How did you pack for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip?

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How did you pack for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip?

Postby bcassidy003 » Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:21 pm

So I'm here wondering the best way to pack my luggage (i.e., hiking clothes, sleeping bags and so on) for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip...

Since the porters will be carrying a share of the gear, and the hikers carrying their own individual day pack, what is the easiest way that any of you have brought it to the country? I like the idea of one of the bigger backpacks that can hold sleeping bags (like the ones truly meant for 'backpacking'), but don't know if I should spend the money on one of them just to make travel a bit easier.

I hate checking luggage for the fear of it being lost in transit from the US to Peru but will have to do this no matter what it appears. Thus I'd try to keep a lot of the key gear (shoes, clothes, etc...) with me in a day pack.

So basically, I'm curious to know how you got your stuff down to Peru...
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Re: How did you pack for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip?

Postby Janice08 » Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:37 pm

The fun of packing!

When you do the Inca Trail hike you are given a duffel bag to put in your personal stuff that the porters will carry. This includes your sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and anything else you don't want to carry up to 6 kg (the sleeping bag, sleeping pad and bag weigh about 3 kg). You carry what you want for the day, and anything that exceeds the weight limit, in your day pack. This includes sweater, raingear, camera, snacks, water, etc. Anything that you have brought on your trip that you don't need for the trek can be left at your hotel in Cusco.

If you want to cut down on what you bring with you, you can rent sleeping bags, thermarest sleeping pads and trekking poles for the trekk. You can buy alpaca sweaters, toques, and mits in Cuzco. They make nice souvenirs.

I used my daypack as my carryon for the flight down. I wore my hiking boots because I didn't want to risk them getting lost. Broken in boots are a necessity. Because, as you say, luggage doesn't always take the same route as you do, I always carry at least one complete change of clothes in my carryon as well as anything of value and anything I can't do without or easily replace. It still manages to fit under the seat.

My checked bag is either a travel backpack (one that the pack straps zip under a cover to prevent them from being damaged on the conveyer belts) or a wheeled backpack. The wheels are kind of useless on cobblestone streets but come in handy getting around airports and paved roads. I wouldn't go out and spend the money on a new bag unless you need to buy one anyways. Whatever bag you bring, you need to be able to carry it up a couple of flights of stairs and possibly a few blocks if taking a public bus or your arranged transportation can't make it to your hotel. It also has to be light enough to be lifted up onto roofracks on buses.
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Re: How did you pack for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip?

Postby ballu » Mon Mar 04, 2013 2:31 pm

As mentioned above, no need to buy special luggage for the trail. You'll be given a duffle bag for that part of the trip. It's big enough for your sleeping back, clothes and personal items...but small enough that you won't have room to pack anything you don't need. The rest of your stuff will be safely locked up on Cusco.

As for what to bring...layered clothing works best and something waterproof. I just bought a cheap poncho there that did the job. It can get cold at night.

There is also an option to rent a sleeping bag/sleeping pad so you don't have to lug that stuff around for the rest of your travels.

I haven't been everywhere, but it's on my list

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Re: How did you pack for the Inca Trail (SPIT) trip?

Postby texasamazon » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:07 am

Just rent the sleeping bag there. They're clean, but by the end of the trip, mine was wet and dirty. I wouldn't have wanted to try to haul that home with me.

And keep in mind 3K is VERY minimal. That is, with your sleeping bag, which is required, and the weight of the duffle you're required to use, the amount the porters carry is very little. And that's how it should be. But you really have to think carefully about what you want them to carry and what you can actually carry yourself. This isn't a sissy hike. It's hard.
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