My Top 10 Backpacking Gear – 2020

Summer is here and I thought I share with you an updated list of my top 10 backpacking and photography gear for 2020.

This is the gear that I use when I’m out on my photographic adventures in the Swedish mountains working on my project Mountains & Beyond. As I carry a lot of camera equipment and food (sometimes for more than 2 weeks) I need to shave off weight in the other categories. In the beginning of an adventure my backpack usually weighs around 25 – 30 kg.

I hope you find this post helpful and if you have any questions you can drop me a comment below – I’ll be happy to answer them!

A happy photographer and the Hilleberg Niak in Padjelanta National Park.
  1. The Backpack – Hyperlite Mountain Gear Porter 4400/5400
    Lightweight, nearly waterproof and versatile. I use both the 4400 and 5400 version depending on how much gear I need to carry. It’s a minimalist type of pack but you can add extras outside. I found this pack to be a great balance between durability and weight.
  2. Tent – Hyperlite Mountain Gear Ultamid II or Hilleberg Niak / Soulo
    I choose tent depending on the terrain I will encounter. I really enjoy pyramid shelters like the Ultamid II but in some terrain it’s better with a freestanding tent like the Hilleberg Niak or Soulo. All are excellent and roomy options for solo adventures. In terms of stormproofness the Soulo is the best, followed by the Ultamid and then the Niak. For very exposed terrain I choose the Soulo.For two persons I can recommend the Ultamid or the Hilleberg Allak 2 which is a great allrounder.
  3. Camera Equipment – Fujifilm GFX 50R + Lenses
    I’ve recently switched to medium format and the Fujifilm GFX 50R. It weighs a bit more than other systems but the image quality I get from it is in a different league. As I make large prints from my adventures the extra weight is worth carrying. The lenses I use are the 23 mm, 32-64 mm, 100-200 mm and the 250 mm. I also carry a Fujifilm XT-4 that I use for filming. My camera kit weighs around 8 kg in total.
  4. Tripod – Feisol 3442 Tripod + Acratech GP-ss Ballhead
    The bestlightweight tripod system I have found. The tripod is tall enough for me (I’m 178 cm) and the ballhead is both sturdy and have some extra features like the ability to make easy panorama stitching by inverting the head.
  5. Insulating Jacket – Arcteryx Atom AR
    Synthethic insulation isn’t as warm per gram as down but this jacket has become a favorite of mine. It’s a great allround piece and dries much faster than down. Also, after years of use, I have found it to be more durable than some of the lightweight down jackets I have used before. Very comfortable!
  6. Wind Jacket – Arcteryx Squamish Hoody
    A simple wind shirt is an essential piece for wilderness travel. I love this one from Arcteryx. It’s lightweight, breathable and as a bonus it works as a protection from the mosquitoes. Quick drying and versatile!
  7. Sleep System – Katabatic Gear Flex and Therm-a-Rest Xtherm
    In the summer I use quilts instead of sleeping bags as I find them more comfortable. I believe Therma-a-Rest makes the best sleeping pads in terms of comfort, weight and durability. The Xtherm model works all year round which I like. One pad for everything.
  8. Stove – MSR Pocket Rocket 2
    I have used the original version of this stove for more than 10 years (it’s still going strong) and the new version is even better. Coupled with a titanium pot it makes for a great summer cooking system. Although you need to have shelter from the wind to use it.
  9. Freeze-dried Dinner – Real Turmat
    A tasty dinner is essential for well being in the wilderness. These are the ones that taste the best if you ask me. Pork Sweet and Sour is my current favorite – I’ve had a few of those and they can be a real moral boost when your’e tired.
  10. Hiking Poles – Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork
    When carrying a heavy backpack in difficult terrain a pair of hiking poles makes life easier. I enjoy these ones from Black Diamond and they work equally good in summer as well as in winter and are also sturdy enough to pitch the Ultamid with. Makes water crossings easier and safer. Once you start hiking with poles it’s hard to go back!
Ultamid II from Hyperlite Mountain Gear is a great lightweight shelter option. Here pitched in Sarek National Park.

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