Are you planning a hiking trip with friends or family for the holidays and need to make the experience worthwhile? Then, the first step to accomplishing this mission is to pack the essential items required to make your experience the best it can be. Your safety and comfort are of utmost importance, and depending on the journey and location you will be exploring, the items needed may vary. However, before you pack and go, there are some essential factors you must consider to know how to pack expertly. You need to check the weather for the region you will be hiking in (although it can change at any time of course, having an idea at least is much safer) as well as the conditions surrounding the area (rocky, windy, sunny, cold, etc.). Once you confirm these, you can start with your packing.
Having a checklist will help you to organize yourself better and know what you need to pack. It serves as a guide and it helps to be followed down to the details. We have made it easier for you by giving you 10 of the most essential items that should be on your checklist for a worry-free hiking trip:
- A Rucksack
When going hiking, first thing is first, and that is a rucksack. If you are planning on hiking you will need your hands free, also for comfort but also for safety, so a carry-on bag is not ideal. A backpack will sit efficiently on your back while being able to carry all the other essential things you need for the trip. Ensure that the bag is of an adequate size to hold everything, while also being comfortable.
- Proper Clothing
You never know what the changing weather condition will be like on your hike, and it is not safe to wait until you are under pressure to be scouring for what to wear, as it can go from hot to cold pretty quickly in certain places. Taking a few extra pieces of appropriate and durable clothing will be a wise choice. Also, you may want to consider taking a hoodie, a hat, and sunglasses along.
- Portable Power Source
We all know our batteries hate us sometimes and only crash when we are in dire and desperate situations. With that said, you may want to pack a portable power source to keep your batteries up to communicate with friends and family, or even just to enable you to take some gorgeous pictures on your smartphone.
- Hiking Shoes
These are a must no matter the kind of weather you are expecting in the area. Too often, people plan for cool and dry weather and end up facing the harsh reality of a wet trail. After all, hiking will involve lots of walking and climbing, so again, being comfortable and safe is a must, and that all starts with footwear.
- Navigation Tools
It is possible to get lost while hiking, and you need to get home somehow. Therefore, packing a few navigation tools like a compass and a map is essential. Your navigation tools can also include strings or markers to highlight resting spots.
These items include knives, machetes, and torches. You may need to clear weeds and other debris along the way, and a torch is absolutely essential for most hiking trips. Also, these tools can be handy as a source of protection, depending on where you are going, or just for something as simple as making a sandwich, your knife may be a life-saver.
- First Aid Kit
Hiking often comes with a little injury, especially for first-time travelers. Your first aid kit will come in handy and should have items such as insect repellants, hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol, cotton, duct tape, and bandages.
- Emergency Blankets/Mini Tents
Many people may ask why all these are needed for a day trip, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Are you sure certain conditions will allow you to return the same day? You may want to have what is needed in case you are left stranded and have to spend some extra hours.
We are sure we don’t need to tell you to have enough water to last for at least a day or two when going on a hike, even if it is just a “day hike”. Circumstances happen, and you may get dehydrated along the trail, especially if it is hot.
- Energy Food
Packing foods rich in fiber and carbs will aid in giving you the much-needed boost to keep up on your journey. Going hungry far from home is not a sweet feeling to encounter, and can definitely put a dampener on your trip.
It may seem like a whole lot to take for just a day trip of hiking, but these are the essential items every hiker should travel with in order to make the best out of their hike. Don’t have regrets while on your mission.