Adventures in hiking…

What Equipment Do I Need to Hike?

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You don’t need a pack mule for a day hike

After logging a few miles day hiking on various trails, we have come to understand why some people get into trouble while hiking.  From wearing flip-flops on rocky trails to not having any water on a hot hike,  many people think trails are a walk in the park.  I wonder how many people who went out on a day hike ended up spending the night in the wilderness?

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If you venture out more than a few miles on a day hike, it doesn’t hurt to bring along some “necessities”.

Here’s our short list:

  • Daypack
  • Hydration bladder or bottle
  • A good pair of hiking shoes or boots
  • Sock liners and merino wool socks
  • Synthetic shirts and pants.  Anything but 100% cotton
  • A hat with a brim
  • Sunglasses
  • The Ten Essentials (listed below)

The Ten Essentials-A list created in the 1930s by The Mountaineers:

  1. Map
  2. Compass
  3. Sunglasses and sunscreen
  4. Extra clothing
  5. Headlamp/flashlight
  6. First-aid supplies
  7. Firestarter
  8. Matches
  9. Knife
  10. Extra food

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Good to have:

  • hiking poles
  • GPS
  • large trashbag – makes good raincoat
  • neckerchief-synthetic
  • portable water filter or water purifier tablets
  • toilet paper, antiseptic wipes.  You never know.
  • duct tape
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Keep going higher…

Generally on day hikes, we take more than we need.  More water, more snacks and a portable stove to brew that cup of celebratory tea at the summit.   For those extended backcountry trips, every ounce counts so we use a checklist and carry only what we need with a few backup items like lighters, batteries and spare socks.  Some gear buying tips-spend the money on shoes and a good pack.  Research the gear on the web and read the reviews.

This is a nice GPS locator that I use: SPOT 2 Satellite GPS Messenger –

Bottom line, start with the ten essentials, you can’t go wrong.    

2 responses

  1. Pingback: O M G Shoes!! How to pick your hiking shoes. | Ginger and Vanilla

  2. Pingback: Tip: Before an extended hike, do a shakedown with all your equipment. | Take a Long Hike

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