Pack Base Weights
Trailpost was the first pack manager to distinguish between carried and worn quantities without duplicating items and, when we initially launched, the breakdown between carried and worn weight was our primary distinction. However, last week when we released per-item consumption rates it unlocked the most important number in pack planning, the Base Weight. In the update pushed today, base weight is now the primary metric for packs, along with worn, consumable, and total pack weight.
So, what is base-weight? If you’re not familiar with the term, it is the sum of all carried items, minus consumables. It doesn’t include the boots you’re wearing or the food that may vary per trip, it’s just the amount of weight you will start with on your back on any hike. Many hikers have a “Target base weight,” and noted outdoor communities like Backpacking Light, and /r/Ultralight use this number to quickly compare packing plans and make suggestions for how to optimize a packing list to make it lighter.
I hope this design change, enabled by our growing feature set, helps you better understand your packs and how to improve them.
Customize your pack checklist printout
Every pack on Trailpost has a print view which you can use to print out all the items in your pack showing quantities and a handy check box for real-world packing. One complaint about this view was that different people wanted different information on their printouts and not everyone was happy with the defaults provided.
Well, starting today you can now configure the pack and item-level data you want to display on your printout. Just click the Settings (Gear) button in the top right and Trailpost will present you with check boxes for each piece of data that it can display in the printout. As you make changes, the print preview below will refresh in real-time.
Lots of other design, usability, and performance updates
In addition to the significant changes, this week’s release is comprised mostly of improvements to the current feature set. Some of the things I’ve included are:
- I’ve updated the “Add pack items” screen to work better on small screens, and significantly improved performance on mobile devices.
- I’ve redesigned user-related pages (profile, packs, locker) to be more functional. The header now takes up considerably less screen real-estate, improving mobile usability the most.
- Trailpost now has a prettier 404/Not Found page, something you should hopefully never see.
- I have added tooltips to various screen elements that benefit from the additional information, such as buttons with only an icon. This change is focused mostly on increasing usability for Trailposters who may use assistive technologies due to vision impairment.
Along with that, there are dozens of other small design changes, performance improvements, and other minor usability enhancements that I hope will enhance your experience using Trailpost to plan your next adventure.