Packing can be a real puzzle and most of us always end up bringing way too many things on a trip. But when your name is Antoine Girard, and you're going on a 15–20 days paragliding and hiking trip across New Zealand in full autonomy, you don't have a choice but to be a master at packing light and smart. Here's what's in the Red Bull X-Alps athlete's bag.
Ozone LM5 paraglider
It's the classic paraglider on the market, the same one than I used in the X-Alps race. It's a high-performance yet light wing that allows extremely easy launching and landing phases.
Kortel Kolibri harness and Kolibri bag 80L+20, 800gr with rain cover
This bag has quite a good volume. It's big enough for my needs and lightweight, yet very solid. The harness is made of the same material as the bag. So we have here a harness that is about 1.2kg, but that is extremely solid. We can't leave with material as light as for X-Alps because there are a lot of risks of breaking the gear, and we are trying to be self-sufficient. It's the same for the paraglider. We have a repair kit that can be used for both wings and for the lines as well.
24-Watt solar panel
The idea of the trip is to cross New Zealand in 15–20 days, in complete autonomy. Thus, we have to be self-sufficient for electricity as well, so we need a solar panel powerful enough to charge two cameras, all flight instruments like the Vario GPS tablet, the iPhone 6s Plus – used for navigation and video – as well as the image stabiliser. There are quite a few items to charge, which means we need a big solar panel to be self-sufficient.
Adidas Terrex – GTX Active shell jacket
The Gore-Tex shell is really for rainy days, to try to keep as many things dry as possible. I can even cover the bag a bit with it. New Zealand is a country where it rains a lot, but as far as I understand, the weather is very, very changable and it rains almost every day.
Tenkara fishing rod
We will have food rations for about 10 days, but knowing we will be gone between 15 and 20 days, we'll have to find other sources of food. That's why we're bringing fishing rods. There's a lot of fish in New Zealand, so we hope to be able to eat from what we fish, and what we can find on location. There are actually two fishing rods. The one we see is a fly-fishing one, since there are a lot of places in New Zealand where it's the only authorised type of fishing. And to optimise the weight, I also have a walking stick that can become a reel fishing rod. We don't quite know how it's going to go, so we're going to be a bit in survival mode!