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November 16, 2020  |  Tips & Guides  |  Water Filtration

The Packable Life: Budget Backpacking Gear: Cheap 10 lb Ultralight Kit [Sub $500]

Budget Backpacking Gear: Cheap 10 lb Ultralight Kit [Sub $500]

Quality backpacking gear has a reputation for being pricy, but I’m here to show you that it’s entirely possible to put together an affordable ultralight setup on a $500 budget.

That’s right; you can get your hands on a brand new backpacking gear kit with a 10-pound base weight without having to max out your credit card.

I’ve spent over $3,200 on my current ultralight setup, so I know how expensive backpacking can be. Many of my readers have seen this kit and asked for more affordable recommendations. I can’t blame them, after all, because the gear on my backpacking list isn’t exactly cheap.

So, I scoured the internet for the best budget gear, tested a bunch of it in the field, and asked fellow backpackers for their favorite affordable recommendations. This article is the result of all my tedious research and gear nerdery.

Every piece of gear I recommend in this post is well-reviewed, widely-used in the backpacking community, and will help get you into the backcountry for a sliver of what you might pay otherwise.

Let’s dive in. It’s time to save some money.


1. Backpack & Sleeping System
2. Carried Clothing
3. Cooking System
4. Water Filtration & Storage
5. Electronics/Technology
6. Miscellaneous Items
7. First Aid Kit & Toiletries
8. What About Worn Items/Consumables?
9. Budget Backpacking Advice
10. Final Word: Budget Backpacking Gear
11. More Backpacking Resources

Explore the complete list with other tips & tricks written by Noel Krasmil here:

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