The Great Karakoram Traverse
The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum. The packed weight of your trek bag whilst trekking including your sleeping bag and mattress should be no more than 12.5 kgs / 27 pounds. This limit which is set by the porters is strictly enforced and bags will be weighed prior to setting off on trek. Anything not required on the trek can be left at the group hotel in Islamabad. Please note that your mountaineering equipment will be packed into additional, communal kitbags at the start of the trekking and this equipment will not be part of your personal 12.5 kgs weight limit.
When selecting clothing for this holiday, please be culturally sensitive. Tight fitting or revealing clothing is not appropriate. Shorts and tee shirts can be worn but only once we are above the last temporary habitations of the valley.
You must bring the following items:
4 season sleeping bag*
Thermarest or similar sleeping mat*
Daypack c. 30 to 40 litres / 1800 to 2500 cu in
Mountaineering boots (see Mountaineering equipment below)
Trainers / sneakers or sandals for river crossings and camp use
Technical walking socks (2 or 3 pairs)
Trekking trousers / pants
Lightweight waterproof overtrousers / rain-pants
Long johns (thermal underwear)
Thermal baselayer shirts (2 short sleeve, 2 long sleeve)
Shirts or T-shirts
Fleece jacket or warm jumper
Warm jacket (down)
Warm hat or balaclava
Eyewear - Sunglasses
Warmer over gloves or mittens
Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
Water bottles 1 litre / 1 quart (x2)
Headtorch / headlamp with spare batteries
Washbag and toiletries
Basic First Aid Kit including: A broad spectrum antibiotic, antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), altitude (Diamox), painkillers, plasters (band-aids) and blister treatment, insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite). Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets.
The following items are optional:
Insect repellant (DEET)
Scarf or buff
Sleeping bag liner
Pocket-knife (note: always pack sharp objects in hold baggage)
Repair kit (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)
Small padlock (to lock your KE trek bag)
Camera, film / memory cards, batteries
Insulated and rigid mountaineering boots which can be securely fitted with crampons. (B2 grade minimum).
Karabiners (2 x screwgate)*
Sling (120cm. / 3ft.)*
Prussik loops X 2 (4m. / 10ft. of 6mm cord makes 2)*
Equipment hire / rental
Items marked * can be hired / rented through KE Adventure Travel. Please make requests at least 6 weeks prior to the trip departure. All hire / rental equipment is issued in Pakistan.
Needle Sports (specialist mountaineering equipment shop)
Needle Sports is the English Lake District's foremost specialist climbing shop supplying mountaineering, rock, ice, alpine and expedition equipment worldwide. Internationally recognised as among the very best of the UK's top technical climbing gear retailers. They have a good range of equipment appropriate for this trip and offer knowledgeable advice both on their website and in store.