If you’re a fan of adventure, it may be time to put hiking on your bucket list. Hiking gives you the opportunity to reconnect with nature, partake in some exercise, and to explore unique parts of the world.
Though most people will want to jump right in and get to the trails, hiking has some risks. Luckily, there are some things you can pack to help you prepare for any unexpected events. Here are 8 essentials you’ll need to pack for your next hiking trip.
A Map and Compass
When going hiking, we highly recommend that you go the traditional way of navigating rather than relying on newer technology.
Though GPS makes everyday navigation easier, there are certain parts of your trail where you’ll lose reception. It’s also possible that your phone battery will could out. When this happens, you’ll be happy you brought a compass and map.
Pay attention to your surroundings and correlate where you’re at from what you see on the map. Know where you’re going ahead of time and, if possible, mark your trail. If you’re a beginner hiker we suggest bypassing the complex trails to avoiding becoming lost.
Most importantly, have patience. There will be times that the sun will set and you haven’t reached your destination. When this happens, set up a camp, enjoy the night under the stars, and continue your journey the next day.
A Hiking pole
Not everyone will need a hiking pole, but if you’re going on a more challenging trail or you’ll be on a specific path for days, you might want to consider bringing one along.
Hiking poles will help you keep your balance and come in handy on rough trails.
If you’re going on a winter hike, they’ll come in handy to poke through snow and know how deep the step is in front of you. The same applies when you’re passing through a stream.
If you’re hiking on a trail where wild animals live, your hiking pole can come in handy too. You can create sounds by striking the poles, which will alert the animals and hopefully have them run away.
A First Aid Kit
It’s undeniable that hiking can pose a risk, which is why a first aid kit is essential. Below are some things that your bag should contain:
- Antiseptic wipes
- Antibacterial Ointment
- Medical Tape
- Blister Treatment
- Pain Medication
- Insect sting treatment
- Allergy meds
- Safety pins
Hiking can be exhausting, and you’ll likely break a sweat. Since you’re releasing fluid from your body, you’ll need to stay hydrated.
How much water you need to bring would depend on the duration of your hike. Ask your guide or scan the guidebook on how long the trek is. This way you’ll be able to estimate how much water you’ll need.
Food to Fuel Your Body
Hiking can burn a lot of calories, and you’ll need to replenish that energy.
Bringing the right food can be a challenge, especially if you’re going on a multi-day hike. We suggest bringing frozen pre-packed foods with you. Ones that will satisfy your hunger and will replenish your energy. You can also bring some fruits and vegetables that will last throughout your hike.
The sun can be extremely damaging when you’re hiking, especially when you’re high up in the mountains and the rays are hitting you directly.
So, don’t forget to protect yourself from the heat. Without sun protection, you might end up with a sunburn, and nobody wants that.
Firestarter and Matches
You’ll need firestarters and matches if you’re going on a hike for a few days at a time and need to camp through the night and cook meals.
Don’t make things harder for yourself than you need to. Using a match to start a fire is the simplest way to start a fire. Just make sure that you put out the fire when you’re all done.
If you’re hiking in rainy weather, make sure to pack your rain gear. Bring rain compatible shoes, a rain hat, and by all means, don’t wear cotton clothing. Protect your gadgets and bags, and buy some waterproof cases.
It’s essential to check weather conditions before going on a hike so you’ll be able to prepare everything you need.
Whether you’re going on your first hiking adventure or your hundredth adventure, make sure that you pack these eight essentials in your backpack. The best thing you can do is be prepared. Aside from ensuring your safety, being prepared allows you to enjoy your adventure without worry.