Gear Talk- Selkirk Bear bag, Sawyer SP160 Gravity Bag, Alcos Alcohol Stove

At this point in my preparation I still had three significant decision to make for my gear.

What water purifier system to use?

How will I cook my food?

What will my bear bag be like?

The first one was maybe the trickiest.  There are a ton of chemical and push filter companies out there. The best reviews and quality I could find were the products from Sawyer.  Everything I read told me that they were to gold standard in water filtration.  They also had the most options.  Filters to press water through and into a bottle.  Filters that you put dirty water into the bottle and drink through a filter (this freaked me out a bit… I’m not gonna lie). And a gravity filter.  Takes a bit longer but does higher quantities with less work.  Once I decided to go with the camel pack it was an easy decision for me. The Sawyer SP160 Gravity feed system.  You fill a one-gallon bag with dirty water.  Attach a hose to the filter and hang the bag.  The water moves through the filter and into a clean line on the other side right into my camel pack or anything else I want to fill.  I couldn’t be happier.

Here is more information on that filtration system.

The toughest decision was a stove.  Weight vs efficiency here was the biggest concern for me.  There are again a million options out there from pellets to high pressure gas to alcohol stoves.  For me this came down to how I will be hiking.  If I were going to be regularly on the trail for weeks or months at a time, I would have gone gas all the way.  They are efficient and fast.  Big problem is that they are also heavy.  Considering I’ll be usually doing two or three days at most (exception for the long sections one or twice a year) I felt that time I’d be saving wasn’t worth the weight.  I decided on the alcohol stove and specifically the Alocs cs-b02 Alcohol Stove Kit.  I got a cup set and a light weight one quart aluminum pot from the Restaurant Store and feel like I’m good to go.  I’ll be cooking dinner each night on the trail and probably only heating up water for oatmeal or tea in the morning.  Everything else I’m taking will be ready to eat.  With so little cooking it seems to make sense to me.  On the flip side, I can also switch to a gas stove for longer trips or if this kit doesn’t cut it for me.  Stay tuned for the results!

More info can sometimes be found here at Amazon:


The last decision was my bear bag.  Bear bags are odor containing bags that hang from trees to keep hungry bears from coming and stealing all of your food.  Great thought.  Right?!  There are a number of different options and the prices vary widely.  Almost o the point where I wasn’t sure I would even use one.  But, at the end of the day, the thought os some hungry momma bear poking her nose into my tent to get at my cliff bars was just too much for me to handle and I went with a very simple, and small bag system.  As before, I’m not going to be out long on most trips so I don’t need to carry a lot of food with me.  I will be using the Selkirk Ultralight Food hanging system.  It came with everything I need.  Odor free bag.  Ropes.  And a rock bag to get those ropes over tree limbs and hung un the right place.  I’m sure this will do the trick with a little bot of hanging practice on my part.

More info on this bag can be found here:


Thanks for checking out this weeks blog and for all of your support!

See you on the trail

Published by Michael Brookshire

Philly guy hiking his way to fitness

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