What's in my Backpack?

Being a natural snoop, erm, a keen observer, the contents of other people’s bags always amuses me. What’s inside and how it’s packed says something about the person carrying it and what they’re doing. A person’s bag is like a walking Facebook profile! 

On a recent trip to Sorsogon, I had to pack for a 3D 2N trip and our itinerary involved the following activities : 
1. Attend an opening for the Rizal Elementary School Library (Gubat, Sorsogon) - it’s first ever in 50 Years! Congrats everyone! 
2. Beach swim 
3. Food Trip 
4. Short hike to Bayugin Waterfalls 
5. Trip to Bulusan Volcano Natural Park 

The travel involved an uneventful 14-hour bus ride from Manila to Gubat, Sorsogon and if not for my entertaining seatmate, Gael of The Pinay SoloBackpacker and the rest of my companions, I would have melted in boredom. That said, when I pack, I also prepare stuff for the transit. 

The Main Backpack : 
Deuter Act Trail 32 (very durable, light, packs a lot, highly recommended!). 
Capacity : 32 Liters 
Where to Buy : Toby’s, R.O.X. 

Now, on to the juicy bits, here’s a list of what was inside my backpack : 
1. Carry-on backpack - since we had a varied range of activities scheduled, I brought a smaller backpack which I used when we roamed around Sorsogon. I placed it inside my main backpack so I don't have to worry about it while on the road.  

2. Bus Ride Essentials - located at the pockets outside my bag, within easy access are the things I needed for the long bus ride. 

The snacks I brought for the trip were all put to  good use :P

These included : a. inflatable neck and shoulder pillow. It avoids stiff necks and falling into the arms of an unwilling seatmate. b. MP3 Player c.Mints - keeps breath fresh all night long! d. Malong - in case it gets really cold inside the bus e. Jacket f. Notebook and pen - in case I felt the urge to write g. Chocolates - in case I get hungry and cannot wait for the next stop. I hate waiting for food! :P h. Wallet - I bought an Eagle Creek wallet which comes with a sling so I don't have to worry where I put my wallet. I could just string it on my neck in case I needed to make an emergency purchase.i. Vapur Anti-bottle water container - The great thing about Vapur is that you can just fold it up when you've depleted the contents. It also comes with a carabiner to keep it from falling off your bag. j. Headlamp - in case of power outage; and  also because I get scared of the dark very easily when I'm far from home.  k. Wet Tissue - keeps me feeling fresh all the time even with no bath. :P    

Whew, so that's it for the bus ride. Now on to the rest of the trip essentials : 

3. Clothes placed inside plastic bags/waterproof bags - years of hiking has taught me to pack as though I'll be walking a heavy downpour. It's an irreversible habit and I actually feel iffy when my clothes aren't inside a waterproof bag. A question I always ask myself whenever I pack is that "if my backpack is thrown into the water, would everything remain dry?". It's something that was instilled to me years ago by a former mentor, Sir Rommel Corro from the Ayala Mountaineers (now called AMCI). 

To save space and to avoid from crinkling the clothes, I fold then roll it. My clothes are packed per activity. It's easier that way for me so I can easily pull things out from the bag. The going home clothes stays at the bottom of the bag while the ones I needed to change for the first night are at the top of the pile. 
Packing Light Tip: What I wear in the evening is what I also wear the following day. When I swim, I use the same set so I don’t consume a lot of clothes. 

Some of the clothes I packed. 
4. Waterproof bags for wet &  smelly clothes 

5. Mobile Phone & Camera Chargers - since these are a bit sensitive, everything's placed on top of the bag. 

6. First Aid Kit - this is an essential. Sometimes, it's not you who will need it but someone else so it pays to bring one. 

7. Hiking shoes - The initial plan was to hike Mt. Pulog in Bacon but I decided to take it easy instead and spent time at the beach with friends. 

8. Plastic bag for trash - in case there are no garbage bins around. It's another packing habit from hiking I'm unable to break even if I'm not going to stay long in the mountains. 

9. Toiletries - alcohol with atomizer, lip gloss,  soap, shampoo, conditioner, sunblock, mosquito repellant, sanitary napkin, etc, etc. I keep a separate set - one that's left at home while the other set's what I pull out from the closet when I'm traveling. 

I also had an earlier post about the toiletry kit I bring on the road. Read it here - Travel Essentials : Kikay Kit for Outdoorsy Backpackers).

And that's pretty much it. I was able to bring everything I needed for the trip. :)

This is a partner post with another friend, James Betia of JourneyingJames.com. Check out what he packed for our trip -> What's in my Backpack by Journeying James

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