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Backpacking Packing List – Nepal Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek With a Baby Gear Guide

backpacking packing list
Our son P (8-months-old here) and all our gear for our Poon Hill Trek in Nepal

Backpacking Packing List (And Nepal Ghorepani Poon Hill Trek With a Baby Gear Guide)

When I was a kid, I was in the Boy Scouts of America, and the scout motto was “Be Prepared.” From an early age, I have spent a lot of time in the outdoors learning exactly what that means. I have also spent a lot of time refining my backpacking packing list. Ultimately, what I have discovered is that being prepared, first and foremost, means knowing where and when you’ll be venturing into the backcountry. That is why in this post why we have provided you with two backpacking packing list.

(1) The first list is designed for general backpacking excursions, and we’ve made that list based on 30+ years of backpacking experience. It can also be used for packing for a Ghorepani Poon Hill trek in Nepal. The picture above is from our Nepal trek. You can read the full details of that experience in out post Ghorepani Poon Hill trek with a baby in Nepal in December. To say the very least, being prepared for that trip was of the utmost importance, especially for baby P.

(2) The second list is designed for backpacking with a baby. It can also be used for baby trekking Ghorepani Poon Hill in Nepal in the winter months. We made this second list because we learned a lot from our Ghorepani Poon Hill trek in Nepal in December with our 8-month-old son, and we want to share it with other prospective baby trekking families.

If you have questions or comments about any of this, leave us a comment below. We will write back just as soon as we can!

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Backpacking Packing Lists – Two Checklists

If you’re like us, checklists make packing for a backpacking trip a heck of a lot easier. So, we’ve made two different checklists for you. To download them, just click the pictures (or links) below, and you’ll be good to go!

General Backpacking – Packing Checklist

We have designed our general backpacking packing list to include everything you need in order to have a safe, enjoyable and a leave no trace friendly backpacking experience while being completely off grid in the backcountry. You can download it by clicking on the image or link below.

NOTE: If you are planning to use this list to pack for a Ghorepani Poon Hill trek in Nepal, you will not need many of the items on our list. This is because you will likely be staying in trekkers lodges or tea houses. Therefore, you will be sleeping inside each night, eating food the lodge has prepared for you and buying filtered water. On our downloadable packing list, we have indicated whether or not an item is necessary for a Poon Hill trek.

Download our General Backpacking Packing List here!

Baby Trekking – Packing Checklist

We have designed our baby trekking backpacking packing list to include everything your baby needs in order to have a safe, enjoyable and a leave no trace friendly backpacking experience while being completely off grid in the backcountry.

NOTE: If you are planning to use this list to pack for a Ghorepani Poon Hill trek in Nepal with a baby in the winter time, you will not need some of the items on our list. On our downloadable baby trekking packing list, we have indicated whether or not an item is necessary for baby trekking Poon Hill in the winter time.

Download our Baby Trekking Packing List here!

When To Use Both Lists

If you are planning to go backpacking with a baby, i.e. you’re planning to go completely off grid with your little one in tow, we recommend you use both of our packing lists to make sure that you and your little one have all the gear you’ll need in the backcountry. We know it’s a lot of stuff, but we have found all of these items essential for having a safe and enjoyable backpacking experience, and we think you will too.

General Advice for Choosing Gear

Generally speaking, the lighter your backpack, the happier you will be while you’re backpacking (provided you have all the essential items). Every gram/ounce counts. However, light gear is often the most expensive, so build your gear supply over time, and invest wisely. With that said, working within your budget, we recommend you buy the lightest, most functional and most versatile gear you can afford.

The Specific Gear We Recommend

Some of the items we list below are the specific models we use, and some of them are similar. Regardless, we have selected items that balance price, weight, functionality and versatility. Most of them are affiliate links which simply means you will pay the normal price for the item, and we will get a small percentage of the sale. We use these funds to help run this site, so thank you in advance for your support!

How Our Backpacking Packing List Is Organized

We have divided our backpacking packing list into four sections.

General Backpacking Packing List

1. General Backpacking Gear
2. General Backpacking Clothing

Baby Trekking Packing List

3. Baby Trekking Gear
4. Baby Trekking Clothing

General Backpacking Gear

Hiking Backpacks

1 Per Person

First and foremost, buy a backpack that fits your body. A poorly fitting pack can be extremely uncomfortable. If you don’t know how to fit a backpack, go to a reputable gear store, and have someone help you select a pack that fits your body.

Second, buy a backpack with an appropriate volume for the backpacking trips you’re going to take. Too big and you’ll likely bring extra (and unnecessary) items. Too small, and you won’t be able to fit the essentials.

Sleeping Bag

1 Per Person

Again, if you don’t know how to fit a a sleeping bag, asking a professional is a good idea. To oversimplify, a perfect fit is when the bag gently hugs your body all over. However, it should not be so tight that it “fits like a glove.” There should be no loose spots, as extra air inside the bag will make it cold.

Also, choose a bag that is rated for an appropriate temperature range based on where/when you will be backpacking and on the likelihood of you wearing clothes in the bag while you sleep.

Sleeping Pad

1 Per Person

Find a pad that is both comfortable and lightweight. Test them out in the store, and you’ll have a good idea of which one is right for you.

Sleeping Pad Patch Kit

1 Per Person

If you choose an inflatable pad, make sure you bring a patch kit.

Inflatable Pillow (Optional)

1 Per Person

An inflatable pillow is one of the few “luxury” items we have on this list, but when we hunker down in our tent after a long day of trekking, we never regret carrying this bit of extra weight.

Hiking Poles

1 Pair Per Person

Most often, we use our poles on the downhills, as they help reduce the impact on our knees and ankles and give us a welcomed bit of extra stability. Especially if you’re planning on doing any sort of long-distance backpacking trips, we highly recommend you buy a pair of hiking poles.

Backpacking Stove

1 Per Party

This stove can burn petrol, kerosene, liquid camping fuel and pressurized canister fuel. It’s also super durable. We love this stove and have been using ours for the past ~15 years!

Fuel Bottle

1 Per Party

To use the above stove with petrol, kerosene or liquid camping fuel you will need to buy a fuel bottle.

Stove Repair Kit

1 Per Party

You will need this in the unlikely event that your stove breaks (or clogs) in the backcountry.

Cooking Pot Set

1 Per Party

If you can cook without pots and pans, please tell us your secret! Otherwise, pickup a set of these durable and lightweight cooking pots.

Cooking Utensils

1 Per Party

You will need these in order to cook your food.

Spice Set

1 Set Per Party

Spices aren’t necessary, but they sure are nice to have while you’re backpacking. We use these little airtight containers to bring along our favorite spices.


1 Per Party

A sponge makes cleaning your dishes quite easily. If you’re going super lightweight, you can just use leaves, sand and water to clean your stuff, but we prefer a sponge.

Biodegradable Soap

1 Bottle Per Party

Again, if you’re super hardcore about lightweight backpacking, you might not even bring soap. However, we’re not that hardcore.

Eating Cutlery (Spoon, Fork, Knife)

1 Per Person

This lightweight and durable cutlery is essential for your backpacking mealtimes.

Water Filter

1 Per Party

In the backcountry it’s nearly impossible to completely determine if a source of water is potable, so it’s better to be safe than sorry. Filter your water, and you won’t have to wonder if you’re going to get sick later on.

Water Purifications Tablets/Drops

1 Bottle Per Person

Just in case your water filter breaks, clogs irreparably or gets lost, always bring a backup water sanitation method.

1 Liter Water Bottle

2 Per Person

It’s important to stay hydrated when you backpack, so make sure you carry enough water. We usually carry 2 liters at a time.

Water Storage Container (4 Liter Size)

1 Per Party

When you get to camp it will be nice to have a large supply of water around for cooking, cleaning and drinking. This storage container will help negate the need to go back and forth to the water source. If you’re camping at a dry camp (a site with no water) this will be essential for carrying in the water you will need throughout your stay.

Windproof Lighter

2 Per Party

Use this to light your stove. Always bring a backup.

Stormproof Matches

1 Box Per Party

These matches can serve as yet another backup for your stove. Also, they are also an essential part of emergency preparedness. While making a campfire is not leave no trace friendly, in the event of an emergency, it may be necessary to make a fire.

First Aid Kit

1 Per Party

Don’t go backpacking without a first aid kit. While considering the weight of your first aid kit, make it as comprehensive as your medical training and the likelihood of you using the items permits.

Parachute Cord 100 Feet

1 Bunch Per Party

You can use this to create a clothesline, to create a shelter (with a tarp) and for about a million other things.


1 Per Party

If you need to poo in the backcountry, you need to dig a hole first. Make sure you do it at least 60 m (200 ft) from trails, campsites or water sources.

Biodegradable Toilet Paper

Enough For Your Trip

This item doesn’t need much explanation. Just make sure your toilet roll is biodegradable.

Toiletries (Toothbrush, Floss, Etc.)

Variable Quantities

Bring your essential items but no more.

Personal Medications

Variable Quantities

Again, bring your essentials, and leave the rest at home.


1 Per Person (Plus One Spare Per Party)

You will need a headlight to see at night time. A headlight also gives you the option of night hiking.

Headlight Spare Batteries

1 Set Per Person (Plus One Spare Set Per Party)

Make sure you have a set of spare batteries for your headlight.

Spare Headlight

1 Per Party

It’s unlikely someone’s headlight will not be usable, but it really sucks if that happens. Therefore, we recommend you bring one spare per group.

Spare Batteries for Spare Headlight

1 Set Per Party

Don’t forget spare batteries for the spare headlight


Variable Quantity

We love taking pictures. We use this camera because it’s weatherproof.


1 Per Party

When we go backpacking, we always have some need for a multitool. Just make sure you choose a lightweight model.


1 Per Party

You might not use this if you’re navigating using your smartphone or GPS, but it’s essential emergency preparedness gear.


Variable Quantity

You can go ultra lightweight by leaving your tent at home and sleeping under a tarp, but most times we prefer a lightweight tent.

Pack Towel

1 Per Person

There is no need to bring a full size cotton towel when you can bring a lightweight and ultra absorbent pack towel.

Pack Cover

1 Per Person

When it rain, it is important to keep your pack dry. A pack cover will help you do just that. Leave it on your pack a night, and it can also help prevent the morning dew from getting your gear wet.

Nylon Stuff Sacks

Variable Quantity

We use these to organize the gear in our packs. They add a bit of extra weight, but they are well worth it.

Emergency Whistle

1 Per Person

Again, bring this for emergency preparedness sake.

General Backpacking Clothing

There is a lot to consider when you decide what to wear hiking. Ideally, none of your backpacking clothing should be cotton. This is because if cotton gets wet (or sweaty) it looses much of its insulating ability and thus will not keep you warm. Ideally, choose clothes made from wool, as they will keep you warm even if they get wet. For undergarments, choose synthetic materials.

Hiking Shoes

1 Pair Per Person

We hike in trail running shoes unless there is a good chance we will encounter snow.

Ice Cleats

1 Pair Per Person

These will help you on some light ice and snow.

Low Cut Wool Socks

2 Pairs Per Person

We hike in wool socks year round. They help prevent blisters.

Hiking Pants

1 Pair Per Person

Hiking pants are a must. Pants made especially for hiking are a game-changer. I love these men’s hiking pants, and Julia loves these women’s hiking pants.

Quick Dry Hiking Shirt

2 Per Person

Any quick dry shirt will do. Just don’t wear cotton.

Quick Dry Underwear

2 Pairs Per Person

Synthetic underwear keeps us dry and prevents chaffing.

Rain Jacket

1 Per Person

We always bring our rain jackets when we go backpacking. They keep us dry and warm, and we also use them as windbreakers.

Rain Pants

1 Pair Per Person

We also always bring rain pants when we go backpacking. By wearing both our rain coat and pants, we keep dry and warm in all weather conditions.

Thermal Underwear (Top and Bottom)

2 Per Person

Thermal underwear is useful for hiking during chilly weather and for keeping warm at night. Designate one pair for daytime and the other for night time, and don’t mix up the two!

Down Parka

1 Per Person

If you’re going to be backpacking when it’s cool, a down parka is a lightweight way to ensure you will be warm.

Wool Hat

1 Per Person

As a genera rule, if your head (and feet) is warm, your whole body will be warm.

Gloves (Smartphone Friendly)

1 Pair Per Person

Chilly fingers are no fun. If you get smartphone friendly gloves, you can navigate with your phone, and not freeze your digits.

Waterproof Glove Shells

1 Pair Per Person

It’s nice to have the versatility of making our gloves waterproof when we want to. That is why we use these shells instead of buying a pair of waterproof gloves.

Sun Hat

1 Per Person

Sun protection is important, so a sun hat is essential.

Baby Trekking Gear

Baby Trekking Backpack

1 Per Baby

We love this baby hiking backpack, and we use it all the time. As long as you find one that is comfortable for you and your baby, you’ll be good to go.

Baby Trekking Backpack Rain Cover

1 Per Baby

It’s important to keep your little one (and the pack) nice and dry.

Baby Spoon (Silicone Head)

1 Per Baby

Your baby has to eat. The silicone head is nice for scraping their bowl clean, and cleaning your baby’s face a bit.

Baby Food Container (Airtight)

1 Per Baby

An airtight container is nice because you can make a bit of food for your baby ahead of time, pack it away for a few hours and then feed it to them later. Not having to worry about leakage is a big relief.

Baby Formula Dispenser

1 Per Baby

If your little one eats formula, it’s nice to not have to go into your formula canister every time you want to make a bottle. Also, it’s nice to have a few pre-measured portions right on hand.

Silicone Bib

1 Per Baby

We love our silicone bib because it keeps our son P clean, and we can easily rinse it off.

Cloth Bib

2 Per Baby

Our son P drools quite a bit, so having absorbent cloth bibs is important for us.

Burp Cloth

2 Per Baby

If you are backpacking with a baby, you’ll find a million ways to use a burp cloth (or two) while you’re in the backcountry.


2 Per Baby

We bring two bottles. We use one for P’s milk, and the other for his water.

Bottle Nipples

2 Per Baby

A baby bottle is pretty useless without a nipple, so don’t forget these at home.

Baby Formula

Variable Quantities

If your baby drinks formula, don’t forget this essential item.

Baby Food

Variable Quantities

We like to make sure our little one has a good meal even when we’re in the backcountry. Fresh food is too heavy (and can spoil), so we bring dehydrated rice, dehydrated beans, dehydrated veg, and dehydrated fruit.

Biodegradable Soap (Small Bottle)

Variable Quantities

Use this to bathe your baby!

Baby Sunscreen/Bug Spray

Variable Quantities

You don’t want your little one getting sunburnt or eaten by bugs.

Baby Sunglasses

1 Pair Per Baby

Your baby will not only look cool in their baby shades, but their eyes will be protected from all those harmful UV rays.

Baby Medicines

Variable Quantities

You know best what your little one will need. Make sure you plan ahead on this front.

Baby Syringe

1 Per Baby

We use one of these to give our son his liquid meds.

Baby Toys

Variable Quantities

We bring along a few toys that we can hang from our baby hiking backpack. P likes to play with them as we hike with him down the trail.


1 Per Baby

If your little one is teething, this will be essential.

Biodegradable Baby Wet Wipes

Variable Quantities

We cringe when we use anything disposable, but we feel a bit better when the things we use are biodegradable. (As an aside, do NOT leave these items in the backcountry. Pack them out.)

Biodegradable Diapers

Variable Quantities

Again, we don’t like using disposable anything, but at least these are biodegradable. (Again, do NOT leave these items in the backcountry. Pack them out.)

Diaper Changing Pad

1 Per Party

This pad allows us to change P’s diaper just about anywhere.

Diaper Cream

Variable Quantities

If your little one gets diaper rash while you’re backpacking, you’ll be glad you brought a tube of this along.

Baby Bath Soap

Variable Quantities

If your baby has sensitive skin don’t use the above soap for baths, bring some baby bath soap.

Baby Trekking Clothing

Just as we try to avoid cotton clothing with our adult backpacking clothing choices (because cotton does not keep you warm when it gets wet), the same goes for your babies clothing.


1 Per Baby

When we go backpacking, it usually gets cold in the evening time. It’s super easy to keep our son P warm by just putting him into his snow suit.


1 Per Baby

If we don’t need the full warmth of his snowsuit, it’s nice to have the option of a vest.


2 Pairs Per Baby

We like footie pants, but choose whichever you like best.

Long Sleeve Onesies

3 Per Baby

Long sleeves provide a bit of warmth in the cooler months and sun protection year round.

Wool Socks

2 Pairs Per Baby

Who doesn’t love a good pair of wool socks? Even babies do!

Wool Hat and Mittens

1 Per Baby

Usually, if we keep our son P’s head warm, the rest of his body stays warm too.

Mitten String

1 Per Baby

It would stink to lose a mitten in the middle of the backcountry, so make sure to pick up a set of these.

Bathing Sun Suit

1 Per Baby

If your backpacking route includes swimming holes, you can avoid the challenge of putting suncream on your little one by using a sunsuit instead.

Reusable Swim Diaper

1 Per Baby

And of course, if your baby isn’t yet potty trained, make sure to get a reusable swim diaper.


1 Per Baby

For us, a swaddle is a baby must have item, even when backing.


1 Per Baby

When we go backpacking, we bring our son P’s baby blanket from home, as it gives him something familiar and comforting during nap and bed time.

Fleece Booties

1 Pair Per Baby

No one likes cold toes, not even babies. And, since our son’s socks always seem to fall off, or since he often pulls them off, these booties are a good choice.

Go Backpacking!

With all of the right gear, you will have an enjoyable and safe time in the backcountry. And, if you want to go backpacking with your baby, of course, you can bring the right gear to do that too. Ultimately, if you use our backpacking packing lists as a starting point, you will find out which items you personally consider to be essential and which ones you can simply leave at home. So, go pack your backpack, venture out into the wild, and create your own personal backpacking packing list. And, at any time if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. In the mean time, happy backpacking!

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