small lt. wt. paperback book
Journal pages & pen (NOT a heavy, hardback journal)
Camera, new batteries, & card space
Hydration system only if you are used to it and love it.
Food: All the food for the trip us provided from the first evening thru the last day's lunch. Email me if you have food restrictions. Bring a festive adult beverage to share for the first dinner.  

Note about toiletries: We must be able to fit all food and toiletries into our bear canisters at night so toiletry volume is a real issue. Think about leaving it home.

Last messages:  In preparation for the trip, be sure to drink AT LEAST 4 QUARTS OF WATER A DAY for at least 2-3 days prior to your trip, preferably for the whole preceding week.  It will make your adjustment to altitude & exertion infinitely easier.

A Final Note:  We reserve the right to turn back at the trailhead anyone guides deem unprepared for the trip - from lack of conditioning or inappropriate equipment.  So to avoid disappointment & for your personal safety & enjoyment, please arrive with “all the right stuff”.  If you have any questions please call or email Karen or put the item in your car and ask your guide at the pack check.

Tiny Individual First-Aid Kit
The following list is to help jog your memory of items you might need for your own personal conditions. Not every item is required or needed.
A few Band-Aids
Pain reliever/fever reducer
Anti-fungal powder or cream if you suffer athlete's foot
Allergy medicines, if applicable
Prescription items
Hearing aids
Eye glasses or contacts & small bottle of solution
Eye drops
2 Epipens for known increased chance of severe allergic reaction possibilities.
Insulin pumps & diabetic monitors. Inform your guide upon applying.

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