As a fan of festival flashpacking, I’m always looking for ways to lighten my load without sacrificing fun at a fest. Below are 14 items that are currently in my pack and come in handy at festivals around the world.
1. prAna Brion Pants
Light, durable, and breathable – these are my go-to pants when the weather takes a turn for the chill. They’re comfortable enough for hiking, dry out quickly after rainstorms, and look stylish enough to wear in almost any situation. I’ve even slept in them a few times on cold nights and they roll up to a size smaller than my shorts.
2. Mountain Hardware Ghost Whisperer Jacket
I added this to my kit two years ago and it’s been a staple ever since. It turns out that even in summer, having a lightweight insulated layer is crucial for cool summer nights in places like Scotland and Sweden. When it’s too hot, this jacket rolls up into its own pocket, and becomes my travel pillow.
3. Ever-Ready First Aid Kit
For small cuts, scrapes and other minor issues, having a first aid kits saves a ton of time on the road. You’ll also make some friends in the campground when you produce allergy medication or much needed bandaid.
4. ENO SingleNest Hammock
I’m a hammock person, so I’m always on a lookout for travel-sized versions. The SingleNest is one of my favorites as it requires no knots. As long as you find two trees, you’re ready to hammock. The high quality carabiners also come in handy for clipping waterbottles and other gear to my bag when I’m not hammocking.
5. Rainleaf Microfiber Towel
These microfiber towels are incredible. They’re tiny, but absorbent, and much better than using your t-shirt after a campsite shower.
6. Petzel Tikka Headlamp
I’ve been traveling and camping with this Petzl headlamp for over a decade. It comes in handy for late night bathroom trips, poking around in your hostel, or when you find yourself lost on the Albanian border in the dark.
7. Hydroflask Cooler Cup
This dual design cup is a regular 12 ounce cooler cup, or with one quick switch, can become a bottle or can cooler. And because it’s from Hydroflask, it keeps your beer way colder than a standard coozie.
8. Earpeace HD
Do your ears a favor and drop a pair of earplugs into your gear bin. We’ve written extensively about which ones to pick up, but for both high-quality and budget, we recommend Earpeace which comes with three varying levels of ear protection.
9. Platypus DuoLock Softbottle
This collapsible softbottle comes equipped with a carabiner, and a nice large opening to easily pour in the contraband booze that I plan to smuggle into a festival.
10. Klymit Static V2 Ultralite Sleeping Pad
The V2 rolls up so small that I can drop it into a jacket pocket when traveling. It takes only eight breaths to inflate and provides some of the gentlest sleeping I’ve ever had festival camping.
11. GSI Infinity Backpacker Mug
Lightweight yet incredibly durable, the Backpacker Mug is prefect from early morning coffee to late night drinks around the campfire. It’s got a soft handle so packs up easy and doubles as a measuring cup.
12. JBL Clip 3
Ignore the tinny speaker on your phone and upgrade your campground tunes with the CLIP 3 from JBL. It fits in the palm on your hand, comes with a built in carabiner, and sounds fantastic.
13. Mophie Powerstation Keychain
You don’t want to lose power, but you don’t want to carry around a bulky portable phone charger. Enter the Mophie Powerstation which packs a 1,200mAh battery and built in connecting cable into a package that literally fits in your pocket.
14. Outdoor Research Radar Pocket Cap
It’s not the hippest hat I’ve ever owned, but it dries quickly and folds up to just about zero space. I’m not great with the sun, so I tend to wear a lot of ballcaps over the summer and this cap keeps me cool.