Packing light is so important for a long distance thru hike. There are loads of advantages – less weight, reduced chance of injury, quicker packing times, less items to keep track off and loose and…better sense of freedom! Here is the packing list of the kit I took on a 2 month thru hike doing the Israel National Trail. Notes in red were made after the hike.

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Israel National Trail packing list, general:

Sleeping packing list:

  • Hubba Hubba NX 2 man lightweihgt tent (best tent ever!!)
  • Therm-a-rest inflatable roll mat and repair kit (got a lot of punctures and needed to order extra repair kits)
  • Mountain Equipment down sleeping bag, 3 Season (thicker than is recommended but I’m a cold sleeper and I appreciated it on some of the cold winter nights. Mostly used like a blanket which was very comfortable)

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Cooking packing list:

  • Lightweight cooking pan
  • Jetboil with pan attachment (and without the pot attached. I chose to take a separate pot as it is larger more versatile for 2 people)
  • Gas canister
  • Sea to Summit collapsible mug/bowl
  • Spork (broke and ended up using a regular metal spoon)
  • Lighter

What to pack for the Israel National Trail

Toiletries packing list:

  • First Aid Kit
  • Sunscreen factor 50+
  • Aqua Prove purifying drops (didn’t need to use purification tablets at all)
  • Lush Ultrabalm (used as a moisturiser, preventing blisters, chaffing)
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • LUSH solid shampoo (for washing myself and clothes)
  • Mooncup (women only)
  • Duct tape (wrapped around the repair kit)

Clothes packing list:

  • Bandana (tied around head to keep sweat out of eyes, used as flannel sometimes)
  • Warm hat (used quite a bit for the cold desert night)
  • Brimmed sun hat
  • Waterproof Jacket (didn’t use at all!)
  • 1 x Fleece
  • 1 x cotton shirt (sun protection)
  • Pair of trousers
  • 2 x t-shirts
  • 1 x Shorts
  • Bikini
  • 1 x bra
  • 2 x Wool hiking socks
  • 3 x quick dry underwear

The Israel National Trail saw me hiking in hot desert conditions. In regards to clothing, it is better to wear loose fitting cotton items that will retain sweat and keep you cool in the hot conditions. The exception is socks and underwear – areas that you want to keep dry – so buy good quality quick drying materials. Dark colours absorb heat so the best is bright colours or light (although light clothing will show the dirt more).

When it comes to buying equipment, good shoes and socks are your biggest priority and where you should definitely want to invest. Buy them at least 6 months before the walk and wear them as much as you can, including for some long walks. It is common for the boots to cause blisters at first until you ‘wear them in’ and they become softer and mould to your feet. My leather booths cost me £200 but rarely cause me blisters and are incredibly comfortable.

Second to the boots and shoes, you want to think about getting a good back that fits comfortably and can be adjusted. After boots, the bag will be the item that causes you the most amount of discomfort. Both are a personal choice so you need to go to a shop and try different options and go for the one that is most comfortable and fits your body the best. I only took a 50l bag which was plenty, although there were 2 of us so some items we could share – stove, first aid, etc. I would try and keep your pack below 60l if possible. Not only will it save you over packing and carrying extra weight, but it will make scrambling over rocks a lot more comfortable.

Gas stoves can be found on the trail at the supermarkets that you pass so you don’t need to carry more than 1 at a time. The same goes with toiletries and sunscreen.

 


For more information on hiking the Israel National Trail, check out these blogs:

An honest review of the Israel National Trail
A guide to the Israel National Trail
22 tips for thru hiking
Israel National Trail: budget breakdown
24 pictures that will make you want to walk the Israel Nationals Trail
My Israel National Trail Itinerary

Want to know more about my packing kit list or the gear I took? Let me know in the comments below.