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  • patricia92140

Packing Tips for the Inca Trail (or any other trek)

Updated: Feb 1, 2022

I remember my first big trek was a round the Annapurna in 1983. I was a young man of 22 and walked with slippers and minimum gear. As a result almost froze to an icicle during the coldest nights. Since then I have done many routes in the Himalayas, the Alps and lately now in the Andes, where I currently reside. Besides the learning on how to prepare better, much has changed on the clothing and camping gear front. Everything has become more efficient, lighter, breathable, windproof and temperature regulating.

Often people ask on what to bring and how to prepare. For trekking, weight is of essence, this counts especially for the traditional Inca trails, where every kilo is weight and calculated.

So at Qinti we decided to make two lists, one for men and one for women.

This is my list: Beat, male, part responsible for product development and trekking organisation

Inca Trail classic: 4 Days and 3 nights in tents

Weight limit: 3 KG (personal cloths, carried by Qinti staff)

Excludes gear provided by Qinti: Tents, sleeping bag, sleeping pads, hiking poles, lamp, small towel, etc

To make it easy to understand, I have separated the items into 3 sections.

  1. Stuff to pack, your items Qinti carries: Max 3 Kg

Trekking trouser (Columbia), where I can take the legs off, light and fast drying.

I love Merino wool T-shirts, since they are very comfortable on the skin, fast dring and light. For this trek, I carry 3 changes. Underwear and socks, minimal toiletries, head lamp, wet wipes. A pair of sandals that can be worn in case of blisters. Some band aids.

2. Things I wear (first day):

My favourite, is a boulder, climbing trouser (Karpos) great for hiking too. Merino wool long sleeve T-shirt, a Merino hoody in the early morning and usually I hike with trail running shoes. Normally I go for shoes with Vibram soles and shoes that have a good hold on the sides.

3. Daypack, personal things, I carry:

Light down hoody, I have several, either from North Face or Patagonia. The down jacket can be complimented in high altitude winds wearing the rain jacket on top. For longer high altitude treks I carry my Patagonia 3 layer GoreTex shell instead of a simple rain jacket. It’s a bit heavier, but wind and nasty weather just stop to matter. Normally I carry my camera, which still makes better pictures than a smart phone. Water bottle, sun screen, sun glasses, cap (have a habit to forget) and some energy bar (provided by the company)

Backpacks: I have two favourites, one is an Exped Torrent 30 liter, absolutely waterproof and indestructible, great for rainforest and rainy season. The other is a lightweight titanium frame Columbia pack, great on the back and a pleasure to carry. For a Shortt trek it might seem oversized, but the carry comfort is too good to change for a smaller pack.

Marianas packing list for Inca Trail Classic:

Mariana is one of the owners of Qinti and has years of experience with the Trails in Peru. I am sure for women this is a great help on how she packs for the big hikes.

  1. Stuff to pack, your items Qinti carries: Max 3 Kg

  • Smartwool hoodie

  • Lightweight long sleeved cotton t shirt

  • Simple bralette

  • Warm socks for the evening

  • Wool cap

  • Tevas (lightweight, can be worn with socks, I can walk in them if I get blisters)

  • Sweatpants or yoga pants (yoga pants can be worn with the rain trousers)

  • 3 extra hiking t-shirt and underwear

  • 2 pairs of additional hiking socks

  • Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste (pills), deo, nailclippers, barshampoo (lush), comb, Tylenol or Advil, haircrunchie, earplugs, Swiss knife, ziplock bag, wet wipes

2. Things I wear (first day):

  • Hiking shoes (La Sportiva)

  • Woolen hiking socks (Smartwool)

  • Lightweight hiking pants (Prana)

  • Comfortable underwear and sportsbra (Patagonia)

  • Long sleeved hiking tshirt to protect from sun and possible moskitos (Patagonia)

3. Daypack, personal things, I carry:

  • Sun cap, sunglasses and sun screen

  • Rain jacket and light weight rain pants

  • Snacks provided by Qinti

  • Down jacket if the mornings or evenings are very cold

  • Waterbottle that I get refilled by Qinti every morning

  • Reading glasses, ID, credit card and some money for tips and snacks upon arrival

In case you have further questions please get in touch with us, we will be happy to advise and assist, so you are well prepared and ready to enjoy the most amazing hikes in the Peruvian Andes.

Hope to welcome you soon in Peru!

Beat, Mariana and the Qinti team.

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