10 Essential tips for hiking
Hiking is an fantastic and enjoyable way of working out, people say it gives hikers peace and a good way to clear the mind. It allows people to relax in the great outdoors, hiking is an outdoor activity that gives you pleasure and enjoyment.
Its nothing like spending a few hours on a treadmill or the pavement, hiking takes a lot more, it will throw obstacles at you, with it doing this it makes it so enjoyable. Use these top 10 essential tips on hiking for beginners for your first steps of hiking.
1. Be smart and chose a suitable trail for yourself
Find the right hike a bit smaller than the normal distance you can walk on level ground. To get the right time needed to hike a trail, figure out a pace of 2 miles per hour. Next check the elevation changes and add an hour to you guessed hiking time for every 1000 feet of gain. After you have been hiking a few times, you will have a better understanding for what distance and elevation changes you can handle.
2. Remebering the trail.
When you find your trail, get a map of the area and make yourself familiar with it. There are many useful ways to find information. Find out if the trail is looped, or if you will have to backtrack on yourself. Take note of any dangerous trails or trails where you could get lost very easily. Also, you could find a good lunch spot to take a rest like a lake or a peak point with a view.
3. Check the weather report.
When the time comes to going on your hike, and by this, I mean a few hours before or maybe even a day, check the weather report. This will give you this will give you knowledge of how to dress and what you may need to pack. If the weather is not what you expected, it will give you the chance to make any changes instead of being hit with a surprised out on your hike.
4. Inform someone about where it is your going.
It’s important to let someone know where you will be going, this someone needs to know what time to be expecting you back and when to call for help. this could be a few hours later then you had planned to be finished, amazing views or perhaps a sore ankle caused a delay.
An alternative way is to have a SPOT tracker, which allows you to be found by satellite. One caveat, devices like the SPOT are not for personal use and should only be used as an emergency backup.
5. 10 essential items to pack
These top 10 essentials to have is not only a list of items it’s a list essential and they are called essentials for a good reason. These are a must to pack to stay safe in the outdoors, including facing a overnight. Depending on the length of your hike, take less or more. For a example, on a short hike near services, a emergency blanket should be fine. However, a winter hike would require something more extensive. Here are the 10 essentials:
- Navigation (compass and map)
- Sun Protection (sunscreen and sunglasses)
- Insulation (extra clothing)
- Illumination (torch/headlight)
- First aid kit
- Fire (lighter/waterproof matches)
- Repair kit and tools
- Nutrition (extra food)
- Hydration (extra water)
- Emergency shelter (tent)
This list may seem long, but once you have adjusted it to your hike, it won’t be so bad. most of these items are what you have have lying around your home.
6. Shoes and socks.
Irritated and sore feet can make the hike very unpleasant. Get yourself a pair of good pair of hiking shoes and socks. No need for heavy leather boots, there are a lot of other options available that are also comfortable. Also, make sure you get wool or synthetic socks NO COTTON! As well as a pack of plasters just in case.
7. Dress for success
When your footwear is taken care of, dressing in the right gear to ensure comfort on your hike is key. Skip anything cotton, it gets wet and stays like that making you feel clammy and can cause you to be uncomfortable. Instead use synthetics. To change for temperature and weather changes, wear layers that you can add on or take off as when needed. Last but not least, pack an extra layer to what you think you will need, preferably something that will block wind also.
8. Keep everything light
Ok, now that I’ve told you what you need to pack, I’m going to inform you to keep your backpack as light as you can. This means picking the lightest of every item on the list. For example, pack a decent sizes bottle of water instead of the big liter one you buy in your local shop.
9. Take your time
Once you are on the hiking trail, you will feel like storming ahead like a hiking pro champ. However, this will not do you justice at the end of the day, you must pace yourself. Stay at a pace you can maintain throughout the day, it may feel boring and slow but after a few miles onwards ands upwards, you will be glad you saved your energy.
10. Respect the Area
These amazing and breath taking hiking paths we enjoy so much will only stay that way if we respect and take care of them and look after them. It’s down to the people who loves the outdoors to take care of our natural places of peace.