What To Pack For A Hiking Trip Jun 7, 2017 by James (Awesome Escape Blogger)
If you want to get out outside and go on a hike, then you need to understand what to bring with you. It can be a challenge to carry the right load that provides everything you need for a fun and safe hiking experience without taking on extra weight that decreases your enjoyment. Keep in mind that it is always advisable to travel light, so carry what you need and don’t bring frivolous accessories. Here is what we recommend for your next hiking adventure.
What you go with here depends on the weather, but you will always need real hiking boots, socks, raingear, and bug repellent. If you are heading out over the winter, then an appropriate jacket would be a great point to start. The summer is blisteringly hot, so purchase lighter fabrics but you will still need boots and socks. Do not forget a pair of sleeping bags and leggings to keep the insects away at night (If you are spending the night outside).
Food and Water
This should be a no-brainer, because nobody wants to be caught on a long hike with nothing to quell those rumblings and you absolutely need water. Bring a large stainless steel water bottle, extra water in your pack, and even a way to purify fresh water if you’re going out for multiple days. Always plan ahead and carry extra amounts just in case you get stranded for longer than you might have thought possible. Dry, pre-cooked, or canned food is always the better option just in case the weather does not allow you to light a fire outside.
Compass, Maps, and GPS
While you might be very aware of your surroundings in the city, it is not uncommon for people to end up in the wrong place after losing their way on a hike. Inclement weather or old trails can mislead even experienced hikers. A simple compass will help you out when you need to find your way, but a real map is the perfect tool if you need intricate geographic details. Always keep your map in a water-proof case. While a ruggedized phone or GPS unit can be a useful tool, don’t rely on your batteries and bring a compass and map just in case.
It is going to be searing hot out there, particularly in the summer. You have to feel comfortable in order to enjoy your hike, so do not leave the tools that help with the heat at home. Grab a good sunscreen, a comfortable hat, and a pair of sunglasses before you head out. If you have a SPF-rated lip balm, that’s bound to come in handy as well.
Never forget to throw into your backpack a knife or multitool, a way to start a fire (always practice fire safety and check local regulations), a whistle, and a pair of flashlights or headlamps. Just to be sure, also pack an extra case of batteries. Be sure to put lamps as near to you as possible—you might need to reach them in the dark.
First Aid Kit
Hiking comes with the attendant bumps and bruises here and there. If wounds do not get attended to for long when you are out there, then infections set in. To offset this eventuality, find a padded case or lunchbox and equip it with painkillers, disinfectant, basic medication, bandages, band aids, and even some methylated spirits.
With these essential items you can pack safely (and light) before a hiking trip. Now get out there and go on an adventure.