Welcome to the Jaypoints Substack!

Hi, I’m Jay Parker! Exactly what rhymes with Jay? As I learned in elementary school, a whole heck of a lot of words, and some choice ones too! But there weren’t many that were really sticking during the creative process of naming this blog. I was thinking of calling it “Ultralight Jay” but that conjured up thoughts of travel trailers! Better to go with something that doesn’t prematurely channel one’s thoughts and piques curiosity instead. I landed on “Jaypoints,” like waypoints but with a Jay!

World traveling as an older adult with all kinds of aches and pains, I’ve needed to adopt a smart minimalist style. My body is worn out but my wanderlust is as strong as ever. Shouldering a small mountain of gear in a large backpack is neither feasible nor desirable these days and is especially off-putting having handled heaps of gear on weekend warrior outings since my late teenage years. A full-time desk job as an environmental-mechanical engineer at a fixed facility throughout most of my adulthood has fueled my lust to see more of the world beyond my own backyard. And since I now fully understand why the word “tired” makes up a large part of “retired,” I need these late ventures to be really energy efficient! And that’s why my total target baggage weight for international travel has shrunk to less than 10 pounds. Yes, single digits have made all the difference, taking “less is more” to a new level.

Also, being on a fixed budget in retirement, I can’t afford great luxury. Fortunately, reflecting back, I’ve found that the greatest moments of my travels were either free or very cheap. I discovered that lavish budgets made my travels more comfortable, but ironically high spending tended to isolate me from those richer travel experiences. It seemed the more I spent, the more I had to remind myself as to where I even was; everything started to look more or less the same. Plus, I delightfully discovered that the less I pay, the longer I can be away. Yay! Now that’s a worthy rhyme…

My goal for this blog is to share my travel tips, experiences, musings, feelings, and other thoughts to hopefully inspire some of you to get out and travel in spite of getting older. We just need to do it smarter and lighter! From this renewed life of exploration, I’m here to help you travel the world in minimalist style.

More About Jay Parker

Jay Parker is a Northern California native. Having lived in such “Jaypoints” as Berkeley, Davis, and Redding, he now calls Truckee his home since moving there 20 years ago with his family. Located in the Lake Tahoe region of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California, the Town of Truckee is the only spot where Jay’s felt compelled to drive in a permanent stake. Formulative to his appreciation of ultralight traveling were a few decades of countless weekend warrior trips which were often intense, gear-heavy, and exhausting ventures to climb, ski, kayak, bike and hike various pockets of the western United States all while raising a family and juggling a full-time career as a professional engineer. Now what he loves most is ditching all the gear and simply jumping over the back fence to explore the world in featherweight style!

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Waypoints but with a Jay. Traveling the world beyond Truckee with Jay Parker in minimalist ultralight style.


Minimalist Ultralight Traveler