Consider your gear’s point of failure
It is usually worth the extra money–or the extra research–to find truly exceptional gear. The last thing you want is to be out in the middle of nowhere and find that your shoulder strap has ripped clean from your pack. Or, that you snagged your sleeping bag on a dead branch and tore a hole in it. Or, found your tent has decided it didn’t want to stand up anymore. This becomes a significant issue on gear that is indispensable, and too big or too expensive to take backups.
I know of no backpacker who is willing to take an extra tent on the off-chance that their tent will fail them.
There’s really a couple of different ways to face this problem. This is certainly one reason why backpackers all over the world make sure to take a meaningful amount of duct tape. Duct tape is the universal quick fix tool. Almost, universal.
This is also why it’s essential that you take a sewing kit. You’re not likely to need to sew the batting in your grandmother’s quilt, but you are very likely to need to repair something on your backpack, your tent, or any other piece of gear that split down a seam.
Of course, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. You need to know your gear well enough to understand where it might fail given how you were using it. It doesn’t matter the quality of the gear, it can easily fail given how demanding we are on it.
Do you understand the points on your backpack which have the chance of ripping? Do you know where your tent might fail in a rainstorm? Sometimes it’s not a matter of believing the gear will fail, but just being mindful of exactly where it could.
I went on a long backpacking trip recently, and realized that I had packed my bags so heavily that the true strain on the pack was coming as I would throw it onto my back. Understanding that extra strain, I became more mindful of how I hefted it off the ground. Consequently, it never gave me any trouble, and still looks like it would survive many hundred more miles.
Sometimes it’s just a little bit of thought, some critical thinking, and a little common sense. If you take care of your gear, your gear will take care of you.