When planning a thru-hike, there are many things to consider; gear is the first. Hiking gear is expensive, but I have learned it doesn’t have to be. I have successfully obtained my essentials for under $600. Here’s how I did it.

 

I made a wish list and humbly asked for outside support. (*Thank you to all those who are reading and graciously donated. Special thanks to the anonymous shoe donor. )

I requested product donations from many companies, and a lot of companies rejected me. I am grateful to the companies that said yes, ACR (personal locator beacon) and Moving Comfort (sports bras).

 

I don’t have disposable income, acquired most items over time.

I diligently searched for sales. I purchased new products but from previous seasons.

My tent was a top seller when it came out in 2013. The same tent that was awesome in 2013 is still excellent in 2015.

 

Rather than purchasing a newer version of the tent, I bought an inventory close-out model for $50, but the rain fly was missing.

 

I later purchased the rain fly for nearly 50% off (from the manufacturer as a replacement). I bought an open box footprint similar to the rain fly situation.

I used a lot of promo codes. I had friends sign up for internet sites that gave me a discount for referring friends. This method worked exceptionally well.

I took advantage of sales and after-the-sale deals (post-sale items aren’t sold during the original sale and are marked down even lower). Note: This practice sometimes meant losing out – because the item sold out.

 

Although I still don’t know what outfit(s) I’m wearing during the hike. I frequent the thrift store. Most thrift stores have unique color tags, with 50% off that color day. I look for special tag color items, but it’s a thrift store, so anything I find relevant and fits I purchase.

 

The hike is about way more than popular gear.

When you stop to think about it, it’s all going to get dirty.

A hike shouldn’t leave you financially broke.