The science of packing

We're now less than a month from leaving.  Over the course of the last several months, I've managed to pack what I hope is everything necessary for this trip.  I'm sure there's something I forgot, but I plan to return to this post either during the trip or at the end, and evaluate what was useful and what was a waste, hopefully as a resource for others who wish to take a similar journey.  I'm taking two bags on this trip, the main one being a DaKine Heli Pro pack that I've owned for years, and has held up well through numerous backcountry ski trips, including some small slides, and tumbling off cliffs.  The other pack I'm taking is a small sling bag I picked up from an army surplus store, perfect for day trips when I don't want to carry my large bag.  I pulled everything out of my packs to give an idea of how much can fit in them.

In the main bag I have organized my clothes in the main compartment into categories, all sealed in 2 gallon ziploc bags.  I have 5 shirts, 2 pairs of shorts, 1 pair of swim trunks (plus the pants I will wear on the plane), 5 pairs of socks and underwear, 2 rolls of toilet paper, and a heavy duty rain poncho.  In the rest of the bag I have a pair of aqua socks, my steel Spider-Man water bottle (important!), disposable razors, various toiletries (toothbrush, deodorant, etc), a scarf, lonely planet guidebook, leather journal, first aid kit, and passport and necessary papers.

In the smaller bag I have various malaria meds, iodine tablets, mini LED flashlights, some cards for when we get bored on trains and planes, numerous pens and pencils, various small toys to give to local children out there, a lighter, and sunglasses.

It all packs in with a little room to spare, space I'm sure I'll be filling with books.  I'm eager to see how much of this stuff I will return with.  Now we just need to pack up the rest of our house and we'll be out of here.