Do you wonder what things to pack? Do you need these backpacker meals as well as protein bars? Do you want to bring an extra pair of underwear? Do you think you just only need go commando? If you want a hot meal that is not from a bag and you want a hot shower, can you get it?
So, you are about backpacking over 110 miles with the insane elevation gain and it is all about crossing three countries. You should count every ounce of your pack list. The trek you are going to start here offers one of the most incredible scenes that you can do about six to seven days minimum with 11 to 14 of your group backpackers. Most backpackers from all over the world visit this place for many things like biking, skiing, ultra marathon, backpacking, rock climbing, day hikes, and parachuting. Even you can find others are sans skiing when you visit this place in summer. It is good to make a nice trek at the end of July to August.
Here are all things to consider before the day is coming out!
1. Camp vs Refuge
Do you want to sleep in huts or refuges for every night or camping? Choosing refuge means you need to spend $60 or $70 per night. Meanwhile, if you choose camping, the price ranged from $10 to $15. For the refuges, it offers private rooms, big shared rooms, and small shared rooms. The big shared rooms are great for 20 people. If the weather worries you, you can stay in the refuges for a couple nights. They even offer hot showers, wooden bunk beds so you can drop your sleeping bag on it. The huts make you able to sleep comfortably with the plastic mats on the top of the bunks together with the warmth, hot and a though a meal at the end of the day. Of course, there are some great benefits to stay in refuges especially you don’t have to bring all the camping gear.
If you want to save your backpacking costs, spend a few days in the refuges and choose to tent camp. It is because you are about hiking the trek in 11 days and it means you are going to spend some costs quickly. Therefore, it is good to save your funds at the end of the trip to Paris for three days to enjoy the local wine and the tourist fun.
Even if you are not staying at the huts, it is still possible to enjoy the showers, food, Wi-Fi, a brown-bag lunch for your hike next day with the reasonable price, $25 to $35 for everything.
2. The Weight And The Pack List
You are going to climb over 33,000 feet in elevation plus 13 miles a day. If you bring too much item to your bag, of course, it will only trouble yourself. Even if you hike a lot and you are fit people that you feel you can handle your 50 to 55 lbs of your own pack, it is possible if you lose your first toenail and get all pain around your knees. Therefore, if you think that you can live without the extra pair of underwear or some pants for a while, forget to bring them! Otherwise, it is good to get the donkey service from the local companies. The elevation is so insane that it is okay to pay a travel agency for having donkeys or taxis to carry your pack in each hut by paying $13 per day.
It is okay if you don’t want to go with the donkeys, as long as you bring one pair of pants, one shirt, one pair of shorts, rain gear, and that is all. On your trek, you will pass a city that will save your life, thanks to their decent groceries to see every day. The prices are decent as well that you do not have to eat a single backpacker meal. You can buy a fresh homemade baguette, local cheese, espresso, and homemade chocolate!
Here is the necessity to pack for camping:
TMB Guidebook (Required), 60-70 L backpack, 30-50 degree sleeping bag, sleeping pad, tent, tent rope lines, crocs/tevas/chocos for refuges, wool socks, base layer, insulating layer to use at night, rain gear, 1 pair of hiking pants or shorts (you can use laundry mats for every two to three days), cap or hat, towel, sunglasses, water bottle, first aid, rain cover for pack, toiletries, camera, cell phone, phone charger (outlets are available in refuges), euro-power converter, passport, headlamp, Euros/Swiss Francs, trekking poles, sunblock, Moleskin, sleeping bag liner (required), and small pillow
3. The Variants To Do
Trek at 8 to 13 miles with the crazy elevation gain per day. It can be hard that you feel your back or knees cannot reach the hut. Don’t worry. You still enjoy many variants. You can even reserve the variants up to 6 months in advance. You can use the TMB guidebook to provide you detailed directions for each variant. Of course, high variants always offer better views.
It doesn’t matter if you cannot take the high variant. In fact, there are many hikers spent multiple days to take the low variant due to their knee paint. The views in the low variant are still breathtaking.
4. A Must Decision
In fact, every variant for this trek provides beautiful refuges and views. Whether you have five-course hot meals and the red wine at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter. Just do it. You have the option to eat there and do not turn it down. The huts also lack sleeping arrangement as well as hot showers. They can provide you with delicious food and the local wine also the cheese. You only need to spend $6 for the whole bottle and tasty. The meals are available in some options like casseroles, bread, soup, pasta dishes, meat dishes, dessert, and cheese trays.
You also need to keep your weight as low as you can. 25-lbs are so light for campers but it is a big necessity. You can even buy a pizza and a bottle of wine at the campsite from the little truck. Also, take Ibuprofen and eat them. There will be no ice at huts or refuges so you cannot ice your knees unless you can reach the summit of the mountain to use the snow on the ground to ice your knees.