Packing it

There are several ways of packing and sorting everything in your pack. Let me share a method that works well for me. I sort my clothes in different coloured plastic bags. I have a shirt bag, a bag for socks and underwear, a bag for pants, a utility equipment bag, and a laundry bag. The bags keep everything together and keep your stuff dry when your pack gets wet. My utility bag is the heaviest and least used, so it goes to the bottom of my pack. On top of that, I place my laundry bag which fills up as the days go on and then my pants’ bag which I only use once or twice a week. On top of the laundry and pants’ bag, I have my underwear, and shirt bags. These are used at least once every two days. Loose at the top of the pack is my Pack Safe™, bathroom kit, sarong, travel food, and long sleeve fleece shirt.

I like this method for easily keeping everything together and to waterproof my gear.

For small items that need to be protected from water, place them in a zip-loc bag. All of the contents in my money belt, and photocopied identification, were in such a bag. Take some extras in case the ones that you are using break. Main pack or day pack: What should I place in my day pack and what should I place in my main pack? The day pack should contain everything you need for that time when your main pack is not accessible. Again, focus on just the essentials that you are going to need that day.

The only time I detach my day pack from my main pack is when I jump on the bus and my main pack is in the storage compartment on the bus. I don’t bother wearing a day pack when I am in a populated city. I want to blend in as much as possible with my environment and not look like a tourist. Everything I need is in my zipped up pockets in my jacket and pants.

Note: Imagine that you lose your main pack. What do you need in your day pack to hold out for a few days before you recover you main pack?

Test it out: Now that you have everything all packed in your backpack, carry it around the house for a few hours. Walk up and down some stairs, go outside, and practice taking it off and putting it on without assistance. This is your true “break in” period.