What to carry while backpacking?

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I've settled on a Ruger EC9 in 9mm. It weighs 23 oz loaded in a Bladetech IWB holster. I chose this because it's the lightest, smallest, most reliable and inexpensive 9mm handgun I could find. I think 9mm is adequate for the 2 and 4 legged predators I'd run into in the NW. What do you carry, and why?
 

ZigZagZeke

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I've settled on a Ruger EC9 in 9mm. It weighs 23 oz loaded in a Bladetech IWB holster. I chose this because it's the lightest, smallest, most reliable and inexpensive 9mm handgun I could find. I think 9mm is adequate for the 2 and 4 legged predators I'd run into in the NW. What do you carry, and why?
4" S&W Model 66-2 in .357 mag. Open carry for hiking and hunting.

GunInv2016-SWRev1.jpg WapinitaCanyon-JohnAerynCrop.jpg
 

3MTA3

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Depends on the country you are backpacking in

I used a stainless Redhawk in 44 mag. First two chambers snake shot next four bear loads. Also had one speed loader or each. A 357 or a Glock 29 would be other good choices.

I've been stalked a few times and have had a bear encounter. Never had to shoot anything but happy I had the option if needed.
 

RVTECH

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What do you carry, and why?
Packed a 4" Mod 19 Smith for 100s of miles of backpacking, hiking, fishing etc. for many years ans never felt undergunned.

I fell to my brother's pleading with me to sell it to him but knew I would always replace it one day and I ultimately did with a Mod 66 in an odd turn of events.

Why ? To begin with I don't go through life paranoid or fear 'dangerous animals' - mostly because I have spent a lot of time in the deep woods and largely in part they are few and far between (in Oregon anyway) but the two most dangerous 'animals' I have always concerned myself with are DOGS and humans - and while the encounters with humans have been relatively uneventful I have dumped two dogs in my life....

I find it interesting however how so many refer to their 'woods carry' guns - only to discover how little time these people have spent, or do actually spend in the woods.

I think woods carry is fine, and with whatever you choose but to enter the woods with the notion it is some sort of apocalyptic nightmare full of lions, tigers and bears is not a good starting point.

My woods adventures have always been enlightening, educational and exciting but were never dominated by fear and apprehension.
 
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There is no worse feeling in the world than being alone in the wilderness and facing a threat and wishing you had more gun or more ammo. I carry a Glock 29 10mm with 15 rounds and an extra magazine.
Same here, in a Kenai chest rig
Packed a 4" Mod 19 Smith for 100s of miles of backpacking, hiking, fishing etc. for many years ans never felt undergunned.

I fell to my brother's pleading with me to sell it to him but knew I would always replace it one day and I ultimately did with a Mod 66 in an odd turn of events.

Why ? To begin with I don't go through life paranoid or fear 'dangerous animals' - mostly because I have spent a lot of time in the deep woods and largely in part they are few and far between (in Oregon anyway) but the two most dangerous 'animals' I have always concerned myself with are DOGS and humans - and while the encounters with humans have been relatively uneventful I have dumped two dogs in my life....

I find it interesting however how so many refer to their 'woods carry' guns - only to discover how little time these people have spent, or do actually spend in the woods.

I think woods carry is fine, and with whatever you choose but to enter the woods with the notion it is some sort of apocalyptic nightmare full of lions, tigers and bears is not a good starting point.

My woods adventures have always been enlightening, educational and exciting but were never dominated by fear and apprehension.
I agree to an extent, but also like feeling prepared. I even carry a truck full of tools and spare parts when I'm going deeper up into the mountains (so it's not just self-defense). I carry mine even while camping up in the San Juan Islands with no 4 legged predators. Not scared, just better to have it and not need it.
 

Andy54Hawken

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When I am off hiking in the woods...
I generally carry a knife of some kind...and maybe a tomahawk.
I have been known to tote my Hawken rifle as well , since much of my hiking leads to shooting practice...:D

Where I live , hunt , hike , camp , etc...We don't don't have much in the way of dangerous critters.
Keep a clean camp and pay attention to your surroundings...and you will be fine.

As for a two legged threat....well I have seen some sketchy types when out and about...
Again...pay attention , mind your own business and put forth an alert , but not challenging attitude , and you should be fine.

I say should be in the above , 'cause man is far more unpredictable than most critters.

And with that said...if I were to get et , by say a bear or mountain lion....well it would be an historic way to go...which is an important consideration , for this historic minded muzzle loaded shooter....:eek: :D
Andy
 
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A 'truckfull' ?

So I take it your woods adventures never leave a road ? - considering your term 'truckfull'.
Hm. Not sure where I said all my adventures are in my truck, on the road, or really anything else to use the words "never leave the road". I'll help and explain that it was an example of how one mindset, hiking and camping in the woods, applies to other situations, taking my vehicle deep into the mountains. I also drive my cars without extra parts, carry my gun when not in the woods, and do lots of things that are mutually exclusive.
 
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When I am off hiking in the woods...
I generally carry a knife of some kind...and maybe a tomahawk.
I have been known to tote my Hawken rifle as well , since much of my hiking leads to shooting practice...:D

Where I live , hunt , hike , camp , etc...We don't don't have much in the way of dangerous critters.
Keep a clean camp and pay attention to your surroundings...and you will be fine.

As for a two legged threat....well I have seen some sketchy types when out and about...
Again...pay attention , mind your own business and put forth an alert , but not challenging attitude , and you should be fine.

I say should be in the above , 'cause man is far more unpredictable than most critters.

And with that said...if I were to get et , by say a bear or mountain lion....well it would be an historic way to go...which is an important consideration , for this historic minded muzzle loaded shooter....:eek: :D
Andy
Don't want to derail, but I'm curious about this tomahawk.. I have a mental image of what you would carry, but do you do any kind of training should you need to use it against a living thing? I bought a modern RMJ Tactical one this summer because I saw them on The History Channel 12 years ago. I have no illusions that I know the tactical uses for it, but I'm pretty sure which end to hold
 
My woods adventures have always been enlightening, educational and exciting but were never dominated by fear and apprehension.
I agree with this. Well, trying to be sneaky working into my tree stand a couple of hours before legal shooting time is sometimes a little nerve wracking. I got tangled up in a herd of elk a couple mornings that had me freaked out trying to figure where they were, were going and where I could get near a tree for protection!
Not to mention cougars on the game cam at approximately the same time of the am. During those times I've been carrying a rifle. That was more comforting than any handgun. :D

I've had a couple of big boomers that I liked, but carrying them was always troublesome. Big, heavy handguns are difficult to pack around and when hiking, the weight isn't appreciated, either. When carrying my backpack and a handgun together I find that my 1911 is just the ticket. I can strap the belt of my pack across the holster and it's not uncomfortable like a mid size or larger revolver. Weight is the downfall of the 1911. A good holster really helps, but the belt of the pack does the best job of supporting the weight of the gun. Extra mags stash easily and I'm pretty comfortable with the 45 ACP. I agree man and dogs (rural, feral, coyotes, etc) are the most likely, but cougars are a rare possibility, too. The 45 is more than adequate for this kind of use.

Recently I picked up a S&W Model 60 3" 357 that I'm looking forward to carrying. It's like a 5 shot 357 version of the 6 shot 22 Kit Guns of the past, including nice adjustable sights. I'm waiting for the holster to arrive. It's going to see a lot of use, I believe.
When I'm riding my dirtbike I throw a Model 642 Airweight in the pocket of my Camelback. It's small size and lack of weight make it unnoticeable.
 

Andy54Hawken

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Don't want to derail, but I'm curious about this tomahawk.. I have a mental image of what you would carry, but do you do any kind of training should you need to use it against a living thing? I bought a modern RMJ Tactical one this summer because I saw them on The History Channel 12 years ago. I have no illusions that I know the tactical uses for it, but I'm pretty sure which end to hold
My tomahawk is a very traditional one....not "tactical" at all.
That said it would do what was needed if I ever had to use it for making firewood or defense.

As for training....
Hm....I just use it...and try different swings , cuts and hits ( it has a "Hammer poll" on the back end )
It look a lot like my camp axe pictured below...but with a more tapered handle and a slightly less heavy axe head.
( The axe on the far right...the pipe tomahawk in the middle is old , as in from the 1860's - 70's , and was never intended for use as a weapon . )
Andy
DSC06777.jpg
 
I've got a little, short handled hatchet. Problem is, the handle is so short as to nearly render the hatchet useless. Great for cutting kindling, not so good for large limbs or splitting anything.
I remember reading books in my youth about outdoorsmen. An axe was a necessity! The outside possibility of using as a weapon was well known, too. Something like Andy shows on the right would be a very useful tool.
 

Camelfilter

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I've settled on a Ruger EC9 in 9mm. It weighs 23 oz loaded in a Bladetech IWB holster. I chose this because it's the lightest, smallest, most reliable and inexpensive 9mm handgun I could find. I think 9mm is adequate for the 2 and 4 legged predators I'd run into in the NW. What do you carry, and why?
Ruger LC9s (same size, I believe as ec9) is decent enough for everyday carry, if one shoots it well. We do “OK” with them, however shoot far far better with full-size, so open carry while camping.

We shoot double stack compacts far far better than the LC9s’s, likely due to hand fitment. So that’s what we normally carry everyday these days.

Comes down to really what you can shoot best, and access swiftly. No sense carrying anything (shoot it well or not) if you can’t access it swiftly. IWB with a backback does not read swift access to me. Unless we’re discussing a simple day outing (book bag), or getting into the realm of true “ultralight” trekking.
 

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