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Thread: Round the World with a Synapse 25

  1. #1
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    Round the World with a Synapse 25

    First, I need to give props where they are due. Tynan first put me on the path of minimalist travel with his book Life Nomadic and the Gear Posts on his blog. I originally learned about Tom Bihn from him and I have incorporated many of his suggestions into my travel gear.

    Generally I try to take the minimum of clothes and wash things out in the sink as needed. I truly love the merino wool from Icebreaker.

    This is what is going into my Synapse 25 for my upcoming trip around the world. As I mentioned in my review, the S25 is the perfect travel backpack. Everything goes in with a little room to spare. I have removed the waist / chest straps to simplify the pack and organized the strap ends with Velcro Strapeez.

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    Clothes
    3 Icebreaker T-shirts (black, stripe, bright) These are hands down the best T-shirts on the planet.

    2 Icebreaker Anatomica Boxer

    A small nod to fashion:
    1 SS button front Shirt
    1 LS button front Shirt
    I don’t wear these daily so they don’t need to be washed often but I do like to have something to go out in at night that has a little style.

    1 Pair of Shorts - ArcTeryx Rampart - lean profile with side pocket big enough for a Kindle or iPad Mini.

    1 Pair Long pants - Patagonia Rockcraft - super lightweight
    I may take a pair of pants by Bluffworks instead.

    1 Pair Board Shorts – surfing, swimming, workouts
    1 Icebreaker Sonic Short - for sleeping and hanging out in the room. They can also be used as workout shorts. I cut the inner liner out.

    1 Pair New Balance Minimus - good at the gym or out at night.
    1 Pair Havaianas flip flops – I live in these!

    1 B-ball Cap
    1 Shemaugh - tons of uses - bandana, sun cover, scarf, blanket, pillow, sling, weapon, carryall.
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    Electronics
    1 13" MacBook Air
    I leave this behind on shorter trips. It’s also nice not having to hassle with taking a computer out in airport security.

    1 Kindle Paperwhite – great for reading by the pool or at the beach. It also goes forever on a charge.

    1 iPad Mini – I could really leave this behind when I take my MB Air but I love sitting in a coffee shop reading magazines on it (The New Yorker, Atlantic, Outside, Vanity Fair) and it’s pretty tiny. BTW, I don’t miss the bigger screen on my original iPad - the lighter weight and portability more than make up for it.

    Jawbone Jambox Bluetooth Speaker – I need a soundtrack!
    I also use it for movies, podcasts, and audiobooks. It is on constantly in the room. It charges with the same cord as the Kindle.


    2 Phones (iPhone 4s, 5)
    I haven’t found a way to consolidate. The 5 is so people in the US can reach me and the 4s is unlocked for local sim cards. I’m experimenting with Google Voice to see if I can simplify things.

    Kikkerland UL03-A Universal Travel Adapter
    Don’t even think about any other adapter. This one does it all and packs down super small.

    Cords
    “Odds and Ends” Pouch

    Compact Power strip - Monster Outlets to Go

    Miscellaneous
    TB Small Pouch for passport and currency.
    TB Wallet Pouch - extra CCs, etc.
    These clip inside the bottom pocket of the S25.

    Toiletries kit
    I am going to do a separate post on this at some point.
    Liquids Pouch - Sea to Summit
    (Conditioner, Tooth Paste, Lotion, Shave Cream)
    Bolsa Mágica

    Liquids go in 1.5 oz GooToobs – these tubes are extremely well designed and are super functional.

    Klean Canteen 16 oz SS Insulated Bottle – I love this bottle!
    Moleskine Soft Sided Pocket Info Book – notes, workouts, sketches, etc. etc.

    Folding Wayfarer Shades
    When I am not wearing them, I keep these in the soft slot in the right side pocket so I don’t need to bring the case.

    I add a wool cap, sweater, super-light down vest, and Golite rain jacket as required.
    On this trip I am mainly headed through the Middle East, Africa, and SE Asia so I probably won’t need any cold weather gear. However, I am considering going to Korea and Japan at the end of the trip so maybe???….. We’ll see!

    All my clothes go into an Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Cube. Everything stays neat and orderly and it weighs literally nothing.
    Then the Cube goes into an REI Flash 18 pack. The Flash 18 a very thin 18L backpack that I use as a daypack/gym bag once I get somewhere. The Specter Cube goes into it and it goes in the big compartment of the Synapse. It takes very little room and also serves as a good organizer. I like this pack because it is very thin but still has a little structure. The TB Packing Cube Backpack looks to be a good alternative.

    I don't normally bring my cat.
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  2. #2
    Registered User Seabass25's Avatar
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    Wow I am so amazed. I've learned a lot since reading your post. Never heard if the book, the rei flash 18, or your icebreaker clothes. Thank you for sharing!!

  3. #3
    JLE
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    @jppreston, that is a terrific list. I especially love that even with such tight editing, there is room for the Jambox in your bag. I never travel without mine either!

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    Clothes Detail 1

    Here is a little more detail on my clothes.

    Icebreaker T-shirts and Boxers
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    Patagonia Rock Craft Pants and BluffWorks Pants
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    Cold Weather Gear - Icebreaker Pullover, North Face Down Vest, Ibex Hat
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    Clothes Detail 2

    New Balance Minimus
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    Havaianas Flip Flops
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    Patagonia Board Shorts
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    ArcTeryx Shorts
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    Yep - it goes right in the long pocket with my water bottle!

  7. #7
    Registered User RhoFro's Avatar
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    Have you used the Gootubes before? I've read mixed reviews whether they leak or don't leak so I've held off trying the product for that price although cheaper alternatives do crack. What inside color did you chose for your S25?
    ~ one of virtually everything ~ Happy victim of Tom Bihn mind control

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    This shows a little more detail on the electronics I carry.
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    A few more things to mention.

    Headphones - Etymotic HF3. These block most exterior noise. I mainly use them while I am on the plane. I carry the normal Apple earbuds in my pocket for day to day.

    Morphie JuicePack for iPhone 5 - I keep it in my pack and only use it when I can't charge my phone. It basically doubles the charge. I use my phone constantly while I travel - music, camera, internet, notes, reading, etc etc. etc.

    ōlloclip Lens for my iPhone. I don't carry an extra camera and have learned to take some pretty amazing photos with my iPhone 5. This little lens clips to my phone and provides a Fish-eye, Macro, and Wide-angle lens. I don't use it all the time but only for that special shot.

    Tiny Sandisk 32G Flash Drive

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    Quote Originally Posted by RhoFro View Post
    Have you used the Gootubes before? I've read mixed reviews whether they leak or don't leak so I've held off trying the product for that price although cheaper alternatives do crack. What inside color did you chose for your S25?
    I have used the GOOTOOBES for about a year with all kinds of liquids and have never had a leak. As a matter of fact, they are one of my favorite things that I carry (I am easily amused!) because of their excellent design. They feel good in your hand and the opening keeps the liquid / gel super neat and clean. I even fill one for toothpaste. Highly recommended!

    I chose Ultraviolet for the inside. It is bright enough for a contrast with the things in the bag and looks awesome!

  10. #10
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    GoToobs are awesome. I like that I can put my xtra-manly shower gel in one without any risk of my toothpaste becoming contaminated by xtra-manliness. You have to make sure the coupler is firmly affixed to the tube before screwing on the cap, but if you get that part right, the sucker won't leak.

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    Wonderful layout! Thanks for sharing!

    What kind of built do you have? I am curious about the Synapse 25 as a travel bag.

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    Quote Originally Posted by backpack View Post
    Wonderful layout! Thanks for sharing!

    What kind of built do you have? I am curious about the Synapse 25 as a travel bag.
    My stats? 6'0" 195 lb

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    Quote Originally Posted by jppreston View Post
    My stats? 6'0" 195 lb
    I kind of wanted to know what size clothes you take.

    It would if you shared more about where you bought, what kind of experience you have with Morphie JuicePack for iPhone 5 and ōlloclip Lens for iPhone.

  14. #14
    Registered User Seabass25's Avatar
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    Question: how do you keep wearing clean clothes when you don't have much clothes?

    How often do you wash them while traveling?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seabass25 View Post
    Question: how do you keep wearing clean clothes when you don't have much clothes?

    How often do you wash them while traveling?
    With wool you can go for a long time but I wash about every 4 days.

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