You have planned a great hike and are wondering about what hiking wilderness gear to pack for your journey. Hiking wilderness gear does not need to be expensive; however there are seven pieces that should be considered essential.
Your Backpack – a backpack comes in many different styles and sizes. For a hike your backpack should be lightweight; have pockets for odds and ends; and a place for your water bottles. There are many degrees of waterproofing and many hikers also have a rain cover.
Footwear – for some trails a pair of running shoes will do, however this is not a recommended piece of wilderness gear if you are out in the wild country. If you are hiking along a rocky section or a swampy trail you will need a pair of hiking boots. The hiking boots will protect your feet along with your hiking socks to prevent blisters. Your footwear can be the most important piece of essential gear for your day hike. I love and recommend Vasque hiking boots.
Food and water – high energy snacks such as trail mix, energy bars and a banana along with your light lunch. You will need to carry you dinners and a light camp stove as well. Water is also a must. A lack of hydration will cause cramps and loss of energy as well.
Map and guidebook – you need to know where you are headed so this is also an essential pick of hiking gear. If hiking in a wilderness area it is also recommended you carry a compass and have a basic knowledge on how to use it. Many hikers today are also using a hiking GPSalthough it is not considered an essential piece of hiking gear.
First aid kit – an essential piece of wilderness gear is your first aid kit, someone in your party should carry one on every hike. Your kit should contain materials to treat minor cuts, blisters and burns.
Clothes – depending on the conditions your clothing needs to keep you warm, dry and comfortable. Any outdoor wear is suitable and this can include a wind jacket, rainwear, hiking pants or shorts, long sleeve shirt and sun hat. Also do not forget to pack the sunglasses and sunscreen.
Safety items – a cell phone is handy in case of emergencies. Others recommend a whistle however it is only useful over short distance. A flashlight is recommended in case you are still on the trails at dark.
These hiking wilderness gear items are not essential but will increase your enjoyment:
- Insect repellent is necessary during the black fly and mosquito seasons
- A Digital camera to record your memories
- Some hikers carry binoculars to view the scenery and wildlife
- Hiking poles to take the weight off your feet and assist you on hills
- Swiss army knife is always handy in emergency situation
- Toilet paper
Now that you are all packed for your day hiking with your essential hiking wilderness gear go out and have a wonderful time in the outdoors.