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Arizona Trail Gear | Average Hiker

AZT Gear

Gear for the Arizona Trail is not much different than what I use on other three-season hikes.

The Arizona Trail is a trail of extremes. The trail traverses diverse eco-systems, traveling between “Sky Islands.” Hikers can travel from the desert floor to high alpine altitudes in the same day – desert heat to knee-deep snow.

This means I carry cold-weather gear when I hike the Arizona Trail in the Spring and Fall.

Water can also be scarce on the Arizona Trail, and often you are sharing water with both domestic and wild animals. You may need to carry additional water and treatment methods.

Gear List – Big Three!

Feathered Friends 10 Degree Lark – I am a Feathered Friends fan, and for the past few years, I have used their sleeping bags exclusively. Their bags are made here in the states, located in Seattle. You can check out the review I wrote for SectionHiker.

Zpacks Hexamid – The Hexamid is a great tarp-tent. I don’t have to carry poles, and it fits in the pocket on the outside of my pack. The only drawback is condensation which is also an issue on the Arizona Trail. I recently wrote a review of the new Altaplex I purchased. The hope is to eliminate some of the condensation.

ULA Ohm 2.0 – My 36 oz. Ohm can’t be beaten for quality, durability, and comfort. I’ve worn them for years and have a review of the most recent Ohm 2.0.


  • Feathered Friends Lark 10 Degree – see the mention above.
  • Neoair XLite Pad – there is a lot of debate about whether or not to use this pad in the desert due to punctures. I’ve used mine in the desert and have been successful in my last couple of hikes. Carefully selecting a campsite is critical – no pointy things!
  • Hyperlite Stuffsack Pillow – I have a review for this pillow and love it. It also serves as a stuff sack for my toiletries, electronics, etc.
  • Gossamer Gear Thin light Pad – This pad weighs about an ounce and I take it with me on all my hikes. It is great as a seat for breaks, and I always put it under my Neoair to keep it from sliding around on my tarp-tent. It also offers a little bit of insulation. You can check it out at this review.


  • The Gravity Gear Cozy – this is a fairly recent addition to my gear. I will be hiking longer sections and wanted to reduce my fuel usage. This will help keep the food hot while it continues to “cook.”
  • Pocket Rocket 2 – I have tried wood burning, canister, alcohol, etc., and the Pocket Rocket 2 is still part of my Cooking Kit. It is fast, easy to use, and safer in arid conditions when I’m in the backcountry.
  • Evernew Titanium Pot – This little pot has been with me a long time. I expect it to stay with me for many more years to come.


  • HOKA One One Challenger ATR 5 – shoes have always gone through frequent changes due to Plantar Fasciitis and Blisters. After years, I have finally found THE TRAIL RUNNER. I recently switched from Challengers to EVO Speedgoats, and explain why in this review.
  • Dirty Girl Gaiters – These lightweight gaiters should work out well in the desert, and I have a review that provides more insight.
  • Smart Wool Socks – There are many good socks to choose from, and I’ve not found noticeable differences in the brands. Unless I’m using Injinji (toe socks), I use Smart Wool. Darn Tough is a great brand with an even better guarantee.


  • Precip Men’s Rain Jacket – I’ve used this jacket on many hikes and prefer the wider men’s jacket for layering over other clothes. It has a slightly boxier shape.
  • Montbell Versalite Rain Pants – @ 3.7 ounces, can’t beat em!
  • Voormi Women’s River Run Hoodie – My sleeping and town shirt. The more I wear it the more I like this hoodie. You can also see this Hoodie Review.
  • Running Shorts – Lightweight pair of miscellaneous running shorts.
  • Feathered Friends EOS Jacket – nothing warmer @ 16 ounces, and I HATE being cold in camp. You can see my review on this jacket.
  • Columbia Buttondown Shirt – I always find the cheapest one on the sale rack for each hike and generally trash it by the end of the trail.
  • Kora Beanie 230 Esker Hat – warm, snug YAK Wool beanie. See the review here.
  • Generic hiking shorts with pockets – these are women’s shorts with pockets. I always keep my “finances” in my pockets.
  • Old Sun Hat – seen in this lovely picture from the PCT.


  • Iphone X – the smaller one. My brother calls it my “retro Phone,” but I just got it 2 years ago. The Old Fart takes great pictures.
  • Anker 10,000 and 20,000 Battery Chargers – this charger is great! The larger one is heavy @ about 16 oz., but I can go 10 days without recharging if I’m careful. I also get tired of always looking for outlets. I charge it when I go into town to resupply since I typically stay overnight.
  • InReach Mini – The Mini was new on the AZT and has since hiked the CT and NET with me. It has not always been dependable when texting, but having a consistent signal has not been an issue.
  • Fenix HM50R Rechargeable Headlamp – This is one of my favorite new pieces of gear. I really do love this headlamp and have a review to show my love.

Arizona Trail Gear – Miscellaneous Items

  • Sunglasses – Mine are prescription. I always carry them.
  • First Aid Kit – Tinactin, Neosporin, Imodium, band-aids, mole skin, 3 larger bandages, needle, Ibuprofen. I can’t say enough good things about Tinactin. It is awesome for those “heat rashes” so common when hiking. Some call it “Monkey Butt,” and it can be crippling!
  • Bandana – I always carry one to soak up rain, tie back hair, as a sling, hot pot holder. They have many uses.
  • Kula Cloth – I reviewed what equates to a “Pee Cloth, ” and still rave about it. It is so much cleaner than a bandanna.
  • Black Diamond Carbon Cork Hiking Poles – These are new for 2019, and you can check out that review also. They are tough as nails and will last for years to come.
  • Silver Shadow Mini Umbrella – My Silver Shadow Mini Umbrella is described in this review. I have used umbrellas for years, and they are awesome for many reasons, which are included in the review.

Arizona Trail Gear List – Final Thoughts

Most of these items are on my other gear list, but I’m always trying out new items, especially in my Big Three.

Again, most of these items are found in “My Gear List” in the Average Hiker Store, so check them out if you see anything that grabs you.

You can also send any questions you have to contact@averagehiker.com. I never tire of talking about hiking and backpacking!