Unconventional ways of packing lighter with pump supplies

Hi all,

I love minimalist travel -- traveling with my backpack as small and light as possible. I've used a large camping backpack to do a few 4-6 week international trips, and one 6-month trip across SE Asia and China, but my pump supplies always end up taking up a lot of the bag, and keep me from being truly "light." Right now, I can go for 2 weeks at a time with just a small day pack, but even then, my pump supplies take up almost half my pack.

What I'd really like is to be able to take, say, a 2-month international trip with just a day pack. Basically, something like Tim Ferris' backpack in this blog post, but with the volume of my pump supplies minimized in the same way. But I still want the peace of mind of bringing more supplies than I need, as I do now.

Right now, my strategies for shrinking the footprint of my supplies have been pretty simple:

  • removing the supplies from their boxes, keeping them in large plastic bags, and interleaving the reservoirs in the empty spaces left by the infusion set packaging to minimize volume
  • taking vials of test strips and individual lancets out of their boxes
  • strapping my Frio to the outside of my bag (needs to be exposed for the evaporation effect anyway)

I want to take things to the next level, and I suspect someone here has already tried some "unconventional" ways of making pump supplies take up less space. For example, one thing I'm considering:

  • taking my Quick-set infusion sets out of their massive plastic containers and sticking them into the slots of a large pills case (this should take care of the need to protect the needle, but is not necessarily sterile...)
  • storing my OneTouch test strips in a similarly air-tight but less space-wasting container

Anyone have awesome strategies for making your diabetes packing footprint smaller?

Don't ask me. I once got on a plane to Beijing without my basal. Forgot it. My Doc, I'm sure, wanted to slit my throat. I chronically over pack diabetes supplies. I don't like the idea of taking supplies out of sterile packaging. Can't you just take comfort in the fact that your supply pack will always be getting lighter and lighter over time? Where you gonna go? Exciting! Are you bringing just the large camping backpack?

Test strip containers, at least mine, include a built in moisture-absorbing material. So taking them out of their containers risks spoiling them, particularly awkward during travel.

I do like how my bag always shrinks towards the end of a trip... :)

I'm thinking of backpacking down western South America next (Colombia to Argentina). If I can't figure out a way to shrink down my supplies more, I'll probably bring my Osprey Farpoint 55 backpack, plus the small daypack that comes with it. Also considering something in between, around 40 liters, but it still won't truly be a "day pack."