Julie “Stopwatch” Urbanski

Julie Urbanski
Julie Urbanski


Ultralight backpacking started for me when I struggled under a 40 pound pack on my first thru-hike, the Pacific Crest Trail in 2007, and I knew there had to be a way to enjoy the trip more with less stuff. On every ensuing thru-hike, including the Appalachian Trail in 2011, the Colorado Trail in 2012, and then the Continental Divide Trail in 2013, I’ve focused on carrying gear that was lighter and served more than purpose. I simply carry less stuff and have enjoyed myself more and more.

I feel lucky to have seen so many unique, beautiful, remote parts of the US on foot, under my own power, and I love that I’ve shared that experience with so many other hikers just as excited to throw their minds and bodies into challenging, rewarding adventures. I’ve also been able to share my stories with the greater community through self-published books about my thru-hikes, allowing me to connect with so many people who share in a passion for backpacking.


Home: Seattle, Washington

Age: 33

Website: Urbyville

My Favorite Pack: The G4. It’s like a good relationship: straightforward, no b.s., and uncomplicated. It’s a standout pack being in the featherweight class yet holds as much poundage as other packs twice its weight.

I Never Hit the Trail Without: My Patagonia Houdini jacket and wind pants. Combined they weigh less than 7 ounces, scrunch down to the size of a tennis ball, and offer an amazing amount of wind protection and warmth on chilly mornings and changes in weather patterns.


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