So you love the outdoors and want to try your hand at hiking? No harm in that and you don’t have to go all about and invest in expensive gear to try it out. Of course, you will need to plan for things and ensure you pack everything and also take weight into consideration. Remember you will be walking with all of your gear, so be sure you don’t pack everything including the kitchen sink. Certainly, do look at the weather and plan your first hiking trip when it looks like there will be good weather.
But, always remember there are unexpected things that pop up. So be sure to be ready for a quick shower with a raincoat or even a large garbage bag will do in this case, just cut a hole in the bottom for your head. Contractor bags work best as they can go over you and all of your gear at one time.
You don’t have to be a fitness expert with abs of steel to enjoy hiking. For the most part, hiking is just walking with your gear on your back. This gear can be a hiking backpack, but for the first time, any backpack would do really, just make sure that it is comfortable and can hold everything you need.
Get creative and bungee cord in your tent and sleeping bag if you have too. Remember, hiking is not a beauty pageant. And, you want to try it without spending a fortune you will need to think outside of the box. For the first-timer, we recommend a day hike (check also our day hiking checklist), where you won’t need your tent and sleeping bag. This way you can try it but not be submerged into this new experience. Maybe go and set up camp and then plan a day of hiking and sightseeing.
Plan your Hiking Trip
Planning is the most important thing about hiking. You need to plan in order to enjoy your experience. Make sure that you always have a compass, raincoat, and a map. These are the key components that you will need to ensure you have a safe journey.
Also, remember the sun comes up in the East and settles in the West, this little tip has helped 1000s in the past. Whatever happens, don’t panic! If you find yourself lost, don’t panic, stay calm, check the map and your compass and regain your status. Your phone might be good to keep nearby and check yourself into your location so that you can find your camp after wandering. However, do not completely count on that, like many places we go hiking don’t have phone coverage.
Other things you will need to have a successful hiking trip are safe and comfortable shoes. If you don’t own hiking boots, it is okay, just have some appropriate shoes for walking in the woods. This means even tennis shoes will do. But, ensure that your feet are well covered as sometimes you might find yourself in a valley of poison ivy or oak.
Having the proper coverage will protect you. For a more enjoyable experience pack sunscreen and bug repellant, lunch or snacks, toilet paper, and enough water for your trip.