Packing List

I will update what worked and what didn’t throughout my service, but here is what I’m starting out with.

comments in red


  • 60 L hiking backpack
  • Duffle (from goodwill) (this was nice until a rat ate a giant hole in it)
  • Backpack


  • 6 T-shirts
  • 3 tank tops
  • 3 blouses
  • 1 cardigan
  • 2 pairs running shorts (what I sleep in)
  • 1 pair basketball shorts
  • 2 pairs of pants
  • 1 pair of jean
  • 2 skirts
  • 1 dress
  • 2 pairs of leggings
  • 1 fleece jacket
  • 1 rain coat
  • 2 baseball hats
  • Lots of sports bras and underwear

(in general I probably could have gotten away with only bringing the nicer clothes for training and then buying casual clothes for site once I was here)


  • flip flops
  • tennis shoes
  • hiking boots
  • flats (haven’t worn since training)
  • chachos (I hardly ever wear these because I’m too lazy to take the time to put them on)


  • Bring a 2-3 month supply of the toiletries you normally use. If you are picky about a certain brand consider bringing more or having them shipped
  • the one caveat is deodorant. It is apparently difficult to find so consider bringing more
  • I’m a fan of menstrual cups and would advise trying them


  • MacBook Pro – I know it seems like and expensive item to take, but I already had it and it’s 7 years old so I’m not overly upset if it doesn’t make it back
  • Kindle
  • iPod
  • speakers (thanks Chantal!)
  • headlamp
  • rechargeable batteries
  • a couple pair of headphones
  • watch (thanks Chantal!)
  • external hard drive
  • a couple flash drives
  • Solar charger and battery pack
  • flashlight
  • water proof point and shoot camera (The waterproof part has been really great so I can capture swimming with shale sharks and snorkeling)
  • Solar light (super awesome)
  • unlocked iphone

Other stuff

  • Quick drying towel
  • pens
  • journal
  • drink packets
  • sewing kit
  • crochet hook and knitting needles
  • pocket knife
  • sunglasses
  • snacks (as many oreos as I can fit in my bags)
  • 2 water bottles (lost one before I even got to Mada)
  • 1 umbrella
  • a couple kitchen knives
  • seeds
  • tea


There are probably many things that aren’t on my list right now or that are going to end up being left behind, but this is the general idea.


Simon was and adorable, but not so helpful packing partner

“What are you doing with all those books anyway?” Ron asked.
Just trying to decide which ones to take with us,” said Hermione. When we’re looking for the Horcruxes.”
Oh, of course,” said Ron, clapping a hand to his forehead. “I forgot we’ll be hunting down Voldemort in a mobile library.” -J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows


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