Are you backpacking for the first time? You must be excited to explore the world out there. Are you geared up? No? Check out this packing guide, and you will be primed to camp out there!
1.Get a Gear Checklist – A checklist is a collection of all the important travel gears that you require for your own safety and comfort. Check out the 10 basic must-haves for hikers.
- Maps and compass for routing.
- Extra clothing to protect yourself from the fluctuating weather.
- Sunglasses and sunscreen lotions.
- Lights to lead you in dark.
- First-aid kit for emergency.
- Fire-starter. Carry them in water-proof packs.
- Food and some extra ration for emergency.
- Extra water to keep yourself hydrated.
- Portable tents for emergency shelter.
2. Acquire the Gears – It’s useless to purchase expensive bags and tents for a couple of days. Consider borrowing or renting it.
3. Add Small Comforts (Optional) – You can easily pack small non-heavy comforts like sleeping bag, toilet paper, camera, a water purifying solution. Just make sure the backpack weighs as much as you can handle – around 30 pounds.
4. Check the Size and Capacity of the Backpack – It should be according to your torso length. Keep the heavy gears close to your shoulder and back.
5. What to Wear – Pack what you actually need. Don’t tempt to cart your entire wardrobe. You have to manage with just a few pairs. Remember; layering is the trick!
- Pack polyester underwear. They dry fast.
- Pack a pair of convertible pants or shorts. Convertible pants are convenient as you can unzipped the lower part of the pant for some extra air and sun.
- Bandanas, buffs, hiking caps will protect your scalp for sun. Apply some sunscreen on your skin that is exposed to sun.
- Don’t miss to pack a rain jacket or vest. An extra insulating layer that will protect you during the chilly hours of the day.
- Choose synthetic or woolen socks that are compatible with your footwear. Sweat-laden cotton socks don’t dry easily.
- For footwear, you can choose hiking shoes, trail runners or traditional backpacking footwear, i.e. full or mid-cut boots. If you are hiking on rocky terrain – Sports shoes will do good. Just make sure they are robust and comfortable.
- Carry dried or frozen food – All you need is 10 minutes and a few cups of boiling water to prepare your meal. Opt for some energy bars, dried fruits, cheese or jerky for snacks. Always protects your food from critters and other animals.
- Communing Gears- You cannot rely on your smart phone network in wild. Think of other options like satellite messengers or personal locator beacons. Carry a portable solar charger to charge the batteries.
Finally, remember to S-T-O-P (Stop-Think- Observe-Plan) in case you lost the trail. If you cannot get back, wait for the rescuers. Be nice to other hikers, creatures and nature. Take deep breathes, relax and engross yourself in the scenic beauty.