Aravaipa Canyon Gear Checklist

Toll Free:877-399-2477

Aravaipa Canyon Backpacking Checklist

All backpacking trips include backpack, sleeping bag, mat, double occupancy tent and trekking poles.
Items with this (***) next to them means they are OPTIONAL


Stuff to bring

Our Price

What’s It For

Air Mat***

$99.95 +

We supply a Therm-a-rest Z-Lite Mat. Light-weight, easy to use but will not puncture. If you want a bit more comfort, an air mat may be the way to go!

Arnica Lotion or Gel ***


multiple sizes

Necessary for those sore backpacking muscles!

Bandanas (2-3) ***


All purpose camp tool - use as headwear, dust cover, sweat rag, snot rag, wash cloth, napkin, etc.

Bathroom Tissue


Nose blowing and butt wiping – you may not be able to wait until you get to a bathroom!

Biodegradable Camp Soap


It’s soap, but good for the environment and essential for good camp hygiene.

Camera, Case, and Batteries


Taking pictures, protecting the camera & making sure the camera can keep taking pictures.

Carabiners ***


Great for attaching light, wet, or accessible items outside your pack.

Coffee Mug/Cup***


Yes, we serve coffee and tea on our trips. If you are one to imbibe, you will want a plastic cup of some sort to drink from.

Compression Sacks ***


Lightweight bags to help sort your things & then squish them down to make more room in your pack.

Cooling Collar***


Stays wet and goes around your neck to help keep you cool for warmer weather hikes.

Hair Care


Comb, brush, ties, headbands, etc.

Hand Sanitizer 


Anti-bacterial gel to kill, well…bacteria.



Lights your way in the dark. Get one with a red light LED option to avoid blinding fellow campers. Don't forget some spare batteries as well!

Hiking Hat


multiple brands

Sun protection.

Hiking Socks - 1 pair/day


We recommend Point 6 - founders of Smart Wool have new, but small company with awesome hiking socks.

Hydration Bladder/Water Bottles


Holds water - you need this! Recommend 3-4 liters of carrying capacity. A 2 or 3 liter bladders plus additional bottles is a good combo. Our packs are compatible with hydration bladders of up to 3 liters.

Insect Repellent ***


To repel bugs. Not many in the desert but some people just don't like any bugs!

Lip Balm SPF 15


multiple brands

Sun protection for your lips - no one likes to kiss chapped lips.

Liner Sheet


For a little extra comfort and warmth in your sleeping bag! For colder weather trips, we recommend the 100% flannel or Thermolite MummyLiners.

Mess Kit


Great for eating and drinking the fabulous food we prepare for you!

Moleskin ***


Blister prevention.

Multi-tool ***


Leatherman/Swiss Army

Has it all! Scissors, blade, file, pliers, & screw driver in case you need to build a birdhouse while in the back country.

No-Rinse Bathing Wipes ***


Great for dry camps to clean up, or any camp where you need a quick cleanup.

Pack Pillow ***


Small, compressible/inflatable pillow for sleepy time.

Pack Towels (1-2) ***


Lightweight towels that absorb water but compress when you have limited space.

Personal First Aid Kit


Bangs, cuts, and scrapes care.

Personal Hygiene Items


Up to you what you bring BUT deodorant would be appreciated by all in the group - no perfumes or colognes though.

Prescription Meds


Ask your doctor if you don’t know.

Stuff Sacks ***


multiple sizes/brands

Lightweight bags to help sort your things, like clean clothes from dirty maybe.




multiple colors

They block the bright sun from your eyes.

Sunscreen SPF 30


multiple sizes/brands

Sun protection for the rest of you.

Super Salve***


Anti-chaffing, blister prevention &/or healing of minor cuts, scrapes, and chaffing.

Toothbrush and toothpaste


For brushing your teeth, because you still want to do that in the backcountry. Bring travel sizes.



Goes great with the mess kit so you don't have to eat with your hands.

Ziplock Bags


For trash and storage.

If you wish to purchase any of the items listed above, please order well in advance of your scheduled trip to ensure product availability.
Click here to access our online store.


Stuff to Wear

Sturdy, broken in hiking boots or shoes, light to mid weight, aggressive tread. We recommend a good pair of water hiking shoes with good support and closed toe for protection when hiking in the water. If you buy new, give yourself at least 2 weeks to break in, which means wear them hiking and around daily - even to bed! You must also break in old shoes you have not worn in a while or shoes you are borrowing (if you really prefer to not have your own shoes). Wearing shoes that are not broken in or are too small or too big is a HUGE mistake and will make for a very miserable trip for you and everyone in your group. Click here for information about selecting hiking shoes.

Camp shoes such as Crocks or Flip flops are okay, but consider something with toe protection. Watersport shoes such as Keen or Teva are also suggested. 

Hiking socks- we recommend Point 6 but other good brands are Smart Wool and Darn Tough. Test your sock/shoe combinations before you go on your trip.  Also try Super Salve to help prevent blistering. You NEED dry socks for the evenings after a day of hiking in water.

Short and long sleeved shirts that are lightweight, light colored and breathable – recommend wicking material for the colder months, cotton for the shoulder seasons. Tank tops are not recommended when carrying a backpack.

Hiking or workout pants- lightweight, comfortable, quick drying to avoid chaffing. No denim!

Lightweight fleece and outer shell for layering.

Warm sleepwear – thermals suggested and don't forget your knit cap, gloves, and socks for sleeping and at camp.

Rain gear – only when dictated by weather (rarely needed).

Tips and Tricks


Check local weather forecasts prior to the tour (see our additional resources) to help you determine what to wear.


Please remember to always pack essential items such as passport, money, eyewear, medications, a change of clothing (including hiking boots) and other essential items in your carry-on baggage, in case your checked luggage is delayed while you travel.


Layering clothing is essential. Always test your layers before a trip. Your outer layer should fit easily over the inside ones without binding, bunching or otherwise restricting movement.


Make sure your boots are broken in! Bring Moleskin for foot treatment. Also try Super Salve to prevent chaffing and blisters – great for feet, thighs, arms, etc.


Snacks: Bring your favorite non-perishable hiking snacks to eat while hiking. Bring a good mix of salty and sweet!


Biodegradable soap cannot be used in the creeks at Aravaipa Canyon, but can be used in wash basins, sinks, and away from water sources.

*** This checklist is generalized based on season and does not take into account drastic changes in temperature (hot or cold). Shoulder seasons present varying degrees of weather – late and early season cold/warm fronts. JRI recommends you over pack for the trip so you are prepared for any last minute changes in weather. Any items you do not ultimately need for the trip can be left behind in the vehicle on the morning of your trip. ***

Toll Free:877-399-2477