Your Basic Backpacking Checklist

Contrary to what the local stoner/hiker-dude/hippie/“I have been in India 12 years”- person says, a pair of flip flops, 2 samosas and lots of love for the world may not be the best kit to survive in the mountains. Lord Shiva is not going to save your ass when you are freezing/starving/ravaged by wild animals in the beautiful Himalayas. The best you can do is take a few photos of your sun burnt, freezing and hungry ass during the last moments on earth so that others can learn from your experience (read as fuck up).

You will be asking yourself – ‘how do I avoid being remembered for the idiot that got killed 5 Kms from habitations?’ Well, to start with follow a checklist. Yes, there is a basic checklist of things that can and will assist you in enjoying your outdoors experience.


  1. Navigation
  1. Sun protection
  1. Insulation
  • Jacket, fleece, pants/trousers, gloves, hat
  1. Illumination
  1. First-aid supplies
  1. Fire
  1. Repair kit and tools
  1. Nutrition
  1. Hydration
  1. Emergency shelter


So now you got your basics covered, in the next installment of Rust and Dust we will discuss what to carry in your First Aid Kit. Seriously, it is always good to follow checklists. I did not make them up, they have been around since man started going further from their caves to forage and hunt to keep the tribe alive. So don’t open yourself to ridicule after your long and painful death at the hands of Mother Nature, pack a good kit and enjoy the mountains!!

Backpacking the HimalayasBackpacking the Himalayas


One thought on “Your Basic Backpacking Checklist”

  1. Oh Raja, how I would love to tramp through some of the mountains with you! I’ve had 2 knee replacements (one of which I am still trying to recover from and a very bad fall and femur break since I left India) and probably couldn’t do it, but my heart is there hoping to do it.

    I hope your mom is doing well – tell her I said hello. And also Hi to Elise and your darling daughter. One of these days I will make it back to Dharm!


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