Real freedom lies in the wilderness, which is why we owe it to ourselves to get out and about regularly to enjoy the real world. However, If you’re going on a hike, no matter how experienced you might be, it’s important to take the time to pack right before you set off. Rushed ventures only end up with a lot of issues down the track – we all learned that from our little friend Bilbo Baggins. Being prepared is important for safety, but will also help you maximize the enjoyment of your trip. Read on to find out how to pack right for your next hike.
First Things First
To be able to pack right for your next hike, you first need a good quality, sturdy backpack, so that is item number one that you need. The size of the backpack you should get all depends on the length of time that you are going to be hiking for, your own size, and the amount of weight that you are capable of carrying. However, a 40L backpack is generally a good size to go for, in that it will be able to fit all the essential gear you need for a day or two-day hike. However, if you plan on heading out for longer than that, you will most likely need a bigger pack.
The second essential item that you need is a good quality torch. The last thing you want is to find yourself on a dark night, fossicking around and trying to get your bearings in an unfamiliar place, or simply not being able to see once you’ve set up camp and need to prepare your things. A torch will save you and whatever your needs, it’s easy to buy torches online.
Protect Your Feet
People wear a variety of footwear while hiking, and even though minimalist sandals can be good for your feet and alignment, they do lack the protection from the elements and wildlife that lace-up boots can offer. So, getting a good pair of quality hiking boots is recommended, especially in Australia where you need to protect against snakes. Good hiking boots aren’t cheap, but if you invest in quality, they will last you many miles of hefty hiking and will look after your feet and ankles over the rough terrain. If you’re buying a new pair of boots before setting off on your hike, it’s also important to break them in and mould them to your feet before hitting the trail. Don’t just take them out of the box at the beginning of your hike, you’ll end up with blisters.
Sleep Under the Stars
If you’re planning to camp out overnight on your hike, then you are obviously going to need something to sleep in. Quality and warmth are important when it comes to sleeping bags and the best ones are going to be extremely warm while also being lightweight, which is exactly what you want. It might feel like a good idea to save a few bucks in the shop, but when you’re out on top of a mountain and the temperature drops and you snuggle up to bed, you’re going to hate yourself if you don’t have a quality sleeping bag to help you get a good night’s rest so you’re fresh and ready for the next day’s adventure (and so you don’t freeze all night!).
The main point to remember is that quality is key when you’re investing in hiking gear. It may cost you more up front, but it will last you much longer, even a lifetime, and provide you with years of comfort and safety out in the wilderness on the trail. Happy hiking!