Exploring the wilderness and adventuring on hikes can be both exciting and daunting if you’ve never hiked before. While you can always plan and prepare ahead for what you know, there may be many things you encounter on hikes that you can’t confidently plan for, so doing as much as you can beforehand is always a must to be better prepared for the unexpected.
Hiking tips are about making the most out of your hikes, as well as keeping yourself healthy and safe. Here are the top hiking tips for those who have never done it before.
Practice for Bigger Hikes
If your hiking journey is going to include some serious goals, such as some of the most demanding hiking trails, then you’ll need to start small. Practicing smaller trails that you’re more comfortable with will help you build familiarity and train your body for bigger trails that you can work your way up to.
Always Invest in Quality Gear
You’re going to be depending a lot on your gear for comfortable and confident hikes, so it’s essential you find the best gear for you and your budget. When choosing the right gear, it’s important to compare prices and reviews as well as materials and your own needs. As well as considering gear that can apply for a number of different hikes, you may also need to focus on certain items for specific trails. This could be:
- Hiking sticks for more demanding trails
- A dependable waterproof jacket for trails where rain is likely
- Thermal gear for colder climates
- Sturdy and supportive hiking shoes or boots to protect your feet
- Comfortable hiking clothes
- Plan for Emergencies
If you’re hiking in unknown territory or alone, then it’s essential to always plan for emergencies, as you never know what might happen on long hikes.
This could include what to do in emergency situations, what to do for a light source if you lose track of time, a plan for if you get lost, and knowing how to handle any injuries or illnesses.
Even basic survival skills can be very helpful for peace of mind and skill-building if you’re planning on hiking regularly and for long periods of time. This could include tips for emergency first aid as well as finding access to clean water. You can read this great article from Ready and Armed on what is the best way to purify water?
Tell Someone Where You’re Going
This is especially important if you’re hiking alone, but even if you’re hiking as part of a small group, there’s no harm in letting someone else know where you’re planning to go, and what time you should be expected back. If you’re hiking during your travels, you can let a loved one know back home, or even inform an attendant at your accommodation.
Good hiking etiquette is important to respect other hikers and the environment you’re exploring. Always be sure to pick up litter and try to leave no trace, as well as being respectful with noise and movement. If you’re hiking in a new country, it’s always helpful to check their particular hiking and environment rules.
Stay safe, prepare well and enjoy your hiking journey.