So it appears 2018 is going to see more gear changes and additions than most. While I'm still sorting out the details, here's what's likely going to happen:
My bear barrel (BearVault BV500) will be replaced with an Ursack Major.
- I love my bear barrel but it weighs 2.5 pounds to the Ursack's half a pound. On the downside, if a bear ever goes after my Ursack then I'm probably going to be enjoying bear-saliva-flavoured paste for the rest of my trip.
I've added a tripod to my gear (Surui T-025X Carbon Fiber). I've received quite a bit of feedback about including more 'around the campsite' footage in my videos, and the lack of a tripod has always been the main reason I've avoided it. Hard to take campsite footage from a foot-tall suction cup mount. That's about 1.8 pounds.
I changed pots from the MSR Titan Kettle to a TOAKS Titanium 1100ml pot. The toaks holds just a bit more volume (2-300ml) and I was always boiling a second pot with the Titan just to top up my coffee. This should avoid that.
A higher capacity power pack for longer trips (Anker 20100mAh portable charger). My spring trip is 8 days and I think I'll be using a lot of iPhone power for GPS - better safe than sorry.
A folding saw (Silky Pocketboy 170) to replace my Sven saw. I've always been super happy with the Sven saw, but my Spring trip is going to involve some bushwhacking, and I need a folding saw that I can use and put away quickly. The Sven saw... does not do that.
And lastly, I'm seriously considering bringing my SLR again (Canon 60D with an EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens). Its last trip was in 2016 after I got super, super mad that it couldn't manage basic autofocus while taking video. But if I bring it again it won't be for video, only for taking pictures. I really miss having a quality camera along for landscape photography. I feel like I haven't taken a good picture since I stopped bringing it. The downside is that, with the wide-angle lens it's almost 3 pounds.
And it's only early March. Who knows - maybe more gear changes to come!