The Budget Minded Bikepacker


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Just a thought on "budged minded" gear shopping:
I noticed that people that are on a tight budged tend to buy "cheap" gear that may not survive the first trip... Or even worse, let them get wet, cold, hungry... I have been there and learned my lesson. Doesn't mean that only the most expensive stuff is the best, but I think it's a fine line and (so far) I have only seen good gear being recommended in this thread.
I believe in saving up some cash and then buy the best you can get. I bet, that one will enjoy his trip way more when dry, warm and well fed :)
What's your thought on that?

Christophe Noel

Expedition Leader
Just a thought on "budged minded" gear shopping:
I noticed that people that are on a tight budged tend to buy "cheap" gear that may not survive the first trip..
Not a problem. Head on over to the "Spend what it takes bikepacker" thread. :) Titanium chopsticks? Why not?


its not that I don't have an esbit (any good camper has one somewhere), but it is not my go to in almost every situation. No flame control, slow to boil. If I want slow in the morning, I have my Emberlit mini TI. I can get water to boil with twigs faster than I can with my esbit. Lol.


Expedition Leader
For water purification, have you looked into the sawyer filter you can clip into a hydro system? Pricy, but you wont need a steripen, drops, tablets, or any such thing.


Budget minded? Where there is trees, 550 cord and a blue tarp. That is budget minded. Hobo soup can stove using ground litter. This combo works everytime.


Expedition Leader
Budget minded with reasonable gear in mind. I used a folded tarp all four seasons when I putzed around on my bike in Northern Wisconsin. But, now I want a smaller tent/bivy, a good bag, and a pot to cook things in. There is budget, and then there is building your own bike out of the bear you just killed with a wooden shiv.


Just do like we did in the army. Now that's camping on a budget!




Borah gear makes ultralight tarps and bivys and although they may be on the border of "budget", they are certainly a bargain amongst the likes of hyperlite mountain gear, zpacks, gossamer, and mountain laurel designs. This comparison of course lacks the relative consideration of quality, though.


Middle Income Semi-Redneck
Bivy - Adventure Medical Kit (SOL) Thermal Bivy, $35
View attachment 86719
This barely made our list, and it's still a marginal option. This really would need to be used in tandem with a light tarp, but it is a waterproof fabric. If there a genuine threat of weather, this would be dicey. It's a great product, and worth owning, but it might be sketchy to call this your only shelter in some areas.
Cons: not fully weather proof.
Not sure I'd recommend this bivy to someone who isn't already a bikepacker and knows what he/she is after. This bivy with the velcro closure does not breathe (the material reminds me of Tyvek) and it's not rugged enough to last (mine started tearing the first night of use). It will get you a few days of cat naps on the CTR but that's it.

The SOL Escape bivy is a slightly better option, it has a zipper and the fabric is more breathable. But if you're going to spend $50 then you might also start looking at the Alpkit Hunka (also $50) or MSR E-Bivy ($100), too.

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