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Pack Lists

Whenever I travel, I tend to make elaborate to pack checklists. It would be handy to file them away, for future reference on other trips.

It is very helpful to make a list of things that you need to pack for a trip, before you start packing for the trip. I call this a “pack list”. Writing down such a list feels a little bit obsessive, but it saves a lot of rummaging around both mentally and physically.

If you have the list written down in front of you, then you can scrutinize the list. Does it have everything that we’ll need? Does it have any obvious gaps? Does it focus too heavily on one thing or another? One could, in principle, lay out all the stuff that you want to pack and then stare at it carefully to answer these questions. This practice is making a sort of physical pack list. (This is what I used to do for a long time.)

Writing down a pack list allows you do a couple things which coming up with ideas on-the-fly or laying everything out, do not allow. If everything is written down, then you can make an order to pack things. “First, get all the garage stuff. Second, all the wardrobe stuff. etc.” You can delegate fetching things to people without worrying about overlapping or redundancy. And lastly, and this is quite meta, you can preserve the list and check how much stuff you used or didn’t use. That speads up packing next time around, as your list gets more and more honed.

Early Spring Camping Trip

Context: This is the pack list for a week long cottage camping trip with Mira (~4 years old) and Mabel (~1 year old) in May 2024.

Pack list from NCFS


Pack list from us

Algonquin 2022


Published: Apr 30, 2024

Last Modified: Jun 26, 2024


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