The Things They Still Carry: 4 Month Update

We thought it would be potentially interesting and/or useful to take a little inventory of what we are still carrying around after 4 months on the road. Our gear has definitely changed, but not as much as we thought it would to this point. Our original list is here.

Mike’s Packing List

So far I am happily unsurprised that my pack is quite a bit lighter than it was when we left. Trial and error and all that.

– Two Eagle Creek packing cubes with toiletries and medicine inside (anti-malarial pills, traveler’s diarrhea pills, anti-altitude sickness pills, toilet paper, sink stopper, bed bug spray, Benadryl, 2 ponchos, laundry detergent strips, duct tape, and possibly one or two things I’m forgetting).

4 Month Update: No major changes here. We haven’t needed any of the medicine yet, but probably will later on our trip. The duct tape and toilet paper have been wonderful and very necessary. Most of the bed bug spray went home with my parents after they visited. Frankly, if a place has bed bugs we aren’t staying there long enough to use the spray and you won’t use it until it’s too late anyway. Kind of pointless.

– Money belt (haven’t used this once yet).

– Pack cover

– Beard trimmer

– Extension cord with multiple outlets

4 Month Update: If you have multiple electronics please, please, please bring one of these. It has been fantastic.

– Ankle brace

4 Month Update: Two other people have used this on long treks so it has definitely come in handy.

– Small notebook


– 1 pair of jeans

4 Month Update: People seem to have irrationally strong opinions about bringing jeans on an RTW trip which has always struck me as strange. It’s a pair of pants – who really cares? In any event I have loved having jeans. Everyone in South America wears them and they’re comfortable. Any objections? Good.

– 1 pair of long, lightweight pants

– 2 pair of cargo shorts

– 2 long-sleeve button-up shirts, one of which has wicking material

– 2 pair of hiking socks

– 5 pair of running socks

– 2 wicking t-shirts

– 1 Finley Dunne’s t-shirt

– 5 pair of ex officio wicking boxers

2 1 pair of cotton boxers

1 North Face pullover sweatshirt

4 Month Update: Sent this one home with my parents as we weren’t going anywhere cold enough to justify it and the zip-up hoodie I bought at a market in La Paz. It definitely served its purpose, but the hoodie is far more versatile.

– 2 pair of athletic shorts

1 long sleeve t-shirt

4 Month Update: A cleaning company mixed this one up with someone’s blue tshirt so we lost it. A major bummer because it really would have come in handy in Patagonia. Oh well.

3 2 wicking polos

4 Month Update: One of these, a white one, became a bus travel shirt and was trashed after 3 months. I sweat a TON, so these have really come in handy otherwise. They’ll be even more important as we keep traveling in warm climates, which will be basically the rest of our trip.

– 1 Scottevest vest

4 Month Update: This thing is still in my bag because I am too stubborn to get rid of it. That’s basically it. Maybe twice I have enjoyed the multitude of interior pockets. Maybe. Possibly useful in Africa and India? I guess we’ll see.

– 1 REI rain jacket

– 1 Blackhawks hat

– 1 White Sox hat

– 1 pair of walking-around sandals

– 1 pair of flipflops

– 1 pair of running shoes

4 Month Update: Additions

– 1 button up t-shirt purchased in Buenos Aires

People seem to like these here and I was really hot so this seemed like a good idea. It still is. We’ll see how it holds up, though. It’s pretty flimsy but undeniably stylish:


– 1 zip-up hoodie

Great purchase for Patagonia and the Peruvian/Bolivian altiplano. Kind of wish I had brought this initially as it has been one of my most worn items for the last month at least.

Pretty good I would say. My shoes and jeans will need to be replaced soon as they have taken a ton of abuse (shoes) or were old to begin with (jeans). We’ll see how this goes as we hit really warm weather in about 3-4 months!

Anna’s Packing List

4 Month Update: Surprisingly, I haven’t had any major changes to my packing list. I did do a considerable amount of research and trial/error before leaving, so I am happy to report that I planned pretty well!

All of the gear and clothing listed still fits into my Gregory Deva 60 Pack. As I stated in our previous post, it is designed for women and adjusts to fit us small people. In short (haha, see what I did there?), it’s been amazing. It fits everything I need and still has a bit of room to expand if we have to carry anything temporarily. I love it.


– 1 Eagle Creek packing cube with tons of meds: anti-malarial pills, traveler’s diarrhea pills, anti-altitude sickness pills, 12 months supply of birth control & disposable contacts, Nexium, 2 epi pens, Tums, Sudafed, Cortisone, Advil, and bed bug spray.

4 Month Update: This cube is still pretty big but I’ve used up most of the anti-altitude pills, the appropriate amount of contacts & birth control, and still thankfully have the unused epi pens & diarrhea pills.

– 1 Toiletry Bag: sunscreen, bug spray, small bottles of shampoo & conditioner, toothpaste, contact solution, razor, light amount of make-up (foundation, powder, eye liner, eye shadow), face cream, face wash, cotton swabs, hair ties, floss, nail file, and nail clippers.

4 Month Update: We inherited another bottle sunscreen and new bug spray and have obviously changed out for new toiletries. I’ve barely touched the makeup, but it’s nice to know I have it if I want it.

– 1 ziplock bag full of tampons (I am really worried about finding them while traveling)

4 Month Update: Worry confirmed – it is difficult to find tampons here in South America. Lots of pads available but tampons are scarce and expensive when you do find them. Luckily, we have friends and family visiting us along the way so they can help restock my supply.

– Money belt
4 Month Update: Haven’t used it once…I think it’s lost in my bag somewhere.

– Backpack cover
4 Month Update: Very helpful when flying, useless when bussing.

– Very compact hairdryer

4 Month Update: Like the makeup, I’ve rarely used it but happy I have it.

– 1 Go Girl FUD
4 Month Update: Haven’t taken it out of its container once. Will probably get sent home with the next group of visitors.

– 1 Cotton Sleep Sack

4 Month Update: I’ve only had to use this once during our night of terror while in San Pedro, Guatemala but that was enough for me to hold on to it.

– 1 Water Bottle

– 1 Armband to hold ipod while running

– 2 Quick dry Towels: Large, Mini

– 1 small drawstring bag

– 1 headlamp

– 1 mini scrubber for laundry/stains

Clothes: Majority of these items fit into 2 large and 1 small Eagle Creek packing cubes

– 1 pair of skinny jeans

4 Month Update: I agree with Mike, I LOVE having my jeans. The argument to not bring them include that they are heavy and take awhile to dry. Honestly, I haven’t noticed a big weight difference in my pack with or without them. Plus, you don’t have to wash your jeans that often so if you plan ahead a little bit you won’t be stuck traveling in or with wet jeans. If you wear jeans a lot at home you will probably want to wear jeans on the road. Bring ’em!

– 1 pair of long, lightweight Northface pants

– 2 pairs of shorts: Nike running shorts & Northface hiking shorts

– 1 travel skort

– 2 pairs of yoga pants: Capri and Full-length

– 6 pairs of socks: 2 hiking socks, 4 running socks

– 8 pairs of underwear: 4 Ex Officio underwear, 4 regular

– 3 bras: nude, black, sports bra

– 5 t-shirts: 2 wicking, 2 cotton, & 1 Finley Dunne’s t-shirt

– 2 tank tops: 2 cotton tanks

– 3 dresses: 2 Ex Officio Chica-Cool Tank dresses & 1 long black dress for a more conservative look

– 1 long-sleeved wicking shirt

– 1 REI lightweight fleece

– 1 gray light sweater

– 2 jackets: 1 Athleta Anytime Anorak Jacket & 1 Rain Jacket

4 Month Update: These two jackets have been warm lifesavers throughout Patagonia. Primo purchases!

1 2 hats

4 Month Update: I asked Mike’s parents to bring me my prized StL Cardinals hat. It’s ready for baseball season!

– Warm Gear: 1 scarf, ear warmer, & gloves

4 Month Update: I’ve added an awesomely warm Alpaca hat purchased at a roadside cafe on our way to hike Machu Picchu.


– 1 pair of Keens

– 1 pair of flipflops

– 1 pair of running shoes

– 1 pair of black comfortable flats

4 Month Update: Turned out to be not-so-comfy. But, I really haven’t missed them yet.

4 Month Update: So, I’ve kept all the clothes listed above. I probably could eliminate one of the dresses but other than that I wear everything pretty regularly. Plus, I did have Mike’s parents bring me 2 more long-sleeve wicking tshirts; one to sleep in and one to hike in. I was wearing my solo long-sleeve tee so much that it was starting to show signs of wear and tear really quickly. It all still fits in my bag so feel that I am ok for right now. One t-shirt and running shoes will have to be replaced before leaving South America but other than that everything else is holding up!

5 thoughts on “The Things They Still Carry: 4 Month Update

    1. RTWFlyers Post author

      I was drinking mate – the ubiquitous Argentinian drink that is basically looseleaf tea. Seriously, you can’t swing a dead cat in Argentina without hitting the mate out of someone’s hand.

  1. ann

    Have you considered buying a menstrual cup? It’s much more practical than using tampons (and it eliminates the worry of stocking up!)

    1. RTWFlyers Post author

      I did consider buying one before leaving. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get pass the process and cleaning method needed for the menstrual cup. You are right, though, it may have been easier than carrying around 100+ tampons for the 9 months!

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