December 18, 2013
by Ken Sin in Brooklyn, NY
Here’s a picture of Sam. She’s in Spain now doing her own sort of adventurous things. She gave me some tips through Skype on what to pack. She’s the one who encouraged me to make this post. Maybe some can use this info in the future for their own travels. Maybe some can laugh at how a newbie like myself packs. Maybe some can get weird feelings about seeing pictures of my underwear. I don’t know.
Mike and Stephen, being the most experienced rally-ers, gave everyone some of their advice on how to pack for a journey like this. The wise thing to do is to pack light. Uhhh… so here’s my attempt:<
- Underwear. This is the bare minimum. I got these super cool travel underwear Mike recommended called Ex Officio. They’re pretty cash.
They’re pricey, but sweet. I only bought 2 pairs. Yes, only 2. Cause that’s all you need. They’re made of something synthetic that dries fast. So you can wash and dry one overnight. That’s basically the mantra for packing light: Synthetic = Dry fast = Wash and dry overnight.
They’re surprisingly comfortable. Bring some long johns for when it gets cold too.
- Socks. 4/5 pairs. Some summer weight, some winter weight. Again, I look for comfort and quick drying material. Expecting a lotta walking = don’t get socks that make your feet feel soaked on long treads.
- Outerwear. Rain coat, winter jacket, spring jacket. I can probably do with less, but I really don’t fuck with the cold or wet, so I play it safe. All lightweight. All packable into a pocket. Same story. Less is more.
- Bottoms. One pair of jeans. One pair of waterproof pants. One pair of sweatpants. Shorts for the hot weather down there. Lotsa shorts. Going so hard on that Adidas. I could sub for DRose.
- Shirts. Goes through the most use. Au contrare to the other stuff, I’m bringing lots. I could wear just a few athletic quick-dry tees, but there is a desire to look reasonably presentable in photos (see 8).
For anyone that has a ton of shirts that never get into their rotation – but the shirts are totally fine and you just never wear them because you’re too lazy / have too many even more baller shirts – I definitely suggest going on a journey like this. This is a chance to wear everything and anything. And it’s OK if you lose them or mess’em up, because they’re shirts you don’t ever wear anyway!
Also, no one’s going to judge you! Well, maybe they will, but at least you have the excuse of “Treacherous adventure. Ain’t nobody got time to be dressin’ pretty.”
- ACCESSORIZING. Thick scarf and a cap. Not necessary, but also very necessary. Both have a lot of uses. For example: Your scarf doubles as a rope. It can also be used for extra padding to your pillow.
Another example: You’re at a river. You’re starving. You want to catch a fish to eat but you don’t got no fishing rods. Good thing you brought that cap with you so you can stand in the river and use your ninja skills to quickly scoop up the fish swimming downstream. Now you have yourself a nice protein-rich meal. But what’s this? A pack of coyotes find you. They attack you, and take your fish, and they leave your ravaged body to die in the wilderness. Lucky you, you took a picture of that cap you were going to use on your rally, and showed it to everyone on the internet through the team blog. Now the authorities can easily identify your body.
Also, a watch. Actual wristwear. Get something cheap and easy. Need this to tell time and day (unless you can read the patterns of the sun moon and stars). Very important.
- Bagz. Backpack and weekender by Everlane. Best bags. Less swag options are available. Bigger, sturdier, more adventurous bags exist. But if you need them, you’re not packing right.
But really, you want something like a large duffel, about suitcase sized, so you don’t just leave clothes around in the ambulance cubbies. And then a daypack, about carry-on sized, so you can hike around with a bag. Everlane is still great for sending us their bags though.
- Luxuries. Gucci shades. Tom Ford Tuscan leather passport holder. These are absolutely necessary for you to encounter a brigand in your travels. Now that’s adventurous.
I’m bringing a razor and shaving cream and shaving brush. Not necessary for a grittier experience, but I really don’t like being itchy. Generic Gilette razor is luxury on a rally like this.
- Malaria pills. Fuck mosquitos. Rather die driving ambulance off a cliff.
- Insecticide. See Fuck mosquitos.
- CPR mask and band-aids. Pretty useless if we’re not near a hospital, but might as well. Rather not die.
- Ukulele. You know how sometimes it’s like a Tuesday and you ain’t really doin’ shit. Sometimes it’ll be like that. Just sitting in the back of the ambulance. Gotta have music. Music is livelihood. And I’m sure we’ll run out of iPod/iPhone tracks to listen to after 3 months. Will probably drive teammates insane when practicing though.
Cameras and laptop. Not a necessity if you’re just backpacking. But we’re Last Responders. We’ve gotta share our story with yall.
Sleeping bag. Sleeping pad. Pillow. Self-explanatory. When bringng sleeping bag, consider the temperature. When we get deep into the southern hemisphere, we’ll need a winter rated sleeping bag cause it’ll be real cold. But I don’t really want to bring a cool and a warm sleeping bag, so I’m just bringing one warm sleeping bag. Again, rather be warm than cold. If anything, I’ll sleep outside of the bag.
Towels. One for face and one for body. Quick dry kind. Coulda probably survived with just one though.
Basketball. never stops.
Shoes. One pair. Waterproof. Breathes. Uglier the better.
Toiletries. Toothbrush, toothpaste, toilet paper, clothesline, whatever. But that’s all acquireable on the road.
So actually, this is not that light at all. I tried. This is much better than what I would’ve packed in the past though. A lot of these decisions I don’t see Ken 2012 or even Ken S/S 2013 ever wearing or packing. He’d probably need more. More comfort. More aesthetically pleasing. More clean and fresh.
I know I still need a lot of junk, but I am slowly trimming down on these things. By the end of this rally, I should transform into a being that needs very little maintenance and materials. Ken Lite. I just hope I don’t miss too many showers. :\