What’s in my backpack: Tour du Mont Blanc

View on the Tour du Mont Blanc

After consulting many blogs and asking boyfriends, friends and family for advice we put together our TMB packing list, here’s what we took on our multi-day hike on the Tour du Mont Blanc, it can also be considered a packing list for a summer multi-day hike in the mountains. We stayed in mountain huts so didn’t need to consider any weighty camping gear and so although it looks like a lot, we kept it relatively light.

Packing list for the Tour du Mont Blanc:

Travel Essentials:

  • Passport
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tickets
  • Cards and enough available cash to pay for your accommodation and extras – a lot of the places don’t accept card.

Basics:

  • Underwear
  • Hiking socks, around 3 or 4 pairs is plenty
  • Sleep wear
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • First aid kit – arnica, paracetamol, plasters, bandage, space blanket, blister plasters, energy gel, tick remover, antihistamine cream,
  • Toiletries – toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, face wash, lip balm, body wash, moisturiser (can be shared if in a group!)
  • Cotton sleeping bag liner – most places provide blankets but during our trip they weren’t available due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we managed by covering ourselves with our down jackets on chillier nights but if you have any doubts then take a sleeping bag instead.

Footwear:

  • Hiking boots – make sure you have a trusty pair that are worn in to avoid any blisters en route. I ended up having to buy a pair just a week before the trip due to the disintegration of my last pair and bought a pair of lightweight boots from La Sportiva, fully recommended as I didn’t have any trouble with them at all, despite not having any time to wear them in. Go up a half size (European sizing) on your regular sizing to get the right fit.
  • Flip flops for the evenings or lightweight casual shoes to wear in the hotels/mountain huts.
  • Back up trail running shoes, if like Zo you’re relying on an old pair of leather walking boots from your mum. Zo recommends her Salomon trail runners, keep eyes open for a full review.

Layers:

  • 3 x technical vest top or tees
  • 2 x pair of shorts, consider opting for quick dry so that you can easily wash them in the evening
  • 1 x pair of leggings
  • 2 x long sleeved top, preferably to include merino wool or a fleece
  • 1 x waterproof jacket
  • 1 x pair waterproof trousers
  • 1 x down jacket
  • 1 x cap or sun hat, if you catch good weather then you’ll be under the sun for a lot of your hike

Gear:

  • Backpack 35L, we don’t recommend going any bigger than this unless you have to carry camping gear, keep everything as light and compact as possible
  • Dry bags, even if your backpack has a waterproof cover we recommend to have a dry bag as an inner lining and a couple of smaller dry bags to store your essentials
  • Platypus or a couple of water bottles, we recommend having enough to store 2 litres of water as although there are plenty of water supplies along the route, there are often some killer up hills in between!
  • Quick dry towel, grab one of these to avoid any damp.
  • Guide book, we recommend Trekking the Tour of Mont Blanc with Kev Reynolds.

Tech:

  • Travel adaptor (if necessary)
  • Phone and camera plus chargers
  • Kindle and charger

Extra:

  • In lieu of a kindle take a book of choice for those days when you arrive a little earlier
  • notebook to jot down your thoughts from the day’s hiking
  • snacks, we stocked up on a few snack bars and dried fruit and nuts but consider that you can re-stock in several locations along the route such as Chamonix, Les Houches, Les Contamines and Courmayeur, so don’t go overboard and weigh yourself down!
  • A small bag for the evening, although we both stylishly used our mini dry bags in this case.
  • A cotton tee for the evenings

Check out our post about the Tour du Mont Blanc here!


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