Bergen Packing 101

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Apr 14, 2011
So what is the item that has to be loosely packed in a ripped bin liner and tied to the bottom of the bergan to bounce against your **** with every step like all the DofE type groups that I see on a regular basis? Also, should I fix mugs/billies etc to the outside and, when traffic approachs, ensure that my group splits equally to either side of the road thereby minimising the gap available to pass though? Glyn.
Hahahaha my Daughter has just done a 4 night stint in Yorkshire Dales, your right, Packing her Kit was a right laugh, (she just threw it in then and didnt give it any consideration till she picked it up & found things unbalanced and digging in her.
I wasnt far out from the advice given within this topic.
I must add tho (in my daughters case) we found there was very minimal advise given for those doing the expeditions, any teachings that were given was from "students" that had done the trip the year before, the numpty teaching my daughters team couldnt pitch a tent or figure out hor to assemble the trangia!


Nov 18, 2004
One of the good ideas about packing your bergan or rucksack in a set way is that you have an almost checklist so you pack it the same way and bring the right things, not to mention finding them in the dark.

Good post will spend some more time playing and by the way Prepper, you wouldn't have missed a moment fondling your kit !!!!
Apr 30, 2012
Don't know if this is relevant or of any use but I went away with the army a few years back on an insight course. We had a one nighter out in the field and they taught us how they pack their bergans. Line bergan with your bivvi bag to act as a dry sack, stuff sleeping bag in uncompressed, then chuck everything else you need in. Saves using a separate dry liner bag.


Here's my two pence on the subject, feel free to take what you will, it is after all, only my way of doing things!

I always use my Berghaus Vulcan, size 2. Over the years i think it really is the best rucksack out there. If your only on a day hike you dont have to fill it up, just pack what you need and pull the compression straps nice and tight! On longer trips i can get everything i need in it and the rucksack is very comfortable even when heavy. So, from the lid down....

Top lid pocket: warm hat and gloves, head torch packed in to a small canoe bag. Bahco Laplander Saw. Hobo fishing line.

Main compartment, from the top: plain flour, milk powder, baking powder, dried fruit, egg powder, dry cured meats, dark chocolate, honey. All in seperate ziplock bags. Amount varys for duration of trip, for day trips the bannock is already made at home for instance. I also carry tea bags. A metal spoon. Then all this together in packed into a canoe bag. Can get quite heavy!

Under the above: sleeping bag, in a bivvi bag. 14cm zebra billy can with the following inside; toilet roll, bar of soap in a soap dish, toothbrush, tooth paste. Orlieb 5ltr water bag. Two tea lights and a lighter. Crook/spoon knife. The zebra can is packed inside a canoe bag.

Under the above: warm and spare clothes. For longer trips i carry; a shirt, walking trousers, socks 2prs, ulfrotte thin wool top. 2prs of underwear. Gortex socks. Helly hanson pile shirt. On day trips i usually just carry the gortex socks.....

Side pouches: nato waterbottle in each pouch. A metal mug. Gortex jacket and trousers in one, tarp in the other. A snack and a tea bag.

So thats about it. Helpful to someone i hope? On my person i carry a knife, fallkniven DC4 and a small steel and a flint striker. Map and compass.


Aug 14, 2010
Ipswich Suffolk UK
Hi All

I have got to say I found this post very use full when I first got my Berghaus cyclops 2, size 2 and it was very helpful.
I have much the same lode out as everyone else, with a few miner alternation as you do.
Once full loaded how much do you think all this kit ways? I keep think of weighing it but I don't want to freak myself out. I think approximation it is about 20 to 25 Kg.
I do also carry 4 Lts of water with me as well 1 Lt in water bottle and 3 Lt in camel back

Nov 29, 2004
Many many years ago when I attended a Woodlore Fundamental course, the then chief instructor gave a talk on how he packed his Sabre 45.

Also of possible interest for folks looking through this thread...

A Bushcraft Camping Outfit – Equipment for Living in the Woods

...from the blog of Paul Kirtley.

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Mar 15, 2011
on the heather
Just to add a bit about water crossing.
It wasn't until I started canoeing that I started to do things just a little different. In the canoe I would use my pack as movable ballast and flotation, Sleeping bag, spare clothing, tent or bivi +tarp and FAK all in separate dry bags, pan, food and wet weather gear sealed in poly bags, total volume probably about 20 L, pack weight around 10-15 KG QED pack neutral to positively buoyant. the only thing I really need to offset in the pack is metal objects, nice to know your pack wont sink, mind you I did throw my pack across a stream once just to watch it role down the opposite bank and float off down the river, but still, handy when you need to take a swim.
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