Hiking is a great activity for awesome views and to keep fit and active but it can be dangerous if you aren’t prepared. Here’s a list of things to take hiking to keep yourself safe on your adventures.
WATER – Take plenty of water. You will need lots to stay hydrated.
FOOD – Snacks are essential on longer hikes. Fruit, nuts, muesli bars, sandwiches are easy to take on the go.
SUNSCREEN – Especially at high altitude as you are closer to the sun and more susceptible to burn. Even apply on cloudy days.
SPF LIP-BALM – Protect your lips from the sun with a SPF15+ or more lip-balm.
WATERPROOF JACKET – You never know what the weather will do so having a waterproof layer in your bag is handy. Pocket style jackets fold down to a tiny parcel that won’t take up too much room
PRO TIP – Never walk with your hands in your pockets, if you slip you won’t be able to break your fall.
PHONE – For safety, it is ideal to have a working mobile with you. Sometimes when hiking in remote locations there won’t be phone service so let someone know where you are going and when you expect to be back so they can check in with you.
PLASTIC BAG – If I see rubbish left behind I have to pick it up so I like to leave a plastic bag I’ve found or recycled from something else in my bag incase I need to pick up some trash. It’s helpful to put your own rubbish in too! Always take everything with you when you leave.
CAMERA – It can be a bit of a pain to carry a bulky camera with you on a 6 hour hike but for me it’s essential. I love being able to capture all of the beautiful things I see. Phone camera works well too.
LAYERS – It might be a warm sunny day when you set off but the temperature can drop dramatically as you reach higher altitudes. Take an extra layer to keep you toasty if the weather turns. Look for quality fabric with wicking properties to take hiking.
SUNGLASSES – You have to protect your eyeballs. A full day in the sun can strain or actually burn your eyes. Having a pair of sunnies with high-quality lenses will protect your eyes.
UV protection: There are two types of UV radiation to protect yourself from – UVA and UVB. Finding sunglasses that block 99 to 100% of both UVA and UVB will help to keep your eyes healthy. Wearing cheaper lenses can give you headaches after long periods due to your eyes compensating for distortion.
MAP – Look up your route ahead of time and if it’s on your phone make sure to take a screenshot or download for offline use. I’ve been caught out before when I didn’t have phone service and the trail was poorly signed.
FOOTWEAR – I’ve done my fair share of hikes in vans or even thongs but now I stick to running style sneakers. I haven’t ever had proper hiking boots but it would be something to consider.
FIRST AID – Having a few medical supplies in case of an emergency is a great idea. Something like this is ideal to take hiking as it’s compact but has all the essentials even a compass, whistle & space blanket.
WHISTLE – If you run into trouble when hiking this will make it a whole lot easier to make yourself known to people around you or a rescue party.
LIFESTRAW – Safely drink any water you find with a Lifestraw.
KNIFE/MULTI-TOOL – I’ve never had the use for a knife when hiking but it might come in handy in certain situations.
POWER BANK – To charge your phone, camera, drone, torch etc if you run out of juice.
HAT – My mum’s voice echoes in my head “always wear a hat” and for hiking she’s not wrong!
TOILET PAPER – Some places you will come across public toilets but sometimes the TP is nowhere to be found. If you need to go when out in the wilderness take your paper with you in a plastic bag. Toilet paper takes weeks or months to break down and in the meantime, it looks disgusting.
HAND SANITISER – Especially for after nature calls or before eating. Good hygiene is important so you don’t get sick.
INSECT REPELLENT – In tropical climates where mosquitos are common, repellent is essential especially where there is a risk of malaria.
TORCH – Even if you don’t intend to be out after dark this is great to have with you just in case you get lost and delayed on your return. A head torch is a great option because you’ll have your hands free to use for balance.
FIT WATCH – Not an essential item to take hiking but I LOVE looking at the stats when I’m hiking. It’s also helpful to know not to push yourself too hard.
HEADPHONES – Again this one is not essential and it’s nice to enjoy the sounds of nature but sometimes a song is all your need to get you through a particularly challenging part of a hike.
WATERPROOF BAG – If you are taking electronics a waterproof bag is advisable.
Enjoy your hike!
What do you like to take hiking? Let me know in the comments!0