Are you looking for a place to have fun and relax with friends, and family? Hiking can be the best option. When you go on a hike, you get a chance to explore places in nature that obviously you cannot reach by road. While hiking you must leave all your worries and stressors, and other work behind.
If you have not hiked or trekked before, you might feel daunted by the idea. Or you are worried that you might not find your way. Hiking is not a race that needs to be finished, but, it can be known as a low-impact workout that is all about enjoying good company and plunging yourself in the beauty of nature.
Apart from enjoyment, hiking offers many health benefits that include correct weight management and stress reduction. This physical activity helps in reducing the risk of cardiac attacks, hypertension, and diabetes. If you choose to start hiking, you are making the best choice for your overall well-being.
Have a look at the following packing essentials of how to prepare for a day hike. By making small efforts to plan, you can enjoy a safe, comfortable and pleasurable hike.
Hiking Tips and Tricks
A hiking trip is successful when you have the right kind of tools and a positive mindset. The initial step is to know what all to pack.
- What To Pack For Your First Hiking Trip
If you are planning for a short hike, you need not to require much. During your hike, you need to carry everything, but, the lighter you pack, the better it will be. You can include the following as some of the essentials of your hiking list:
- Navigation Tools: Make sure that you carry a map or a GPS for your hiking trip. This will help you in knowing where you are and where you are going. Furthermore, you will get to know about the campsites, emergency exits, water and rest areas. This can further help you in planning other enjoyable activities during the hike.
- Adequate Water: Water is the most important item that must be there on your hiking list. Before the hiking trip, it is important for you to stay hydrated and sip water throughout the day. Regardless of the weather; cold or hot, sufficient water supply should be your priority.
- Clothing and Rain Protection: After a lot of planning, there are chances that the weather changes. You cannot always predict a sudden storm or a heavy rain shower. To solve this kind of surprising problem, you can pack a lightweight poncho so that you are able to manage according to the change in the temperature levels.
- Safety Items: While planning a hike, make sure that you carry a safety kit with yourself. A fire can signal for help, a whistle calls for help and a torch or flashlight will guide you in dark. Also, don’t forget to carry a first aid kit.
- Backpack: Choose a pack that makes you comfortable and doesn’t put a strain on your back. Always wear both shoulder straps and ensure that the backpack rests close to your body. If you specifically want to choose the backpack for hiking, try the padded ones, and adjustable high belts.
- Trash Bag: A zipper plastic bag is right in order to collect all the wrappers and other trash until you get back. Guide your youngers hikers dispose of their trash in a proper way.
- What To Wear On Your Hike
What to wear on your hike will surely have a major impact on your hiking experience. The inappropriate shoes may lead to sore feet. Similarly, heavy pants may be uncomfortable on a hot sunny day. Here are some tips you must consider for a comfortable hiking experience:
- What Pants to Wear
The best pants that you can wear on your hike are the ones that are breathable and help you to stay comfortable according to the type of climate. While hiking, it is always recommended not to wear denim. For shorter hikes, you may choose to wear your favorite pair of jeans, but, for longer ones, these may be uncomfortable. In the winter season, jeans will not serve the chilling cold, whereas, in summer, these absorb water and are slow to dry. Further, these will make you feel hot and your skin might get irritated. In winter, it is always suggested to wear layers to keep yourself warm.
- What Shoes To Wear
Choosing the right kind of shoes is another key for a successful hike. With so many different shoes, how would you choose the right type of hiking shoes? Here are some factors that can be considered:
Terrain: If you plan to hike on mild terrain, light hiking shoes would work just fine. Whereas, if you are going to mountainous or snowy terrain, you may go in for more rugged mountaineering boots.
Material: Synthetic materials like nylon and polyester are breathable, and are light in weight. Full-grain leather boots are heavier and less breathable but are durable at the same time.
- Other Hiking Clothing Tips
Here are some of the clothing related tips:
- Dress up in layers
- Bring a hat
- Wear long socks for additional protection
- Avoid cotton
- Choose light-colored clothing
- How To Plan Your First Hiking Trip
The trace of nature and the fresh feeling of earth beneath your feet, the soothing babbling sound of the creek- are you preparing for a hike?
Planning a hiking trip is very easy if you have plenty of online resources available. Consider the following factors:
- Locating the trail: You will not just start hiking by hopping in a car and searching for a path along the road. You can do the same without wasting time by searching online before hitting the trail. The web is completely loaded with a good number of hiking websites with a lot of useful information.
- Time: Decide the time that you want to spend on your hike. Are you planning for a full day or a half day hike? Also, take into consideration how long it will take to get to the trail and how will elevation affect timing?
- Weather and Time of Year: Make sure that you check the weather forecast before you start hiking. Also, make a plan according to the time and weather. Make sure not to hike new trails in the dark regardless of your skills and fitness levels.
- Characteristics of the trail: Become aware of the track before you start the hike. Go through the maps and consider the length, level of difficulty, elevation, and Keep in mind where you will park and where the restrooms are.
- Other Hiking Tips and Tricks
- Let someone know about your hiking plans
- Only carry the things necessary for a safe, enjoyable and stress-free hike
- Carry sufficient water along
- Hike with a companion or any of your friend
- Carry your cell phone and switch it off in order to conserve battery
Most importantly, don’t bring your worries and work and simply have fun, relax and enjoy the outdoors. Enjoy and hike at your own pace and don’t hurry, as it is the time to connect with your family and friends.