What to Pack for a Hiking Trip

Packing for a hiking trip can be very tricky, especially if this is not something you do very often. Many people feel tempted to bring a lot of things with them thinking that they might need them throughout the trip. However, if there is one think you have to know about hiking trip is: if you think you might need an item, you’ll end up not using it at all. It’s important to only bring things you know for certain you will need.

 

photo credit: diloz via photopin cc

photo credit: diloz via photopin cc

 

First of all, you need to figure out what type of luggage to bring. Backpacks are the preferred piece of luggage for a hiking trip, but there are so many to pick from, which can make it difficult to know which the best one is. Simply pick a backpack that has an appropriate size for your height and weight. There’s no use in picking a heavy backpack if you know you’re not strong enough to carry it. Also, make sure the backpack you settle on is waterproof to protect everything you’ve packed from rain or snow. In Luggage retails some great backpacks for hiking, so check out their website if haven’t found one already.

Once you’ve picked your backpack, it’s time to decide what to fill it with. However, before you start looking for your favourite sweatshirt, make sure you place the heavier items on top to distribute the weight properly and avoid putting pressure on your back. Place your sleeping bag, fleece, and rain gear at the bottom of the backpack. Not only will you protect your back, but you’ll also protect them if rainwater gets in your backpack through the zipper. After that, add some extra clothing, your cooking utensils, food, and the tent body. Some backpacks have a special compartment for the tent, but in case yours doesn’t, simply make sure the heavy tent is as far from your back as possible. Also, don’t get a large tent if you’re travelling in a small group. A tent for two people is usually enough.

Furthermore, make sure you bring other essentials such as a map, compass, knife, flashlight (with extra batteries), and matches. Place these items in the outside pocket of your backpack for easy access, since you’ll need them to help you find your way. Also, many often forget to bring trash bags for the campsite, so make sure you pack a couple. You can also use trash bags to isolate wet and dirty clothes from the clean ones. Finally, bring a small first aid kit with enough items to help you treat injuries, bug bites, and various allergies.

As far as food is concerned, the first thing you need to know is that you can reduce food weight and volume by packing dehydrated meals. Don’t bring raw meat and heavy vegetables on long trips. Instead, consider bringing oatmeal, nuts, granola bars, dried fruit, crackers, sausages, hard cheese, instant food/soup and ramen. These foods have many calories and proteins which will help you get through your trip. Also, bringing water is a must, so pack some big water bottles for your trip. Look at your map and figure out how far apart the water stops are. That way, you won’t bring too many heavy bottles with you and you can refill the ones you already have. Don’t forget to pack some purification tablets or water filters when you refill to avoid any problems.

Finally, don’t go hiking by yourself, especially if you’re fairly new to it! Not only is it safer to travel with a companion, but you can also pack together and evenly distribute the things you plan on bringing with you on your trip. You can bring more food and a bigger first aid kit to use during emergencies.

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