Packing for the Annapurna Circuit Trail

When trekking a long trail, like the Annapurna Circuit, it is important that you are prepared for any weather while also keeping your pack light. Here is a basic list of the necessary items, along with some recommendations. Bare in mind that a pack should never weight more than 30% of your body weight — though this can be adapted to your fitness level.


Necessary Items

  • Backpack and rain cover (at least 40L)

  • Map (1 per group)

  • 2 – 3 shirts

  • 1 warm long sleeve base layer shirt

  • 2 bras (female)

  • 1 rain jacket or shell

  • 1 warm jacket/fleece

  • 1 pair of long underwear

  • 2 pairs of pants (or zip off shorts)

  • 3 pairs of trekking socks

  • Beanie and hat

  • Gloves: Just something light to medium for the early mornings and cold nights (wool is not recommended with the common rainfall)

  • Sturdy, trekking boots
    Scarpa, Asolo, and Vasque are all a good place to start.

  • Trekking Poles
  • Nalgenes or water packs: 4 – 6 liters worth

  • First aid kit
    Include Diamox for altitude sickness, nail clippers, bandages, iodine, tape, etc.

  • Knife

  • Headlamp and spare batteries
    Splurge on a good headlamp. It will be extremely useful and you do not want it to break in the middle of the trail. Aka: Don’t buy a knock off in Thamel.

  • Water purification tablets

  • Towel
    Best if it is a light backpacking one, medium size will do.

  • Toliet paper

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste

  • Deodorant

  • Soap

  • Sunscreen

  • Pads/tampax (female)

  • Zipblock/trash bag – 2 for trash, etc.

  • Sleeping bag
    Not exactly necessary as most places will provide sheets and blankets, but very helpful and it is always your responsibility to be in charge of your safety and warmth. Plus, during high seasons porters can go without blankets if the demand from tourists is too high. Be aware of your choices.


  • Stove or Jetboil with gas

  • Tea bags

  • Cup

  • Granola, dried fruit, power bars, chocolate, and other snacks

  • Medium base layer
    We used thin, but really warm sweaters made by Smart Wool

  • Camera

  • Comb
    Leave the hair brush… too bulky

  • Compass (always recommended “just in case”)

  • Deck of cards

  • Scarf – a large but light one is especially useful for women, when rinsing in public places… Remember, Nepal is a modest culture.

  • Bandana

  • Sandals or flipflops for nighttime (let your feet breathe)

Will Not Need

  • Tent, Cookware, Extensive Amounts of Food
    Part of the trail’s delight is staying in teahouses and getting to know the local people and culture, along with all the other trekkers. Unless you are planning  on diverging from the main road onto primitive side trails none of these or like objects will be necessary.

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