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Packing List

 

Front Country Packing List

(CLICK HERE FOR PRINTABLE PDF OF GEAR LIST)

GEAR TIPS!

1. If you’re not sure about something, always ask. You can also watch gear reviews and tutorials on REI's Outdoor Blog or Outside Magazine Gear Reviews (if you type your gear into the search option, you will find reviews worth reading). Putting in the extra time to learn about your gear options with your child is a great life lesson! 

A word of caution: Don't get too caught up in name brand gear. People have been enjoying the natural world for hundreds of years without the latest Patagonia down jacket or Big Agnes puffy sleeping bag. It's important to be prepared and there are definitely some brands that last much longer and are higher quality. But, don't be afraid to follow rule #2 below.

2. Borrow gear or buy it used. If you need something, let us know. We’re happy to help! The following websites carry discount outdoor gear: Sierra Trading PostCampmorREI Outlet

3. Less is more. Do not bring extra gear without checking with us first.

4. The weather in Montana is extreme. Packing the right gear is a serious safety precaution. Anyone arriving in Montana with missing items will be charged $50 per item. We are absolutely serious about packing!

CLOTHING

LABEL ALL OF YOUR ITEMS! (PARENTS, RESIST THE TEMPTATION TO DO THIS FOR YOUR CHILD; LET YOUR CHILD LABEL HIS/HER ITEMS SO THAT HE/SHE TAKES MORE OWNERSHIP OF THE GEAR AND THE TRIP.)

 1-2 Pair Quick-dry Hiking Pants (not jeans, non-cotton)

 1 Pair Jeans (for horsemanship and ranch work)

☐ 1 Pair of Sweat or Fleece Pants for Around camp

 2 Pairs Shorts (board shorts or athletic shorts are great!)

 1 Fleece Top (medium weight for warmth)

 1 Long Underwear Bottoms (polypropylene or wool)

☐ 1 Long Underwear Top (polypropylene or wool)

 2 Long sleeve shirts (1 lightweight, button-down for bug/sun protection; 1 non-cotton base-layer for warmth--smart-wool is great!)

 5-6 T-shirts or tank-tops

 Rain Jacket (this is for setting up camp in the rain, as it will offer more range of motion than a poncho)

 Poncho (no plastic ponchos; high quality; this is for hiking in the rain, as it will offer more body and pack cover than a rain jacket)

 Rain Pants (these are required, as it can get extremely cold very quickly and wet pants are a quick ticket to hypothermia)

 8-10 Pairs Socks (crew cut or mid-calf; 6 pairs must be non-cotton)

 8-10 Pairs Underwear/Boxers (optional)

 Swimming suit/trunks (board shorts can replace)

 Rash Guard (for sun protection on the river)

 Belt (if needed)

 Hiking Boots (or running shoes with good tread) 

 Slippers for Around Camp

 Winter Beanie

 Gloves (small cotton gloves are fine)

 Baseball Cap or Sun Hat

 Camp Towel (small quick dry towel, example)

EQUIPMENT

☐ Sleeping Bag (Middle School: 34 degree or below; example 1example 2; High School: 20 degree or below)
What to look for: degree rating, weight/packability. Down or synthetic are both fine in terms of material. Be sure to store your sleeping bag by either hanging it or keeping it in a very large bag so it maintains its loft.

☐ Compression Sack (example) Note: a waterproof compression sack is a worthwhile investment and is required for High School trip.

☐ Sleeping Pad (Thermarest or similar, example 1 non-inflatable, example 2 inflatable) Note: A sleeping pad is what keeps your body warm, as the cold ground is most responsible for sucking away your body heat. It is important to get a sleeping pad that can pack very small, but will also be warm. Inflatable sleeping pads tend to be a bit more comfortable, but many people swear by the foam z-rests as well. The thick, blue-foam sleeping pads will not work because they are too bulky.

☐ Camp Pillow (example). Note: this is a space issue, so getting a small, compressible pillow is quite important.

☐ Daypack (example 1example 2example 3). What to look for: must have waist belt and water bottle pockets, 25L minimum for Middle School, 40L minimum for High School, hydration pouch (optional) 

☐ Headlamp with extra batteries in ziplock bag (example)

☐ Sunglasses (optional)

☐ Whistle (many daypacks come with a built in whistle)

☐ 2 Bandanas (minimum)

☐ Pocket Knife and/or Multi-tool

☐ Wrist watch and compass

☐ 2-3 Lightweight Carabiners (these do not need to be climbing grade carabiners)

 2 Water Bottles (durable, 40 oz; Nalgene recommended; you can bring 1 insulated water bottle for hot beverages or you can bring a camp mug and stick to two non-insulated water bottles)  
Note: Camel Backs or similar hydration pouches are fine and can replace 1 bottle.

☐ High School Only: Mess Kit & Camp Mug (Chopsticks are great! Small, light collapsible bowl: example.)
 

MISCELLANEOUS

☐ Journal and Pen/Pencil (required). Note: Wild Kids will provide the journals at a $5 fee, as we have a group journal decoration project that we will do together.

☐ Book to read (optional)

☐ Camera (optional) Note: phones cannot be used as cameras. 

☐ Binoculars (optional)

☐ Magnifying glass  (optional)

☐ Field guides (optional)

TOILETRIES (TRAVEL SIZE)

☐ Sunscreen

☐ Chapstick (very important due to dry climate)

☐ Bug Repellant (optional if you have preferred brand; we provide all-natural repellant)

☐ Comb/brush

☐ Toothbrush (we provide biodegradable toothpaste in accordance with wilderness laws)

☐ Face Wash (optional if you have a preferred brand; we provide biodegradable soap)

☐ Deodorant(natural, preferably unscented in accordance with grizzly bear safety)

☐ Feminine Hygiene Products 

DO NOT BRING!

These items will be provided by Wild Kids:

☐ Soap  

☐ Shampoo/Conditioner  

☐ Matches

☐ Tent  

☐ First Aid Kit

Important Note: Personal electronics are not allowed once you arrive to Montana. You are welcome to bring them for the plane ride. We will collect them upon arrival and return them on departure. Cell phones will be kept in a group bag and used only for set parent communication days.

 

Backpacking Packing List

(ClICK HERE FOR A PRINTABLE PDF OF THE GEAR LIST) 

 

GEAR TIPS!

Backpacks
SIZE: 60-75 liters (smaller students can use a 55 liter pack)
MEASURE: Torso before buying (How to Measure Torso Video
Backpack Guide from Sierra Trading Post (useful!)

MUST HAVE:
•Hip Belt
•External H20 Pockets
•Ability to Tie Stuff on Outside
•Adjustable Torso

GREAT BRANDS: Osprey, Mountainsmith, Black Diamond, Gregory, Arcteryx

Rain Gear
•GoreTex Shells (lasts much longer, can be re-waterproofed)
•Waterproof
•Breathable (we recommend "pit-zips")

GREAT BRANDS: Outdoor Research, Gore, Polartec, Mountain Hardware

Sleeping Bags
•Warm, Light, Compact
•20 Degrees or Lower Rating
•Must Have Waterproof Compression Sack (Size Med. should work for most bags, but you can check by putting your sleeping bag in the sack) 
•Mummy Bags are Preferable
•Look for bags that are around 3 lbs

Sleeping Pads
•Self-inflating (example) or Closed Cell Foam (example)
•Check Weight (lighter is better)
•There are Gender Specific Pads (not necessary, but can be nice)
•Thermarest is Best   

Note: A sleeping pad is what keeps your body warm, as the cold ground is responsible for sucking away your body heat. It is important to get a sleeping pad that can pack very small, but will also be warm. 

 

CLOTHING

 1-2 Pair Quick-dry Hiking Pants (no jeans, one pair can be non-cotton yoga)

☐ 1 Pair of Sweat or Fleece Pants for around the ranch (optional)

 2 Pairs Shorts (board shorts are great!; 1 pair will stay in van for around town)

 1 Fleece Top (medium weight)

 1 Long Underwear Bottoms (polypropylene or wool)

☐ 1 Long Underwear Top (polypropylene or wool)

 2 Long sleeve shirt (1 lightweight button-down for sun/bug protection; 1 base layer-smart wool, etc.)

 2-3 non-cotton T-shirts or tank-tops  (1 will be for bear clothes, 1 will stay in van)

 Rain Jacket and High Quality Poncho

 Rain Pants

 6 Pairs Socks (crew cut or mid-calf ; non-cotton)

 3-6 Pairs Underwear/Boxers (optional; recommended: quick-dry underwear: example)

 Swimming suit/trunks (can count as one pair shorts)

 Belt (if needed)

 Hiking Boots (or running shoes with good tread) 

 Slippers for Around Camp

 Winter Beanie

 Gloves (small fleece gloves, not large ski gloves)

 Baseball Cap (or other sun cap)

 Camp Towel (small quick dry towel, click here for example)

 

EQUIPMENT

☐ Backpack (must have waist belt, 60-80 Liters; 55 liters for those under 115 lbs)

 Sleeping Bag (20 degree or below; 3 pounds or less) 

☐ Compression Sack

☐ Sleeping Pad (Thermarest or similar, click here for example) 

☐ Camp Pillow (click here for example)

☐ Headlamp with extra batteries

☐ Sunglasses

☐ Mess Kit & Camp Mug (Chopsticks are great! Small, light collapsible bowl: example.)

☐ Whistle (many packs have a built-in whistle)

☐ 3 Bandanas

☐ 2 Water Bottles (35-40 oz; Camel Backs can replace 1 bottle.)

☐ Multi-tool/Pocket Knife

☐ 2-3 Carabiners (examples)

☐ Wrist Watch and Compass

 

TOILETRIES

☐ Sunscreen (small travel size) & Bug/Tick Repellant (we have a mandatory brand)

☐ Chapstick (very important due to dry climate, pocket size)

☐ Comb (Unless the brush is very small, don't bring one. Packing light is the key on a backpacking trip.)

☐ Toothbrush (We provide biodegradable toothpaste in accordance with wilderness laws.)

☐ Deodorant(natural, preferably unscented)

☐ Feminine Hygiene Products

 

MISCELLANEOUS

☐ Camera  (light weight)

☐ Binoculars  (light weight)

☐ Magnifying glass  

☐ Field guides

☐ Down Jacket/Vest

☐ Camp chair (highly recommended; example)

☐ Additional Toiletries, Vitamins, Medications

☐ Personal Snacks per Dietary Needs

 

DO NOT BRING!

These items will be provided by Wild Kids:

☐ Soap, Shampoo/Conditioner   

☐ Matches

☐ Tents

☐ Tarps

☐ Backpacking Stoves and Cooking Equipment

☐ Safety Line

☐ First Aid & Safety Kit (one for each camper)