Packing Smart

Sometimes, I see those videos pop up on Facebook about how to pack “smart” and it involves some rolling up clothes inside socks and putting in baggies… and while yes, that’s great, you can get 14 outfits into a bag, what happened to reusing clothes. Why is having a fresh outfit so important?

Wool clothing can be worn for several days without smelling. How about those tips? There are so many ways to pack a bag, roll, vs fold, roll and then put in a bag … with the day’s label. But it’s not very often you see tips like synthetic clothes smell quicker, but can usually pack smaller. Wool clothes breathe and can be worn on hot days. Reebok and Champion make leggings with pockets that are big enough to hold a smart phone WITH a case. Fabletics makes 1 pair (that I’ve found) with decently sized pockets. Actual pockets in leggings are still unicorns if/when you find them, but they are SLOWLY starting to exist. I have slowly built my wardrobe of pants with decent pockets over the past few years, it took a while, but I’m finally past 1 pair of leggings, capris, and shorts. Finally.

I pack my bag pretty typically. pants on the bottom, shirts on top, socks/underwear on the sides. And then when I unpack, it goes everywhere, but I’m usually ok with that. Of course, I only try and pack 2 pairs of pants, less than 3 shirts, and a hoodie for any length of trip, so disrupting that pile isn’t too frustrating. But packing/unpacking is definitely something I can improve on, so that trying to pull out my pants doesn’t result in unpacking the entire bag. Will I go as far as putting everything in ziploc bags, no. That seems extravagant and wasteful. Organizers? Probably not, but I’m open to arguments for those.

I recycle travel sized containers as much as possible. I pack a comb over a brush. I use sarongs like they are my lifeblood. Need a beach or shower towel? Sarong. Skirt? Dress? Top? Blanket? Sarong. Pretty much live in them when away.

My biggest fear for packing though is which bag do I use. Do I use the big backpacker’s backpack? My hard roller? My high sierra roller/backpack? My 72-hour field bag? I guess when I actually pack (about 4 hours before I leave for the airport), I’ll figure out which bag is best. Smaller is usually better. Especially if moving a lot… but sometimes, packing tight gets tedious.

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